Measurement of Stress

  • Kyung Bong Koh


The assessment of stress is essential in clinical approaches as well as in psychosomatic research, particularly for exploring the relationship between stress and diseases. Such assessment has been done in terms of stimulus-oriented, response-oriented, and interaction-oriented measurement. Three categories of variables which need to be assessed are stressors, stress responses (cognitive, physiological, and behavioral), and personal characteristics (personal resources, behavioral patterns, and coping styles). The purpose of stress assessment in these three aspects is to make clear the client’s problem areas and help the therapist plan therapeutic approaches appropriately. In addition, such assessment can be used to evaluate changes between pre-treatment and posttreatment states. There are three approaches to stress measurement, such as interview, paper-and-pencil measures (use of rating scales or checklists), and direct observation. Each of these approaches has its own strength and weakness. Therefore, the therapist needs to be aware of both the strengths and weaknesses of the assessment tools to select the tool specifically fit for the individual.


Assessment of stress Stimulus-oriented Response-oriented Interaction-oriented Stressors Stress responses Personal characteristics Interview Paper-and-pencil measures Direct observation 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kyung Bong Koh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryYonsei University College of MedicineSeoulKorea

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