An international assessment of the emotional and behavioral strengths of youth

Kristiina Lappalainen, Hannu Savolainen, Matti Kuorelahti, Michael H. Epstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


The assessment of emotional and behavioral strengths has been identified as an important part of the assessment process for children referred for specialized services. The Behavioral and Emotional Rating Scale-2 (BERS-2; Epstein, Behavioral and Emotional Rating Scale: a strength-based approach to assessment. PRO-Ed, Austin, TX, 2004) was developed as a standardized, norm-referenced instrument to measure strengths of children and youth, and has been found to be a psychometrically sound instrument. We determined the psychometric characteristics of the BERS-2 with a Finnish sample. The BERS-2 was translated in Finnish and 608 Finnish 9th graders filled in the self-evaluation. Results showed that the five subscales of BERS-2 have good reliability and formed a strong strength index. In general, females scored higher than males and special education students scored lower than non-special education students. This study suggests that the translated version of BERS-2 is a valid and reliable instrument in Finland.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)746-753
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number6
StatePublished - Oct 2009


  • Assessment
  • Emotional and behavior disorder (EBD)
  • Special education
  • Strengths

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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