RELIGIOUS WORLD VIEW SCALE

Variable:

 The Religious World View Scale assesses the extent to which one agrees with a number of orthodox tenets of the Christian faith. The respondent is asked to respond to various statements pertaining to central as­pects of Christianity, including the divinity of Christ, the existence of hell, the occurrence of miracles, the validity of the Bible, and the means of salvation.

Description:

 This scale was developed to stimulate interest in religious thought and to help students understand and clarify their religious worldview. Twenty-five scale items are presented according to a Likert scale ranging from 5 to l (strongly agree to strongly disagree) format. Some of the items are reverse scored. All of the items contribute to a single total score for the in­strument.

Practical Considerations:

 The instrument consists of 25 items presented in a clear manner that can be completed quickly. The instrument evaluates the extent to which one agrees with the orthodox tenets of the Chris­ tian faith. It assumes some nominal religious background or knowledge in that re­spect. The reverse-scored items are denoted in the Jennings (1972) study, and the responses to all of the items are simply totaled for a final score.

Norms/Standardization: 

Jennings (1972) studied 364 students in a metropolitan ju­nior college in Dallas, Texas. The sample age range was between 20 and 24 years, 61% male and 48% married. The study sub­ jects were broadly representative of the var­ious types of students attending the school. Jennings's Likert Scale means and standard deviations across all of the items in the scale for males under (n 129) and over (n 91) 25 years of age were 79.7 (SD= 20.1) and 86.9 (SD 21.2) respectively. The Likert Scale means and standard deviations for fe­ males under (n 101) and over (n 37) 25 years of age were 89.3 (SD= 19.3) and 84.l (SD 22.5) respectively.

Reliability:

 None given.

Validity:

Construct validity is supported by Jennings (1972), who found that females scored significantly higher than males, con­sistent with findings in religiosity that fe­ males tend to be more religious than males. Jennings's (l 972) study also found that older males scored significantly higher on the instrument than younger males. Of the various instruments that Jennings used in his study, the strongest pairwise correlation (r 0.91) was for the Religious World View Scale and another measure of orthodoxy of belief, the Scriptural Literalism Scale (Hogge & Friedman, 1967).

What Do You Believe?

For each of the following statements, circle the choice that best indicates the extent of your agreement or disagreement as it describes your personal experiences:

  1. strongly disagree

  2. moderately disagree

  3.  disagree

  4. agree

  5.  moderately agree

  6.  strongly agree

    * l.

    The work of the church could be just as effectively done by schools and social agencies.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    2.

    I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *3.

    I believe that men working and thinking together can build a just society without supernatural help.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *4.

    The writings of Plato, Aristotle, Dante, and Shakespeare are as much inspired as are the writings of Moses and Paul.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    5.

    All miracles in the Bible are true.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *6.

    In general, I consider church (or synagogue) attendance a waste of time.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *7.

    Belief that in the end God's purposes will be achieved tends to destroy man's sense of social responsibility.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    8.

    God is the great companion who shares with us the travail and tragedy of the world.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    9.

    Jesus was born of the Virgin in a manner different from human beings.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    10. The revelation of God's word in the Holy Scriptures is man's ultimate authority.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *11.

    The attempt to believe in a supernatural being is a sign of a person's failure to accept responsibility for his own life.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    12.

    I believe in the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    13.

    The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.

    1

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    14.

    I believe Hell is a form of existence in a future life.

    1

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *15.

    The four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, contain some legendary materials.

    1

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *16.

    We live in a universe indifferent to human values

    1

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    17.

    We were made for fellowship with God and our hearts are restless until they rest in Him.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    18.

    Man is saved by the free gift of God's grace.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    19.

    The biblical writers were endowed with a divine wisdom which enabled them to fore- tell specific events in the distant future.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *20.

    The fall of man in the story of the Garden of Eden is a myth symbolizing the problem of good and evil in the world.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    21.

    Man is ultimately responsible to God.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *22.

    God is only a symbol of man's ideal.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    23.

    Jesus walked on water and raised the dead.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *24.

    The biblical story of creation is probably based on one of the early Babylonian myths.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    *25.

    If I believed that any part of the Bible were unreliable I would no longer have confidence in its moral and spiritual teachings.

    2

    3

    4

    5

    6

    (* indicates reversed-scored item)

    Location:

    Jennings, F. L. (l 972). A note on the reliability of several belief scales. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 11, 157-164.

    Subsequent Research:

    None located.

    References

    Hogge, J., & Friedman, S. T. (1967). The Scrip­tural Literalism Scale: A preliminary report. Jour­ nal of Psychology, 66, 275-279.

    McLean, M. (1952). Religious world views. Motive, 12, 22-26.

    Jennings, F. L. (1972). A note on the reliability of several belief scales. Journal for the Scientific Study of Re-ligion, 11, 157-164. Copyright© 1972 Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion.