the child behavior checklist (cbcl) is a questionnaire that allows the assessment of behavioral problems and social competences of children and adolescents. although it was developed on the basis of the classical approach of the test theory, recent investigations have revealed the usefulness of applying the item response theory (irt) to model the variables of cbcl. this paper revises the considerations made by the respective authors in order to meet the demands of the irt models. the information provided by the characteristic curves of items is described as well as the manner in which the analysis thereof might contribute to optimize the administration period of cbcl. furthermore, the invariance of the measures obtained through transcultural adaptations of this questionnaire is analyzed and the results are summarized.