Hypnosis Clinical Resources

This page is designed to contain useful resources for clinicians.  These can include patient hypnosis handouts, links to podcasts or training videos on hypnosis related topics, or other material you might be willing to share.  See below if you are a Society member and have something to contribute to the Society's Hypnosis Clinical Resources page.

Past-President Gary Elkins has generously provided the first resource we will include on this page.  Gary is the author of the Elkins Hypnotizability Scale (EHS), a measure that correlates at 0.86 with the Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale, and can be administered in 30 minutes. See below to access a downloadable version of the EHS and view a training video providing instructional guidelines for administration.  We hope this will be the first of many clinical resources that we can make available through our website.  

EHS: Elkins Hypnotizability Scale

Author: Gary Elkins, PhD, ABPP, ABPH

All persons have the ability to experience some aspects of hypnosis as it involves a focus of attention and response to hypnotic suggestions. However, there are individual differences in hypnotic abilities. Hypnotizability refers to “an individual’s ability to experience suggested alterations in physiology, sensations, emotions, thoughts, or behavior during hypnosis” (Elkins, Barabasz, Council, & Spiegel, 2015). Hypnotizability is a relatively stable trait which can be accurately measured over time. It is important that clinicians who use hypnotherapy understand hypnotizability and have the knowledge and skill needed to assess the hypnotic ability of their patients.

The Elkins Hypnotizability Scale (EHS; Elkins, 2014; Elkins, 2016) is a well-validated and highly reliable measure of hypnotizability for use in research and clinical practice (Elkins, Johnson, Johnson, & Sliwinski, 2015; Kekecs,  Bowers, Johnson, Kendrick, & Elkins, 2016).  It involves a standardized hypnotic induction and deepening suggestions, followed by hypnotic suggestions of increasing difficulty. The items of the EHS includes suggestions for: (1) Arm Heaviness/Arm Immobility; (2) Arm Lightness/Arm Levitation; (3) Mental Imagery/Dissociation; (4) Rose Smell/Olfactory Hallucination; (5) Positive Hallucination; and (6) Post-Hypnotic Amnesia. A range of scores from 0-12 can be obtained from the EHS with estimates of low, medium, high, and very high hypnotizability. The average time for administration of the EHS is approximately 25-30 minutes. The average rating of pleasantness of the EHS (on a 0-10 scale) is 8.97, which strongly indicates that the EHS is likely to be experienced as very pleasant by the majority of people. Information on the development of the EHS, rationale, constructs, reliability, and validity can be found in these Springer Publishing source publications: Elkins, G. (2014). Hypnotic Relaxation Therapy. New York, NY: Springer Publishing Co.; Elkins, G. (2017). Handbook of Medical and Psychological Hypnosis: Foundations, Applications, and Professional Issues, New York, NY: Springer Publishing Co. and Elkins, G. & Olendzki, N. (2018 release) Mindful Hypnotherapy: The Basics for Clinical Practice, New York, NY: Springer Publishing Co.

Click here to access or download the Elkins Hypnotizability Scale.

Video Demonstration of the EHS

Click below to view a video demonstration. This video demonstration of the EHS provides administration and scoring criteria. It is demonstrated at a somewhat slower pace for teaching purposes. The full EHS transcript is also included for use by qualified professionals.

Key References

Elkins, G. (2017). Handbook of medical and psychological hypnosis: Foundations, applications, and professional issues, New York, NY: Springer Publishing Co.

Kekecs, Z., Bowers, J., Johnson, A., Kendrick, C., & Elkins, G. (2016). The Elkins Hypnotizability Scale: Assessment of reliability and validty. International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 64(3), 285–304. https://doi.org/10.1080/00207144.2016.1171089

Elkins, G., Barabasz, A. F., Council, J. R., & Spiegel, D. (2015). Advancing research and practice: The revised APA Division 30 Definition of Hypnosis. International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 63(1), 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1080/00207144.2014.961870

Elkins, G., Johnson, A. K., Johnson, A. J., & Sliwinski, J. (2015). Factor Analysis of the Elkins Hypnotizability Scale. International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 63(3), 335–345. https://doi.org/10.1080/00207144.2015.1031550

Elkins, G. (2014). Hypnotic relaxation therapy. New York, NY: Springer Publishing Co.



Invitation to Contribute to This Page

Society Members are invited to contribute to the SCEH Hypnosis Clinical Resources page.

Do you have a useful patient hypnosis handouts, links to podcasts or training videos on hypnosis related topics, or other material you might be willing to share on the Society's Hypnosis Clinical Resources page?   If so, please send the resource and a cover letter to SCEH President Don Moss at dmoss@saybrook.edu.   The SCEH Education Committee will screen material and make final decisions on postings.  Thank you.