Frequently Asked Questions

How can I get the temperament measures?  Is there a charge?

We do not charge researchers to use our temperament measures.  Dr. Rothbart believes the free exchange of scientific information is essential to research improvement. Access permission to the questionnaires can be repaid by sharing with us the results of your studies.

To request access to the questionnaires, please complete and submit the request form , providing your email, name, institutional affiliation, and a brief description of your intended study, including age ranges and which questionnaire(s) you plan to review or use.  Sam’s email reply will arrive within 48 hours and provide access codes and information on how to obtain copies of the measures. You may also contact Sam by email at sputnam@bowdoin.edu or by postal mail at Department of Psychology, Bowdoin College, 6900 College Station, Brunswick, ME 04011.

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How do I score the questionnaires?

Instructions for scoring the measures are available from the same download page as the questionnaires.  The scoring  process is the same for all measures.  After  scores are computed, you may wish to compare them to the average scores reported in the appropriate  articles pertaining to the specific measure(s) used. An important caution; however, is that these are not considered to be published norms. In general, one should be extremely wary of using canned “norms” because it is  not obvious that one could actually find a population to be a representative subset of one’s present sample.

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Can you provide the measures in a different language?

The various measures have been translated into a number of languages. Please visit the Instrument Descriptions page to learn if the instrument is available in the language you desire. The lists in the Instrument Descriptions section includes  all translations of the questionnaires we possess. If you create a translation of one or more of the questionnaires that is not on the list, please consider allowing us  to disseminate it on this website by contacting Samuel Putnam at sputnam@bowdoin.edu. We advise that those  intending to translate these measures read this article concerning model translation procedures.  Although it is not necessary to perform all steps carried out by these authors, procedures such  as back-translation will help ensure a quality translation.

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Do you have any computer-based questionnaires?

Not at this time, although we hope to develop these soon.  Researchers are, however, welcome to create electronically-administered versions of the instruments on survey software such as Qualtrics or SurveyMonkey.

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Are there any additional scales for the CBQ?

Yes.  Five additional social behavior scales have been created for use with 3- to 7-year-olds: Aggression, Empathy, Guilt/Shame, Help-Seeking, and Negativism. You can  download these scales after completing the Questionnaire Request Form.

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The IBQ is for infants, age 3-12 months; the ECBQ covers  age 18-36 months.  Do you have a  questionnaire for the 13-17 month range?

At this time, we believe that the ECBQ is the best choice for this age range, since several IBQ/IBQ-R items do not appear to be appropriate for children older than one year. Exceptions to this rule include use with samples with developmental delays or use by researchers who wish to directly compare their results at 13-17 months to data obtained with 3- to 12-month-olds.

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What if my sample includes children in age groups covered by different instruments?

We recommend that the TMCQ be used for 7-10 year old children. The EATQ should be used exclusively only if the youngest age in the sample is 10. If you are including children 9 years or younger, we recommend that you use the TMCQ. We recommend using the CBQ exclusively only if the sample includes children 6 years or younger and the oldest age in the sample is 8 years.

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Do you know of any researchers testing subjects from birth?  Which questionnaire was used?

The IBQ and IBQ-R Very Short Form have been successfully used with very young infants.  We are hopeful that the majority of items and scales in the standard and short IBQ-R questionnaires will prove to be valid with newborns, but this has not yet been demonstrated.  If you have used this questionnaire with this age group and would like to provide us with your results, we would greatly appreciate it.

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Could I use your questionnaire to measure my child’s
temperament?

These measures are NOT the best instruments to use for an individual assessment.  Our questionnaires are intended for use by academic and institutional researchers who are studying large numbers of infants, children, adolescents, and adults to determine a specific trend over a long period of time.

For example, an infant, as compared to part of a larger study group, may be easily angered or not very soothable, and these aspects of temperament are confirmed through standardized, laboratory testing situations, and other parent report questionnaire responses. One of the main purposes of these temperament studies is to attempt to predict whether behaviors displayed in infancy will remain stable throughout the other development stages. One child, however, does not make a reliable statistic for prediction.

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How long does it take to complete each questionnaire?

The length of time for completion depends on: the version used (long or short forms), the respondent’s familiarity with the language, the subject’s level of development, and aspects of the child or completion conditions. The following are general estimates:

IBQ – 20-30 minutes; IBQ-R Standard – 1 hour; Short – 30-40 minutes; Very Short – 10-15 minutes

ECBQ Standard – 1 hour; Short – 30-40 minutes; Very Short – 10-15 minutes

CBQ Standard – 1 hour; Short – 30-40 minutes; Very Short – 10-15 minutes

TMCQ, Parent-report – 25-30 minutes

EATQ-R, Standard – 1 hour

ATQ, Standard – 30-45 minutes; Short – 10-20 minutes

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How much formal training do I need to run studies with these questionnaires?

