ACE Centre - our research

Children's social behaviour in the clinic waiting room 


Waiting Room picture Abused and neglected children can have abnormal social behaviour, such as overfriendliness, that places them at risk of further maltreatment.   We have previously developed a structured observation, for use in a clinic waiting room, that detects these abnormal social behaviours in school-aged children. This Waiting Room Observation (WRO) is already being used internationally. 

We now wish to establish population norms for our WRO so that it can be confidently used to contribute towards the recognition of psychiatric diagnoses (Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) and Disinhibited Social Engagement Disorder (DSED)) of which these abnormal social behaviours are key symptoms. 

We already have a database containing data on the WROs of 50 children suffering from RAD and/or DSED. We plan, in this current study, to recruit 200 general population children aged 5-12 from local primary schools and to invite them with one of their parents to our clinic at Caledonia House, Yorkhill (where we conducted our previous structured observations) to take part in the WRO. 

This will allow us to produce reference ranges for the various WRO items and for the total WRO score that can be used in future studies across the world.