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versão impressa ISSN 0120-4157


CANO, Luz Helena; ACOSTA, María Natalia  e  PULIDO, Adriana. Adaptation to Spanish and criterion validity of a scale for the screening of emotional and behavioral problems in early childhood. Biomédica [online]. 2018, vol.38, suppl.1, pp.114-126. ISSN 0120-4157.


Early identification of emotional and behavioral risk in children can contribute to the development of strategies that promote mental health from early childhood. In Colombia, we do not count with a validated screening tool for emotional and behavioral problems in this population.


To identify, adapt, and establish evidence for the criterion validity of a screening tool for emotional and behavioral problems in less than 6-year-old children.

Materials and methods:

We selected the Early Childhood Screening Assessment (ECSA) after a literature review and expert consensus and then we undertook its linguistic adaptation. For criterion validity, we used the Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) comparing the scale with the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL 1,5-5). The sample included 206 caregivers of children between 1.5 and 6 years of age from the city of Tunja and the municipality of Sopó.


The ECSA showed a good correlation with the total t-score of the CBCL 1,5-5 (Spearman rho= 0,75, p<0,01). The scale showed a sensitivity of 86% and a specificity of 82% at a cut-off point of 24.


In this first adaptation to Spanish and validation study of the ECSA scale, we found good sensitivity and specificity values for the screening of emotional and behavioral problems in early childhood.

Palavras-chave : behavior; emotions; child preschool; behavior rating scale; mass screening; validation studies.

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