Development and validation of the Child and Adolescent Flexible Expressiveness (CAFE) Scale
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AbstractExpressive flexibility, or the ease with which one can switch between enhancing and suppressing emotional behavior in line with situational demands, appears to be an adaptive skill for promoting psychological well-being for adults. However, this construct has rarely been explored among children and adolescents. To facilitate such investigations, the present study developed and validated a scenario-based, self-reported measurement tool that tests youth’s expressive flexibility, namely the Child and Adolescent Flexible Expressiveness (CAFE) Scale. Results from Study 1 (N = 549) and Study 2 (N = 248) supported a two-factor structure (expressive enhancement and expressive suppression), identifying eligible items through exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses. The measurement invariance of the scale was also evidenced via a series of multigroup tests across sex and age groups. Additionally, both subscales showed adequate internal consistencies, and the CAFE scores related to most theoretically similar measures (emotion expressivity and internal emotion regulation) and clinical outcome variables (e.g., depression, problem behavior), as expected. Study 3 (N = 199) further compared CAFE scores to children’s observed emotion expressivity in a standardized laboratory task. Results indicated that CAFE enhancement and suppression scores significantly predicted respective performances in the task. Finally, Study 4 (N = 48) demonstrated adequate test–retest reliability of the CAFE Scale by retesting a subsample of participants from Study 1. Generally, the CAFE Scale appears to be a reliable and valid measurement in the area of emotion regulation, which allows convenient clinical assessment of children’s and adolescents’ expressive flexibility.
Acceptance Date20/11/2019
All Author(s) ListWang Y., Hawk S. T.
Journal namePsychological Assessment
Volume Number32
Issue Number4
Pages358 - 373
LanguagesEnglish-United States
Keywordsexpressive flexibility, emotion regulation, scale development, children and adolescents

Last updated on 2021-23-01 at 23:59