Sociology, Department of


Date of this Version



American Indian and Alaska Native Mental Health Research, 11:3 (2004), pp. 20-42.


Copyright © 2004 University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.


This study examined the measurement of depressive symptoms among American Indian adolescents as assessed by the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), Youth Self Report (YSR), and the Tri-Ethnic Center’s for Prevention Research Depression Scale (TEDS). This analysis demonstrated that the TEDS had good internal consistency, demonstrated construct validity, and shared a commonality with the other two measures, but had limited predictive validity. The YSR had strong predictive validity but, like the CES-D, showed weakness in construct validity. Unexpectedly, the CES-D and YSR revealed enculturated youth were at risk of depressive symptoms. These findings do not generate unequivocal support for any one measure, but suggest that their strengths and potential shortcomings should be taken into account when assessing depressive symptoms among American Indian youth.