The Health and Psychosocial Instruments (HaPI) database has been providing comprehensive, accurate information about measurement tools in a variety of disciplines and professions, including psychology, medicine, nursing, public health, social work, communication, sociology, and organizational behavior/human resources for nearly four decades. By providing this information, we at Behavioral Database Measurement Services (BMDS) hope to help researchers and practitioners find and identify measurement instruments most relevant to their investigations and evaluations. Our primary objective is to promote the sharing of knowledge about measurement tools across disciplines, with the ultimate goal of helping researchers to enhance the quality, reliability, and validity of their measurement techniques.
Today, with over 232,000 records and with more than 5,000 new records added annually, HaPI is proud to serve numerous subscribers at universities, medical schools, hospital systems, VA and government agencies, and research organizations worldwide.
Scroll down to see our timeline.
The HaPI database was first conceived in the early 1970s by the late Dr. Evelyn Perloff, a professor at the University of Pittsburgh.
HaPI began as a file cabinet of folders containing bibliographic information about measurement instruments (surveys, rating scales, interviews, etc.) that was intended to help students and faculty doing research projects, theses, and dissertations.
When Dr. Perloff taught Statistics and Research Methods at the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing, she noticed that her graduate students were constantly looking for instruments which measured various health-related topics. They spent months tracking down such instruments which, when found, were stored in Dr. Perloff’s office until the room overflowed with paper. Not wishing to discard such valuable information, she applied for funding to make the information available online.
A grant from the National Center for Nursing Research of the National Institutes of Health provided the initial funding to establish an electronic database, called the Health Instrument File (HIF).
The Health Instrument File became available nationally to faculty, researchers, clinicians, and students through BRS (Bibliographic Retrieval Services).
Dr. Perloff established the company Behavioral Measurement Database Services (BMDS) to produce, maintain, and continue development of the database.
We changed the name of our database to HaPI (Health and Psychosocial Instruments) to reflect our expanding collection of questionnaires and surveys in psychology and other social science fields, beyond the initial focus on nursing measures.
Eventually, HaPI caught the interest of OVID Technologies, who took over as the primary vendor for distributing the database through university library subscriptions. Not long after, as HaPI continued to grow, EBSCO Host joined as an additional vendor. With two well-respected vendors disseminating the database electronically, HaPI was better able to serve the needs of students, teachers, and researchers in the United States as well as internationally.
For over three decades, HaPI has been the most comprehensive international database of bibliographic information about behavioral measurement instruments in the fields of medicine, nursing, psychology, public health, social work, communication, sociology, and organizational behavior/human resources.
A Tribute to BMDS' Founder