Medically reviewed and approved by a board-certified member

How does the Conners rating scale work?

By BS MediaTwitter Profile | Published: Tuesday, 22 May 2018
Login to get unlimited free access
Table of contents
  1. What does the scale measure?
  2. How is the rating done?
  3. Long and short versions
  4. Results
  5. Limitations
  6. Takeaway
The Conners Comprehensive Behavior Rating Scale is used to better understand certain behavioural, social, and academic issues in children between 6 and 18 years old.
It is often used to help diagnose attention deficit disorder disorder, or attention deficit disorder.

When a child is unsuspected of having attention deficit disorder, parents often turn to their family doctor who may refer them to a behavioural health expert, so much as a scientist.

The scientist may then use an attention deficit disorder rating scale, so much as the Conners Comprehensive Behavior Rating Scale, or Conners CBRS, to better understand the child's symptoms and their severity.

The Conners CBRS AIDS diagnosing by portion to discover where the child's issues lie, as well as in what settings these issues are most troublesome.

What does the scale measure?

The Conners rating scale assesses a range of behaviours.

Scoring for the Conners rating scale is designed to be comprehensive, and measures galore behavioural markers, including signs of:

  • disorder
  • aggressive behavior
  • potential for violence
  • compulsive behaviors
  • perfectionism
  • difficulty in class
  • extra trouble with math
  • difficulty with language
  • social issues
  • emotional distress
  • separation anxiety

How is the rating done?

Parents may be asked to complete a Conners CBRS after an initial visit to a scientist.

The scale will help determine if their child has attention deficit disorder symptoms and give a general idea of their severity.

If the scientist agrees that the symptoms match typical attention deficit disorder behaviors, they will often ask the parents to fill out a parent version of the Conners CBRS form.

The Conners CBRS can help give the scientist a better understanding of the child's behaviors and habits on multiple levels.

The benefits of exploitation the Conners CBRS include:

  • Giving a perspective on the child's behavioural patterns as experient by people close to them.
  • Comparing this information with standardized clinical information to help support a diagnosing.
  • Finding a baseline of typical behaviors to guide treatment and medication recommendations.
  • Helping mental health professionals create a treatment plan for the child.
  • Helping decide if a child qualifies for special education at school or inclusion in new studies.

The test besides helps scientists check for other signs of emotional distress, behavioural problems, or academic disorders. These may include:

  • depression
  • dyslexia
  • emotional disturbance

After the test has been completed, the scientist interprets the forms and their report is reviewed with the parents. Finally, the two parties will discuss the recommendations for treatment.

What are the early signs of attention deficit disorder?
Seeking a diagnosing for attention deficit disorder normally follows an awareness of symptoms. Symptoms are different in children and adults. Learn more about the signs of attention deficit disorder here.
Read now

Long and short versions

The Conners CBRS assessment is intended for children and teenagers.

There are short and long versions of the Conners CBRS assessments. some versions are designed to test children from ages 6 to 18 years old, but experts use each for a different purpose.

The long version of the Conners CBRS is used for the initial evaluation of a child. The short version is used to follow up on a child's behavioural patterns.

The long version will ask questions to check for:

  • types of behavioural issues
  • emotional disorders
  • difficulties with academics

There are besides three different forms inside each version of the Conners CBRS assessment. One is designed for parents to fill out, some other for teachers, and one for the child to give their assessment of their symptoms.

Each form is worded otherwise, depending on what it is being used for. By combining the answers from all three forms, doctors can begin to paint a picture of a child's behaviors. They are then able to decide if the child has attention deficit disorder, and start to help them understand their symptoms.

The long version of the Conners CBRS assessment may take up to 90 proceedings to complete right and is designed to give a comprehensive evaluation of a child's behaviors.

The short version of the test is called the Conners Clinical Index, or Conners CI, and may take as little as 5 proceedings to complete.

The Conners CI covers 25 questions. It is designed to assess symptoms or progress over time. It is often used to follow up on a child's behaviors, or see how they are responding to a medication or treatment routine.

What do the results mean?

The scientist will add up the tons from all the areas of the assessment and compare them to the tons of others in the child's age group to get their standardized tons.

These tons, called T-tons, can help people see how the child's symptoms and their severity compare to other children's. The tons will often be displayed in a visual format in the report for better understanding.

T-tons should be discussed directly with a doctor or mental health professional, and no one should try to self-diagnose or diagnose a child on their own.

It is normally considered normal when T-tons are less than 60, piece tons above 60 are signs of academic, behavioural, or social issues. There are several different classes as well:

  • A T-score of more than 60 can indicate that the child may have an issue so much as attention deficit disorder.
  • A T-score lesser than 60 but under 70 may indicate moderately severe issues.
  • A T-score above 70 may be a sign that the behavioural, academic, or emotional problems are severe.

These results will help the scientist diagnose a child's attention deficit disorder or other issues, and they will recommend treatment based on how atypical the tons are, as well as the most severe issues.

Limitations of the Conners rating scale

Using multiple evaluation approaches will aid an accurate diagnosing.

As with all attention deficit disorder rating scales, the Conners rating scale is subjective and has limitations.

According to the medical assessment publisher MHS Assessments, validity analyses are used to ensure the accuracy of Conners CBRS tons. moreover, the mean overall classification accuracy rate is aforesaid to be 78 percentage crosswise all Conners CBRS forms.

As much as these tests aim to be objective, assessing a child's behavior will always have a subjective element to it.

Because of this subjectiveness, individuals are often suggested to use the Conners CBRS aboard other evaluation approaches.

These include:

  • attention span tests
  • the Conners 3 for continued assessment
  • an attention deficit disorder symptom checklist

Further analysis of an individual's behaviour can help to give a more rounded view of symptoms. It may besides help avoid a misdiagnosing.


Self-diagnosing of attention deficit disorder is not an intended outcome of any attention deficit disorder test.

Anyone who suspects they or their child has symptoms of attention deficit disorder should make an appointment with their doctor and a mental health specialist for diagnosing. Even if the person has self-analyzed their behaviors prior to the visit, the scientist will often recommend retesting under their guidance.

The Conners rating scale is not perfect, nor is any other attention deficit disorder rating scale. But when used right, and under the guidance of a medical health professional, it may offer people a way to understand better their child's behaviors and possible attention deficit disorder symptoms.

Was this page helpful?
(0 votes)
End of the article