The Best Interests of The Child Self-Report (BIC-S): Psychometric Properties of the Adapted Version of the BIC-S used as a Monitoring Instrument to Measure the Quality of The Children’s Rearing Environment From a Children’s Rights Perspective

Elianne Zijlstra*, Wendy Post, Marit Hopman, Alexandra de Jong, Margrite Kalverboer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Background
In line with the legal duty to monitor the compliance of policy and practice with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Netherlands’ Ombudsman for
Children collects data concerning children’s views about their rearing environment and well-being. This Children’s Rights Monitor uses the Best Interests of the Child Self-Report (BIC-S). The psychometric properties of the BIC-S need to be further investigated.

Method
For the 2018 Children’s Rights Monitor, 1639 children (age: M=12.05
SD=2.70) completed the BIC-S (quality of rearing environment) and value their life on a scale of 1 to 10 (well-being). Mokken Scale Analysis was applied to determine the construct validity, and a Pearson correlation coefficient between well-being and the quality of rearing environment was used to determine the convergent validity of the BIC-S.

Results
The results of the Mokken Scale Analysis reveal an invariant, strong, and reliable family scale (H=0.60; Rho=0.88) and an invariant, moderate, and reliable
society scale (H=0.45; Rho=0.81). Two conditions (safe wider physical environment and adequate examples in society) should be viewed as separate items. Strong and significant correlations are observed between well-being, on the one hand, and the family and society scales on the other (respectively, r=0.54 and 0.63).

Implications
Results of this study point to a reliable and valid BIC-S for measuring the quality of the rearing environment. This instrument can be used to bring policy, practice, and decision-making in line with Children’s Rights.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1341-1361
Number of pages21
JournalChild indicators research
Volume16
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun-2023

Keywords

  • Children’s rights
  • Best interests of the child
  • Voice of children
  • Participation
  • Questionnaire

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