Social phobia and social anxiety are highly prevalent psychological conditions in children and adolescents.
The SPIN is a 17-item measure purported to assess the full spectrum of social phobia symptomatology.
Previously, psychometric research on the SPIN in adult populations has demonstrated its validity and reliability.
Recall that a sample should be an accurate representation of a population, because the total population may not be available.
An instrument that is externally valid helps obtain population generalizability, or the degree to which a sample represents the population.
Consider the SAT, used as a predictor of success in college.
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It is a reliable test (high scores relate to high GPA), though only a moderately valid indicator of success (due to the lack of structured environment – class attendance, parent-regulated study, and sleeping habits – each holistically related to success).
For a more complete discussion of trustworthiness, see Lincoln and Guba’s (1985) chapter.
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A review of the available modes of assessment for social anxiety and social phobia in youth is provided with an emphasis on the psychometric properties and clinical utility of existing measures.
Because research to date on self-report measures of social phobia in adolescents is limited, the primary objective of the present study was to contribute to the literature by examining the validity and reliability of a new self-report measure for social phobia, The Social Phobia Inventory (SPIN), in a community sample of adolescents.