The validity and reliability of the Mandarin Chinese version of the drug abuse screening test among adolescents in Taiwan

Jung Yu Liao, Hsueh Yun Chi, Jong Long Guo, Chiu Mieh Huang, Shu Fang Shih

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: This study aimed to investigate the validity and reliability of the Mandarin Chinese version of the Drug Abuse Screening Test (DAST-20) among adolescents, as well as examining the test's predictability with regard to the actual level of drug abuse. Method: A total of 100 adolescent participants were recruited with their consent, in which 49 were current drug users and 51 were non-users. Based on the frequency of their drug use, participants who had used drugs at least once every week during the past year were classified as regular users (34 participants); participants who had not reached the regular use frequency of once every week during the past year were classified as occasional users (15 participants). All of the participants were required to answer a sociodemographic questionnaire, and undergo a DAST-20 (Mandarin Chinese version). Results: The DAST-20, which has a high reliability with a Cronbach's alpha of 0.88, and a construct validity accounting for 61.87% of the variance. The area under the receiver operating characteristics (ROC) curve was 0.96 between the users and nonusers, and 0.93 between the occasional users and non-occasional users. A cut-off of three points could identify 93.5% of the drug users and 88.9% of nonusers, whereas a cut-off of six points could identify 85.3% of the regular users and 92.4% of non-regular users. Conclusions: The DAST-20 was the strongest predictor of adolescents who were regular users, occasional users, and non-users after controlling for other potential covariates. The Mandarin Chinese version of the DAST is simple to use and has a satisfactory validity and reliability. It is an effective screening tool for drug users among adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
Article number30
JournalSubstance Abuse: Treatment, Prevention, and Policy
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jun 6

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • Drug abuse screening test
  • Drug use
  • Reliability
  • Validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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