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Finding instruments, measures, scales and tests in education, health, psychology, and social work: Finding articles on a test or measure

About this section

Finding research studies that used the instrument, or report its validity, reliability, or psychometric properties (i.e., when you know the instrument, and want to find out more about it)

Databases

  • PsycINFO - Key database for psychology. Occasionally, the full measure is included with an article as a an appendix.

Tip: Use the name, or part of the name in the search box, and limit to “tests and measures” (or type the suffix .tm.)

Examples:
McGill pain.tm.
Beck.tm.

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  • HaPI (Health & Psychosocial Instruments) - 1985-present, with many earlier measures. “Source” is often publisher contact information rather than a journal or book citation.

Tip: Limit to Primary Source to get only articles containing the measure or discussing its development

Example:
depressi*, limit to "Primary Source"

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  • CINAHL - Offers extensive coverage of the nursing and allied health disciplines. 

Tip: For searching the reliability or validity of an assessment tool.

Use one or more of the following Subject Headings, and combine using AND with the name of the assessment tool:
Instrument validation/
Occupational therapy assessment/
Patient assessment/
Physical therapy assessment/
Test-retest reliability/

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  • MEDLINE - Contains journal citations and abstracts for biomedical literature from around the world.

MEDLINE on Ovid:

Tip: Use the name of the instrument in combination with one or more of the MeSH terms below.

Reproducibility of results/
Psychometrics/
Observer variation/

Or, cut and paste the following search string and combine (using AND) with the name of the instrument.

(reliability or reproducib* or inter rate or interrater or valid* or test retest or predictive or psychometric*).mp.

Example:
hads.tw. AND Observer variation/

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  • Mental Measurements Yearbook - Includes information about tests, how to purchase, a complete description, and references to reviews of the test.

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  • Health Services and Sciences Research Resources - Database designed for health care researchers and health sciences librarians seeking data resources used in health services research, the behavioral and social sciences and public health.

Tip: Search words from the name of the measure and select "Search Instruments/Indices only"

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  • ERIC - Online library of education research and information, sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education.

Tip: Search words from the name of the measure with the term "test validity" and choose "Descriptor" from the drop-down menu.

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