NLSY79 Appendix 25: Attitudinal Scale Scoring

National Longitudinal Survey of Youth - 1979 Cohort

NLSY79 Appendix 25: Attitudinal Scale Scoring

This appendix contains descriptions of scale score computations for four attitudinal scales: The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression (CES-D), Rosenberg Self-Esteem, Pearlin Mastery and Rotter Locus of Control scales.

Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression (CES-D) Scale

Created Variables:  CES-D Scale Scores

CESD_SCORE (R3896810) 20-ITEM CES-D SCORE (CESD) 1992 
CESD_FLAG (R3896811) FLAG – NUMBER OF MISSING ITEMS FOR 20 ITEM CES-D SCORE (CESD) 1992
CESD_SCORE_7_ITEM (R3896820) 7-ITEM CES-D SCORE (CESD) 1992
CESD_SCORE_7_ITEM (R4978910) 7-ITEM CES-D SCORE (CESD) 1994
H40-CESD_SCORE_7_ITEM (H0001101) H40 7-ITEM CES-D SCORE (CESD) XRND
H50CESD_SCORE_7_ITEM (H0013301)                    H50 7-ITEM CES-D SCORE (CESD) XRND

Scoring computations are described below.

Please note: Item response theory (IRT) parameter estimates, IRT scores, and their standard errors of measurement for the CES-D variables are also available, along with a custom-weighted z-score and percentile rank. See Appendix 27: IRT Item Parameter Estimates, Scores and Standard Errors for a detailed description and discussion of the IRT scoring for these scales.

The CES-D is a self-report scale that measures the current prevalence of depression symptoms. Respondents rate a series of statements regarding how they felt during the week prior to the interview. While the full 20-item battery was included in the 1992 (round 14) survey, a collapsed 7-item battery was administered to respondents in the 1994 (round 16) survey.  A slightly expanded 9-item battery was included in the 40+ Health Module and in all years of the 50+ Health Modules.  All years of the 40+ and 50+ Health Modules contained the consistent 7-item scale.  Table 1 details the questions asked and the survey years and modules in which they were included.

Table 1: CES-D Scale Questions Including Survey Years and Modules Asked

Item Question Question Name (survey years)
1 I was bothered by things that usually don't bother me. CESD~000000 (1992)
2 I did not feel like eating; my appetite was poor.

CESD~000001 (1992, 1994)

H40-CESD~000001

H50-CESD~000001

3 I felt that I couldn't shake off the blues even with help from my family and friends.

CESD~000002 (1992)

H40-CESD~000002

H50CESD~000002

4 I felt that I was just as good as other people. CESD~000002A (1992)
5 I had trouble keeping my mind on what I was doing.

CESD~000003 (1992, 1994)

H40-CESD~000003

H50CESD~000003

6 I felt depressed.

CESD~000004 (1992, 1994)

H40-CESD~000004

H50CESD~000004

7 I felt that everything I did was an effort.

CESD~000005 (1992, 1994) 

H40-CESD~000005

H50CESD~000005

8 I felt hopeful about the future. CESD~000005A (1992)
9 I thought my life had been a failure. CESD~00005B (1992)
10 I felt fearful. CESD~00005C (1992)
11 My sleep was restless.

CESD~000006 (1992, 1994)

H40-CESD~000006

H50CESD~000006

12 I was happy. CESD~000006A (1992)
13 I talked less than usual. CESD~000006B (1992)
14 I felt lonely.

CESD~000007 (1992)

H40-CESD~000007

H50CESD~000007

15 People were unfriendly. CESD~000007A (1992)
16 I enjoyed life. CESD~000007B (1992)
17 I had crying spells. CESD~000007C (1992)
18 I felt sad.

CESD~000008 (1992, 1994)

H40-CESD~000008

H50CESD~000008

19 I felt that people dislike me. CESD~000008A (1992)
20 I could not get "going."

CESD~000009 (1992, 1994)

H40-CESD~000009

H50CESD~000009

Possible responses for all 16 negative-symptom questions are as follows:

0 point :  Rarely or none of the time (< 1 day)
1 point :  Some or a little of the time (1-2 days)
2 points: Occasionally or a moderate amount of the time (3-4 days)
3 points: Most or all of the time (5-7 days).

