We can not overestimate the importance of these measurement
instruments in the contrast of psychological theories or in the practices of
professional assessment and intervention. The tests, scales and questionnaires
make psychological ideas operative and connect the deep world of speculative
thinking with the empirical world of facts. A theory without measures is only
philosophy, but, in fact, a psychological measurement instrument with the help
of some data may contribute seriously to the development of a psychological
theory. Tests, questionnaires and scales define an important part of psychological
The close connection between the development of Psychology
and the development of the measurement instruments can be seen in the increasing
number of tests, scales and questionnaires devoted to the measurement of new
variables in all areas of Psychology. In most of these areas, actualized and
accurate research and professional practice is unthinkable without taking into
account the flow of new instruments. Frequently professionals, academics and
students know the most classic instruments very well, but unfortunately, the
access to new contributions, spread by hundreds of journals and other sources,
is difficult. Therefore, a comprehensive review of the main contributions of
research on new measurements is essential.
«Commissioned Reviews of 250 Psychological Tests» is a two-volume
comprehensive collection of more than 300 reviews of tests, scales and questionnaires
published in research from the nineties and classified in seven general areas.
As Michael W. Eysenck said in the preface of the first volume,
«it is probable that most researchers are less likely to be aware of recent
psychological tests than of well-established tests, and so the book provides
a valuable resource for all researchers who find that their congested professional
lives preclude perusing the current literature as fully as they would like to
do». The two-volume book provides a thorough overview of psychological tests
developed during the 1990’s, including many new measurement instruments found
in the research journals but not available in a commercially published form.
It is designed as a reference for researchers and professionals in school, counseling,
clinical, social and organizational psychology.
Each chapter contains the reviews of a selection of measurement
instruments within the corresponding area. The following information is provided
for each test: the test title and acronym, authors, variable or variables measured,
description of the instrument, purposes, contents and items description, sample
or samples in which the instrument has been validated, reliability studies,
validity studies, location of the instrument, observations or additional comments,
references and reviewer, including their address. In most cases the reader will
find the address of the test author.
Review of Commissioned Reviews of 250 Psychological Tests (Volume
Volume one includes three chapters: 1) Health Psychology: attitudes,
behaviors and experiences, 2) Cognitive Psychology: Cognitions, Coping and Ability
and 3) Personality and Individual Differences.
In Chapter one, 47 tests, scales and questionnaires related
to health psychology are selected for presentation. The topics covered
in this area can be classified in nine main subareas. In some cases more than
one scale or questionnaire is described for a specific topic. These are the
nine subareas and the topics included:
Substance use and abuse: Use of alcohol and implication
in therapy, self-efficacy for avoiding drinking, readiness to change harmful
drinking behavior, beliefs about medicines, substance misuse and injecting risk.
Food disorders: Symptoms of eating disorders, food choice,
emotional eating, and attitudes towards chocolate.
Sports attitudes and experiences: Athlete satisfaction
and feelings and thoughts during running and aerobic activity.
Body care experiences, attitudes and behaviors: Attention
to body shape, body attitude, body investment, body consciousness and anxiety
experienced when one’s body is perceived to be evaluated by others.
Physical exercise: Behavioral regulation in exercise,
physical activity experience (flow), exercise motivation, lifetime total physical
activity and physical activity for the elderly.
Health experience and attitudes: General health status,
mental and physical health, lifestyle appraisal and stress reduction.
Sex: Female sexual activity and sexual satisfaction
and sexual dysfunction among heterosexual couples.
Physical diseases experiences and attitudes: Coping
with health injuries and problems, pain beliefs and perceptions, breast cancer
and hereditary knowledge, cognitions in infertility, infertility distress and
attributions for common somatic symptoms.
Mental and psychological diseases: Knowledge about epilepsy,
panic disorder and symptoms and agoraphobia.
Patient reactions to treatments: Patient satisfaction
with doctors, perceived quality of care from the patient’s perspective, acceptability
of psychological treatments and acceptability of psychological and pharmacological
treatments for late life depression.
