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Parenting Stress Index, Fourth Edition Short Form

Richard R. Abidin, EdD

Identifies parent–child problem areas quickly
Paper and pencil, Online administration and scoring via PARiConnect, E-Manual
Age range:
Birth to 12 years
10 minutes
Qualification level:
A degree, certificate, or license to practice in a health care profession or occupation, including (but not limited to) the following: medicine, neurology, nursing, occupational therapy and other allied health care professions, physician's assistants, psychiatry, social work; plus appropriate training and experience in the ethical administration, scoring, and interpretation of clinical behavioral assessment instruments. Certain health care providers may be eligible to purchase selected "B" and "C" level instruments within their area of expertise. Specifically, relevant supervised clinical experience using tests (i.e., internship, residency, etc.) in combination with formal coursework ( i.e., Tests and Measurement, Individual Assessment, or equivalent) qualifies a health care provider to purchase certain restricted products. Any PAR Customer already qualified to purchase a "B" or "C" level product, is also qualified to purchase an "S" level product. If you are not already qualified to purchase a "B"or "C" level product from PAR, please download and complete the special Qualification Form for Medical and Allied Health Professionals. (You will need Adobe Acrobat to view.) Close

Quickly Screen for Stress in the Parent–Child System in Only 10 Minutes


The Short Form features 36 items drawn from the full-length form divided into three domains (Parental Distress, Parent–Child Dysfunctional Interaction, and Difficult Child). 

The PSI-4-SF is an abbreviated version of the PSI-4. Please visit the PSI-4 page to purchase the full-length version.


What's Available

The PSI-4-SF PARiConnect Quick Start Kit includes the PSI-4 e-Manual, 10 i-Admins, and 10 interpretive reports bundled together to get you started on PARiConnect quickly.

Administer the PSI-4-SF to your Spanish-speaking clients via PARiConnect!

Features and benefits

  • Thirty-six items are divided into three domains: Parental Distress (PD), Parent-Child Dysfunctional Interaction (P-CDI), and Difficult Child (DC), which combine to form a Total Stress scale.
  • One simple form contains everything you need for administering the measure and for scoring and profiling results.
  • The PSI-4-SF's brevity allows primary healthcare providers to identify those families most in need of follow-up services. It is also ideal for use in schools, mental health clinics, and research.
  • The Parenting Stress Index, Fourth Edition Short Form is approved by the TRICARE Autism Care Demonstration (ACD) program. 
  • Empirical validity has been established in studies that focused on parenting of Head Start children, medication adherence, and cognitive development of infants.
  • PSI-4-SF Record/Profile Forms have been translated into U.S. Spanish. This product uses English norms only.
  • The PSI-4-SF Interpretive Report contains a profile, a score summary table, a scale-by-scale interpretation of the protocol, and a list of possible diagnoses for the child.
  • The PSI-4-SF Score Report contains a percentile profile, a T-score profile, a score summary table, and a table of item responses.


Full form available

The PSI-4 is a 120-item inventory that focuses on three major domains of stress: child characteristics, parent characteristics, and situational/demographic life stress. Commonly used as a diagnostic or screening measure to evaluate the parenting system, the PSI-4 helps identify at-risk or problem areas in the child's or parent's behavior. Major enhancements in this revision include: improved cultural sensitivity of item language, increased internal consistency of scales, the addition of age-based norms at the domain and subscale level, enhanced factor loading of items on scales, the addition of T scores to enhance interpretation, and a new normative sample that includes fathers.


To learn more about the PSI-4-SF, visit the PAR Training and watch a video presentation given by the author!