Title

The Family of Instruments That Assess Suicide Risk

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

6-1-2005

Department

Psychology

Abstract

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.

Publication Title

Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment

Volume

27

Issue

2

First Page

133

Last Page

140