Psychometric properties of the Chinese version of Autism Spectrum Quotient- Children’s Version (AQ-C): A sex-specific analysis

Fan Sun, Meixia Dai, Lizi Lin, Xiang Sun, Aja Louise Murray, Bonnie Auyeung, Jin Jing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A Simplified Chinese translation of the Autism Spectrum Quotient-Children’s Version (AQ-C) is needed for research in mainland China. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is a condition that differs in presentation and prevalence by sex. Thus, evaluating the psychometric validity of the AQ-C in males and females is an important step in its validation. The present study aims to develop a Chinese translation of the parent-report AQ-C, and test its psychometric properties among Mandarin Chinese speaking boys and girls. A total of 1020 non-clinical children and 134 children with ASD were assessed. Factor analyses were performed for the whole sample, as well for girls and boys separately. A 30-item, 5-factor model (the Chinese AQ-C) showed adequate goodness of fit (RMSEA=0.037; CFI=0.907; TLI=0.901) for the whole sample. According to parents’ reports, non-clinical boys had significantly higher scores than non-clinical girls on the Chinese AQ-C. Sex-specific factor structures were identified resulting in a 4-factor model with 32 items for girls (the Chinese AQ-Girls), and a 4-factor model with 34 items for boys (the Chinese AQ-Boys). The cut-off scores of the Chinese AQ-C, AQ-Girls and AQ-Boys were 44.5, 42.5 and 46.5 respectively. These three Chinese versions of the AQ-C all showed satisfactory internal consistency (α=0.786-0.840) and concurrent validity with the Social Responsiveness Scale (r=0.789-0.814) for the total scale. Differences have been found in the sex-specific factor structures of the AQ-C which would be more reliable to use for future research when measuring autistic traits in the general population. 
Lay Summary: This study developed Chinese versions of the Autism Spectrum Quotient-Children’s Version (AQ-C) in Chinese boys and girls together and separately. The AQ-C showed good psychometric properties in boys and girls together and separately. There were differences in sex-specific factor structures of the AQ-C. These results suggest that the sex-specific Chinese versions of the AQ-C provide reliable and valid measurement of autistic traits.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-315
JournalAutism Research
Volume12
Issue number2
Early online date28 Dec 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019

Keywords

  • Autism-Spectrum Quotient
  • children
  • sex differences
  • autistic traits
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder

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