Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version



Child Abuse & Neglect (2010) 34: 305-317. DOI: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2009.09.015.


Copyright 2010, Elsevier. Used by permission.


Objectives: The present study reports on the development and initial psychometric properties of the Computer Assisted Maltreatment Inventory (CAMI), a web-based self-report measure of child maltreatment history, including sexual and physical abuse, exposure to interparental violence, psychological abuse, and neglect.

Methods: The CAMI was administered to a geographically diverse sample of college students (N= 1,398). For validation purposes, participants also completed a widely used measure of maltreatment (Childhood Trauma Questionnaire) as well as measures of social desirability. To examine test–retest reliability, a subset of participants (n = 283) completed the CAMI a second time 2–4 weeks after the initial administration.

Results: Short-term test–retest reliability of the CAMI subscales was good to strong, as was internal consistency on applicable scales. Criterion-related validity of the CAMI’s composite abuse severity scores was supported through predicted discriminative correlations with subscales of the CTQ. The CAMI subscales showed comparable or weaker associations with measures of social desirability than did the CTQ. Although both measures were more strongly associated with a need for approval than other aspects of social desirability, these correlations were still rather low in magnitude and in a range typical of many clinical measures.

Conclusions: The present findings as well as the rich descriptive data and flexibility offered by computer administration suggest that the CAMI is a promising instrument for the comprehensive assessment of maltreatment history from adults.