In the field of mental health there is a large number of scales available that measure the same disorder, but the scales differ in terms of length, response options, and content. These differences often make it very difficult to compare scores across scales and in some cases inappropriate. In order to draw comparisons between scores, a common scale or metric is required so that a score on one scale can be converted or re-scored to match scores of another scale.
Statistical approaches developed primarily in educational testing are suitable to adjust scores from a variety of mental health scales to form a common and comparable metric. These approaches generate what is known as "cross-walk" tables to easily convert group mean scores or individual scores from one scale to another. These tables facilitate merging datasets or comparing different clinical samples that have been assessed and scoring using different scales.
We aim to develop a range of cross-walk tables to convert scores from multiple mental health scales. The cross-walk tables are freely available for non-profit research or clinical settings.