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WHAT IS THE ADBB SCALE ( Alarm Distress baby) ?

The ADBB is a scale for assessing relational withdrawal in babies between 0 and 24 months of age, with 8 observation items. It is an observation aid validated by research.

The ADBB was developed by Pr. A. Guedeney (child psychiatrist, Hôpital Bichat Claude Bernard, AP/HP Paris). The Baby Alarm Distress Scale (ADBB) is an observation aid for child professionals (paediatricians, child psychiatrists, psychologists, nursery nurses, educators, etc.). It is used in clinical settings (screening), for the evaluation of interventions, and for research.


Withdrawal is a major component of the baby’s response to the alteration of the relationship that occurs during the still face experience or in the clinic during maternal depression.

Withdrawal behaviour is also one of the most stable developmental behaviours, despite the major changes that occur in the first three years of life.

Early relational withdrawal behaviour is therefore an important warning signal.

The baby’s defensive repertoire is indeed initially quite limited, and centres mainly around protest and withdrawal.

Withdrawal is more difficult to identify than protest, yet it is involved in many situations of early psychopathology, whether they are caused initially by a relational disorder, or by an organic disorder, as in intense and lasting pain.


General objective: To be able to detect and assess relational withdrawal in children between 0 and 24 months using the ADBB (Alarm Distress Baby Scale)

Operational objectives: at the end of the course you should be able to :

  1. Define relational withdrawal,
  2. Understand the links between relational withdrawal and developmental risk,
  3. Name the main findings of research on relational withdrawal and the validity of the scale,
  4. Cite and define each of the items in the ADBB scale,
  5. Be aware of the legal, ethical and technical requirements for conducting an assessment,
  6. Detect a relational withdrawal baby in all assessment situations in a reliable manner,
  7. Reliably assess the severity of relational withdrawal.


  • Theories and research on relational withdrawal
  • Scoring manual and assessment methodology
  • Training in scoring with the help of video documents: Finding your way around the ADBB Scale, first steps with the Scale
  • More in-depth
  • Test-retest and difficult items
  • Using the video tool in the clinic
  • Preparation for the final test (private certification)
  • Final test


The training is 100% online, with synchronous time in virtual classes and asynchronous time, meaning self-training, and therefore autonomous. It has been designed by instructional designers who are experts in e-learning. You will find videos, teaching resources and questionnaires to enable you to validate your acquired skills. You will be invited to practice using and observing the scale during the training.

You will also have a learning community on which you are invited to participate. The trainer will regularly answer your questions posted on this space. We also encourage you to interact with other learners, as this will enhance your integration of the course content and support your clinical reflection. Moreover, your clinical wealth is also a pedagogical wealth for others and the trainers will use it to enrich the training and adapt it to your needs.

The use of these spaces implies full acceptance of the general conditions of use described on the site: These conditions of use may be modified or completed at any time, so you are invited to consult them regularly.


Alexandra Deprez, B-Families

Alexandra DeprezDoctor in psychology, certified trainer for the ADBB, expert trainer and educational tutor. Child and adolescent psychologist. Trained in perinatal psychopathology and different attachment assessment tools (CARE-Index, Adult Attachement Interview, Strange Situation, Crowell Procedure..) and different modalities of informed attachment and trauma therapy interventions: Theraplay, EMDR etc..


Jocelyne Guillon, Humagogie ​: administrative tutor (management of registrations in France and administrative documents for the course) and Learning Community Manager.


The evaluations allow us to collect your comments and suggestions for improvement. They are also passed on to the trainers.

The evaluation procedure also makes it possible to determine whether the trainee has acquired the knowledge whose mastery constitutes the initial objective of the action.

  • The evaluations carried out on the spot (at the end of the training course) and afterwards (1 to 3 months after the training courses) enable us to collect your comments and suggestions for improvement. They are also sent to the trainers. The evaluation procedure also makes it possible to determine whether the trainee has acquired the knowledge whose mastery constitutes the initial objective of the action.
    • Before : Pre-training questionnaire to assess participants’ expectations of the training.
    • During : The learning activities will be monitored throughout the course by recording the time spent on the platform, the trainees’ involvement in the learning community, and the completion of the pedagogical activities and exercises. During the virtual classes, exchanges on the understanding of the techniques, on their questioning for a practical application in their daily professional life and on their experimentation.
    • Afterwards: End-of-training evaluation during the last virtual class, then a cold evaluation by questionnaire sent by e-mail, 3 months after the end of the training.


For this distance learning course, learning activities are monitored throughout the course by recording connection times on the platform, recording attendance at virtual classes, your involvement in the learning community and the completion of teaching activities and exercises.

