Staff Morale Questionnaire

Smith, K. R. (1971). The validation of a morale measuring instrument. Journal of Educational Administration 9:32–37.

Comments: A new 72-item Staff Morale Questionnaire (SMQ) has been developed for teachers based on the three fac- tors currently identified. The SMQ has been used in Great Britain, Australia, Indonesia, New Zealand, New Guinea, Canada, Israel, and the United States.

Scale Construction: The original 50-item SMQ based on the work of Cattell and Stice examined five areas: group cohesion; tenacity and fortitude; leadership synergy; adventurous striving; and personal reward. Originally, there were 10 items in each category. When the 50-item questionnaire was factor analyzed, three factors emerged.

Sample: Teachers from six schools in Florida participated (four schools were identified as high morale schools and two schools were identified as low morale schools). Four hundred and fifteen secondary school teachers in Singapore completed the 24-item SMQ. Seven items from the original 50-item SMQ were added to the 24-item SMQ. Four months later, an additional 305 secondary school teachers in six schools in Singapore completed the SMQ.

Validity: The purpose of the Singapore study was to provide construct validation of the three factors in the SMQ. The factor loadings for the SMQ are provided.

Factor Analysis: A varimax rotation yielded seven factors. The first three factors are labeled as: leadership synergy, cohesive pride, and personal challenge. Ten items loaded on leadership synergy (9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 26, and

29); nine items loaded on cohesive pride (1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 18, 20, 22, and 25), and five items loaded on personal challenge (23, 24, 27, 30, and 31). A second factor analysis was performed with the second sample. A varimax rotation yielded three factors: leadership synergy (1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 18, 21, 22, 24, and 25); cohesive pride (3, 4, 5, 6,

15, and 17); and personal challenge (16, 19, 20, 23, 26, and 27).

Definition of Factors: Cohesive pride means that the staff works together to achieve the objectives of the school; it exemplifies cooperation. Personal challenge relates to the incentives that are received from job satisfaction; it assesses how a group uses its potentiality for freedom. Leadership/synergy describes the energy of the group and is viewed as the most important morale factor.


Smith, K. R. (1976). Morale: A refinement of Stogdill’s model. Journal of Educational Administration 14:87–93.

Smith, K. R. (1987). One hundred dissertations: A review of the University of New England Morale Research Project. Journal of Educational Administration 25:101–25.

Williams, K. W., and Lane, T. J. (1975). Construct validation of a Staff Morale Questionnaire. Journal of Educational Administration 13:90–97.

Wong, R. Y. L. (1991). Construct validation of the Staff Morale Questionnaire—The Singapore Scene. Journal of Educational Ad- ministration 29:71–80.

Staff Morale Questionnaire

  1. I would rather teach with my present colleagues than with any other group of teachers in another
  2. In this school teachers have a sense of belonging and of being
  3. The teachers in this school cooperate with each other to achieve common professional
  4. Every teacher on this staff contributes toward the achievement of the school’s
  5. I would perform my duties equally well and continuously under less pleasant conditions than I have at
  6. I do school work beyond my normal working
  7. When I believe that suggestions made by my immediate supervisor are of little value, I ignore
  8. Members of this staff can be relied upon to work with steady
  9. On the whole, how much chance is given to you in this school to show what you can really do?
  10. How well are you kept informed about what is going on in your school?
  11. How do you feel after your immediate supervisor has talked to you about a mistake or weakness in your work?
  12. How well are school policies and the reasons for them explained to you?
  13. How well do you think your school is run?
  14. The principal seems to want everything to depend solely on his
  15. Our principal encourages teachers to participate in the formulating of major school
  16. Duties delegated to teachers are clearly and explicitly
  17. To what extent do teachers in your school pursue inservice or university courses?
  18. In general, teachers on this staff show a great deal of originality and initiative in their
  19. To me there is no more challenging profession than
  20. Teachers in this school display confidence and keenness when called upon for a special
  21. In general, I have tried to be innovative in my teaching techniques on my own
  22. Teachers in this school are convinced of the importance of the school’s
  23. The teaching I am doing at present gives me a feeling of success and
  24. I feel that I am an important part of my present
  25. There is no complaining, arguing, and taking of sides among my
  26. To what extent do you feel that your colleagues act as a unified staff rather than as a collection of independent individuals?
  27. Keeping up to date professionally is too much of a
  28. Are you provided with the best possible equipment consistent with your school’s aims and finances?
  29. Would your immediate supervisor support you and back you up if something went wrong which was not your fault?
  30. To what extent would you wish to share in the organization and running of your school?
  31. To what extent do past successes in teaching cause you to strive for similar success in the future?

Scoring: A four-point scale is used ranging from 1 to 4.