Validation of the Chinese version of the Children's Revised Impact of Event Scale (CRIES) among Chinese adolescents in the aftermath of the Sichuan Earthquake in 2008

Joseph T F Lau, Nelson C Y Yeung, Xiao-nan Yu, Jianxin Zhang, Winnie W S Mak, Wacy W S Lui, Jianxin Zhang
Comprehensive Psychiatry 2013, 54 (1): 83-90

OBJECTIVE: This study examined the psychometric properties of the 13-item Chinese version of the revised Impact of Event Scale for Children (CRIES) among 3160 high school students in Chengdu, China, 1 month after the Sichuan Earthquake in 2008.

METHODS: Participants self-administered a structured questionnaire in classroom settings. Posttraumatic stress symptoms (using the Chinese version of the CRIES) and other psychological variables, including depression, anxiety, thoughts of physical threat, and earthquake-related experiences, were measured. Confirmatory factor analysis and Spearman correlation analyses were conducted to confirm the factor structure and examine the validity of the CRIES.

RESULTS: As in previous Western studies, confirmatory factor analysis results indicated that the 3-factor structure of the CRIES (intrusion, avoidance, and hyperarousal) provided a significantly better fit than the single-factor model and the 2-factor model. The CRIES showed good reliability (Cronbach αs for the full scale and subscales ranged from .74 to .85). The CRIES total score was positively correlated with depression, anxiety, automatic thought of physical threat, earthquake-related worries, and postearthquake suicidal ideation.

CONCLUSIONS: The CRIES has shown to be reliable and valid in assessing Chinese adolescents' symptoms of potential posttraumatic stress disorder. Our findings also support the 3-factor measurement model of posttraumatic stress symptoms, which is comparable with their Western studies. Further validation studies on other forms of traumatic experience among Chinese adolescents are warranted.

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