A self-administered rating scale for pubertal development

J Adolesc Health. 1993 May;14(3):190-5. doi: 10.1016/1054-139x(93)90004-9.


The purpose of this study was to assess the reliability and validity of a new self-rating scale to measure children's pubertal status without pictorial representations or interviews. The scale is an adaptation of an interview-based puberty-rating scale by Petersen, and included scores for each of five items rating physical development, an overall maturation measure, and a categorical maturation score designed to be similar to Tanner staging categories. Each measure was obtained from independent ratings by students and parents, and a 3-point categorical scale was also obtained from teachers. Subjects included 698 5th- and 6th-grade students (323 boys and 375 girls) from 61 schools and their parents and teachers. Fifth-grade students rated themselves and were rated by parents as less mature than 6th graders; 6th-grade girls were consistently rated more mature than boys of the same age. Significant correlations were found between parents and students for all of the measures for 6th-graders and 5th-grade girls and several measures for 5th-grade boys. This new scale is a useful tool for assessing pubertal status in settings that require noninvasive measures.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Data Collection
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Human Development*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Parents
  • Puberty*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sex Characteristics
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Teaching