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The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL)


There are various assessment instruments for adults to assess for symptoms associated with a diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.  However, there are also assessment instruments for children that also assess for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.  One assessment instrument that I will discuss in this article is the Child Behavior Checklist.  According to, “The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) is a widely used caregiver report form identifying problem behavior in children.”  This article will describe background information on this specific assessment tool, as well as list various questions used on the Child Behavior Checklist.

Some Background Information On The Child Behavior Checklist

According to, the following background information can be noted about the Child Behavior Checklist:

The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) was a parent-report questionnaire on which the child was rated on various behavioral and emotional problems. It was first developed by Thomas M. Achenbach and has been one of the most widely-used standardized measures in child psychology for evaluating maladaptive behavioral and emotional problems in preschool subjects aged 2 to 3 or in subjects between the ages of 4 and 18.  It assessed internalizing (i.e., anxious, depressive, and overcontrolled) and externalizing (i.e., aggressive, hyperactive, noncompliant, and undercontrolled) behaviors.

Questions On The Child Behavior Checklist

According to, the following represent some of the questions on the Child Behavior Checklist:

32. Feels he/she has to be perfect

33. Feels or complains that no one loves him/her
34. Feels others are out to get him/her
35. Feels worthless or inferior
36. Gets hurt a lot, accident-prone
37. Gets in many fights
38. Gets teased a lot
39. Hangs around with others who get in trouble
40. Hears sound or voices that aren’t there
(describe): _________________________
41. Impulsive or acts without thinking
42. Would rather be alone than with others
According to, participants who take the Child Behavior Checklist answer the above questions based on the following criteria:
0 = Not True (as far as you know)
1 = Somewhat or Sometimes True
2 = Very True or Often True
This article has provided readers with basic information and several examples of questions on the Child Behavior Checklist.  As stated in this article, the Child Behavior Checklist can be used for participants ranging between the ages of 2 years old to 18 years old.  It is used to measure behavior problems in children and adolescents.  In addition, these behavioral problems can signal symptoms associated with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.  If you are a parent and believe your child is experiencing symptoms associated with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, consult with a professional provider.

The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL)

Lauren Walters

My name is Lauren Walters. I am currently heading into my final semester of graduate school for Mental Health Counseling in the Spring of 2016. Through my own experiences with mental illness, I love to inspire others through my writings and reassure them that they can live healthy, productive lives, despite mental illness. I hope you enjoy my articles. Feel free to comment. I will be sure to respond to you questions and/or comments in a prompt manner. Enjoy!

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APA Reference
Walters, L. (2016). The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL). Psych Central. Retrieved on July 23, 2019, from


Last updated: 14 Dec 2016
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