DUKE RELIGION INDEX

Variable:

The Duke Religion Index (DUREL) measures three major dimensions of religiousness: organizational (OR), nonorganizational (NOR), and intrinsic reli­giosity (IR). The authors developed this scale as an attempt "to measure religiosity in a comprehensive yet brief and non-offensive manner" (p. 885).

Description:

The first and second items of this five-item scale measure OR and NOR respectively. The last three items were ex­tracted from Hoge's (1972) intrinsic reli­giosity scale (items 2, 6, and 7). From a study of 458 medical patients in the Duke Hospital Study, these three items were cho­sen based on their intrinsic factor loading (3 of Hoge's 5 items that loaded .72 or greater), correlation with the total score of the Hoge ten-item scale (3 of Hoge's 6 items that correlated .65 or greater), and relationship with several health outcomes, in­cluding social support, functional impair­ment, severity of medical illness, self-re­lated depression, major depression, and speed of recovery from depression. The five items are summed, resulting in a score range of 5 (high religiousness) to 27 (low reli­giousness).

Practical Considerations:

This brief scale requires no special considerations and should take only a few minutes to complete.

Norms/Standardization:

Though no norma­tive data on the first two items are presented in Koenig, Patterson, and Meador (1997), the authors report that normative data on re­sponse rates in both clinical and community populations are available. These two items were administered to over 7,000 persons aged 18 to 90 participating in three separate studies. Descriptive statistics (e.g., means, standard deviations, etc.) were also not re­ ported for the final three items. Again, how­ ever, such normative data is provided through the Duke Hospital Study.

Reliability:

No reliability data are presented on the first two items. The three-item intrin­sic religiosity subscale had a Cronbach's alpha of .75.

Validity:

The 3-item intrinsic religiosity subscale strongly correlated (r = .85) with Hoge's full 10-item scale and only moder­ately correlated with OR (r = .40) and NOR (r = .42). Though the correlation between OR and NOR was not reported, correlations with physical and mental health measures suggest that these two measures of religious behavior are distinct (see also Koenig, 1997; Koenig, Hays, George, & Blazer, 1997). For example, OR is related to more social support, less depression (both self­ rated and major depression), less severity of medical illness, and less functional impairment. NOR is related to more social support only, though the authors cite recent research (Koenig et al., 1997) suggesting that NOR is related to poorer physical health and has a mixed association with depression. The au­thors' claim that this brief instrument mea­ sures "three major dimensions of religious­ ness that are related in overlapping yet unique ways to social support and different health outcomes" (p. 885) appears to be valid.

Duke University Religion Index (DUREL)

  1. How often do you attend church or other religious meetings? (OR)
    1. More than once a week
    2. Once a week
    3. A few times a month
    4. A few times a year
    5. Once a year or less
    6. Never
  2. How often do you spend time in private religious activities, such as prayer, meditation, or Bible study? (NOR)

    More than once a day

    Daily

    Two or more times/week

    Once a week

    A few times a month

    Rarely or never

    The following section contains 3 statements about religious belief or experience. Please mark the extent to which each statement is true or not true for you.

  3. In my life, I experience the presence of the Divine (i.e., God). (IR)

    Definitely true of me

    Tends to be true

    Unsure

    Tends not to be true

    Definitely not true

  4. My religious beliefs are what really lies behind my whole approach to life. (IR)

    Definitely true of me

    Tends to be true

    Unsure

    Tends not to be true

    Definitely not true

  5. I try hard to carry my religion over into all other dealings in life. (IR)

    Definitely true of me

    Tends to be true

    Unsure

    Tends not to be true

    Definitely not true

    OR-organizational religiosity

    NOR-Non-organizational religiosity IR-intrinsic religiosity

    Location:

    Koenig, H. G., Parkerson, G. R., & Meador, K. G. (1997). Religion index for psychiatric research: A 5-item measure for use in health outcome stud­ies. American Journal of Psychiatry, 154(6), 885.

    Recent Research:

    Koenig, H. G. (1997). ls religion good for your health? New York: Haworth Press.

    Koenig, H. G., Hays, J. C., George, L. K., & Blaxer, D. G. (1997). Modeling the cross-sectional relationships between religion, physical health, so­cial support, and depressive symptoms. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 5, 131-143.