Screening Young Children from 0 to 6 Years Old

For an Intervention as Soon as Possible

The importance of early screening of developmental difficulties in young children is the subject of broad consensus. Early screening can ensure that children with higher needs can receive interventions as soon as possible.

In this perspective, the UNESCO Chair is interested in screening practices and tools that involve the child’s parents or relatives. The latter have many opportunities to observe children in their various environments. The Chair members are particularly interested in the adaptation and validation of screening tool ASQ-Ages and Stages Questionnaires (Squires & Bricker, 2009), developed considering the accessibility to the child’s various settings.

Screening Projects

In Quebec and Canada

A seven-year project funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) focuses on inclusive daycare settings, particularly in terms of the developmental vigilance practices put in place by educators. It will document these practices at the provincial level and continue the validation process related to the ASQ’s 3rd edition.

At an International Level

Translation, adaptation and validation of screening tools addressed to children's settings are currently being conducted by international members. Among them, researcher Jane Squires, director of the Center on Human Development at the University of Oregon (United States), is leading a project (Oregon Online Screening Project) to test an online screening method for parents. This project involves providing parents with a range of online resources enabling them to be informed about early childhood development and to be accompanied when needed. In particular, parents have the opportunity to complete screening tool ASQ (Ages and Stages Questionnaires) or ASQ-SE (Ages and Stages Questionnaires: Socio Emotional), allowing them to check their worries in case of doubt about the development of their child.

An overview of previous work completed

In Quebec and Canada

ASQ validation studies for children in Quebec have been conducted by the chairholder since 2000. A first experimentation project was conducted in 2000 with daycare facilities in the Mauricie and Central Québec regions (Regional Health and Social Services Board 04/17) to ensure that this tool (2nd edition) is appropriate for young Quebec children and that it is appropriate for the needs of daycare educators. In 2003, a new grant from the Regional Board was obtained to continue this research. In 2011, the chairholder translated and adapted the 3rd American edition of the tool (Squires & Bricker, 2009) by performing a reverse translation of each item and additional material. Research continued with this last edition in daycares as well as in Health and Social Services Centers (Victoriaville and Sept-Îles). The instruments’ psychometric properties results are promising.

Research has also been done with First Nations people. In 2007, the Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Early Intervention and the Step by Step Center received a grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) as part of the "Aboriginal Realities" program. This grant led to the first ASQ validation study for Aboriginal children attending the Step by Step Child and Family Center in Kahnawake, Quebec. A Canadian summit was also held bringing together experts from British Columbia, Alberta, Nunavik, Ontario and Quebec who underline the importance of continuing studies in this direction.

At an International Level

In development.

Documents to consult

Articles (in English)

Schonhaut, L., Martinez Nadal, S., Demestre, X., & Armijo, I. (2019). Reliability and Agreement of Ages and Stages Questionnaires®: Results in Late Preterm and Term-Born Infants at 24 and 48 month. Early Human Development, 128, 55-61

Xie, H., Bian, X. Chen C., Squires, J., & Lu, P. (2019).  Examining the convergent evidence of a parent-completed social-emotional screening tool in China.  Journal of Child and Family Studies. 28(6), 1471-1480.

Dolata, J, Sanford-Kelle, H., & Squires, J. (2019).  Modifying a general social-emotional measure for early autism screening. International Journal of Developmental Disabilities, 1-8.

Anunciacao, L., Squires, J., Clifford, J., & Landeira-Fernandez, J. (2019). Confirmatory analysis and normative tables for the Brazilian Ages and Stages Questionnaires: Social-Emotional. Child Care Health Development, 45(3), 387-393. doi: 10.1111/cch.12649

Anunciacao, L., Chen, C., Squires, J. & Landiera-Fernandez, J. (2018). Screening for social emotional delays in young children who live in poverty:  A Brazilian example.  Journal of Childhood and Developmental Disorders, 4(25), 1-8.