Response categories for 4 positive-symptom questions asked only in 1992 (CESD~000002A, CESD~000005A, CESD~000006A, CESD~000007B) are reversed.

Scale scores for 1992 (20-item and 7-item), 1994 and the 40+ and 50+ Health Modules (7-item) CES-D are all computed by summing the points for each answer across either the 20 items or 7 items in the specific survey year or module.  The 20-item scale contains both negative- and positive-symptom questions.  No positive-symptom questions are included in the 7-item scales.CES-D 20-item scale score: Points for all 20 items were summed. Possible scores range from 0 to 60, with the higher scores indicating the presence of more depressive symptoms. If more than four items are missing, the scale score is coded as missing. A flag that indicates the number of missing items for CES-D 20-item scale is also present.

CESD 7-item scale score: Points are summed across 7 items (CESD~000001, CESD~000003, CESD~000004, CESD~000005, CESD~000006, CESD~000008, CESD~000009). The possible range of scores is 0 to 21. If one item is missing, the scale score is coded as missing.

References

Radloff, Lenore. S. 1977. "The CES-D Scale: A self-report depression scale for research in the general population." Applied Psychological Measurement, V.1, No. 3 (Summer): 385-401.

Ross, Catherine E., and John Mirowsky. 1989. "Explaining the Social Patterns of Depression: Control and Problem Solving--or Support and Talking?" Journal of Health and Social Behavior, V.30, No. 2 (June): 206-219.

Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale

Created Variables

ROSENBERG_SCORE (R0304410)                               SELF-ESTEEM SCORE 1980

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_SCORE (R2350010)             SELF-ESTEEM SCORE 1987

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_SCORE (T0899810)             SELF-ESTEEM SCORE 2006

Scoring computations are described below.

Please note: Item response theory (IRT) parameter estimates, IRT scores, and their standard errors of measurement for the Rosenberg Self-Esteem variables are also available, along with a custom-weighted z-score and percentile rank. See Appendix 27for a detailed description and discussion of the IRT scoring for these scales.

The Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale is designed to measure the self-evaluation that an individual makes and customarily maintains. It has been administered to NLSY79 respondents in survey years 1980, 1987 and 2006. Table 2 lists the questions by survey year.

Table 2: Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale Items

Item Question Question Names and Reference Numbers
    1980     1987 2006
1 I am a person of worth.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000001

R0303500

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000001

R2349100

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000001

T0899800

2 I have a number of good qualities.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000002

R0303600

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000002

R2349200

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000002

T0899801

3 I am inclined to feel that I am a failure.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000003

R0303700

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000003

R2349300

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000003

T0899802

4 I am able to do things as well as most other people.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000004

R0303800

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000011

R2349400

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000004

T0899803

5 I felt I do not have much to be proud of.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000005

R0303900

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000012

R2349500

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000005

T0899804

6 I take a positive attitude toward myself.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000006

R0304000

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000006

R2349600

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000006

T0899805

7 I am satisfied with myself.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000007

R0304100

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000007

R2349700

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000007

T0899806

8 I wish I could have more respect for myself.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000008

R0304200

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000008

R2349800

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000008

T0899807

9 I certainly feel useless at times.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000009

R0304300

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000009

R2349900

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000009

T0899808

10 At times I think I am no good at all.

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000010

R0304400

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM_000010

R2350000

ROSENBERG_ESTEEM~000010

T0899809

Possible response categories for items 3, 5, 8, 9, 10 are:

  • 0 points: strongly agree
  • 1 point: agree
  • 2 points: disagree
  • 3 points: strongly disagree

Response categories for items 1, 2, 4, 6, 7 are reversed so that a higher score indicates higher self-esteem.

Points for each of the 10 items were summed to create the scale scores. Scores range from 0 to 30 points. If one item is missing, the scale score is coded as missing.

References       

Rosenberg, Morris. 1965. Society and the Adolescent Self-Image. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Pearlin Mastery Scale

Created Variables

PEARLIN_SCORE (R3894810)  PEARLIN MASTERY SCORE (1992)

Scoring computations are described below.

Please note: Item response theory (IRT) parameter estimates, IRT scores, and their standard errors of measurement for the Pearlin Mastery variables are also available, along with a custom-weighted z-score and percentile rank. See Appendix 27 for a detailed description and discussion of the IRT scoring for this scale.

