Short form Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales: Factor structure and measurement invariance by sex in emerging adults

Jasmine Wu, Annabelle Nankoo, Romola Bucks, Carmela Pestell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


INTRODUCTION: The short version of the Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales (CAARS-S:S) is a self-report measure used to identify symptoms of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) during adulthood. However, its psychometric properties specifically in emerging adults, or the transitional age group between adolescence and adulthood, remain understudied. This study aimed to validate the factor structure of the CAARS-S:S in a sample of emerging adults.

METHOD: The CAARS-S:S measure was completed by adults (n = 591) aged 18 to 29 located in English-speaking countries, including Australia, Canada and the United States. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to test a four-factor model of Inattention/Memory Problems, Hyperactivity/Restlessness, Impulsivity/Emotional Lability and Problems with Self-Concept, as well as the model's invariance by sex. Sex was also included as a covariate in the model to examine differences in males' and females' scores on each factor.

RESULTS: Overall, the four-factor structure fit the data and was invariant across males and females. All factors demonstrated high internal reliability (average ω t and α = .86). It was observed that males tended to score higher on Inattention/Memory Problems while females scored higher on Problems with Self-Concept.

CONCLUSION: This research establishes the psychometric properties of the CAARS-S:S, placing greater confidence in using it to screen for ADHD symptoms in emerging adults living in a Westernized cultural context. The detailed findings of this research, implications for the use of the CAARS-S:S in this age group and potential future directions for examining the properties of the measure are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)345-364
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2023


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