Finding health questionnaires, scales & tests

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"...[this book] brings together widely scattered information on health measurement techniques; a practical reference guide by Ian McDowell ... it helps readers choose, administer, and score available questionnaires & rating scales. Reviewing 50 measurement instruments, it describes their purpose and conceptual basis, reliability and validity, and shows a copy of the scale." see free PDF
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See also Information technology topics, Surveys - an introduction to online tools & Teaching health library users

This guide aims to list starting points for health-related research involving instruments, measures, scales and tests. Health-related measures and scales are standardized tools used for a number of purposes in evaluating health, illness, quality of life and a range of behaviours and attitudes. Typically, they are used to gauge the progress in reaching population health goals, assessing health disparities across segments of the population, and measuring effectiveness of health care interventions for a number of age-related diseases.

Health measurement instruments are defined by the Health and Psychosocial Instruments Database (HaPI) as questionnaires, psychological tests, health status indicators, genetic tests, interview schedules, checklists, index measures, coding schemes/ manuals, inventories, rating scales, projective techniques, and vignettes/scenarios.

Major websites

Other guides to tests

Key resources

  • extensive listing of psychiatric rating scales
  • extensive list of scales and PubMed search queries for scales
  • many practical surveys and tools for improving quality of care.

Databases at UBC Library

Monographs at UBC Library

Assessment, measures, questionnaires examples

Relevant subject headings

  1. Health surveys
  2. Social surveys
  3. Health status indicators—Measurement.
  4. Health Status Indicators
  5. Pain Measurement
  6. Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  7. Psychological Tests
  8. Questionnaires

Other rating scales

Health-related quality of life search tips

  • Sensitivity versus specificity - health-related QoL is a specific concept in health technology assessment; it involves measurement, using reliable and validated methods, of functional, social and emotional aspects of health. MeSH and EMTREE headings define quality of life in broad, general terms. Some searches may therefore retrieve a large number of irrelevant references. As more instruments are validated, modified and adapted they are referred to by various abbreviated titles such as: SF-36, SF36, Short-form 36, Shortform 36, MOS 36 & RAND 36. There is an abridged form of the SF-36, the SF-12 (or SF12, Short-Form-12, etc.); texts are useful in identifying freetext variations of relevant terms

Commercial distributors

" leader in clinical assessment; ability, achievement, personality, behaviour, speech and language, occupational therapy, and career interests; Wechsler family of assessments, MMPI® tests, Beck inventories, Millon™ inventories, PPVT™-4, Bayley-III® Scales of Infant and Toddler Development®, BASC™ family of products, Kaufman family of assessments, etc..."

Relevant research

  • Fox, J.E. and Fricker, S.S. (2009). Designing ratings scales for questionnaires. Presented at the Usability Professionals' Association Annual Conference. Portland, OR, USA. 11-Jun-2009. Discusses the effects of rating scales on questionnaire results.
  • Fox, J.E. and Fricker, S.S. (2008). Beyond words: Strategies for designing good questionnaires. Presented at the Usability Professionals' Association Annual Conference. Baltimore, MD, USA. 19-Jun-2008.
  • Dumas, J. and Tullis, T. (2009). Annotated Bibliography of Rating Scale Literature. 25-May-2009. Extensive list of references on rating scales and questionnaires.
  • Dumas, J. (2009). Rating scales: What the research says. PowerPoint slides Presented at the Boston Usability Professionals' Association Mini-UPA Conference, 28-May-2009.
  • Jurek Kirakowski. Questionnaires in Usability Engineering (last updated 2-Jun-2000). A web site with a lot of information about designing scales for usability.
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