Stress Assessment Questionnaire

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Note: This test review was published by BPS on 17th December 2012

Description of the Test:

The Stress Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) is an on-line self-report assessment of stress, for use in counselling and self-development, that has been designed to cover and measure a broad range of factors that contribute to individual stress. The SAQ contains 16 scales which are organised into four major areas deemed relevant to the understanding of stress: Sources and Symptoms of stress, Coping Strategies, Personality Factors and Mental Health. The scales included within the SAQ are shown below against each of these four areas: Sources and Symptoms: Work, Relationship, Parenting, Emotional Symptoms, Behavioural Symptoms, Physical Symptoms. Coping Strategies: Social Support, Self-regulation, Problem Solving, Distraction, Health. Personality: Procrastination, Perfectionism. Mental Health: Self-esteem, Depression, Anxiety. Each scale has 8 items and the total number of test items in this instrument is 128. Test takers respond to these items on a 5 point ‘frequency’ scale (running from ‘hardy ever’ to 'nearly always’). There is also an additional life events checklist. The total time required to complete the test is approximately 20 minutes. The focus of the assessment and report is to help develop the individual’s understanding of stress and inform whether they should seek professional help. The authors note that the SAQ is not designed to replace a formal assessment by a qualified mental health professional. The SAQ is designed to be used by psychologists and stress counsellors but it is also available direct to individuals. The SAQ can be administered in two ways – via an email link sent to the test taker by an administrator or directly from the website by the test taker themselves. There is currently one report available that provides both score-dependent narrative feedback and a profile of the 16 scales in sten scores. The report is either made directly available to the test taker on completion or via the test administrator. The instrument is intended for individuals aged between 18 and 65, as people outside of this age range were excluded during the construction of the normative sample. There is currently one norm group of over 10,000 international respondents who have completed the assessment online in English. The SAQ is supported by a user manual that provides short sections on the background to the questionnaire, administration and interpretation. Additional sections are also presented covering scale descriptions, reliability, validity, the norm group and a sample report is also provided.

Authors: Allan Cameron

Test Publisher: MySkillsProfile.com Ltd