The Beck Depression Inventory is a list of approx 20 questions to ask a person to determine if they do indeed suffer from depression. It was created by Dr. Aaron T Beck – a U.S. psychiatrist. He's a professor of psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania and is the director of the Center for the Treatment and Prevention of Suicide.
Aaron Beck was born after the death of his sister to an influenza epidemic. Understandably, after his sister's death, Beck’s mother became severely depressed. It wasn't until Aaron was born that her depression lifted. Aaron claimed this is where his need for control started. He had feelings of stupidity and incompetence after a near fatal illness caused from an infection from a broken arm. However, Beck taught himself how to work through his fears and problems and this sparked the development of his theory and therapies in later years.
Even though his diagnostic questionnaire was originally published in 1961 - it has been continually revised.
Becks Depression Inventory original printing is out of print but can be downloaded from this site...