Distributional Properties and Criterion Validity of a Shortened Version of the Social Responsiveness Scale: Results from the ECHO Program and Implications for Social Communication Research

J Autism Dev Disord. 2021 Jul;51(7):2241-2253. doi: 10.1007/s10803-020-04667-1.


Prior work proposed a shortened version of the Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS), a commonly used quantitative measure of social communication traits. We used data from 3031 participants (including 190 ASD cases) from the Environmental Influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) Program to compare distributional properties and criterion validity of 16-item "short" to 65-item "full" SRS scores. Results demonstrated highly overlapping distributions of short and full scores. Both scores separated case from non-case individuals by approximately two standard deviations. ASD prediction was nearly identical for short and full scores (area under the curve values of 0.87, 0.86 respectively). Findings support comparability of shortened and full scores, suggesting opportunities to increase efficiency. Future work should confirm additional psychometric properties of short scores.

Keywords: Autism spectrum disorder; Quantitative traits; Social Responsiveness Scale; Social communication.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Area Under Curve
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Communication*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales / standards*
  • Psychometrics
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Social Behavior*

Grant support