A short scale to measure self-righteousness

J Pers Assess. 1985 Apr;49(2):172-7. doi: 10.1207/s15327752jpa4902_13.


Two studies were conducted which created and tested a scale to measure self-righteousness. Self-righteousness was defined as the conviction that one's behaviors or beliefs are correct, especially in contrast to alternate behaviors or beliefs. In the first study, a 4-item scale to measure general self-righteousness was derived which demonstrated adequate levels of internal consistency and was related to dogmatism and ambiguity intolerance. In the second study, the items were worded to be specific to running a race. This study succeeded in demonstrating that the scale possessed predictive validity. This study also demonstrated the usefulness of rewording the general items to make them specific about the content of self-righteousness.