In Search of

Measures of PTSD Developed for Military Veterans

We explore measures of PTSD using our PsycTESTS® database on the OvidSP platform.

We will use the OvidSP platform to perform a search.

As part of a program to promote easier reintegration into home communities for military personnel returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, a psychologist with the RAND Corporation is working on a grant-sponsored study to assess the presence and impact of PTSD on veterans. Her assignment is to gather as much information as possible about any measures of PTSD that have been specifically developed for military veterans.

Log into the OvidSP account and select the resource to search. We limit the search to PsycTESTS®.

Screenshot of OvidSP platform showing how to limit to the PsycTESTS database

The platform opens to show the many available search fields in PsycTESTS in the All Fields view. Note that you may wish to choose a subset of frequently used fields to save to the My Fields tab.

Screenshot of OvidSP platform showing PsycTESTS search fields in the All Fields view

I'll come back to use Search Fields, but let's start constructing a search using the Search Tools tab. That allows us to easily incorporate the Thesaurus of Psychological Index Terms into the search. First search for PTSD:

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing how to search for PTSD using the Thesaurus of Psychological Index Terms

Here is the resulting thesaurus record, which maps PTSD to Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Related terms Acute Stress Disorder and Combat Experience are also added to our search.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing term mapping in the Thesaurus of Psychological Index Terms

After repeating the process to create a Military Veterans search, we AND our two searches together.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing how to AND two searches together

This gives us a set of six measures to assess. However, I'd also like to limit my findings to measures where I don't have to buy through a publisher to use. I can restrict my findings to "freely use in research" or "contact the corresponding author." So let's add another element to the search. I will switch to the My Fields tab under Search Fields.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing the My Fields tab

I'll open the index and select those options.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing how to select options related to test permissions

I now have four remaining records.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing search results

Looking at the first record, you'll see that this is a Test Review for research that used the Penn Inventory for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder with a sample of military veterans. The record gives you information on the test purpose, construct, format, setting, reliability, and validity, as well as on administration method and time.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing a test review record

Note that if you'd like to limit your findings only to those records that have test content available, you can limit your findings to PsycTESTS PDF on the Advanced Search Screen.

Screenshot of PsycTESTS on the OvidSP platform showing how to limit findings to records that have test content available