Chasing the criteria: Comparing SOGS-RA and the Lie/Bet screen to assess prevalence of problem gambling and ‘at-risk’ gambling among adolescents

Abstract

Most instruments assessing gambling problems are relatively extensive and therefore not suitable for comprehensive youth surveys. An exception is the two-item Lie/Bet questionnaire. This study addresses to what extent two instruments (Lie/Bet and South Oaks Gambling Screen Revised for Adolescents (SOGS-RA)) (1) overlap in classifying problem gambling and at-risk gambling, (2) reflect different underlying dimensions of problem gambling, and (3) differ in distinguishing between young gamblers with respect to intensity and frequency of gambling in gender-specific analyses. Data stemmed from a school survey among teenagers in Norway (net sample = 20,700). The congruence in classification of problem gamblers was moderate. Both instruments discriminated sensibly between youths with high versus medium and low gambling frequency and gambling expenditures, although more so for boys than for girls. Both Lie/Bet items loaded on one 'loss of control' dimension. The results suggest that the Lie/Bet screen may be useful to assess at-risk gambling for both genders in comprehensive youth surveys.

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