The purpose of the DISABKIDS-Smiley measure is to assess general quality of life and the level of distress caused by a chronic disease. The questionnaire is simple and fast to complete and is aimed at cognitive levels of children between 4 to 7 developmental years. It can also be used for children above 7 years who have not reached the level of reading ability necessary for the completion of the generic DISABKIDS questionnaire.
The items for the questionnaire were derived from focus groups with parents of children between 4 and 7 years. Research on the use of smileys has guided the graphical layout of the questionnaire. The questionnaire was pilot tested and refined not only by using psychometric approaches but also by results of the ‘cognitive applicability’.
The DISABKIDS-Smiley measure is designed for children aged 4-7 years and completed, at least for younger children, with the help of the interviewer/nurse or parent. Children and adolescent can also complete this short questionnaire.
A single summary score is produced which is compared to the scores on a reference table of children in 7 countries with various chronic medical conditions.
The questionnaire should take no more than 5 minutes to administer to the child.
1.1.6 Description of the instrument
The DISABKIDS-Smiley measure includes a separate paediatric scale designed for children aged 4-7 years and a proxy/parent response form. Responses are in the form of "smiley" faces, and the paediatric questionnaire is completed, at least for younger children, with the help of the interviewer/nurse or parent. The paediatric version is read aloud to the child who is encouraged to point to the appropriate answer category. The interviewer records the first answer of the child. The parental version is completed without reference to the paediatric version.
1.1.7 Scoring and scale structure
A 5-point scale of smiley faces response scale is used. The children respond by indicating one of 5 smiley faces representing a scale between very happy and very sad. The happiest face (on the right of the scale) scores the highest number and the most unhappy face receives the lowest score. The DISABKIDS-Smiley measure consists of 6 Likert-scaled items. Pilot test results denoted satisfactory internal consistency of the original 12-item-scale.
1.1.8 Self- and proxy assessment
Two versions of the DISABKIDS-Smiley measure are available: the self-report version (child version) and a proxy version. Both versions of the DISABKIDS smiley module are available in six different languages: Dutch, English, French, German, Greek, and Swedish. A computer-assisted version of the paper-and-pencil version of the DISABKIDS-Smiley measure is available as well, in six languages.
1.1.9 Administration - suggested uses
Used for all children between 4 and 7 years with a chronic medical condition. It is also useful for children above 7 years whose reading abilities or cognitive level do not allow the administration of the generic DISABKIDS questionnaire.