The desirability of control

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The psychological construct of desirability of control was related to several theoretical statements (e.g., Kelley, 1971; White, 1959) and areas of current research (e.g., Glass & Singer, 1972; Deci, 1975) in psychology. A scale designed to measure individual differences in the general level of motivation to control the events in one's life was presented. The Desirability of Control Scale was found to have substantial internal consistency (.80) and test-retest reliability (.75), as well as discriminant validity from measures of locus of control (Rotter, 1966) and social desirability (Crowne & Marlowe, 1960). The results of an "illusion of control" study (cf. Langer, 1975) provided construct validation: only subjects high in the desire for control displayed a belief in personal control over chance outcomes. Construct validation was also provided from studies on learned helplessness and hypnosis. The practical, as well as theoretical, value of the instrument was discussed. © 1980 Plenum Publishing Corporation.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Burger, JM; Cooper, HM

Published Date

  • December 1, 1979

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 3 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 381 - 393

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1573-6644

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0146-7239

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/BF00994052

Citation Source

  • Scopus