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Coddington Life Events Scales

R. Dean Coddington, M.D.

    Technical Information

    The CLES was normed on a sample of 3,617 children and parents.

    Test-retest reliability of the CLES–A was examined with 120 high school students who completed the questionnaire on three separate occasions, as well as with a sample of 63 students. The results support the test-retest reliability of the CLES.

    Inter-rater reliability of the CLES–A was examined by having 30 adolescent boys and their parents report life events that the boys had experienced during two different periods of time. Agreement was highest for recent family events.

    The CLES Manual provides the psychometric properties of the scales with information about the reliability and validity of the CLES, as well as the development process. The manual also provides complete references for several studies as well as for various instruments that were used to validate the CLES, as outlined in the following:

    • Content validity of the CLES–C was examined by administering the scale to 345 children and 379 parents.
    • Concurrent validity of the CLES–C was investigated in a research study involving 84 fourth graders and their parents. Predictive validity was also assessed using this same fourth-grade sample. Children completed the CLES–C, a measure of family supportiveness, and the Comprehension Tests of Basic Skills (CTBS) intelligence measure. The results of these studies all supported the validity of the CLES.
    • Several research studies also show a predictive link between CLES scores and physical injury.
    • Discriminant validity is also evaluated through several studies. One study consisted of adolescents between the ages of 13 and 19 who had been admitted to a children’s hospital in Philadelphia over a one-year period. The participants were classified into two groups; an injury group consisted of 149 adolescents and an ill group consisted of 258 adolescents.
    • As part of the restandardization of the MMPI, a version of the CLES–A strongly discriminated between a clinical sample and a normal control sample.


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Author R. Dean Coddington, M.D.

Age Range Age 5 years and under (preschool), 6–12 years (child), 13–19 years (adolescent)

Administration Time 10–15 minutes

Administration Type
  • Self-Report
  • Assisted Self-Report
Qualification Level B

  • Handscored