Research Article: Psychometric assessment of the French European Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire (DCDQ-FE)

Date Published: May 23, 2019

Publisher: Public Library of Science

Author(s): Sylvie Ray-Kaeser, Evelyne Thommen, Rose Martini, Marianne Jover, Basilie Gurtner, Anne Martine Bertrand, Chung-Ying Lin.


The Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire’07 (DCDQ’07) is a parent-report measure to identify children at risk for Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD). We developed a French version of the DCDQ’07 (DCDQ-FE) that has shown excellent inter-language reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) = 0.91) and is culturally relevant for use in European countries. The aims of this study were to examine the internal consistency, test-retest reliability, construct validity of the Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire-French European (DCDQ-FE), as well as establish a cut-off score.

The psychometric properties of the DCDQ-FE were examined with a clinical group of 30 children (mean age: 9.4 years, SD = 2.6) and a control group of 43 children (mean age: 9.1 years, SD = 2.4). Their parents (n = 73) filled out the DCDQ-FE at a first sitting and 70 of them filled it out 38 days later in average for test-retest reliability. The children were assessed using the Movement Assessment Battery for Children-2 (MABC-2) so as to measure the convergent validity of the DCDQ-FE. The cut-off score was determined with an additional sample of 42 children according to scores on the MABC-2 (≥ 16th percentile) (n = 115).

Internal consistency of the DCDQ-FE was excellent (Cronbach’s alpha = 0.96) and test-retest reliability was good (ICC = 0.956) with no differences between scores obtained at the two sittings (p > 0.05). Differences in scores between children in the clinical and control groups (Z = -6.58, p < 0.001) provide evidence of construct validity. The correlation obtained between DCDQ-FE and MABC-2 scores (Spearman’s rho correlation coefficient = 0.802, p < 0.001) supports convergent validity. Using a cut-off of 56, overall sensitivity and specificity were 85.0% and 81.6% respectively (area under the curve = 0.896). The DCDQ-FE is a reliable and valid questionnaire for detecting children who are at risk for DCD in a European-French population of children aged 5 to 15 years old.

Partial Text

Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) [1] is a common childhood condition with a prevalence of around 5% to 6% of school-aged children. DCD is idiopathic in nature, occurs across cultures, races and socio-economic conditions, and is more frequent in males than in females. It is a separate disorder, even though it often co-occurs with attention deficit, hyperactivity and learning disorders [2]. The condition is defined by a motor performance that is substantially below expected levels given the child’s chronological age and appropriate type and amount of opportunities for skill acquisition. The motor disturbance significantly interferes with activities of daily living and/or academic achievement [1]. Clinical presentation varies with children experiencing difficulty in performing fine motor activities, such as dressing, eating with use of utensils, drawing, handwriting, and others with gross motor activities such as ball play and sports, which is important for social participation and contact with peers [2, 3, 4].

The objectives of the present study were to investigate the internal consistency, test-retest reliability and construct validity of the French European version of the DCDQ’07, the DCDQ-FE, and establish a cut-off score for identifying children with DCD. Previous studies have demonstrated that the DCDQ-FE is culturally adapted for the French European language and culture [40], and the good interlanguage reliability and internal consistency of the tool [41].

Early identification is critical to implement adequate and timely intervention so as to prevent the consequences of the disorder since its burden is considerable both for children and for society. There are few simple and quick measures in French currently available to identify children at risk or with motor impairment, such as DCD. This study addressed aspects of reliability and validity of the French European version of the DCDQ’07, the DCDQ-FE. The results showed that the DCDQ-FE is highly correlated with the French version of the MABC-2 and can discriminate children with and without motor impairment. The DCDQ-FE is a psychometrically sound instrument that shows promise for helping health professionals to identify children eligible for further testing and interventions.




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