In volume one, the second chapter is devoted to the scales
classified as cognitive psychology. Thirty-five tests and scales are
described. The scope of the variables measured in this area is heterogeneous
and difficult to classify in clear subareas. Among them can be found: cognitive
flexibility, cognitive style, goals, choices and responsibility, coping strategies
and coping styles, defense styles and mechanisms, dimensions of coping behaviors,
strategies to cope with homesickness, coping styles or tendencies in current
or past romantic relationships that cause stress, coping strategies for the
prodromes of mania, appraisal of live events and problems, coping and satisfaction
with activities of daily living, hostile automatic thoughts, automatic positive
self-statements, personal hopefulness for the immediate future, internal, personal
and situational attributions, perceived stress and coping, aggressive, prosocial
and withdrawal problem-solving strategies, state level of the goal-direction
cognition, hope state and trait, fear of fear and agoraphobic cognitions, impaired
self-awareness for persons with traumatic brain injury, pathological and non-pathological
dissociative experience and symptoms, task orientation and ego orientation in
the perception of success in sports, self-referential goal-directed thinking
in children, concern about everyday memory in elderly, belief in good luck,
moral cognitions, forgiveness of others, forgiveness of self, visual and kinaesthetic
imagery ability, use of imagery by athletes, exercise imagery, reminiscence
functions, concentration of attention, vigilance and emotive aspects of risk
taking while operating a motor vehicle.
The third and last chapter of volume 1 is concerned with tests
on the psychology of the personality and individual differences. 68 tests and
questionnaires are included in the chapter. The specific topics measured by
the scales, tests and questionnaires included in this area are difficult to
classify due to the close relationship among the topics on personality. In a
broad way, these specific topics can be reordered in the following four general
subareas: traits and styles of the personality, social aspects of the personality,
personality disorders and specific topics related to religious tendencies.
Traits and styles of the personality: Factors and traits
of personality (several tests and scales), temperament, «the big five», emotional
intelligence, neuroticism, extroversion, openness to experience, perfectionism,
motivational style, Jung’s psychological types, adult attachment patterns, self-actualization
of potential, susceptibility to hypnosis, noise sensitivity, free will or determinism
beliefs, folk-concepts of personality which possess broad personal and social
relevance, life values, voluntary simplicity life-style, state sport confidence.
Social aspects of the personality: Social behavior and
social status, fundamental interpersonal relations orientation-behavior, interpersonal
trust, interpersonal competitiveness in everyday contexts (index of competitiveness),
receptiveness to dissimilar others (diversity of life experience), sociopathy
and autonomy, kindness, level of self-disclosure, concealment, interpersonal
guilt, machiavellism, sensitivity to criticism, susceptibility to embarrassment,
loneliness, preference for solitude and sexual boredom.
Personality disorders and related topics: Personality
disorders (several questionnaires), personality deviance, nonadaptive personality,
schizotipical personality, schizotypy traits, exposure to violence and trauma,
guilt, aggression, antisocial personality, coping for stressful situations,
life-history of aggression, disposition to become angry while driving, anger
reaction to provocations, school anger for males, disgust sensitivity and self-serving
Religious topics: religious orientation, attitude towards
Christianity, internal and external religious coping cognitions and behaviors.
Review of Commissioned Reviews of 250 Psychological Tests (Volume
Volume two contains chapters four to seven. This volume is
devoted to 4) Social psychology: attitudes, beliefs and interpersonal relationships,
5) Psychological well-being, 6) Developmental psychology: childhood, families,
adulthood and aging, and 7) Work and educational psychology.
Chapter 4 is devoted to social psychology: attitudes, beliefs
and interpersonal relationships, and presents 26 reviews.
A first group of reviewed questionnaires are related with gender,
couple and family relationships. These questionnaires measure the following
variables: couples’ critical incidents, attitudes toward sexuality, gender role
trait adscriptions as an aspect of self-concept, gender identity, gender role
journey, commitment in married couples, gender identity, femininity, masculinity,
phases of men’s and woman’s gender role journeys and family allocentrism-idiocentrism
(individual’s connectedness to his or her family).
A second group of questionnaires are related with self-image
and expression, including measures of emotional expressivity, conversational
experience, self-differentiation, independent/interdependent self-image, individual’s
identification with a sport team and body image preoccupation.
The main group of questionnaires are related with several dimensions
of social relationships. These instruments measure variables like central relationship
patterns, types of social support, individualistic and collective dimensions,
sense of community, interpersonal commitment, informal peer groups in adolescence,
tendency to betray interpersonal relationships, tendency to join and maintain
memberships in diverse groups, beliefs in a just world, life values for decisions
regarding work, education, relationships and leisure, symbolic racism, social
life with neighborhoods, intrapersonal-empowerment, social climate in informal
adolescent peer groups and attitudes and knowledge about mental retardation.
