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Finding Survey Instruments and Questionnaires: ProQuest Dissertations

A Resource for Instrument Full Text

Locating the full text of instruments can be difficult. 

Journal space limitations frequently prevent authors from including the actual survey questions in their publication of a new instrument.

If you cannot locate instrument full text using standard academic databases, try searching ProQuest Electronic Dissertations and Theses

Why search a dissertation and thesis database?

Because dissertations frequently include copies of the instruments used to collect research data. They are not subject to the space limitations of journal articles. So, they often provide copies of the survey questions and questionnaires in their appendices



Searching for Instruments in ProQuest Dissertations and Theses

When searching for instruments in ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, bear in mind that it works best if you know the titles of the instruments for which you are looking

While its indexing is extensive, it is focused mainly on finding relevant dissertation full text, not behavioral instruments. So, if you don't already know what you are looking for, this is not a good database in which to 'go fishing.'

To use,

1) Enter the title of the instrument you are seeking (enclosed in quotation marks) in the search box & click the Search button to initiate your search.

2) Open the dissertation(s) full text and scroll to the table of contents

3) Locate the Appendices section 

4) Locate the title reference to your instrument and note the page reference¹ (*this will be a proximate page reference due to the fact that the manuscript's pagination count differs from the database's count for the document [the database counts Roman numeration and Arabic numeration as a single sequence]).

5) Scroll to the page and find your instrument

Note: This procedure will help you locate the instrument full text. It will not indicate the copyright status of the instrument. You will need to independently determine copyright status.

Frequently the appendices will include letters granting copyright permission by instrument copyright holders. Where they do, this information can be used to contact copyright holders to request permission for use. 


¹ The instrument page reference will be proximate because the full text of ProQuest Dissertations numbers the entire document...including the front matter (abstract and opening blank page) that are normally left unpaginated by dissertation authors. So, go by the pagination of the document, not the scrolling number in the right hand margin, when tracking the page numbers of instruments in the document. 

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