The Pearlin Mastery scale is designed to measure self-concept and references the extent to which individuals perceive themselves in control of forces that significantly impact their lives. It was administered in NLSY79 survey year 1992 (round 14). Table 3 lists the Pearlin Mastery questions.

Table 3: Pearlin Mastery Questions

Item Question Question Name and Reference Number
1 No way I can solve some of the problems I have. PEARLIN_1 (R3894200)
2 Sometimes I feel that I am being pushed around in life. PEARLIN_2 (R3894300)
3 I have little control over the things that happen to me. PEARLIN_3 (R3894400)
4 I can do just about anything I really set my mind to. PEARLIN_4 (R3894500)
5 I often feel helpless in dealing with the problems of life. PEARLIN_5 (R3894600)
6 What happens to me in the future mostly depends on me. PEARLIN_6 (R3894700)
7 There is little I can do to change many of the important things in my life. PEARLIN_7 (R3894800)

Possible response categories for items 4, 6 are:

  • 4 points: strongly agree
  • 3 points: agree
  • 2 points: disagree
  • 1 point: strongly disagree

Response categories for items 1, 2, 3, 5, 7 are reversed so that higher scores represent greater sense of mastery.

Points for each of the 10 items were summed to create the scale scores. Scores can range from 7 to 28 points. If one item is missing, the scale score is coded as missing.

References

Pearlin, Leonard I.; Lieberman, Morton A.; Menaghan, Elizabeth G.; and Joseph T. Mullan. 1981. “The Stress Process.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior, V.22, No. 4 (December): 337-356.

Rotter Locus of Control Scale

Created Variables

ROTTER_SCORE (R0153710)        ROTTER SCALE SCORE 79

ROTTER_SCORE (T4998510)         ROTTER SCALE SCORE 14

ROTTER_SCORE (T5733800)         ROTTER SCALE SCORE 16

Scoring computations are described below.

The Rotter Locus of Control scale is designed to measure the extent to which individuals believe they have control over their lives through self-motivation or self-determination (internal control) as opposed to the extent that the environment (that is, chance, fate, luck) controls their lives (external control). It was included in the 1979, 2014 and 2016 (for those not interviewed in 2014) NLSY79 surveys. Table 4 lists the question names and reference numbers in each year.

Table 4: The 1979 NLSY79 Rotter – Locus of Control Questions

Item Question Question Names and Reference Numbers
    1979 2014 2016
1 Pair 1, statement A: Degree of control r has over direction of own life ROTTER-1A (R0153000)  ROTTER_1A (T4997800)  ROTTER_1A (T5733000)
2 Pair 1, statement B: Degree of control r has over direction of own life ROTTER-1B (R0153100)  ROTTER_1B (T4997900)  ROTTER_1B (T5733100) 
3 Pair 2, statement A: Importance of planning ROTTER-2A (R0153200)  ROTTER_2A (T4998000)  ROTTER_2A (T5733200)
4 Pair 2, statement B: Importance of planning ROTTER-2B (R0153300) ROTTER_2B (T4998100)  ROTTER_2B (T5733300) 
5 Pair 3, statement A: Importance of luck ROTTER-3A (R0153400)  ROTTER_3A (T4998200) ROTTER_3A (T5733400
6 Pair 3, statement B: Importance of luck ROTTER-3B (R0153500)  ROTTER_3B (T4998300) ROTTER_3B (T5733500) 
7 Pair 4, statement A: Degree of influence over own life ROTTER-4A (R0153600)  ROTTER_4A (T4998400) ROTTER_4A (T5733600) 
8 Pair 4, statement B: Degree of influence over own life ROTTER-4B (R0153700) ROTTER_4B (T4998500)  ROTTER_4B (T5733700) 

Points for each pair of items are as follows:

Internal control statement:

  • 1 point: Much closer
  • 2 points: Slightly closer

External control statement:

  • 3 points: Much closer
  • 4 points: Slightly closer

Points for each of the 4 pairs were summed to create scale scores. Scores range from 4 to 16 points. If one item is missing, the scale score is coded as missing.

References

Rotter, Julian B. 1966. “Generalized Expectancies for Internal Versus External Control of Reinforcement.” Psychological Monographs: General and Applied, 80 (1):1-28.