Evaluation of the Trauma Symptom Inventory

Topics: Posttraumatic stress disorder, Psychological trauma, Rape Pages: 9 (2914 words) Published: July 8, 2011
Running Head: Evaluation of Symptom

Evaluation of the Trauma Symptom Inventory
Kylah Ramsey
Psyc 421-001

The Trauma Symptom Inventory (TSI) is a test that was developed by John Briere to evaluate traumatic symptoms of the acute and chronic nature. This evaluation will look at the purpose, design, and format of the TSI. The evaluation will also include a detailed narrative of the psychometric properties of the test that make the test reliable and valid including both its strengths and its weaknesses. Lastly, the evaluation will discuss how the TSI is used in counseling, clinical, and research settings.

Evaluation of the Trauma Symptom Inventory
Purpose, design & format of the test
The Trauma Symptom Inventory (TSI) is a test that was developed by John Briere to evaluate traumatic symptoms of the acute and chronic nature. The test has been in circulation for close to fifteen years now, beginning in 1995 and continuing through today (2008). The TSI was designed to be administered to a group of people of at least eighteen years of age. The test itself is a paper and pencil test, consisting of one hundred questions/items and is based on a four point Likert scale, zero being never and three being often (Purves & Erwin, 2004). An example item from the TSI is a statement such as “not feeling happy” or “suddenly remembering something upsetting from your past” (Fernandez, nd). The test taker is instructed to answer never through often based on the occurrence of the statement provided. The TSI makes it very explicit that the answers that an individual gives should be based on the six months prior to taking the test (Fernandez, nd). In general, the TSI measures the response an individual had to a traumatic event not the stimulus (Fernandez, nd). However, the TSI has ten subscales including, anxious arousal, depression, anger/irritability, intrusive experiences, defensive avoidance, dissociation, sexual concerns, dysfunctional sexual behavior, impaired self-reference, and tension reduction behavior, that also help the administrator determine the severity of the post traumatic symptoms (Purves & Erwin, 2004). In addition, the TSI also identifies three reliability scales dealing with the overall response level to the traumatic event, the number of atypical responses an individual gives and also, the within-scale inconsistent responses an individual gives (Purves & Erwin, 2004).

The initial version of the TSI contained one hundred and eighty two items. To narrow this down the test was given to two hundred and seventy nine college students with intentions of discarding eighty-two items or refining the test down to one-hundred questions/statements based on the poorly performing items (Fernandez, nd). They then administered the same one-hundred and eighty two item test to three-hundred and seventy individuals in the clinical setting with the intentions of doing the same discarding procedure (Gebart-Eaglemont, nd). Also measured were three-thousand six-hundred and fifty-nine U.S. Navy sailors of which one-thousand eight-hundred and twenty nine were females and one-thousand eight-hundred and thirty were males, respectively (Fernandez, nd). The researchers then cross correlated the items discarded from both the civilian, clinical, and non-civilian measurements and were able to narrow the test down to one-hundred items based on the poorly performing items from each group.

By using the method of mail sampling the normative sample for the test was procured. Using a stratified and random sample of eight-hundred and thirty-six people from geographically different locations in the United States the researchers developed the test norms based on sex, ethnic group, age, marital and employment status, education, and state of residence (Gebart-Eaglemont, nd).

Psychometric properties of the test
By using the normative sample of eight-hundred and thirty-six people, the two-hundred and seventy-nine...
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