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Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ)

The Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ; Rutter, Bailey, Lord, & Berument, 2003) is an instrument for screening for autism in individuals over the age of 4 with a mental age over 2 years.

Overview

The SCQ contains 40 yes/no items, which can be completed in less than 10 minutes by a parent or other caregiver. The SCQ has two forms: the Lifetime Form, which focuses on behavior throughout development, and the Current Form, which focuses on behavior during the most recent three months. The instrument yields a Total Score for comparison to defined cutoff points.

Summary

Author (yr) Age Range (yrs) Method of Administration/Format Approx. Time to Administer Subscales
Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ) Rutter, Bailey, Lord, & Berument (2003) [formerly the Autism Screening Questionnaire (ASQ)] Over 4

40-item parent questionnaire

Additional Lifetime Form that examines developmental history

Yields total score with cutoff points
Less than 10 min.

Reciprocal Social Interaction; Language and Communication; Stereotyped Patterns of Behavior

Availability: Western Psychological Services, http://bit.ly/1mpzWXU

Research

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Brooks, Benson, 2013 69 - Age Range: 18-40 years Sensitivity and specificity diagnosing adults with ASD

With cutoff score of 15, sensitivity of 0.71 and specificity of 0.77.

Cutoff of 15 Sensitivity = 0.71;

Specificity = 0.77

Cutoff of 12, Sensitivity = 0.86;

Specificity = 0.60

Internal consistency of total scale: alpha = 0.87

Social interaction subscale: alpha = 0.83

Restrictive repetitive behavior subscale: alpha = 0.81.

These three were “good.”

Communication subscale: alpha = 0.48 – poor.

SCQ shows promise as a measure for adults with ID, with uncertain early developmental history.

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Oosterling, Rommelse, deJonge, Van der Gag, Swinkels, Roos, Visser, & Buitelaar (2010) 208 - Age Range: 20-40 months Sensitivity and specificity

The SCQ was not satisfactory at accurately identifying high-risk toddlers and resulted in a number of false positives for toddlers with symptoms of ASD.

Cutoff > 11 Sensitivity = .92; Specificity = .26

Cutoff > 12 Sensitivity = .88; Specificity = .35

Cutoff > 15 Sensitivity = .76; Specificity = .58

Cutoff > 22 Sensitivity = .29; Specificity = .86

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Snow & Lecavalier (2008) 82 - Age Range: 18-70 months Sensitivity Specificity Internal Consistency

Cutoff of 13: Sensitivity = 0.85; Specificity = 0.40

Cutoff of 15: Sensitivity = 0.70 ; Specificity = 0.52

Internal consistency: Total Score = 0.81; reciprocal social interaction = 0.70; communication = 0.47; restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior = 0.76.

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Allen, Silove, Williams, & Hutchins (2007) 81 - Age Range: 2-6 years Discriminative validity

Cutoff of 11:

Good for screening in 3- to 5-year olds; Sensitivity = 100%

Specificity = 62%;

poor in 2- to 3-year-olds

Sensitivity = 93%

Specificity = 58%
Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Chandler, Charman, Baird, Simonoff, Loucas, et al. (2007) 255 - Age Range: 9.8-14.5 years Discriminative validity

AU and non-AU:

Sensitivity = 0.88

Specificity = 0.72

AU and non-AU:

Sensitivity = 0.90

Specificity = 0.86

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Wiggins, Bakeman, Adamson, & Robins (2007) 37 - Age Range: 1.5-3.75 years Discriminative validity

Cutoff 15:

Sensitivity = 0.47

Specificity = 0.89

Cutoff 11:

Sensitivity = 0.89

Specificity = 0.89

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Eaves, Wingert, Ho, & Mickelson (2006) 151 - Age Range: 5 years (mean) Discriminative validity

Sensitivity = 0.71 Specificity: Preschool clinic = 0.62 AU clinic = 0.53

Author (yr) Sample Size Topic(s) Addressed Outcome
Witwer & Lecavalier (2007) 49 - Age Range: 8.3 years (mean) Discriminative validity Concurrent validity

Sensitivity = 0.92

Specificity = 0.62

r = 53

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