Symptom Tests for Children

[Self-Test] Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) in Children

What is oppositional defiant disorder in children? ODD is more than occasional aggressive or irritating behavior. It’s a pattern of angry, uncooperative, and mean conduct that negatively impacts a child’s life at home and at school. Use this self-test to find out if your defiant child is showing signs of ODD — along with or instead of ADHD.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder in Children: ODD Test

Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) is a behavioral and conduct disorder that affects as many as 16 percent of children in the general population; that number is even higher for patients with ADHD.

ODD includes regular temper tantrums, excessive arguments with adults, and uncooperative, deliberately annoying actions. ODD can be an indicator of a mood, substance, or personality disorder and, if diagnosed, warrants further investigation.

The symptoms of ODD may look different in girls and boys, for whom the condition is more common. Boys with ODD tend to be more physically aggressive and have explosive anger while girls often lie, refuse to cooperate, and express symptoms in other indirect ways. ODD is usually diagnosed in childhood; some children outgrow the condition by age eight or nine. Early intervention and treatment for ODD are the best way to help correct oppositional behavior before it progresses into conduct disorder or a more serious mental health concern.

When you take this ODD self-test, think about your child’s behavior over the last six months or longer, behaviors that are excessive compared to what is usual for your child's age and that significantly impair the child's normal daily activities. You may want to take the results to a mental health professional for clinical evaluation and diagnosis of ODD.

This self-test for ODD was designed from symptom criteria in the American Psychiatric Association DSM 5, 2013. It is not a diagnostic tool but is designed to determine whether your child shows symptoms similar to those of oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), symptoms that might warrant a clinical evaluation by a mental health professional. This screener is for personal use only.

Do you feel like your child is purposely trying to ignite your anger?

Does your child unleash outbursts of anger and resentment?

Can simple reminders, like to put socks in the hamper and not on the floor, trigger aggression or meltdowns?

Does your child actively defy or refuse to comply with requests and rules at home or at school?

Does your child argue excessively with adults and other authority figures?

Does your child try to justify their behavior as a response to unreasonable demands?

Is your child touchy, prickly, or easily offended?

Do you find that consequences don't work, nor do they have any impact on behavior? That your child just doesn’t take rules seriously?

Does your child throw huge temper tantrums when getting home from school, and do the consequences for acting out make your child more agitated?

Are swear words a part of your child’s vocabulary?

Does your child bait classmates and pick fights with them by purposely doing things that annoy them?

Does your child test limits by ignoring rules or arguing?

Is your child spiteful, vindictive, or revenge seeking?

Does your child say cruel, mean, or hateful things when upset?

Does your child blame others for their mistakes or misbehavior?

Does your child get in trouble for being physically aggressive (i.e. shoving or hitting) other children?

Is your child unwilling or unable to compromise, give in, or negotiate with adults or peers?

Does your child get in trouble at school for throwing things in class?

(Optional) Would you like to receive your ODD symptoms test results — plus more helpful resources — via email from ADDitude?

Can’t see the self-test questions above? Click here to open this test in a new window.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder in Children: ODD Next Steps

1. Free Download: The 15-Day Fix to Stop Defiant Behavior in its Tracks
2. Take This Symptom Test: Does My Child Have ADHD?
3. Take This Symptom Test: Sensory Processing Disorder in Children
4. Listen to “ODD and ADHD: Strategies for Parenting Defiant Children” – an Expert Webinar with Ross W. Greene, Ph.D.
5. Read More About the ADHD-ODD Link in Children
6. Read: ODD in Children: A Parent’s Behavior Management Guide
7. Find an ADHD or ODD specialist nearby in our ADDitude Directory


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53 Comments & Reviews

    1. The next step is to take these results to you child’s doctor to discuss the possibility.

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

    1. My son is 7yrs old, diagnosed with ADHD & ODD. I was told there are no medications for ODD, but I personally believe that ADHD medications that inhibit the child’s impulsive behaviors limit the instances for the child to get into trouble & lead to fewer arguments. We are in therapy, we use 1-2-3 Magic for the argumentative behavior, he is in an inclusion classroom (2 teachers) and he takes Intuniv, a non-stimulant. Only just this week, do I feel like it is maybe, hopefully,finally, all coming together & he had a great week at school. Not as good at home, but better. Good luck!

      1. What is 1-2-3 Magic? I am trying all things with my 6 year old, still not sure i want to use medication.

    2. I’m in the same boat – my son is about to be 9 and scored a 72% on the test. Finally feel validated in my gut instinct that something just wasn’t right with him. At the same time hoping to find good resources here since there doesn’t seem to be a go to medication.

  1. I took this test for myself. Just see what it was like again to be called “defiant” and to remind me of the certain days when more than 1 of my teachers would yell at me to go outside of the classroom (usually the math teacher) until they were ready to allow me back into the class because I was talking / interrupting the class. He was a real jerk to me. I did not know anything about math and he would call me up to the board with maybe one other student to do a math problem, I hated it, he knew I did not know it. I was so lucky enough to have anyone by my side whisper to me the answers that it might be. And I mean like every single time. I had some horrible teachers who would make me feel so embarrassed. I also had this hippie type of red headed English teacher who had a giant wooden desk decorated by a bundle of bumper stickers and one time as me and the rest of the students were in line turning in our HW directly to her, when I made it to my turn to turn in my HW I made a comment about one particular bumper sticker that boldly said “LIFE’S A BEACH” and I said “Oh, Wait, I get it, like “LIFES A BITCH” and the teacher looked at me with her eyes of disgust, fire, and shame. She reached into her desk drawer and pulled out the red and yellow referral card to go straight to the principles office. As she was doing that I was shocked, I was like “whoa, wait, no, no, no, don’t you get it too?!” I hoped so badly she would get real with me and with life and it’s play on with words but she didn’t. I liked that English teacher and hope she like me too. I just hoped she would listen to me. I wasn’t trying to piss her reality off, but apparently I hit the nail on the head with that one for her. I begged her to see what I saw. But she was in denial for the sake of her own sense of self. She didn’t want to believe that I saw right through it too, and that it was okay to notice and giggle at a bit. God, I cried piles of tears to the principles office. I remember too many mean teachers. But apparently it got so bad all of teachers, principle, and my dad had to have a meeting about me. They were in a glass conference room and I of course had to sit outside near them where I could easily see them at a short distance. Watching there faces change and lips move with ego and how everything was entirely my fault. My defiance, rebelliousness, and absences from skipping class because I was always so embarrassed. The teachers said it was ADHD but when my dad told my mom she did not believe in that whatsoever so my dad just went with whatever my very christian mom had to say. It got so bad the principle told my parents to move me not just out of the public school system, but to another city. So they did. Out of San Diego, CA and into the pretty mountains of Lake Arrowhead, CA. Geeze Louise, talk about going from Life’s a Beach to Life’s a Lake !!! Anyways, take care of your kids hearts and ears. Cherish them in their most vulnerable moments, express your authenticity and they will watch how you move steadily up through life’s growing mountains while out at sea, chartering your waves of empathy for them.

    1. This is not a diagnostic tool, but rather a way to know if your child is showing symptoms of ODD. You should take these results to a clinician and discuss your concerns.

      With gratitude,

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