Psychological Wellbeing and Distress Screener

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The Psychological Wellbeing and Distress Screener (PWDS) is a 10-item self-report behavior rating scale for screening youths' bidimensional mental health. Items comprising the PWDS are found within the Health Behavior in School-Aged Children Survey, sponsored by the World Health Organization

The bidimensional approach to mental health proposes that psychological wellbeing and distress are related yet distinct domains of functioning that should both be considered on their own terms. The PWDS is comprised of two 5-item subscales that provide a brief assessment of both dimensions.

Research conducted with a nationally representative sample of U.S. students completing the HBSC survey shows that responses to the PWDS subscales have at least adequate internal reliability and that scores derived from the measure have concurrent validity with several indicators of student wellbeing and health behaviors. Further research is needed to continue developing the measure outside of the context of HBSC survey administrations. 

Key article on the PWDS: