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Behav Res Ther. 2007 Sep;45(9):2232-40. Epub 2007 Jan 12.

Assessing obsessive compulsive symptoms and cognitions on the internet: evidence for the comparability of paper and Internet administration.

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Department of Psychology, Binghamton University (SUNY), Binghamton, NY 13902-6000, USA.


Administration of psychological questionnaires via the Internet has gained popularity in recent years and touts many advantages. However, before questionnaires that were originally developed as paper-and-pencil measures can be confidently administered over the Internet, it is necessary to document the equivalence of the paper and computer-generated versions [American Psychological Association. (1986). Guidelines for computer-based tests and interpretations. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association; Cohen, R.J., Swerdlik, M.E., & Smith, D.K. (1992). Psychological testing and assessment (2nd ed.). Mountain View, CA: Mayfield Publishing; Cronbach, L.J. (1990). Essentials in psychological testing (5th ed.). New York: Harper Collins; Meier, S. (1994). The chronic crisis in psychological measurement and assessment: A historical survey. San Diego: Academic Press; Schulenberg, S.E., & Yutrzenka, B.A. (2001). Equivalence of computerized and conventional versions of the Beck Depression Inventory- II (BDI-II). Current Psychology: Developmental, Learning, Personality, Social, 20, 216-230]. The current study tested this equivalence for the Obsessive Compulsive Inventory [Foa, E.B., Kozak, M.J., Salkovskis, P.M, Coles, M.E., & Amir, N. (1998). The validation of a new obsessive compulsive disorder scale: The obsessive-compulsive inventory. Psychological Assessment, 10(3), 206-214] and the Obsessive Beliefs Questionnaire-44 [Obsessive Compulsive Cognitions Working Group. (2005). Psychometric validation of the obsessive belief questionnaire and interpretation of intrusions inventory-Part 2: Factor analyses and testing of a brief version. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 43, 1527-1543] in an unselected student sample. Study results support the equivalence of these measures of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) symptoms and beliefs independent of administration method (paper versus secure project website). These findings create new opportunities for conducting OCD-related research online.

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