Protective Behavioral Strategies Scale-20: Psychometric properties of a French and German version among young males in Switzerland

Véronique S. Grazioli, Joseph Studer, Mary E. Larimer, Melissa A. Lewis, Simon Marmet, Mélissa Lemoine, Jean Bernard Daeppen, Gerhard Gmel

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4 Scopus citations


Objective: The Protective Behavioral Strategies Scale (PBSS-20) is one of the most commonly used measures of engagement in protective behavioral strategies (PBS). This research aimed to examine the psychometric properties of a French and German version of the PBSS-20 in a large sample of young males in Switzerland. Method: The sample included 5,017 young males (mean age = 25.44) participating in the Cohort Study on Substance Use Risk Factors in Switzerland. Measures of PBS use, total drinks per week, and alcohol-related consequences were used from a second follow-up assessment. Results: Confirmatory factor analysis testing different models previously documented in the literature provided initial support for a four-factor model. Fit statistics indicated that this model adequately reflects the structure of data. Further findings also provided support for adequate internal consistency and for convergent validity of this four-factor model, whereas metric—but not scalar—measurement invariance across linguistic regions was demonstrated. Conclusion: Although further research testing measurement invariance across linguistic regions and gender is warranted, results of the current study suggest that the French and German PBSS-20 is reliable and that it may represent a promising research and clinical tool that can be used in both French- and German-speaking countries.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1777
JournalInternational Journal of Methods in Psychiatric Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2019


  • French
  • German
  • alcohol
  • protective behavioral strategies scale
  • young adults


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