We think that it is important that you understand basic principles of testing, as well as the ethics involved in any type of psychological assessment.  While not a hard and fast rule, we recommend that either you and/or your advisor/project supervisor has completed a course on psychological assessment.  This type of qualification is equivalent to Level B, as outlined in the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing (published by APA, AERA, and NCME and available here):

Qualification
Level B:
A degree from an accredited 4-year college or university in Psychology, Counseling, or a closely related field, PLUS satisfactory completion of coursework in Test Interpretation, Psychometrics and Measurement Theory, Educational Statistics, or a closely related area; OR license or certification from an agency that requires appropriate training and experience in the ethical and competent use of psychological tests.

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What are the correct citations for the questionnaires?

The correct citations for the temperament measures (as of 8/24/16) are as follows. Citations that are underlined contain links to the articles. Please contact us to determine updated publication information on manuscripts in preparation, submitted, or in press.

IBQ

Rothbart, M. K. (1981). Measurement of temperament in infancy. Child Development, 52, 569-578.

IBQ-R 

Gartstein, M. A., & Rothbart, M. K. (2003). Studying infant temperament via the Revised Infant Behavior Questionnaire. Infant Behavior and Development, 26 (1) , 64-86.

IBQ-R-Short/Very Short

Putnam, S. P., Helbig, A., Gartstein, M.A., Rothbart, M.K. & Leerkes, E. M. (2014).  Development and assessment of short and very short forms of the Infant Behavior Questionnaire-Revised.  Journal of Personality Assessment, 96, 445-458.

ECBQ

Putnam, S. P., Gartstein, M. A., & Rothbart, M. K. (2006). Measurement of fine-grained aspects of toddler temperament: The Early Childhood Behavior Questionnaire. Infant Behavior and Development, 29 (3) , 386-401. 

ECBQ-Short/Very Short

Putnam, S. P., Jacobs, J., Gartstein, M. A., & Rothbart, M. K. (2010, March).  Development and assessment of short and very short forms of the Early Childhood Behavior Questionnaire. Poster presented at International Conference on Infant Studies, Baltimore, MD.

CBQ

Rothbart, M. K., Ahadi, S. A., Hershey, K. L., & Fisher, P. (2001). Investigations of temperament at 3-7 years: The Children’s Behavior Questionnaire. Child Development, 72 , 1394-1408. 

CBQ-Short/ Very Short

Putnam, S. P., & Rothbart, M. K. (2006). Development of Short and Very Short forms of the Children’s Behavior Questionnaire. Journal of Personality Assessment, 87 (1), 103-113.

TMCQ

Simonds, J. & Rothbart, M. K. (2004, October). The Temperament in Middle Childhood Questionnaire (TMCQ): A computerized self-report measure of temperament for ages 7-10. Poster session presented at the Occasional Temperament Conference, Athens, GA.

EATQ

Capaldi, D. M. & Rothbart, M. K. (1992).  Development and validation of an early adolescent temperament measure.  Journal of Early Adolescence, 12, 153-173.

EATQ-R

Ellis, L. K., & Rothbart, M. K. (2001). Revision of the Early Adolescent Temperament Questionnaire. Poster presented at the 2001 Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Minneapolis, Minnesota

ATQ

Evans, D.E., & Rothbart, M.K. (2007). Development of a model for adult temperament. Journal of Research in Personality, 41, 868-888.

 

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Can these measures be used for clinical research?  If so, what are the clinical cut-off points for the temperament scales?

Our focus is on normal development, so the instruments are not designed for use in diagnosis of psychological or psychiatric disorders.  We are hopeful that they may be helpful in the context of a therapeutic relationship, or in other applied settings.  However, we must emphasize that this has not been empirically demonstrated, and in no way do we make any claims regarding their effectiveness for uses other than research.  Regarding “cut-off” scores, please see our reply to the question below.

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How do I determine high, middle, and low scores on the scales?  Are there published norms?

