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Is the information complete or are there topics not covered? Is the information right? Is the information presented in a
way that is understandable and accessible?

Who said it?
When did they say it?
How did they know?

Use this tool to judge the quality of materials about genetic conditions (such as booklets, websites, and handouts). Also, use it to help create new materials. Click through the three scales to learn how to think about and evaluate the content, quality, and usability of a resource.


The Quality Assessment Toolbox website is designed for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice. Genetic Alliance disclaims responsibility for any injury and/or damage to persons or property as a result of any actual or alleged libelous statements, infringement of intellectual property or other proprietary or privacy rights, or from use or operation of any ideas, instructions, procedures, products, or methods contained in the material herein.
Content Scale
Quality Scale
Usability Scale
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The Content Scale

What is the Content Scale?
The Content Scale is a list of topic areas that a group of families, providers, and others thought were important to help people make informed decisions about genetic conditions.
Why do I need the Content Scale?
While there is generally a large amount of information available on medical conditions, there may or may not be for more rare conditions. Health professionals and families with a new diagnosis may not know where to look for help or what type of information is available. We have created the Content Scale to assist with the development of written materials that families and health professionals can refer to when making informed decisions.
How do I use the Content Scale?
The Content Scale organizes the topic areas into four main categories, with key questions listed beneath. Clicking on each broad topic area will link to suggestions for other, more detailed, topic areas that may be relevant to the condition in question. To assess materials, the questions can serve as a checklist to identify information that is covered and other information that might be available. Click on each question for more detailed topic areas.

The Quality Scale

What is the Quality Scale?
The Quality Scale is one way to assess the quality of information in educational material. This scale is made up of six elements, and these elements can be used individually or collectively to judge the quality of the information.
Why do I need the Quality Scale?
There are some genetic conditions that are so rare (in contrast to common conditions like heart disease or diabetes) that there are relatively few people that can be studied to learn scientific facts about these conditions. Therefore, information about these genetic conditions can vary in quality. Some may be of high quality if they are based on studies that looked very carefully at the group of affected people, while some may be of lower quality because the information is based on only a few findings. Of course, information about common conditions can vary in quality as well. The quality scale will help you think critically about the information that you are reading, and will help you determine whether the information is reliable.
How do I use the Quality Scale?
The Quality Scale has six elements. Each element is followed by definitions and examples to help you ‘score’ the information. The purpose is not to come up with an overall score, but, rather, to help you think about how you should use the information in decision making. Please use your own good judgment.

The Usability Scale

What is the Usability Scale?
The Usability Scale is a tool to assess whether the information in an educational product is understandable and accessible to the audience. There are four elements of the Usability Scale, with the underlying theme of asking the target audience for feedback about the material at every step of the development process (not just at the end).
Why do I need the Usability Scale?
Some conditions are so complicated that they can be difficult to understand. To make informed decisions, families and health professionals must both have a good understanding of the condition. When the condition is genetic, the entire family and extended family may be affected. Therefore, it is very important for individuals and families to have access to information they can easily understand and to be given tools that help them evaluate the information they read about a condition. The presentation of informational materials can influence the way it is understood and used.
How do I use the Usability Scale?
The Usability Scale consists of four elements, and the audience of the material should be asked for feedback at every step of the development process (not just at the end).