Causal Attribution for Coital Orgasm Scale

Causal Attribution for Coital Orgasm Scale‌

JOSEPH W. CRITELLI,North Texas State University CHARLES F. BRIDGESTerrell State Hospital, Terrell, Texas VICTOR E. LOOSGalveston Family Institute

The Causal Attribution for Coital Orgasm Scale is designed to evaluate causal attributions for orgasm and nonorgasm during sexual intercourse.

Description

This Causal Attribution for Coital Orgasm scale was developed to evaluate attributions of coital outcomes, along the two major attributional dimensions identified by Weiner (1979; Weiner & Kukla, 1970): internal versus external, and stable versus unstable. The scale uses a paired-comparison forced-choice format as suggested by McMahan (1973), Weiner, Nierenberg, and Goldstein (1976), and Girodo, Dotzenroth, and Stein (1981). The labels in the questionnaire were judged to translate most adequately Weiner’s notions of ability (internal-stable), effort (internal-unstable), task difficulty (external-stable), and luck (external-unstable). For both orgasmic and non- orgasmic coital outcomes, subjects are presented with every possible pairing of causal attributions. With four attributional categories (internal-stable, internal-unstable, external-stable, external-unstable), this yields two sets of six forced-choice options. Whether respondents refer to simultaneous clitoral stimulation does not seem to affect causal attributions (Loos, Bridges, & Critelli, 1987). The scale is designed for use with women who have had at least 15 coital contacts and have experienced coital orgasm at least one time.

Response Mode and Timing

Respondents place a check mark in front of the one choice in each pair of choices which they believe is more accurate for them. The questionnaire requires no more than 10 minutes to complete.

Scoring

One point is credited for each check mark; no points are given for unchecked items. For both Question I (orgasm) and Question II (nonorgasm), items are summed to form an attributional score (ranging from 0 to 3) for each of the four causal categories, as follows: internal-stable (1a + 4b + 5b); internal-unstable (1b + 2a + 6a); external-stable (2b + 3a + 5a); external unstable (3b + 4a + 6b). The two underlying causal dimensions are formed by summing across quadrants, as follows: locus of control (internal-stable + inter- nal-unstable); stability (internal-stable + external-stable).

Reliability

The paired-comparison forced-choice format has been used reliably in a number of other studies investigating Weiner’s four categories of causal attribution (Girodo et al., 1981; McMahan, 1973; Weiner & Kukla, 1970; Weiner et al., 1976), and is a standard method of assessing attributions in achievement-motivation situations (Crandall, Katkovsky, & Crandall, 1965). Girodo et al. reported a test-retest reliability ranging from .65 to .78 (< .001) for success and failure ascriptions, and a high internal consistency of causal preferences across the four causal categories, with Kendall’s tau ranging from .22 (< .05) to .70 (< .001).

Validity

Construct validity for Weiner’s four attributional categories has been established in numerous studies in which respon- dents were asked to explain spontaneously the causes of certain imagined and real outcomes (Frieze, 1976; Weiner, 1979; Weiner, Russell, & Lerman, 1978; Wong & Weiner, 1981). The Causal Attribution for Coital Orgasm Scale has been used successfully to differentiate between attributional styles of women with high and low orgasm frequency (Bridges, 1981; Loos et al., 1987).

1Address correspondence to Joseph W. Critelli, Department of Psychology, North Texas State University, P.O. Box 13587, Denton, TX 76203–3587; e-mail: [email protected]

Causal Attributions for Coital Outcome Scale

 

Complete the following sentence by placing a check mark in front of the ONE CHOICE IN EACH PAIR of choices which you believe is MORE ACCURATE FOR YOU. Please respond to all six choices.

When I have an orgasm during coitus, it is typically because: (Select one answer from each pair.)

  • I am typically sexually responsive. OR I particularly wanted to have an orgasm.
  • I particularly wanted to have an orgasm. OR My partner is a good lover.
  • My partner is a good lover. OR It was a matter of luck.
  • It was a matter of luck. OR I am typically sexually responsive.
  • My partner is a good lover OR I am typically sexually responsive.
  • I particularly wanted to have an orgasm. OR It was a matter of luck.

Complete the following sentence by placing a check mark in front of the ONE CHOICE IN EACH PAIR of choices which you believe is MORE ACCURATE FOR YOU. Please respond to all six choices.

When I do not have an orgasm during coitus, it is typically because: (Select one answer from each pair.)

  • I am typically sexually unresponsive. OR I did not particularly want to have an orgasm.
  • I did not particularly want to have an orgasm. OR My partner is not a good lover.
  • My partner is not a good lover. OR It was a matter of luck.
  • It was a matter of luck. OR I am typically sexually unresponsive.
  • My partner is not a good lover. OR I am typically sexually unresponsive.
  • I did not particularly want to have an orgasm. OR It was a matter of luck.

References

Bridges, C. F. (1981). Orgasm consistency, causal attribution, and inhibitory control. Unpublished master’s thesis, North Texas State University, Denton, TX.

Crandall, V. C., Katkovsky, W., & Crandall, V. J. (1965). Children’s beliefs in their own control of reinforcements in intellectual-academic achievement situations. Child Development, 46, 91–109.

Frieze, I. H. (1976). Causal attributions and information seeking to explain success and failure. Journal of Research in Personality, 10, 293–305. Girodo, M., Dotzenroth, S. E., & Stein, S. J. (1981). Causal attribution bias in shy males: Implications for self-esteem and self-confidence. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 5, 325–338.

Loos, V. E., Bridges, C. F., & Critelli, J. W. (1987). Weiner’s attribution theory and female orgasmic consistency. The Journal of Sex Research, 23, 348–361.

McMahan, I. D. (1973). Relationships between causal attributions and expectancy of success. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 28, 108–114.

Weiner, B. (1979). A theory of motivation for some classroom experiences. Journal of Educational Psychology, 71, 3–25.

Weiner, B., & Kukla, A. (1970). An attributional analysis of achievement motivation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 15, 1–20.

Weiner, B., Nierenberg, R., & Goldstein, M. (1976). Social learning (locus of control) versus attributional (causal stability) interpretations of expectancy of success. Journal of Personality, 44, 52–68.

Weiner, B., Russell, D., & Lerman, D. (1978). Affective consequences of causal ascriptions. In J. H. Harvey, W. J. Ickes, & R. F. Kidd (Eds.), New directions in attribution research (Vol. 1, pp. 59–90). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Wong, T. P., & Weiner, B. (1981). Why people ask “why” questions, and the heuristics of attributional search. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 40, 650–663.