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UCLA PSTD Assessment Tools

UCLA Child/Adolescent PTSD Index for DSM-5

The UCLA Child/Adolescent PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-5 is the revision of the UCLA Child/Adolescent PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-IV. The new DSM-5 version is a semi-structured interview that assesses a child's trauma history and the full range of DSM-5PTSD diagnostic criteria among school-age children and adolescents. A DSM-5 parent/caregiver version is also available.

Access to UCLA PTSD-RI-5

Behavioral Health Innovations requires a licensing agreement for the use of the scale. For assistance, contact Preston Finley.




The University of California at Los Angeles Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Reaction Index for DSM-5 (UCLA-RI-5) is one of the most widely used instruments for the assessment of traumatized children and adolescents. It has been used around the world after major disasters and catastrophic violence as an integral component of public mental health response and recovery programs.

Although the instrument was not designed to make a formal diagnosis, it can provide preliminary diagnostic information. In Part I, a brief review of the traumatic experience sets the stage for the subsequent questions and helps the child recall details of the traumatic event (Criterion A1). Part II includes questions related to A1 and A2 criteria which are scored "yes" or "no". Part III asks about the frequency of PTSD symptoms during the past month (rated from 0=none of the time to 4=most of the time).

The test takes around 20-30 minutes to complete depending on age, reading ability and method of administration. It is suitable for administration by a graduate level student under supervision.

Key/Core References   

Kaplow, JB, Rolon-Arroyo, B; Layne, CM; Oosterhoff, B; Hill, R; Steinberg, AM; Pynoos, RS. (2020) Validation of the UCLA PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-5: A Developmentally Informed Assessment Tool for Trauma-Exposed Youth. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 59(1) 186-194.

Roulon-Arroyo, B, Oosterhoff, B, Layne, CM, Steinberg, AM, Pynoos, RS, Kaplow, JB (2019) The UCLA PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-5 Brief Form: A Screening Tool for Trauma-Exposed Youth.Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 59(3) 434-443.  

Doric, A., Stevanovic, D., Stupar, D., Vostanis, P., Atilola, O., Moreira, P., Dodig-Curkovic, K., Franic, T., Davidovic, V., Avicenna, M., Noor, M., Nussbaum, L., Thabet, A., Ubalde, D., Petrov, P., Deljkovic, A., Antonio, M. L., Ribas, A., Oliveira, J., & Knez, R. (2019). UCLA PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-5 (PTSD-RI-5): A psychometric study of adolescents sampled from communities in eleven countries. European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 10(1), Article 1605282. https://doi.org/10.1080/20008198.2019.1605282

Steinberg, A. M., Brymer, M. J., Kim, S., Ghosh, C., Ostrowski, S. A., Gulley, K., Briggs, E. C., Pynoos, R. S. (2013). Psychometric properties of the UCLA PTSD Reaction Index: Part I. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 26: 1-9.

Elhai, J. D., Layne, C. M., Steinberg, A. S., Vrymer, M. J., Briggs, E. C., Ostrowski, S. A., Pynoos, R. S. (2013). Psychometric properties of the UCLA PTSD Reaction Index. Part 2: Investigating factor structure findings in a national clinic-referred youth sample. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 26: 10-18.

Further Information   

The National Center for Child Traumatic Stress offers a training video for administration and scoring of the UCLA Child/Adolescent PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-5.


The UCLA PTSD-RI-5 manual is available for purchase at www.reactionindex.com

UCLA Brief COVID-19 Screen for Child/Adolescent PTSD

This newly developed tool is available at no cost to facilitate PTSD risk screening and triage to address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on children, adolescents and their families. This tool is designed for use by professionals across a range of child-serving systems including behavioral health, primary care, pediatrics, schools, child welfare, juvenile justice and residential care. It includes an initial set of questions about types of exposure to the pandemic (e.g., Have you or someone close to you become very sick or been in the hospital because of this illness? Has anyone close to you died because of this illness? Does someone close to you work around people who might have this illness?). There is also a set of questions designed specifically for children/adolescents in military families. The exposure questions are followed by an 11-item set of validated questions about the frequency of PTSD symptoms in the past month. The score sheet provides an algorithm for determining the need for ongoing monitoring or a full PTSD assessment and, if indicated, evidence-based trauma-focused treatment. The UCLA Brief COVID-19 Screen is available in English and Spanish.

UCLA Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Reaction Index for DSM-IV

Information for this page retrieved from: National Center for PTSD (29, April, 2020). UCLA Child/Adolescent PTSD Reaction Index for DSM-5. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/assessment/child/ucla_child_reaction_dsm-5.asp