DISC Predictive Scales (DPS)

Factor Structure and Uniform Differential Item Functioning Across Gender and Three Racial/Ethnic Groups for ADHD, Conduct Disorder, and Oppositional Defiant Disorder Symptoms

Published in: Psychological Assessment, 2015

Posted on RAND.org on April 29, 2015

by Margit Wiesner, Michael Windle, David E. Kanouse, Marc N. Elliott, Mark A. Schuster

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The factor structure and potential uniform differential item functioning (DIF) among gender and three racial/ethnic groups of adolescents (African American, Latino, White) were evaluated for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), conduct disorder (CD), and oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) symptom scores of the DISC Predictive Scales. Primary caregivers reported on DSM–IV ADHD, CD, and ODD symptoms for a probability sample of 4,491 children from three geographical regions who took part in the Healthy Passages study (mean age = 12.60 years, SD = 0.66). Confirmatory factor analysis indicated that the expected 3-factor structure was tenable for the data. Multiple indicators multiple causes (MIMIC) modeling revealed uniform DIF for three ADHD and 9 ODD item scores, but not for any of the CD item scores. Uniform DIF was observed predominantly as a function of child race/ethnicity, but minimally as a function of child gender. On the positive side, uniform DIF had little impact on latent mean differences of ADHD, CD, and ODD symptomatology among gender and racial/ethnic groups. Implications of the findings for researchers and practitioners are discussed.

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