Psychometric properties of an omnibus sleep problems questionnaire for school-aged children

Sarah Biggs, John Declan Kennedy, Alfred James Martin, Cameron van den Heuvel, Kurt Lushington

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


There is a paucity of sleep questionnaires that have been psychometrically validated for use in school-aged children. Due to the limitation regarding the psychometric properties and the great variety in question design, there remains a need for a robust omnibus questionnaire that assesses sleep problems in community populations. This study aimed to develop such a questionnaire for school-aged children by assessing the construct validity and reliability of a questionnaire based on a combination of children s sleep domains from two frequently used and validated questionnaires (Habits Questionnaire and Sleep Disorders Scale for Children) and author devised questions. PATIENTS/METHODS: Parents of 1904 children aged 5-10years (mean 7.7+/-1.7years) from 32 elementary schools in Adelaide, South Australia, completed the questionnaire. RESULTS: Principal axis factoring revealed six unique sub-scales - Sleep Routine, Bedtime Anxiety, Morning Tiredness, Night Arousals, Sleep Disordered Breathing, and Restless Sleep - containing a total of 26 items. Internal consistency for sub-scales were moderate to strong (range alpha=0.6-0.8) and test-retest reliability was adequate (>0.4). T-score cut-offs were devised for age and sex. CONCLUSION: The new questionnaire provides a robust set of sleep problem sub-scales which can be used for assessment of sleep concerns in a community sample as well as provide for optimal analysis of associations with other measures of childhood daytime functioning such as neurocognition and behaviour.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)390 - 395
Number of pages6
JournalSleep Medicine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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