This REJECTION OF CHRISTIANITY SCALE measures negative atti­tudes towards Christianity. The scale was developed because the usual scales to mea­ sure attitudes towards Christianity in North­ ern Ireland only measured positive attitudes toward Christianity. The usual scales were therefore open to a tendency toward acqui­escence. The purpose of this scale is to pro­ vide a scale that would have a negative va­lence, to offset possible acquiescence response bias.

Although it has not been previously men­tioned, this reviewer feels there are theoreti­cal reasons to have a negatively oriented scale. Leeming theory notes that negative re­inforcement works somewhat differently than positive reinforcement. Motivation theory notes that negative and positive moti­vations lead, for example, to different ap­proach/avoidance curves. Measuring moti­vation toward religion in terms of negatives and positives should lead to better overall theory development.


The scale consists of 20 items on a range of topics about “religion,” “church,” “clergy,” and “God.” The word “Christianity” is not used. The original items included 32 negatively worded items “cover­ing 8 somewhat overlapping conceptual areas” of “religion, God, church, belief, reli­gious practice, individual rights, authority and science.” Exploratory factor analyses (method unspecified) resulted in selecting 20 items that cohered most “consistently” (Greer & Francis, 1992, p. 1346).

Practical considerations:

The scale is eas­ily administered and scored. Some who are anفه religion but pro-Chrisitianity may need some wordings reinterpreted.


The only norma­tive data provided are for Protestant and Catholic male and female adolescents in Northern Ireland.


The internal consistency relia­bilities were .94 and .90 for 466 Protestants and 409 Catholics (Greer & Francis, 1992) and .93 (N = 1,177; Greer & Francis, I 990). All were Northern Ireland adolescents in forms 4 to 6.


Content validity appears good ex­cept that the term “religion” is used but not “Christianity,” although other terms used make Christianity the only religion to which the scale can be applied. Concur­ rent/construct validity is high in that the scale correlates well with positive measures of Christian faith. Differences found be­ tween Protestants and Catholics are consis­tent with the other data. No differential va­lidity has been tested comparing it with positively worded scales.


Please print a number from l to 5 to indicate how you feel about it. Use the following scale to indicate how you feel about each item:

  • Strongly disagree
  • Disagree
  • Not certain
  • Agree
  • Strongly agree
  1. Religion is out of touch with my experience and interests.
  2. I cannot believe in a personal God.
  3. I do not believe that there is any life after death.
  4. The clergy are completely out of touch with young people today. In the past religion has done more harm than good to mankind.
  5. I see too much innocent suffering to believe in a good God who is all powerful. The church should not dictate a way of living and a moral code for everyone.
  6. Religious education in school is uninteresting and ineffective. Sermons in church are a boring waste of time.
  7. Money and enjoyment are more important to me than religion.
  8. If God does exist, I want evidence to help me believe.
  9. I find it hard to accept that the miracles of Jesus really happened. Going to church is a dull, meaningless ritual.
  10. Most religious people are hypocrites who do not practice what they believe. I get no satisfaction from going to church on Sundays.
  11. The resurrection is unbelievable because people do not come back from the dead. God is something which people create for themselves.
  12. The church has not helped me get any satisfactory ideas about God. The church is out of date and has no attraction for me.
  13. The universe is entirely governed by chance.


Greer, J., & Francis, L. J. (1992). Measuring “rejection of Christianity” among 14 to 16-year-old adolescents in Catholic and Protestant schools in Northern Ireland. Personality and Individual Dif­ferences, 13, 1345-1348.

Other Research:

Greer, J. E., & Frances, L. J. (1990). The religious profile of pupils in Northern Ireland. Journal of Empirical Theology, 3, 35-50.


Greer, J. E., Frances, L. J. (1990). The religious profile of pupils in Northern Ireland. Journal of Empirical Theology, 3, 35-50.