Factor structure, reliability, and known groups validity of the German version of the childhood trauma questionnaire (short-form) in Swiss patients and nonpatients

Kai Karos*, N. Niederstrasser, L. Abidi, D.P. Bernstein, K. Bader

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form is the most widely used instrument to assess childhood trauma and has been translated into 10 languages. However, research into validity and reliability of these translated versions is scarce. The present study aimed to investigate the factor structure, internal consistency, reliability, and known-groups validity of the German Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form (Bernstein & Fink, 1998). Six-hundred and sixty-one clinical and nonclinical participants completed the German Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form. A confirmatory factor analysis was conducted to assess the 5-factor structure of the original Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form. To investigate known-groups validity, the confirmatory factor analysis latent factor levels between clinical and nonclinical participants were compared. The original 5-factor structure was confirmed, with only the Physical Neglect scale showing rather poor fit. As a conclusion, the results support the validity and reliability of the German Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form. It is recommended to use the German Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form to assess experiences of childhood trauma.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)418-430
JournalJournal of Child Sexual Abuse
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

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