Development and Validation of the Homophobia Scale

  • Lester W. WrightJr.
  • Henry E. Adams
  • Jeffery Bernat


This study describes the development and validation of the Homophobia Scale. The scale was developed to assess the cognitive, affective, and behavioral components of homophobia. The participants (n=321 for the field trials and n=122 for test–retest reliability) were college students from a large Midwestern university. Results yielded a 25-item questionnaire consisting of three factors: a factor that assesses mainly negative cognitions regarding homosexuality, a factor that assess primarily negative affect and avoidance of homosexual individuals, and a factor that assesses negative affect and aggression toward homosexual individuals. Concurrent validity was established using The Index of Homophobia (Hudson & Ricketts, 1980). The phases of scale development and implications of the results are discussed.

homophobia homonegativism homosexual assessment 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. American Psychiatric Association (1983). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (3rd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.Google Scholar
  2. American Psychiatric Association (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.Google Scholar
  3. D'Augeilli, A. R., & Rose, M. L. (1990). Homophobia in a university community. Attitudes and experiences of heterosexual freshmen. Journal of College Student Development, 31, 484–491.Google Scholar
  4. Fyfe, B. (1983). “Homophobia” or homosexual bias reconsidered. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 12, 549–554.Google Scholar
  5. Geasler, M. J., Croteau, J. M., Heineman, C. J., & Edlund, C. J. (1995). A qualitative study of students' expressions of change after attending panel presentations by lesbian, gay, and bisexual speakers. Journal of College Student Development, 36, 483–492.Google Scholar
  6. Haaga, D. (1991). Homophobia? Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, 6, 171–174.Google Scholar
  7. Harman, B. H. (1976). Modern factor analysis. (3rd ed., rev.). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  8. Herek, G. M. (1984). Attitudes towards lesbians and gay men: A factor-analytic study. Journal of Homosexuality, 10, 39–51.Google Scholar
  9. Herek, G. M. (1989). Hate crimes against lesbians and gay men: Correlates and gender differences. American Psychologist, 44, 948–955.Google Scholar
  10. Hudson, W. W., & Ricketts, W. A. (1980). A strategy for the measurement of homophobia. Journal of Homosexuality, 5, 357–372.Google Scholar
  11. MacDonald, A. P., Jr. (1976). Homophobia: Its roots and meanings. Homosexual Counseling Journal, 3, 23–33.Google Scholar
  12. MacDonald, A. P., Higgins, J., Young, S., & Swanson, R. A. (1973). Attitudes toward homosexuality: Preservation of sex morality or the double standard. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 40, 161.Google Scholar
  13. Marmor, J. (1980). Overview: The multiple roots of homosexual behavior. In J. Marmor (Ed.), Homosexual behavior—A modern reappraisal. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  14. Nunnally, J. C. (1978). Psychometric theory (2nd ed.). New York: McGraw Hill.Google Scholar
  15. O'Donohue, W., & Caselles, C. E. (1993). Homophobia: Conceptual, definitional, and value issues. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 15, 177–195.Google Scholar
  16. Patel. S., Long, T. E. McCammon, S. L., & Wuensch, K. L. (1995). Personality and emotional correlates of self-reported anti-gay behaviors. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 10, 354–366.Google Scholar
  17. Roderick, T., McCammon, S. L., Long, T. E., & Allred, L. J. (1998) Behavioral aspects of homonegativity. Journal of Homosexuality, 36, 79–88.Google Scholar
  18. Walters, A. S. (1994). Using visual media to reduce homophobia: A classroom demonstration. Journal of Sex Education and Therapy, 20, 92–100.Google Scholar
  19. West, D. J. (1977). Homosexuality re-examined. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  20. Weinberg, G. (1972). Society and the healthy homosexual. New York: St. Martins Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lester W. WrightJr.
    • 1
    • 2
  • Henry E. Adams
    • 1
  • Jeffery Bernat
    • 1
  1. 1.University of GeorgiaAthens
  2. 2.Western Michigan UniversityKalamazoo

Personalised recommendations