William M. Reynolds, PhD, Kenneth A. Kobak, PhD
The RDSI is a self-report measure designed to quickly assess symptoms of depression in adults ages 18-89 years. The RDSI items assess the contemporary symptoms of depression specified by the DSM-IV for Major Depressive Disorder. Although the RDSI does not provide a formal DSM-IV diagnosis, clinicians may use the empirically derived cut-off scores to identify those individuals who may be at-risk for more serious, diagnostic forms of depression. The RDSI development sample consisted of 855 adults: 531 non-referred community adults and 324 psychiatric outpatients, including 150 outpatients diagnosed with Major Depression. The RDSI Professional Manual provides normative data based on a sample of 450 non-referred community adults.
The RDSI is highly reliable and internally consistent with high alpha coefficients (.93 and .90 for the community and psychiatric outpatient samples, respectively). Test-retest reliability of the RDSI is also very high (rtt = .94), suggesting that the RDSI is a useful measure in both clinical and research settings. Extensive validity information in the forms of criterion-related, construct, contrasted groups, factor analysis, and other procedures supports the RDSI as a valid measure of depression. The RDSI showed a high correlation (r = .93) with the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale clinical interview for depression. Clinical validity was demonstrated by the strong diagnostic efficacy of the RDSI cut-off score, supporting the use of the RDSI in clinical practice.
The RDSI Questionnaire booklet contains 19 items that measure the severity of contemporary depressive symptoms. Completing the booklet requires a 5th-grade reading level. Administration takes approximately 5-10 minutes, although additional time may be required by slow readers, elderly respondents, and individuals with severe psychomotor retardation. The RDSI booklet is easily hand-scored without the need for scoring keys or extensive computations.
The RDSI comes with a complete Professional Manual that describes the development, administration, and scoring. Also included are guidelines for interpretation, normative data, summaries of reliability and validity studies, and T-score conversion tables by gender.
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