Chapter 5 is devoted to psychological well-being and
covers 47 measurement instruments.
Some of the questionnaires in this chapter are concerned with
general psychological constructs related to the social aspects of the personality.
This chapter reviews scales in this area about self-concept, self-esteem, self-harm,
role functioning, general behavior and symptom identification, interpersonal
styles, codependency and constructed meaning related to the coping process.
Nevertheless the majority of the reviewed scales are more closely concerned
with psychopathological manifestations.
Many of the scales and questionnaires cover the main area of
anxiety. Questionnaires in this area measure anxiety and traits of anxiety,
health anxiety, anxious arousal, stress/tension, mood, states of anxiety and
, general distress, affective, behavioral and cognitive distress manifestations,
worry and anxiety, micro and macro worries, pathological worry, non-pathological
worry domains and shame and guilt proneness.
Some pathological manifestations related to anxiety
are also covered, including panic disorder, panic and phobia related to agoraphobic
situations, social-phobic situations and interoceptive-sensations, fear of anxiety,
fear of pain, catastrophic thinking associated with pain, anxious thoughts,
and catastrophic cognitions.
The area of depression is also treated, reviewing scales
oriented to measure depression, depression/happiness, depressed mood, death
depression and anhedonic depression.
Other more severe disorders are also covered: maniac-depressive
symptoms, acute confusion, delirium, paranoid ideation and behavior, death obsession,
obsessive compulsive traits, suspiciousness, and dissociative experiences.
The mental-well being and quality of life, especially for persons
suffering from different pathologies, are also represented. We can find the
review of scales oriented to measure mental well-being, quality of life, quality
of life of people with mental illness, quality of life of people with a life-threatening
illness, quality of life in depression and social adjustment for the severely
Finally, chapter 5 covers some scales and questionnaires related
to clinical pathologies and difficulties in childhood, among them childhood
depression, children’s post-traumatic symptoms, diagnostic for incest survivors
and children’s social phobia and anxiety.
Chapter 6 is devoted to developmental psychology: childhood,
families, adulthood and aging and reviews 37 scales and questionnaires.
Children characteristics and behaviors are measured by this
first grouping of the questionnaires reviewed, including: children’s aggressive,
withdrawn and prosocial behavior with peers, children’s perceptions of friendship
processes and satisfaction, social and academic competence, mental disorders
of young children, children’s psychiatric syndromes, subclassification of children
with autism, physical aggression, hyperactivity, inattention, opposition, anxiety
and prosociality, social competence, prosocial orientation and social initiative,
children’s eating attitudes, child and therapist positive and negative behaviors
in child therapy, preschool children’s social and nonsocial play behaviors and
temperament of newborn children.
A second group of the reviewed questionnaires measures variables
related with adolescent development: adolescent symptomatology and adjustment
difficulties, adolescent home and school situations, social and academic competence,
adolescent self-image, victimization, aggressiveness, behavior problems, home
experiences and anti social attitudes, moral judgement development, attributed
level of influence to five sources of moral authority, sociability, social desirability,
self-perception, ideal public self, self-description, ideal private self and
communication of events.
In a third group we find many questionnaires measuring variables
related with adulthood, family and parental behavior. The reviewed questionnaires
measures variables like adult attachment, attachment style, factors in attachment
and object relations, experienced phenomena in the bereaved, family functioning,
family attitudes and behaviors, family satisfaction, empowerment in families,
premarital personal and relationship evaluation, comprehensive premarital assessment
of individual and couple traits predictive of marital satisfaction, maternal
and paternal antenatal attachment, knowledge of pregnant serum screening, attachment
between the mother or father and the infant under the age of 1 year, marital
satisfaction and commitment, marital intimacy, parental knowledge of parenting
skills, parental satisfaction with a community child and adolescent mental health
services; stress and positive and negative aspects associated with raising children.
Chapter 7 includes reviews of work and educational psychology.
It contains 44 reviews about questionnaires devoted to the measuring of the
following four areas: learning and education, aptitudes, work processes and
work health and safety.
The first group includes questionnaires devoted to the measure
of the following variables: learning processes and associated motives and intentions,
motivation and learning strategies, inclination and ability to engage in self-directed
learning, attitudes toward career counseling, dysfunctional thoughts in career
problem solving and decision making, career decidedness, indecision, learning
environment in educational settings, students’ domain specific optimism for
medium-term goals, children’s beliefs about their ability to cope with school
situations, students’ attitudes toward statistics, student’s evaluations of
teaching quality, teacher beliefs in early childhood education, teachers’ perceptions
of their offers of help being rejected by their peers and/or students, communication
ease for deaf students, bullying and victimization in schools and adolescent
problems in several areas.
