Validity of the Massachusetts Youth Screening Instrument-2 (MAYSI-2) scales in juvenile justice settings

J Pers Assess. 2010 Jul;92(4):337-48. doi: 10.1080/00223891.2010.482009.


High prevalence rates of psychological problems among juvenile offenders underscore the need for effective mental health screening tools in the juvenile justice system. In this study, we evaluated the validity of the Massachusetts Youth Screening Instrument-2 (MAYSI-2) developed by Grisso and Barnum (2001) to identify mental health needs of adolescents in various juvenile justice settings. The sample was 1,192 adolescents (1,082 boys and 110 girls) admitted into Virginia juvenile correction facilities between the dates of July 2004 and June 2006. Analyses revealed higher MAYSI-2 scale scores for girls than for boys and MAYSI-2 scale intercorrelations were similar to those reported in the MAYSI-2 manuals (Grisso & Barnum, 2003, 2006). We also evaluated the concurrent validity of MAYSI-2 scales by examining scale score correlations with related and unrelated extratest variables. Results showed strong convergent validity for several MAYSI-2 scales.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Juvenile Delinquency*
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / instrumentation*
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*
  • Virginia