Exercises and analysis of videos and cases with feedback from the trainer take place throughout the course. This continuous evaluation will allow you to acquire the necessary skills to put the ADBB into practice in your clinical practice.

An individual mid-course evaluation is planned.

Your presence in the various virtual classes and your exchanges on the learning community on Slack and the video analyses will attest to your participation in the training.

A training certificate will be provided to you on these criteria after the training.

Validation of the final test (ADBB private certification).

Final attestation (private certification)

This is compulsory and involves scoring 20 ADBB videos and submitting your results to the trainer on an Excel file. Your results will be statistically tested to determine your reliability in assessing relational withdrawal. A final certificate will be given to you at the end of the training, informing you of the conditions under which you can use the ADBB Scale according to your results. This certificate is valid for a period of two years.

Why this period? Because a fine observation skill, if not maintained, diminishes with time. At the end of the training, you will be offered simple ways to maintain your ADBB competence, such as

  • completing your practice through supervision, by joining the co-development community “Attachment in Practice” for at least 6 months
  • or by re-registering for a training session (specific fee) in the use of the ADBB scale. You will then become a peer tutor. You will accompany the other learners to reflect without giving them the answers, while reviewing the content. It is also about being a driving force on the learning community.

Reliability criteria:

  • Correlation .60: use of ADBB for screening purposes .
  • Correlation. 80: use of ADBB for clinical, follow-up intervention and research purposes.
  • Correlation .90: access to ADBB facilitator training, use of ADBB for expert purposes, possibility to use it for written reports.

The ADBB private certification is valid for 2 years, as this knowledge needs to be updated regularly and after 2 years biases may have developed and feedback from an ADBB expert is needed.

To maintain competence in the use of the ADBB scale, it is necessary to take part in an online reflective workshop on the ADBB scale at least once every two years (fee in addition to training and on request).


Institutional/employer: 1870€ TTC (Tariff 01/2024) *

Self-employed, liberal profession or private individual: 1250€ TTC (Tariff 01/2024)*

Student/research project holder: contact us

*Humagogie is not subject to VAT, according to article 262 ter, I of the CGI.

We also offer webinars (video-conferences) or E-learning (6 hours) on the M-ADBB simplified scale to discover the tool.


This training is aimed at professionals who work with families and babies: nursery nurses, paediatricians, psychologists, psychiatrists, psychomotricians, nurses, nursery professionals, osteopaths (10 to 25 people). This training is not recommended for pregnant women or women who have just given birth, due to its content and emotional charge.

Our courses are accessible to people with disabilities, please notify your needs (one month before the course) in the tab provided on the pre-registration form. If you meet the pre-requisites and the public concerned, we will adapt your welcome and the teaching methods.

  • Knowledge of normal child development between 0 and 2 years of age.
  • Be a professional in the medico-social, early childhood or mental health fields
IN 2023 :
  • The self-training part (E-learning) is open  from 23 March to 22 July 2023 (complete)
  • The virtual classes take place on Thursdays from 15:00 – 17:00 Paris time (London Time : 2pm to 4 pm) : March 23 and 30, April 6, 13, 20, 27, May 4 and 25, June 1 and 22
IN 2024 :
  • The self-training part (E-learning) is open  from 30 April to 16 August 2024
  • The virtual classes take place on Tuesdays from 14:00 – 16:00 Paris time (London Time : 1pm to 3 pm) : April 30, May 7, 14, 21 and 28, June 11 and 18, July 2 and 16, 2024
  • Access: 100% online
  • Online training: 65 hours (20 hours synchronous and 45 hours asynchronous) over 12 to 14 weeks (if school holidays in the schedule).
  • Access to content for 1 month after the end of the course
  • Registration possible up to 15 days before the start of the course. This course can be adapted (duration and content) for your team.
Register for the next training

Contact us for additional informations or to register groups bigger than 20 people :


    during the last training


    Satisfaction rate for the training progression


    Satisfaction rate for the training content


    Training efficiency


    Certified via online training (5 promotions) including 8 certified at a research level

    The process of learning by practicing observation is very relevant, it allows you to really refine the observation by focusing on the baby

    Maternal and child heath doctorAnswer to the question, what are the strengths of the training?

    The organization on the online training platform is simple and intuitive. There is technical help available at all times. The trainer adapts to the rhythm of the group and to specific requests. The great level of knowledge of the trainer makes this training a mine of information.

    Specialized educatorAnswer to the question, what are the strengths of the training?

    The direct link and the availability of the trainer. It was very interesting to have support leads for people followed by our services. The analysis of our own videos was rich.

    Young children educatorAnswer to the question, what are the strengths of the training?

    Last edited 29/11/2023