Norms of valence, arousal, and dominance for 13,915 English lemmas

Behav Res Methods. 2013 Dec;45(4):1191-207. doi: 10.3758/s13428-012-0314-x.


Information about the affective meanings of words is used by researchers working on emotions and moods, word recognition and memory, and text-based sentiment analysis. Three components of emotions are traditionally distinguished: valence (the pleasantness of a stimulus), arousal (the intensity of emotion provoked by a stimulus), and dominance (the degree of control exerted by a stimulus). Thus far, nearly all research has been based on the ANEW norms collected by Bradley and Lang (1999) for 1,034 words. We extended that database to nearly 14,000 English lemmas, providing researchers with a much richer source of information, including gender, age, and educational differences in emotion norms. As an example of the new possibilities, we included stimuli from nearly all of the category norms (e.g., types of diseases, occupations, and taboo words) collected by Van Overschelde, Rawson, and Dunlosky (Journal of Memory and Language 50:289-335, 2004), making it possible to include affect in studies of semantic memory.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Affect
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Arousal / physiology*
  • Crowdsourcing / methods
  • Databases, Factual
  • Educational Status
  • Emotions / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reading
  • Reference Values
  • Semantics*
  • Sesquiterpenes
  • Sex Characteristics
  • Social Dominance*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Vocabulary
  • White People
  • Word Association Tests / standards*
  • Young Adult


  • Sesquiterpenes