Volume 34, Issue 4 (2005)
Direct Observational Assessment During Test Sessions and Child Clinical Interviews
Stephanie H. McConaughy
Abstract. Test sessions and child clinical interviews offer opportunities for direct observations of children’s behavior in controlled settings. Moreover, standardized instruments for test session and interview observations offer more reliable and valid assessment methods than do anecdotal reports. This article reviews characteristics and psychometric properties of three standardized instruments for test session or interview observations: the Guide to Assessment of Test Session Behavior(GATSB; Glutting & Oakland, 1993), the Test Observation Form (TOF; McConaughy & Achenbach, 2004), and the Observation Form for the Semistructured Clinical Interview for Children and Adolescents (SCICA;McConaughy & Achenbach, 2001). Broader issues regarding situational specificity of children’s behavior and need for multi-method assessment are also discussed,along with the advantages and limitations of standardized test session and interview observations.
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