Home Educated Children’s Psychological Well Being
Other Titles: 
El bienestar psicológico de los niños educados en casa
Home-educated children
Socialisation and psychological problems
Revised Rutter Scale
Goodman Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire
Issue Date: 
Servicio de Publicaciones de la Universidad de Navarra
Rothermel, Paula Jane. (2012). “Home Educated Children’s Psychological Well Being”. ESE. Estudios sobre educación, 22, 13-36
Contrary to popular belief, children educated at home during the early years make better educational progress than children educated at school (Rothermel 2002). However, even if this is recognised, numerous educationists and Local Government officers assert that home educated children are at risk of developing psychological problems. This research used the Revised Rutter Scale (RRS) and the Goodman Strengths & Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) scales to investigate whether home-educated children experience psychological problems over and above what is considered normal. The research involved 83 homeeducated children aged between 4 and 11 years old. The Revised Rutter Scale (RRS) and the Goodman Strengths & Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) are both widely accepted measures of behaviour difficulties. Whilst the RRS is the more traditional instrument the SDQ has, by virtue of it being freely available, gained popularity in recent years. Whilst the home educated children were judged as psychosocially healthy by the RRS, they were defined by the SDQ as experiencing problems. The research concluded that there were substantial differences between the design and scoring of the two measures and that health professionals using behavioural scales with home-educated children should either avoid doing so altogether, or do so with extreme caution, taking particular note of the standardisation sample. Tests normed on school samples, are very likely to identify children educated out of school as abnormal.

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