A second group is comprised of some questionnaires related
to the measure of aptitudes: clerical worker aptitude (numerical ability, verbal
comprehension, working memory), technician aptitudes (numerical ability, verbal
comprehension, spatial ability, visualization ability and error checking), fill-in
concept maps measuring connected understanding of discipline concepts, self-efficacy
regarding research, learning, proving and avoiding dimensions of work domain
goal orientation, computer expertise, and reading, arithmetic and writing skills
Some of the questionnaires concern different aspects of organizational
functioning. Two themes are mainly included: ethics and power. Related to ethics
we can be find questionnaires measuring: ethical climate in work settings, ethical
autonomy (political, working life and business), ethics environment at work,
perceived occupational discrimination against Black Americans and perceived
occupational opportunity for Black Americans. Power and relationships with superiors
is another well represented area. The variables measured by the reviewed questionnaires
include: formal and informal power in organizations, employees’ perceptions
of career management practices, attitudes toward compliance with inappropriate
requests from superiors, perceived level of worker empowerment and causal attributions
for occupational outcomes. In this group of the organizational area questionnaires
measuring several variables can be considered: hospital social work self-efficacy,
nursing encouragement and control techniques used to care for elderly subjects
with symptom distress in an institutional setting and impact of information
technology on work.
Finally, some of the reviewed questionnaires concern aspects
of health and safety at work: work and team safety attitudes, safety climate
within a work group or division, safety climate in organizations, supervisors
and middle management safety response, coworkers and team work safety response,
worker safety behavior, base risk, real risk, physical work load during work,
combined load of paid work and unpaid duties, work related tension, facets of
job ambiguity and work addition risk.
The selection of recent tests published or validated in the
last decade and the international nature of the contributions are two strong
points of the book. In fact, the book includes contributions from more than
250 psychologists from more than 20 countries. The rationale for choosing this
particular collection of instruments is not clearly specified, except to say
that these instruments were published in the nineties. There is no other comprehensive
review of tests and questionnaires of such breath published in that time. The
wide range of measurement instruments considered represents a cross-section
of subject ages, settings and psychological purposes.
The editors have managed to persuade many measurement instrument
developers to prepare most of the reviews. Authors self-reviewing their own
instruments are well acquainted to communicate the latest developments and results
with regard to these generally recent instruments. Knowledge about psychometric
properties and validation results are granted. Nevertheless a possible limitation
of some test reviewers is the failure to mention a broader list of references
about their use and research. On the contrary, the reader may expect an independent
and critical review of the instruments that in some cases would be a recommended
As in most edited books, some variation in degree of depth
and detail of information can be found, but the editors have made a strong effort
to assure that the common structure of the reviews allows the reader to comprehend
the central information in all of the areas. The references and the addresses
of the authors provide the opportunity of a more sound study of each scale.
In a book of this nature, covering such a vast range of psychological
areas, establishing a classification of the contributions based on their content
is important for the reader who is interested in easily find what has been published
on certain subject. Probably some of the contributions can be placed in different
chapters and introducing a subclassification within each chapter becomes hard
to decide. Editors introduce only a very general classification in seven broad
coverage chapters, several of them mixing well established psychological areas
(for example, chapter 7 includes both work psychology and educational psychology).
Inside each chapter contributions are disposed by alphabetical order. The «author
of tests index» and the «subject and test index», at the end of the second volume,
help the reader, partially palliating these difficulties.
This important two-volume book may be considered a necessary
complement of the Mental Measurement Yearbook series (Kramer & Conoley,
1992), the Test Critiques series (Keyser & Sweetland, 1994) and the Test
in Print series (Murphy, Conoley & Impara, 1994) and others (Newmark, 1989)
As Michael W. Eysenck says in the preface «It often seems to
me that the acid test of a book is whether you personally would find it valuable
to have it on the shelves so that you could refer to it at frequent intervals.
This book triumphantly satisfies that criterion so far as I am concerned, and
I am very confident that it will do the same for all those who read this book.»
In my opinion this two volume book is a must for all the libraries
of the schools and departments of psychology and a necessary guide to choose
the most recent measurement instruments.