Length, language and cost are key things to consider when choosing standardised measures, says Helen Brookes
The NSPCC evaluation team has gained a great deal of experience in administering standardised measures to our service users. This helps us to find out whether the service they've attended has helped them or not, by reducing their anxiety, for example, or improving the quality of their relationship with a child.
There are a number of helpful databases that allow you to find out what scales have been developed to measure a particular construct (e.g. self esteem), such as the National Child Traumatic Stress Network’s Measures Review Database. If you’re lucky, you might find a recent systematic review that has identified and evaluated instruments to measure the construct you’re interested in.
But you can end up with a dizzying array of questionnaires. How to choose the right one for your particular project can be challenging.
This has certainly been a steep learning curve for me – and I wanted to share 5 key considerations I’ve identified.