The Parenting Sense of Competence (PSOC) is a self-report measure of parenting efficacy and satisfaction that is widely used by researchers and clinicians in many countries. Despite its popularity, there have been some criticisms of the instrument. The aims of the current study were to identify and address shortcomings of the PSOC and to produce a revised measure that reflected the original constructs and that demonstrated robust psychometric properties.
The researchers examined the original PSOC and proposed changes to overcome identified issues. A sample of 3056 Australian mothers provided data for the revised instrument’s factor structure and psychometric analyses.
We identified a number of problems with the original instrument, including factorial inconsistency, and multipart or potentially ambiguous questions. Of particular concern was the fact that all negatively worded items load onto one subscale and all positively worded questions load onto the other subscale. In addressing these issues, we produced a 16-item instrument (the Parenting Sense of Competence–Revised; PSOC-R) with strong internal consistency, excellent test–retest reliability and good evidence of construct validity including factorial validity and criterion-related validity.
The PSOC-R maintains the intent of the original measure in assessing parenting Efficacy (10 items) and Satisfaction (6 items). It represents improvements in item construction including reductions in complexity, with no multipart items and a lower reading level requirement than previously. Data across four child age groups enhance the instrument’s clinical utility.