Family management

Scale: Communities That Care (CTC) Youth Survey — Poor Family Management subscale

What it measures:

  • Family management practices characterized by unclear expectations for behavior and poor parental monitoring of behavior.

Intended age range: 11- to 18-year-olds.

Brief description: This measure consists of 8 items. Sample items include: “My parents ask if I’ve gotten my homework done,” “When I am not at home, one of my parents knows where I am and who I am with,” and “The rules in my family are clear.” Youth respond on a 4-point scale: NO!, no, yes, or YES!

Rationale: The Poor Family Management scale was selected because it is relatively brief and has evidence of its reliability and validity in for use with males and females and diverse racial and ethnic groups.

Cautions: One item on the scale, which asks respondents whether they would be caught by parents if they carried a handgun without permission, may be less appropriate for some youth and programs. The scale appears likely to retain its validity with this item removed or refocused (e.g., more broadly asking about carrying a weapon).

Special administration information: None.

How to score: Each item is scored from 4 (NO!)  to 1 (YES!).The total score is computed by averaging across all items.

How to interpret findings: Higher scores reflect youth reports of poorer family management/parental monitoring.

Access and permissions: The measure is available for non-commercial use with no charge or advance permission required, and the items can be accessed online here (page 8).

Alternatives: None recommended.

Citation: Arthur, M. W., Hawkins, J. D., Pollard, J. A., Catalano, R. F., & Baglioni, A. J., Jr. (2002). Measuring risk and protective factors for substance use, delinquency, and other adolescent problem behaviors: The Communities That Care Youth Survey. Evaluation Review, 26, 575–601.

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