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The Psychometrics Centre

Cambridge Judge Business School

The Pre-School Activities Inventory (PSAI) is a psychometric scale for the assessment of gender role behavior in young children. It is used primarily by research psychologists and has been normed on a large and representative sample of children between the ages of two-and-a-half years and five years of age. It contains 24 items and is completed by the child's parent or caretaker. Items concern the child's characteristics and toy and activity preferences. 

The PSAI, specifically designed to address within-sex characteristics as well as to differentiate between the sexes, is today the most widely used questionnaire for research into the development of gender identity and sex role behaviour in young children. Within many developmental frameworks such differences may be important precursors for a variety of sexual and/or role preferences in adulthood.

PSAI Publications

Golombok, S. & Rust, J. (1993) The Pre-School Activities Inventory: A Standardized Assessment of Gender Role in Children. Psychological Assessment, 5(2), 131-136.

Golombok, S. & Rust, J. (1993) The Measurement of Gender Role Behaviour in Pre-School Children: a Research Note. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 34(5), 805-811.

Rust, J., Golombok, S., Hines, M & Johnston, K. (2000) The Role of Brothers and Sisters in the Gender Development of Preschool Children, Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 77, 292-303.

Hines, M., Golombok, S., Rust, J., Johnston, K. & Golding, J. (2002) Testosterone during pregnancy and gender role behavior of preschool chilcren: A longitudinal population study, Child Development, 73(6), 1678-1687.

Golombok, S., Rut, J. Zervoulis, J., Croudace, T., Golding, J. & Hines, M. (2008) Development trajectories of sex-type behavior in boys and girls: A longitudinal general population study of children aged 2.5-8 yearsChild Development, 79(5), 1583-1593. 

Golombok, S., Rust, J., Zervoulis, J., Golding, J. & Hines, M. (2012) Continuity in Sex-Typed Behavior from Preschool to Adolescence: A Longitudinal Population Study of Boys and Girls Aged 3–13 Years, Archives of Sexual Behavior, 41, 591-597.

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