The Australian Self-report Delinquency Scale: A revision

Angela Curcio, Anita Mak, Vikki Knott

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Objectives: The Australian Self-Reported Delinquency Scale has been a widely adopted measure of delinquency, yet requires updating to ensure appropriate content coverage and consistency with contemporary language. The aim of this research was to revise the Australian Self-Reported Delinquency Scale and derive a measure of contemporary delinquent behaviour among Australian adolescents with satisfactory psychometric properties.

    Method: In Study 1, we conducted focus groups with 16 adolescents and 20 professionals (youth workers, police officers, school teachers/counsellors) in Canberra to update items included in the measure. Contents of the scale were revised accordingly, yielding a 56-item checklist of contemporary delinquent
    activities. In Study 2, 312 students (57.7% male, aged 13–17) from government and independent schools in Canberra completed the 56-item Delinquency Checklist.

    Results: Subsequent item analysis and exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses resulted in a 30-item Australian Self-Reported Delinquency Scale-Revised with eight subscales (Driving/Vehicle, Theft, Cheat, Disturb,
    Fight, Drugs) including two new subscales (Alcohol and Media), with evidence of reliability and validity.

    Conclusions: The revision of the Australian Self-Reported Delinquency Scale-Revised, complemented by a 56-item Delinquency Checklist, may prove useful in educational, rehabilitation, and research settings, and aid in evaluating clinical interventions with increased specificity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)166-177
    Number of pages12
    JournalAustralian Journal of Psychology
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 2015


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