Means and standard deviations for the measures have been provided in their
representative articles (see “correct citations” response above) and may serve as a guide to determine percentile ranks for given scores.  An important caution; however, is that these are not considered to be published norms.  In general, one should be extremely wary of using canned “norms” because it is not obvious that one could actually find a population to be a representative subset of one’s present sample. An alternative is to use local norms, self-developed.  For example, if conveying the scores to members of a class, relate the score of each individual to the means and standard deviations derived from the class itself.

Our general recommendation is the use of continuous scale scores (rather than categories) in your analyses. If you do need to use categories, our recommendation is that you provide a theoretical basis for the use of quartiles,  quintiles, or other uses of percentile ranks for categorizing scores into high and low levels.

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Do you distribute any observational (laboratory or home) temperament measures?

We do not. Dr. Rothbart has, however, been involved with the creation of the Laboratory Temperament Assessment Batteries (LAB-Tab). Versions of the LAB-Tab for different-aged children are available from a webpage maintained by Jeff Gagne: LAB-Tab website.

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How to I obtain articles authored/co-authored by Dr. Rothbart?

Links to published articles regarding the questionnaires can be found on this page, under the answer to the question “What are the correct citations for the questionnaires?” Most of Mary’s other articles can be acquired at academic libraries or through electronic databases and search engines such as ebsco and psychinfo. A complete list of her publications can be found in the CV and Publications section of this website.

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I can’t open an attached document you sent.  Any suggestions?

There are several reasons a document might not open. First, be sure you select the appropriate application to open it, if one is not already determined. Word will generally open RTF and DOC formats, while WordPerfect will usually open RTF, DOC, and WPD formats. Acrobat Reader opens PDF files. Usually documents in PDF or RTF work well with Macs.

Second, try another browser. We have discovered that sometimes we have to use Netscape, instead of Internet Explorer. If one browser doesn’t work, try the other.

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I can’t get a PDF document you sent to print.  What happened?

PDF documents can contain large image files, and therefore take more memory and time to prepare for printing.  If your printer does not have a large amount of installed memory, it may not be able to spool the entire job at once. Try printing only half the pages at a time by specifying a range. After those are complete, print the remaining pages.

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Where’s Eugene, Oregon? Where are the rest of you?

The temperament questionnaires were developed by Mary and her collaborators at the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon. Oregon is on the west coast of the United States, between California and Washington State. Eugene (population 150,000+) is 110 miles south of Portland and 304 miles north of Eureka, California.  Nestled halfway between the snow caps of the Cascade mountain range and the deep blue of the Pacific Ocean, our location is a big part of people love about Eugene.  You can travel less than an hour by car in any direction, and find ancient and national forests.  Home to more than 100 city parks and 250 miles of bicycle trails, and incredible public gardens, Eugene is smack dab in the middle of a vast recreation area.  Wilderness areas with pristine lakes, breathtaking waterfalls, picturesque streams, glaciers, sprawling lava fields, hot springs, and rolling sand dunes surround us.  The natural environment is idyllic, with daffodils in February, tree-sized rhododendrons which begin blooming in May, and lush green foliage year-round.

Google Map Link for Eugene, Oregon » http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Eugene,+OR

Link to the University of Oregon Home Page» http://www.uoregon.edu/

The website you are looking at is hosted by Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, the current academic home of Sam Putnam. Maine is located in the northeast corner of the United States, bordered by Canada to the north and New Hampshire to the west. Affectionately referred to as “Vacationland”, Maine’s section of the Appalachian mountain range is home to the best skiing in the Northeast, and Acadia national park (the first national park established east of the Mississippi) attracts thousands of yearly visitors to it’s rugged coastline. With over 80% of Maine covered by forest, it is a popular destination for campers, hikers, hunters and fishers. Brunswick is in the “downeast” section of the state, on beautiful Casco Bay of the Atlantic Ocean, 25 miles north of Portland, and a 2-hour drive north of Boston, Massachusettes.

Google Map Link for Brunswick, Maine » http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Brunswick,+ME

Link to the Bowdoin College Home Page» http://www.bowdoin.edu/

The other individuals involved with maintaining this site are Masha Gartstein at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, and Lesa Ellis and Jennifer Simonds, who are (amazingly) both at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah. If and when they find the time to write little blurbs about their wonderful locations, I’ll be happy to put them here. For now, enjoy the links below.

Google Map Link for Pullman, Washington » http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Pullman,+Washington

Link to the Washingon State University Home Page » http://www.wsu.edu/

Google Map Link for Salt Lake City, Utah » http://maps.google.com/maps?q=salt+lake+city,+ut

Link to the Westminster College Home Page » http://www.westminstercollege.edu/

 

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