Romero Otalvaro, A. M., Granana, N., Gaeto, N., Torres, M. L. A., Zamblera, M. N., Vasconez, M. A., Misenta, C., Rouvier, M. E., & Squires, J. (2018). ASQ-3: Validation of the Ages and Stages Questionnaire for the detection of neurodevelopmental disorders in Argentine children. Arch Argent Pediatr, 116(1), 7-13. doi:10.5546/aap.2018.eng.7

Bian, X., Xie, H., Squires, J., & Chen, C. Y. (2017). Adapting a parent-completed, socioemotional questionnaire in china: The ages & stages questionnaires: social-emotional. Infant Ment Health J, 38(2), 258-266. doi:10.1002/imhj.21626

Chen, C.-Y., Chen, C.-I., Squires, J., Bian, X., Heo, K. H., Filgueiras, A., Kalinina, S., Samarina, L., Ermolaeva, E., Xie, H., Yu, T.-Y., Wu, P.-F, & Landeira-Fernandez, J. (2017). Adapting a developmental screening measure: Exploring the effects of language and culture on a parent-completed social–emotional screening test. Infants & Young Children, 30(2), 111-123. doi:10.1097/iyc.0000000000000089

Chen, C.-Y., Xie, H., Filgueiras, A., Squires, J., Anunciação, L., & Landeira-Fernandez, J. (2017). Examining the psychometric properties of the Brazilian Ages & Stages Questionnaires-Social-Emotional: Use in public child daycare centers in Brazil. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26(9), 2412-2425. doi:10.1007/s10826-017-0770-0

Miao, Q., Chai, Z., Squires, J., Yan, J.-H., Chen, C.-I., Chen, C.-Y., …Bian, X. (2017). 基于《年龄与发育进程问卷⁃第3 版》调查的中国和美国1~66 个月儿童发育状况的比较. [Comparison in development of young children aged 1 to 66 months between China and U.S. based on Ages and Stages Questionnaires (the third edition)]. 中国循证儿科杂志, 12(2), 111-115. DOI:10.3969 / j.issn.1673⁃5501.2017.02.006(Impact factor: 0.949)

Squires, J. (2017). Use of parents and caregivers as accurate assessors of young children’s development. Revista chilena de pediatría, 88, 22-24.

Singh, A., Squires, J., Yeh, C. J., Heo, K. H., & Bian, H. (2016). Validity and reliability of the developmental assessment screening scale. Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care, 5(1), 124-128. doi:10.4103/2249-4863.184636;year=2016;volume=5;issue=1;month=January-March

Chen, C.-Y., Filgueiras, A., Squires, J., & Landeira-Fernandez, J. (2016). Examining the factor structure of an early childhood social emotional screening assessment. Journal Of Special Education And Rehabilitation, Psychological And Pedagogical Survey, 17(3-4), 89-104. doi:10.19057/jser.2016.12

Dionne, C., McKinnon, S., Squires, J., & Clifford, J. (2014). Developmental screening in a Canadian First Nation (Mohawk): Psychometric properties and adaptations of Ages & Stages Questionnaires (2nd edition). Biomed Central Pediatrics, 14, 23. doi: 10.1186/10.1186/1471-2431-14-23

Dionne, C., Squires, J., Leclerc, D., Péloquin, J., & McKinnon, S. (2006). Cross-cultural comparison of a French Canadian and US developmental screening test. Developmental Disabilities Bulletin, 34(1-2), 43-56.

Articles (in French)

Dionne, C. (2010). Dépister les retards de développement. Recherches sur l’outil ASQ. Revue du consortium national de recherche pour l’intégration sociale (CNRIS), 1(2), 13.

Dionne, C., McKinnon, S., & Squires J. (2010). Le dépistage des retards de développement chez les jeunes enfants d’une communauté des premières nations. First Peoples Child and Family Review, 5(2), 117-123.


English version of ASQ and related products

Squires, J., & Bricker, D. (2009). Ages and stages questionnaires. A parent-completed, child-monitoring system (3rd ed.). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.

Squires, J., Bricker, D. D., & Twombly, L. (2015). Ages & Stages Questionnaires: Social-Emotional, Second Edition (ASQ:SE-2™). Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.

French version of ASQ and related products

Squires, J., & Bricker, D. (2016). Ages and stages questionnaires in French, Third Edition (ASQ-3 French). Questionnaire sur les étapes du développement, troisième édition (ASQ-3 en français). Traduction par C. Dionne. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.

Squires, J., Bricker, D. D., & Twombly, L. (2011). Questionnaire sur les étapes de développement : socio-émotionnel. Traduction et adaptation par S. McKinnon. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.