What Research Instruments Are Available for Nursing Research?


CINAHL Complete

Search CINAHL Complete for Research Instruments and Questionnaires.

To find a published research instrument for your topic:

  1. Enter the search terms for your topic.
  2. Select from the following Publication Type options:
    • Research Instrument for instrument description and studies using the instrument. Some records provide you with information on how to obtain the instrument itself
    • Questionnaire/Scale to find the actual questionnaire/scale in the study

To find research instruments are available for Nursing Research:

  1. Go to CINAHL Subject Headings in the top menu

    CINAHL top menu interface
  2. Enter "research instruments" in the search box and click Browse.
  3. Click on the Research Instruments link from the results to expand the tree view.
    • Select Instrument by Name or Instrument by Type to find articles and lists of instruments
    • To search all narrower subheadings under Instrument by Name or Instrument by Type select the checkbox under the Explode (+) column, then click the Search Database button

      CINAHL filtering for subheadings interface
    • Select Instrument Construction, Instrument Scaling, or Instrument Validation to find articles about how to develop or validate instruments
  4. To find studies using a specific instrument, enter the instrument name and select IN Instrumentation as the search field, and click Search.

    CINAHL search interface
Search PubMed@UCSF for an instrument by name to find articles that discuss it. Enter a topic term. Combine with Surveys and Questionnaires [mh] OR psychological tests [mh].


("anxiety"[mh] OR anxiety OR anxieties) AND ("surveys and questionnaires"[mh] OR questionnaires OR surveys)

("depression"[mh] OR depression OR "depressive disorders"[mh]) AND ("psychological tests"[mh] OR “psychological tests”)

PsycTESTS provides access to psychological tests, measures, scales, and other assessments. Most records include actual test instruments.

Sample record: 

Sample record

Other web resources

  • NIHResearch Instruments
    • This guide provides access to databases and web-based resources useful for locating a wide variety of research instruments.
  • NIH ToolBox®
    • The ToolBox is a comprehensive set of neuro-behavioral measurements that quickly assess cognitive, emotional, sensory, and motor functions from the convenience of an iPad.
  • PhenX Toolkit
    • The Toolkit includes measurement protocols that address a wide range of research domains.
    • Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System is a set of person-centered measures that evaluates and monitors physical, mental, and social health in adults and children. It can be used with the general population and with individuals living with chronic conditions.
  • Statistics Solutions
    • Statics Solutions provides a list of complex survey instruments.

Do I need to get permission for this instrument?

Check out Copyright: Survey & Instrument Permissions from Oklahoma State University-Stillwater.

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