Symptom Checklist-90-Revised

Purpose:  Designed to reflect psychological symptom patterns.

Population:  Adults 13 years and older with a sixth grade reading level.

Scales:  Somatization (SOM), Obsessive-Compulsive (O-C), Interpersonal Sensitivity (I-S), Depression (DEP), Anxiety, (ANX), Hostility, (HOS), Phobic Anxiety (PHOB), Paranoid Ideation (PAR), Psychoticism (PSY), and Additional Items, the Global Severity Index (GSI), The Positive Symptom Distress Index, (PSDI), and the Positive Symptom Total (PST).

Time:  (12-15) minutes for most individuals, (2-5) minutes for instructions.

Author:  Leonard R. Derogatis

Publisher:  National Computer Systems, Inc.

Description:  The Symptom Checklist-90-Revised (SCL-90-R) is a 90-item self-report symptom inventory.  It is a measure of current psychological symptom status with a time reference of “the past 7 days including today.”  The SCL-90-R replaces some of the items on the Anxiety and the Obsessive-Compulsive dimensions of the SCL-90 that were flawed psychometrically. Ambiguities in the test instructions and in the definition of the distress continuum were also modified.

Scoring:  Scores for each of the nine factors are the average rating given to the symptoms of that factor.  The remaining seven items do not measure any particular factor, but are evaluated qualitatively. Three "global" scores are also obtained. The GSI is the average rating given to all 90 items. The PST is the number of symptoms complained of (i.e., the number of items rated higher than zero). The PSDI is the average rating, from 1 to 4, given to those symptoms which are complained of (i.e., not rated "0").  Raw scores for each of the primary symptoms are converted into standardized scores.  There are three global indices; the Global Severity Index (GSI), The Positive Symptom Distress Index, (PSDI), and the Positive Symptom Total (PST).

Reliability:  The internal consistency coefficient alphas for the nine symptom dimensions ranged form .77 for Psychoticism, to a high of .90 for Depression.  Test-retest reliability coefficients range between .80 and .90 after one week of therapy.

Validity:  The few validity studies of the SCL-90-R demonstrate levels of concurrent, convergent, discriminant, and construct validity comparable to other self-report inventories. Results of studies in which the SCL-90-R was used as a change measure (e.g., studies of pharmacological effects, stress) provide support for the SCL-90-R, most frequently for the three global scores, and with  more scattered findings regarding one or another of the nine dimensions.

Norms:  Gender specific norms were done for four groups: Norm A (1002 adult psychiatric outpatients, Norm B (974 adult non-patients), Norm C (423 adult psychiatric inpatients), and Norm E (806 adolescent non-patients).

Suggested use:  The SCL-90-R serves as an outcome measure to assess treatment effectiveness, measures of change with treatment, psychopharmacology outcomes and for research studies.