MAST - Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test

WHY all the alcohol screening tools?  If an EAP (employee assistance program) refers a client to you citing alcohol as the main problem, the EAP expects an assessment to be completed.  Some EAPs provide their own alcohol screening tool, but most allow the clinician to use their own.

The MAST is a 25-item public-domain survey and intended to provide an index of how "alcoholic" the subject is (a score of 5-8 or higher is pretty alcohol dependent).  It is not intended for diagnostic use (NOT research!) although you could modify it for that purpose, but then it ceases to be the MAST (so if you told the EAP that you used a personally customized survey to evaluate the level of alcoholism, their next question might be "what did you use that is evidence-based?").  The MAST has been around for some time and most anyone in the recovery field has heard of it.  If you generate a diagnosis with information from it, your diagnosis will seem credible.  But I use this for talking points in the therapeutic conversation or motivational interview.

It is scored by simply adding up the numbers next to the answers of each question.  In questions 24 and 25, multiply 2 times the number of arrests and add that to the running total.  As mentioned earlier, a score of 5-8 or more (depending on where you read) is an indication of possible alcohol dependence.