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Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales Self Report: Short Version ....pdf

Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales Self Report: Short Version

Do you have trouble paying attention, staying organized, or controlling your impulses? If so, you might be wondering if you have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a common condition that affects many adults. However, diagnosing ADHD is not a simple matter of taking a test or filling out a questionnaire. You need a comprehensive evaluation by a qualified professional who can consider your symptoms in the context of your life history, personality, and current situation.

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One of the tools that can help with this process is the Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales Self Report: Short Version (CAARS-S:S), a brief self-report measure that assesses the core symptoms and features of ADHD in adults. The CAARS-S:S is based on the long and widely used Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales (CAARS), which were developed by Dr. C. Keith Conners and his colleagues. The CAARS-S:S is designed to be easy to administer and score, and to provide reliable and valid information for clinical decision making.

What does the CAARS-S:S measure?

The CAARS-S:S consists of 26 items that cover four main domains of ADHD symptoms and related problems:

  • Inattention/Memory Problems: This scale measures difficulties with concentration, distractibility, forgetfulness, and organization.

  • Hyperactivity/Restlessness: This scale measures excessive physical activity, fidgeting, restlessness, and impatience.

  • Impulsivity/Emotional Lability: This scale measures difficulties with impulse control, emotional regulation, frustration tolerance, and mood swings.

  • Problems with Self-Concept: This scale measures low self-esteem, self-criticism, and feelings of inadequacy.

In addition to these four scales, the CAARS-S:S also includes an ADHD Index, which is a composite score that identifies respondents who are likely to have clinically significant levels of ADHD symptoms. The CAARS-S:S also has an Inconsistency Index, which detects random or careless responding.

How is the CAARS-S:S administered and scored?

The CAARS-S:S can be completed by adults aged 18 to 80 years in about 10 to 20 minutes. The respondents are asked to rate how frequently they experience each item on a 4-point Likert scale, ranging from "not at all" to "very much". The items are based on the diagnostic criteria for ADHD in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV), as well as on empirical research and clinical experience.

The scoring of the CAARS-S:S is straightforward and can be done by hand or by using a computerized scoring program. The raw scores for each scale are converted into T-scores based on normative data from a large and representative sample of nonclinical adults. The T-scores indicate how the respondent's scores compare to those of the general population, with higher scores indicating more severe problems. The T-scores are also classified into four categories: normal (T=80). These categories help to interpret the results and guide further assessment and intervention.

What are the benefits of using the CAARS-S:S?

The CAARS-S:S has several advantages over other measures of adult ADHD, such as:

  • Brevity: The CAARS-S:S is shorter than the full-length CAARS or other similar instruments, making it more convenient and less burdensome for respondents.

  • Validity: The CAARS-S:S has strong psychometric properties, demonstrating high internal consistency, test-retest reliability, convergent validity, discriminant validity, and criterion validity. The CAARS-S:S also correlates well with other measures of adult ADHD, such as the Brown Attention-Deficit Disorder Scales (BADDS) and the Wender Utah Rating Scale (WURS).

  • Clinical utility: The CAARS-S:S provides useful information for screening, diagnosis, treatment planning, and outcome evaluation of adult ADHD. The CAARS-S:S can help to identify individuals who may benefit from a more comprehensive evaluation, as well as to monitor their progress and response to intervention.

Where can I find the CAARS-S:S?

The CAARS-S:S is published by [Multi-Health Systems Inc.], a leading publisher of psychological and educational assessments. You can order the CAARS-S:S online or by phone, fax, or mail. The CAARS-S:S is available in English and Spanish, and in paper-and-pencil or online formats. You can also download a sample report and a technical brochure from the website.

To use the CAARS-S:S, you need to have a Level C qualification, which means that you have a master's degree or higher in psychology, education, or a related field, and have completed coursework or training in test administration, scoring, and interpretation. Alternatively, you can use the CAARS-S:S under the supervision of a qualified professional.


The Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scales Self Report: Short Version (CAARS-S:S) is a valuable tool for assessing the core symptoms and features of ADHD in adults. The CAARS-S:S is brief, valid, and clinically useful, and can help to screen, diagnose, and treat adults with ADHD. If you are interested in using the CAARS-S:S, you can visit the [MHS website] to learn more and order the test.


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