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NASP Home NASP Publications School Psychology Review (SPR) Volume 8 Issue 4 (1979) Empirical Classification of Children'...
Volume 8, Issue 4 (1979)

Empirical Classification of Children's Behavior Disorders: Progress Based on Parent and Teacher Ratings

pp. 355—369

ABSTRACT: Despite the diversity of instruments, subject samples, and methods of data collection and analysis, studies using parent and teacher ratings have corroborated several syndromes that characterize disturbed children. In order to be useful in making decisions regarding children, these syndromes must be translated into categories for differentiating among individuals. To date, empirical classifications of disturbed children have been limited primarily to two global categories representing Overcontrolled vs. Undercontrolled syndromes. A promising strategy for deriving more differentiated categories involves the use of cluster analysis. Cluster analysis has been used in one program of research to identify groups of children having similar patterns of reported problems, and these groups have been found to differ in social competence, school performance,prognosis, and response to treatment. Nevertheless, such empirically based taxonomies will have little impact on the delivery of services to disturbed children and youth, unless they are made available in more useful form and their advantages can be demonstrated to practitioners.

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