Skip to main content

Research Instruments, Tests and Measures: Identifying instruments

Identifying instruments using concepts

For nursing related concepts, try searching the CINAHL database for research reports in your subject area. The titles of any tools or instruments used by the author are given in the research instruments field.


Marilyn Frank-Stromborg and Sharon J. Olsen have edited a book, Instruments for Clinical Health-care Research (Boston: Jones and Bartlett, 2004), in which they have organized brief descriptions of research tools according to concepts. An extensive bibliography at the end of each chapter usually contains the journal article citation where the author reported on the instrument. The book is available in Dana Library and the Library of Science and Medicine in the reference section (DANA, LSM REF RT 81.5 .I57 2004)


For psychosocial concepts, the above sources are helpful as well as PsycINFO, the journal literature index for psychology. All journal article citations include an abstract that gives the titles of the instruments used in the research study. You might also search on the appropriate subject and then limit the results using "tests and measures." (Rutgers-restricted Access)


For biomedical concepts, try CINAHL and Medline. (Rutgers-restricted Access)


There are several print and electronic resources that offer broad subject coverage of research instruments. These include:


ETS Test Collection Catalog. Phoenix, AZ: Oryx Press, 1986-1992, 1993.
ALEXANDER, DANA, LSM REF LB 3051 .E79 1986 v. 1-6 and REF LB 3051 .E79 1993 v. 1-2.


Goldman, Bert. Directory of Unpublished Experimental Mental Measures. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 1974- .
DANA REF BF431.G625 V. 1- 1974- .

Mental Measurements Yearbook. Highland Park, NJ: The Mental Measurements Yearbook, 1941- .
ALEXANDER, CAMDEN, DANA REF Z 5814 .P8 B932 and LSM REF LB 1131 .B967


Test Critiques. Kansas City, MO: Test Corporation of America, c1984-1994.


Tests: A Comprehensive Reference for Assessments in Psychology, Education, and Business. Kansas City, MO: Test Corporation of America.
ALEXANDER, DANA, LSM REF BF 176 .T43 1986 and ALCOHOL, CAMDEN REF BF 176 .T43 1997.


Tests in Print: An Index to Tests, Test Reviews, and the Literature on Specific Tests. Lincoln, NE: Buros Institute of Mental Measurements, University of Nebraska-Lincoln: distributed by the University of Nebraska Press, 1999.


TestLink, a database available on the Web provides electronic access to the records of the Educational Testing Service test collection. The 25,000 item collection contains measures for most subject areas. A keyword search leads to a test record with three sections, a description, instructions on how to obtain a copy of the tool (the author's address, a journal citation, or the ETS Library), and suggestions to expand your search. (Use Internet Explorer for this Website.) Before you purchase a test, please read C. How do I locate a copy of the instrument? Section 5.


Test Reviews Online gives electronic access to the critical reviews published in the Mental Measurements Yearbook. Test reviews may be located by searching an alphabetical listing, categorized listing arranged in 18 subject groups, or by keyword.


In addition to the more general information about tests, there are also books available that describe tests and measurements for health related concerns.


American Nurses Association. Nursing Quality Indicators beyond Acute Care: Measurement Instruments. Washington, DC: American Nurses Publication, 2000. DANA RT 85.5 .N8665 2000


Beaton, Sarah R. Measurements for Long-Term Care: A Guidebook for Nurses. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 1998. CAMDEN, DANA RT 120.L64B43 1998


Beere, Carole A. Gender Roles: A Handbook of Tests and Measures. New York: Greenwood Press, 1990. ALEX HM 253.B43 1990; CAMDEN, DANA REF HM 253.B43 1990


Beere, Carole A. Sex and Gender Issues: A Handbook of Tests and Measures. New York: Greenwood Press, 1990. DANA, DOUGLASS BF 692.B38 1990


Bowling, Ann. Measuring Disease: A Review of Disease Specific Quality of Life Measurement Scales. Philadelphia: Open University Press, 1995. LSM RA 407 .B68 1995


Bowling, Ann. Measuring Health: A Review of Quality of Life Measurement Scales. Philadelphia: Open University Press, 1991. CAMDEN, DANA, LSM RA 407 .B69 1991


Touliatos, John. Handbook of Family Measurement Techniques. Newbury Park, CA: Sage. ALEXANDER, CAMDEN, DANA, LSM REF HQ 728.T68 1990 and ALEXANDER REF HQ 728.H267 2001


Waltz, Carolyn F. Measurement in Nursing and Health Research. 3rd ed. New York: Springer, 2005. DANA RT 81.5.W36 2005


Watson, Jean. Assessing and Measuring Caring in Nursing and Health Science. New York: Springer, 2002. CAMDEN, DANA RT 42.W38 2001

Back to Top of Page

Life Sciences Librarian

Ann Vreeland Watkins
John Cotton Dana Library

185 University Ave

Newark, NJ 07102-1814

(973) 353-3809