PsycTESTS®: Getting to 10,000

APA staff are working hard to significantly increase the size of PsycTESTS®.

Since PsycTESTS® was released in mid-September, we have added records for more than 3,200 new test instruments to the database. We will continue to add to PsycTESTS throughout 2012, and have set a goal of reaching 10,000 records by the end of the year.

The descriptive information for the instruments included in PsycTESTS comes from a wide variety of peer-reviewed sources. "We have a team looking through books, journals and dissertations," said Lynn Willis, Content Development Manager.

Willis went on to explain the multi-pronged approach that APA is taking to locating tests. Some staff working on this team are mining PsycINFO to identify authors who may be developing test instruments. Others are exploring gray literature, government websites and technical reports. For example, staff have identified some instruments created by the Centers for Disease Control and found historical tests in the sub-field of military psychology.

"Often, locating one instrument will lead us to others," Willis said. Her team is using an approach that will be familiar to librarians and researchers everywhere. "We always look at the citations in test development articles, which frequently point us to other instruments that the author evaluated."

Currently, staff are casting a wide net to identify tests in a variety of behavioral science disciplines. "At the moment, we're not focusing in any one niche," Willis noted. "We've recently identified a lot of instruments in industrial and organizational psychology, but that just happened to be where the research and exploration led one of our staff."

APA staff and freelancers are steadily identifying new tests to include in the database, but locating tests in this way is a challenging process. Those who are conducting psychological research themselves play a critical role in helping APA expand PsycTESTS.

"From the beginning, we've been contacting authors directly and asking them to submit their tests for inclusion," Willis said. "This of course helps us, but it also provides the researcher with a new outlet for their work, enabling them to expose it to others who are working in the same area."

Are you are in contact with staff researchers, faculty or students who may have developed tests in the course of their research? If so, please direct them to our Call for Tests information, or ask them to contact us by email.

For more information about PsycTESTS, please visit the PsycTESTS homepage.