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The Danish Center of Psychotraumatology

Collection of the Danish norms for the Odense Child Trauma Screening (OCTS)


In recent years, researchers from the National Centre of Psychotraumatology have been working on a project aimed at collecting norm data from Danish children for our structured play-test OCTS. The project were supported by Ole Kirk's Fond and ran from 01.02.22-01.02.23. OCTS is a story stem-tool that can be used to investigate whether children, in the ages 4-8 years old, shows indications of traumatization in their play. OCTS is developed at the National Centre of Psychotraumatology and has been validated in a Danish context. Psychological studies of vulnerable children with OCTS are strengthened by the availability of the norm material, against which  the test of the individual child can be compared to. The norm data indicates how a broad group of children across gender /boy/girl) and age (4, 5 and 6-8 years old) score on average across the individual codes in the OCTS scoring system and across the sub- and total scores. 

The study included 169 children, of which 70% were preschoolers and 30% were schoolchildren. Due to COVID-19 related challenges, it was not possible to recruit any more schoolchildren. The average age was 5 years and 4 months and 51.5% of the study group of children were girls. The children were primarily recruited from the Region of Southern Denmark through schools and preschools


We found no significant gender differences in sub- or total scores, while we found five gender differences in code scores across three stories. None of the significant differences appeared multiples times in the same code. We found two significant age differences in sub-scores the with 4 year olds scoring higher than the group of 6-8 year olds in the Bicycle story and Stomach Ache. The 4 year olds also had significantly higher total scores than the 6-8 year olds. We found 13 significant age differences in code scores. Gender differences appeared between all age groups and all stories, except the Nightmare story. In all cases of significant age difference, the younger of the two groups scored higher. In general there was an overall tendency for the younger age groups to score higher than older age groups, which may indicate that scores on codes, sub-scores and total scores decrease with age. However, this was not the case for all scores and in many cases the differences were not significant. The study therefore suggest that there are few gender and age biases in the OCTS assessment tool's stories and scoring system. This support that the assessment tool can reliably be used across the target population. 

Editing was completed: 27.02.2023