Pastoral Psychology

, Volume 68, Issue 3, pp 271–284 | Cite as

Identifying an Empirically-Derived 10-item Religiousness Measure from Lipsmeyer’s Personal Religious Inventory: Psychometric Properties of the PRI-10

  • John W. Lace
  • Paul J. HandalEmail author


Although it is used throughout social scientific research and is psychometrically robust, Lipsmeyer’s (1984) 45-item Personal Religious Inventory (PRI) is notably lengthy and may be less suitable than other more compendious measures of religiousness. The present study sought to identify, describe, and validate a brief yet comprehensive measure of religiousness derived from the PRI. Nine hundred twenty-one university students (M age = 19.24) participated online. Through parallel analyses and exploratory factor analyses, the authors developed a 10-item, four-factor scale (the PRI-10) that measures aspects of Religious Integration; Religious and Social Morality; Nonritual Social Religious Activity; and; Ritual Attendance. Excellent internal validity was identified for the PRI-10 through confirmatory factor analysis (CFI = .991; RMSEA = .041), and robust convergent validity emerged from moderate to strong correlations with well-validated measures of religiousness and spirituality. Divergent validity emerged from nonsignificant and negligible correlations with participants’ age and grade point average. Further, individuals who reported low religiousness on the PRI-10 tended to have higher levels of psychological distress and need for treatment on the Langner Symptom Survey. Moreover, women who reported low levels of religiousness tended to report psychological distress above a clinically validated cutoff score denoting distress and need for treatment. The authors discuss the benefits and limitations of the novel measure, propose future psychometric validation, and suggest ways other researchers might utilize it.


Measurement of religion Psychometric properties Religion and mental health Emerging adults 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Saint Louis UniversitySt. LouisUSA

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