Civic Attitudes Scale

Piotr Brzozowski
Adults; norms developed on a sample aged 18–90
Administration procedure:
Individual or group examination; the average time does not exceed 15 minutes
Especially useful for:
Social psychologists, sociologists, educators (MA in Psychology, Sociology or Pedagogical Studies required)
A – for psychologists and other professionals (MA required)

The Civic Attitudes Scale is a questionnaire tool. Its items are statements about different beliefs; the examinee assesses the degree to which s/he agrees with them on a seven-point scale from +3 to -3. The questionnaire has a complete version, consisting of 4 items, and a short one, consisting of 20 items.

The SPO is used to study civic attitudes understood as the attitudes of citizens towards the socio-political system in which they live. It takes into account the following three dimensions: a sense of control and trust in the system, identification with one's own country and civic involvement in various social actions and activities.  These dimensions correspond to three subscales of the SPO: 1. Trust and Control – Distrust and Helplessness, 2. Civic Identity – Lack of Civic Identity and 3. Civic Engagement – Civic Non-engagement.  Negative attitudes can be interpreted as a "civic burnout" syndrome.

Reliability: The internal consistency of the aggregate score and the results of individual scales was assessed. The alpha coefficients obtained on the overall sample are satisfactory – complete version: 0.90 for the overall score and 0.790.91 for scales; short version: 0.84 for the overall score and 0.730.88 for scales. The assessment of reliability made separately in groups differing in age and level of education shows that the coefficients decrease in the elderly and less educated, which especially concerns the Civic Engagement scale in the short version (however, only in the case of respondents with primary education its reliability is unsatisfactory).

Validity: Theoretical validity of the scale was confirmed by confirmatory factor analysis and by correlations with other variables theoretically related to civic attitudes: trust, cynicism (measured by the subscale of the Social Axioms Questionnaire), values (measured by the Scheler Values Scale), burnout (measured by the LBQ questionnaire) and life satisfaction (measured by the SWLS scale).

Norms: Standardization studies were conducted on a sample of 4112 persons aged 1890 years. The standards were developed on a s-ten scale for: males and females; persons with different education (higher, secondary, below secondary); persons differing in age (1831 years, 3239 years, 4049 years, 5090 years).

Applicability: The tool can be used primarily in scientific research conducted in the field of social sciences aimed at diagnosing civic attitudes together with their determinants and consequences. It can also serve more practical purposes in research providing diagnoses that will form the basis of educational interventions – towards groups or individuals – undertaken to shape civic attitudes and values.


  • Kit: manual, 2 types of questionnaires (25 copies each), 4 types of sheets (25 copies each)
  • Manual
  • Questionnaire – complete version (25 copies)
  • Two calculation sheets for the complete version (positive attitudes and negative attitudes) (25 copies each)
  • Questionnaire – short version (25 copies)
  • Two calculation sheets for the short version (positive attitudes and negative attitudes) (25 copies each)
Please note: All of our tests are published in Polish. There are not available other language versions of our tools.

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