The Family of Instruments That Assess Suicide Risk
In suicide assessment, Beck's Scale for Suicide Ideation is used widely, though other adult and youth instruments are available. A creative, positive instrument is the Reasons for Living. Advantages of suicide questionnaires include rapid assessment, access to information that may be difficult to obtain by observations and verbal interaction, ease of completion for some, availability of established norms for some instruments, and indirect information provided by questionnaire responding. Disadvantages are the temptation to accept responses uncritically, the possibility that therapists or clients view the questionnaires as superseding the therapeutic relationship, the implication that suicide tendencies are static, and, at times, cost. Overall, sound clinical judgment is paramount when assessing for suicide.
Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment
Range, L. M.
(2005). The Family of Instruments That Assess Suicide Risk. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 27(2), 133-140.
Available at: http://aquila.usm.edu/fac_pubs/2741