Obtain & Administer Measures

Obtain

PDFs of PROMIS® measures need no preparation, are “respondent ready,” and available for free.

PROMIS measures are copyrighted. All English and Spanish PROMIS measures are publicly available for use in one’s individual research, clinical practice, educational assessment, or other application without licensing or royalty fees. Commercial users must seek permission to use, reproduce, or distribute measures. Integration into proprietary technology requires written permission. Read the PROMIS Terms and Conditions of Use for more information.

Obtaining Translations

PROMIS measures in Spanish can be downloaded in Search & View Measures.

To request any other language, please contact translations@HealthMeasures.net. Note that other available languages are subject to a distribution fee.

Please be sure read the Terms and Conditions of Use for more information.

Administer

PROMIS measures can be administered three ways:

  • On paper (short forms and profiles only)
  • By computer
  • With an app

Computer Administration

PROMIS computer adaptive tests (CATs) require computer administration. PROMIS CATs, short forms, and profiles are available in:

  • REDCap: a secure web application for building and managing online surveys. Learn more>>
  • Assessment CenterSM: a web-based data collection platform. Learn more>>
  • Epic: an electronic health record software housing selected PROMIS measures in platforms from 2012 and later. Learn more>>
  • Assessment Center Application Programming Interface (API): an API connects your data collection software application with the full library of PROMIS measures including CATs. Learn more>>
  • OBERD: an enterprise software that supports outcomes data capture with PROMIS and Neuro-QoL measures. Learn more>>

Application Administration

PROMIS CATs, short forms, and profiles are available in apps.

  • PROMIS measures are available for distribution in both the the PROMIS iPad App and NIH Toolbox® iPad AppLearn more>>

Appearance of PROMIS Measures

If you are integrating PROMIS measures in a data collection system, follow our guidance for how the items should appear in the respondent interface. This will ensure the measures are administered consistently with how they were developed, tested, and validated. Contact Help@HealthMeasures.net to learn more.

Best Practices in Administration

  • PROMIS self-report measures are intended to be completed by the respondent without help from anyone else.
  • If respondents are unable to answer on their own, have someone else (“proxy”) report on their behalf. Respondents requiring a proxy may include: young children, people in the early stages of dementia who may not recognize the extent of their impairment, people with cognitive or communication deficits, and people with severe disease burden. PROMIS Parent Proxy measures are available.
  • Keep respondents’ privacy in mind, but have staff readily available to help with any technology issues that may arise.
  • It is acceptable for staff to define a term (e.g., “nausea”), but not to define a concept where the respondent’s subjective interpretation is the goal of the question (e.g., “quality of life”).
  • Respondents should be instructed to answer all items to the best of their ability. For a respondent who indicates the item asks about an activity they don’t do, instruct them to consider what that activity would be like, and imagine or predict how it would be for them. For example, for the item “Are you able to use a hammer to pound a nail?” imagine the upper body strength, coordination, and dexterity needed to pound a nail with a hammer and evaluate to what degree they have that level of function. Respondents should always have the opportunity to skip an item if needed as well.
  • Utilize the same method (e.g., computer, telephone, or paper) and mode (e.g., self vs. interviewer) of administration. However, this is not always possible, and PROMIS measures have produced similar scores when the method of administration varied. 
  • In clinical settings, give respondents the optimal time needed to capture the most relevant perspective and complete data (e.g., before/after clinician visit or in between visits). This may depend on the study aims and/or clinic work flow.

Modifications to PROMIS Items

Our philosophy is that measures can be improved and we welcome others to make improvements. We believe measurement problems or measure improvements are based upon quantitative and/or qualitative data, not expert opinion alone. If a user feels that she or he can improve a HealthMeasure, she or he is welcome and encouraged to test this modification. Ideally, the problem is identified with data (e.g., respondent misinterpretation of an item, differential item functioning, insufficient content validity). If that user generates data demonstrating that the modification does in fact improve the measure, she or he can submit this modification to HealthMeasures to review for adoption. In contrast, modifications based upon opinion alone (e.g., “I think item calibrations should be country-specific,” “I think high scores should always mean bad,” “I think items should reference a specific disease, condition, or body part”) are not likely to be adopted by HealthMeasures. The HealthMeasures scientific teams and research community have invested significant resources in measure development and validation and modification should not be taken lightly. Keller et al (1997) provide an excellent example of comparing an original and modified measure. In this case, the time frame was altered from four weeks to one week. The HealthMeasures team in collaboration with the PROMIS Health Organization have provided more detail about modifying item text. Learn more>>