Measurement of Behavioral and Emotional Outcomes of Youth in Foster Care: Investigation of the Roles of Age and Placement Type
Joy Gabrielli, Yo Jackson, Shaquanna Brown
Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment
The Behavioral Assessment System for Children–2 (BASC-2) is used to assess behavioral and emotional outcomes for youth. Research providing evidence for use of the BASC-2 parent-report form historically has included biological parents reporting on their children (Reynolds and Kamphaus2004). For youth residing in out-of-home placements through enrollment in foster care, caregivers reporting on their functioning may include foster parents or residential staff. Given the significant adverse mental health outcomes for youth in foster care and the need to adequately assess adjustment in foster care, the purpose of the study was to evaluate the measurement properties of caregivers’ report on the parent report form (PRS) of the BASC-2 in foster care youth. Using 479 respondents, a measurement model was fit to the data demonstrating adequate fit across Internalizing Problems, Externalizing Problems, and Adaptive Skills. Further, a comparison of measurement properties across child and adolescent groups and groups of youth residing in residential facilities versus foster homes was conducted. Factorial invariance and latent means also were assessed. The BASC-2 PRS was found to be an adequate assessment of psychological outcomes for youth in foster care when completed by foster parents or residential facility staff.