This is Louis Leon Thurstone.

The person- not important. The scale- more important, but still not as important as the Likert Scale.

Rensis Likert created his scale as an improvement on the Thurstone scale. The Thurstone scale was the first technique to try to measure a person’s attitude. It involved a great deal of steps:

  1. Collect many MANY statements regarding a certain topic. (i.e. the president)
  2. Judges then look at all the statements and separate them into 11 categories according to how much they believe the statement confirms that the individual agrees or disagrees with the topic (i.e. one category could be “never agrees with anything that comes out of Obama’s mouth” all the way to “what ever Obama is selling- they’re buying”)
  3. After each statement has been categorized the judges then try to agree upon the most representative of the category (i.e.  a statement for the first category could be “I completely disagree with all of Obama’s health care reforms”)
  4. Respondents are then given the 11 statements and they check all of the statements they agree with
  5. A mean is calculated from the respondent’s marked answers

It’s rather complicated. Rensis Likert saw all of these steps and the collection of so many statements as unnecessary, so he created  a scale that would eliminate the “judging process” that is involved in the Thurstone scale.

Change Your Attitude?

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