Development of an unlicensed assistive personnel job screening test

Robin P. Newhouse, Michele Steinhauser, Ron Berk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Unlicensed assistive personnel (UAP) competency is essential to the quality and safety of patient care. The purpose of this study was to construct a test with acceptable estimates of reliability and validity to identify UAPs who could successfully perform their job in four essential knowledge-based domains (math, patient data collection, medical terminology, and reporting abnormal data). An investigator-developed test was constructed. Psychometric testing was completed by administering the test to 145 UAPs. A cut score of 17/23 resulted in 79.7% sensitivity and 70.4% specificity. There were significant differences in mean scores between masters and nonmasters (t = -13.70, df = 79, p < .00). Master status was significantly related to the ability to take a patient's blood pressure (Phi = .503, p < .00). A score of 17 or greater indicates that the applicant demonstrates competency of basic knowledge required for the position. The test can be used as a screening tool for UAPs in nurse recruitment before candidates advance to the unit for an interview.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-45
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Nursing Measurement
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Competency
  • Screening test
  • Testing
  • Unlicensed assistive personnel (UAP)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)

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