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During adolescence, social interactions are a potent source of reward. However, no measure of social reward value exists for this age group. In this study, we adapted the adult Social Reward Questionnaire, which we had previously developed and validated, for use with adolescents. Participants aged 11-16 (n = 568; 50% male) completed the Social Reward Questionnaire-Adolescent Version (SRQ-A), alongside measures of personality traits-five-factor model (FFM) and callous-unemotional (CU) traits-for construct validity purposes. A confirmatory factor analysis of the SRQ-A supported a five-factor structure (Comparative Fit Index = 0.90; Root Mean Square Error of Approximation = 0.07), equating to five questionnaire subscales: enjoyment of Admiration, Negative Social Potency, Passivity, Prosocial Interactions and Sociability. Associations with FFM and CU traits were in line with what is seen for adult samples, providing support for the meaning of SRQ-A subscales in adolescents. In particular, adolescents with high levels of CU traits showed an 'inverted' pattern of social reward, in which being cruel is enjoyable and being kind is not. Gender invariance was also assessed and was partially supported. The SRQ-A is a valid, reliable measure of individual differences in social reward in adolescents.

Original publication




Journal article


R Soc Open Sci

Publication Date





adolescence, antisocial, callous–unemotional traits, prosocial, scale development, social reward