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The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Checklist - Civilian Version (PCL-C)

The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Checklist - Civilian Version (PCL-C)

 Weathers et al., 1993

The PCL-C is a 17-item self-report measure assessing symptoms of PTSD in adults. The PCL-C can be used as a screening and diagnostic tool (Wilkins, Lang, & Norman, 2011). The PCL-C has been used in studies with adolescents (Wang et al., 2012; Calderoni, Alderman, Silver, & Bauman, 2006) and a separate adolescent version exists (PCL-C/PR, Ford et al., 2000) but is not freely available. Each item is rated on a 5-point scale from one (“not at all”) to five (“extremely”). The PCL-C was designed to be administered in 5-10 minutes and can be scored in several ways, including a total symptom severity score that ranges from 17-85, or by mapping onto DSM-IV criteria for PTSD. Empirical research suggests that five points on the PCL-C is a minimum threshold for determining whether an individual has responded to treatment and 10 points as a minimum threshold for determining whether the improvement is clinically meaningful (Monson et al., 2008). The PCL-C demonstrates acceptable internal consistency (α > .75; Wilkins, Lang, & Norman, 2011) and adequate test-retest reliability over a period of one week (r = .75-.88; Campbell et al., 1999). In addition, the PCL-C demonstrates concurrent validity (Bollinger, Cuevas, Vielhauer, Morgan, & Keane, 2008) with the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS; Blake et al., 1995) and the Mississippi PTSD scale (Keane, Caddel, & Taylor, 1988; Blake et al., 1995). The measure is available online (


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