A Systematic Review of Psychometric Transactional Analysis Instruments

Vos, Joel and van Rijn, Biljana (2021) A Systematic Review of Psychometric Transactional Analysis Instruments. Transactional Analysis Journal. pp. 1-32.


Since the founding of transactional analysis (TA) by Eric Berne in
the 1950s, many psychometric instruments have been developed
to operationalize TA concepts. Several studies have provided general reviews of these, but the studies are not systematic and do
not assess the psychometric quality of the instruments. We conducted a systematic literature review of all psychometric instruments operationalizing TA concepts by searching in Pubmed,
Medline, PsycInfo, APA articles, Web-of-Knowledge, and scholar.-
google.com. The study quality was evaluated with the consensusbased standards for the selection of health measurement instruments (COSMIN). Of the 12,287 initial search hits, we selected 56
instruments in 263 studies. Among those, the Schema Mode
Inventory, the Tokyo Egogram, the Adjective Check List, the
ANINT-A36, and the Life Position Scale were found to have fair to
good overall COSMIN quality. Except for the Life Position Scale,
they operationalize ego states (Parent, Adult, Child) and the functional analysis concepts of Critical Parent, Nurturing Parent, and
Adapted/Free Child. The Life Position Scale operationalized the
positive and negative positions toward self and others. Other
questionnaires had poor to fair COSMIN quality, usually because
of a lack of studies. Meta-analyses indicated that psychopathology
and physical symptoms are associated with strong Critical Parent,
strong Adapted Child, weak Integrated Adult, negative coping
styles, and negative positions toward oneself and others. Many
instruments need further validation and translation into more languages. The Schema Mode Inventory, the Tokyo Egogram, the
Adjective Check List, and the Life Position Scale are the best validated questionnaires. These could be used by researchers to test
treatment effectiveness and by psychotherapists to examine the
problems and etiology of clients.

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