How can I find a test, measurement, or survey instrument for my research?

Discovering Tests and Instruments

Many scholars use existing tests, measurement scales, and survey instruments to conduct their research. You can start by checking these reference ebooks for a commonly used instrument relevant to your topic:

You can also try using scholarly articles, dissertations, and books to learn of measures that are applicable to your topic.


Search for articles on your topic to identify applicable instruments and read discussions of their reliability and validity. Suggested databases:

  • ERIC - Education Resources Information Center: Type the code assessment: plus a keyword for the topic
  • Education Research Complete: Type Educational tests & measurements and select the field SU Subject Terms, then add your topic keywords
  • CINAHL: On the Advanced Search screen, enter your topic keywords, then scroll down to select "Questionnaire/Scale" under Publication Type
  • PsycInfo or PsycArticles (less content, but all full-text): On the Advanced Search screen, enter a topic keyword and select the TM Tests & Measures field
  • PubMed: On the Advanced Search screen, choose MeSH Terms from the list of fields, and use one of these suggested terms: Questionnaires, Psychological tests, Psychometrics, Process assessment (health care), Outcome and process assessment (health care), Aptitude tests, Language tests, Neuropsychological tests, Personality tests, Patient outcome assessment 


Search ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global for dissertations on your topic to identify applicable instruments. Dissertations usually include a copy of any instrument used in an appendix.


Browse books and ebooks in the SU Libraries collections on these subjects:

Trouble Finding the Full Text?

These two resources may be useful in locating where specific tests and measures have been published:

Publications may be available in the SU Libraries collections or through interlibrary loan.

Contact the Author(s)

If you plan to use a specific instrument in a research project, always contact the author(s) to ask for permission. You may also need to contact them to ask for a copy of the full text if it has not been published. Email addresses for academics are often found on their department web pages at their universities or in their published articles. Many researchers also have public profiles in ResearchGate, Google Scholar, or other similar sites.