Measuring Moral Conviction


We have experimented with various operationalizations of moral conviction and recommend one of two strategies:

Two item form

To what extent is your position on [attitude object]:
…a reflection of your core moral beliefs and convictions?
…connected to your beliefs about fundamental right and wrong?

With the response options of not at all, slightly, moderately, much, and very much

Four item form

The above two items supplemented with the following two items, using the same response scale. The four-item version yields a Cronbach’s α = .99.

To what extent is your position on [attitude object]:
… based on moral principle?
…a moral stance?

For more detailed discussions of measurement see: Skitka, L. J. & Morgan, G. S. (2014). The social and political implications of moral conviction. In H. Lavine (Ed.), Advances in Political Psychology, 35, 95 – 110. <pdf>