The Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale for Children and Adolescents: An initial psychometric investigation

Carrie Masia-Warner, Eric A. Storch, Donna B. Pincus, Rachel G. Klein, Richard G. Heimberg, Michael R. Liebowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


Objective: To examine the psychometric properties of a newly developed clinician rating scale, the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale for Children and Adolescents (LSAS-CA), Method: A total of 154 children and adolescents participated in an assessment consisting of a diagnostic interview, the LSAS-CA, and other measures of psychopathology and impairment. Sixty-one of these children also participated in a second LSAS-CA administration, by a different rater blind to diagnosis, within 7 days of the initial assessment. Results: High internal consistency (α = .90-.97 for full sample and .S3-.95 for social phobia group) and test-retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient = 0.89-0.94) were obtained for LSAS-CA total and subscale scores. LSAS-CA scores had stronger associations with measures of social anxiety and general impairment than with a measure of depression. Subjects with social anxiety disorder had significantly higher LSAS-CA scores than subjects with other anxiety disorders and healthy controls. A LSAS-CA cutoff score of 22.5 represented the best balance of sensitivity and specificity when distinguishing between individuals with social phobia and normal controls, whereas a cutoff of 29.5 was optimal for distinguishing social phobia from other anxiety disorders. Conclusion: Initial findings suggest that the LSAS-CA is a reliable and valid instrument for the assessment of social anxiety disorder.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1076-1084
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2003


  • Clinician-rated
  • Reliability
  • Social phobia


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