Category: Child / Adolescent - Anxiety
The Spence Children’s Anxiety Scale (SCAS; Spence, 1998) has been developed various language versions and disseminated among diverse countries. Nowadays, more than 30 language versions are available (Spence, 2008). In line with previous studies, we have investigated anxiety symptoms in Japanese children and adolescents aged 8-15 years old by use of the SCAS Japanese version (Ishikawa et al., 2009). However, there is no empirical study which reports psychometric properties of the SCAS for high school students. Given diversity of school courses in Japan, it is important to investigate anxiety symptoms of the age of group. This study examined anxiety symptoms of Japanese high school students from general, vocational, and part-time schools.
Participants for this study were high school students (aged 15 to 18 years old) selected from three public high schools. The first school is s full-time school with two general courses: general (N = 608) and general advance (N = 150). The second is a vocational school has six courses, agriculture (N = 94), business (N = 111), commerce (N = 111), electricity (N = 92), engineering (N = 102), and social welfare (N = 76). The third is a part-time school consists of both daytime (N = 126) and nighttime courses (N = 50). In total, 1,500 (740 boys and 760 girls) completed the SCAS Japanese version consists of six subscales; separation anxiety disorder, social phobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic attack and agoraphobia, physical injury fears, and generalized anxiety disorder.
Results and Discussion
First, confirmatory factor analysis with an unweighted least-squares estimation (ULS) method revealed that the SCAS has a 6-factor structure corresponding with the DSM defined anxiety symptoms, GFI = 0.97, AGFI = .97, RMR = 0.037. The result supports that factor structure in Japanese high school students is consistent with the original study and that of younger sample in Japan.
Second, the internal consistency was .92 and the correlation between the SCAS and the DSRS was .55 (p < .001) that was comparable with the previous studies. MANOVAs revealed significant grade and gender effects, p < .001, p < .05, respectively. Significant gender effects were found for total score and all subscales (All ps < .001) whereas a significant grade effect was only found for social phobia, p < .01.
Finally, significant course effects were found for the total score as well as all subscales after controlling gender and grade effects, p < .01. Post hoc analyses generally indicated that students in two part-time courses showed more anxiety symptoms than those in general and vocational schools.
The results support reliability, validity, and availability of the SCAS for Japanese adolescents in high schools.
Shin-ichi Ishikawa– Associate Professor, Doshisha University, Kyotanabe, Kyoto, Japan
Yayoi Takeno– University of Miyazaki
Yoko Sato– University of Miyazaki
Shin-ichi Ishikawa– Doshisha University
Yuto Yatagai– Doshisha University
Susan Spence– Professor Emeritus, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia