Psychological Sense of School Membership Scale (PSSM)

The Psychological Sense of School Membership includes 18-items that measure adolescent students' perceived belonging or psychological membership in the school environment.


5th Grade,
6th Grade,
7th Grade,
8th Grade,
9th Grade,
10th Grade,
11th Grade,
12th Grade

Administration Information

18 items

Access and Use




Aquire permission from the developer, Carol Goodenow, before use.

Use in Research

Anderman, E. M. (2002). School effects on psychological outcomes during adolescence. Journal of Educational Psychology, 94(4), 795–809.

Shochet, I. M., Smith, C. L., Furlong, M. J., & Homel, R. (2011). A prospective study investigating the impact of school belonging factors on negative affect in adolescents. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 40(4), 586–595.

Booker, K. C. (2007). Likeness, comfort, and tolerance: Examining African American adolescents’ sense of school belonging. The Urban Review, 39, 301-317.

Hughes, J., Hee im, M., & Allee, P. (2015). Effect of school belonging trajectories in grades 6-8 on achievement: Gender and ethnic differences. Journal of School Psychology, 53, 493-507.


Psychometric References

Goodenow, C. (1993). The psychological sense of school membership among adolescents: Scale development and educational correlates. Psychology in the Schools, 30(1), 79-90.<79::AID-PITS2310300113>3.0.CO;2-X

Whiting, E. F., Everson, K. C., & Feinauer, E. (2018). The simple school belonging scale: Working toward a unidimensional measure of student belonging. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 51(3), 163-178.

Psychometric Considerations

Psychometrics is the science of psychological assessment. A primary goal of EdInstruments is to provide information on crucial psychometric topics including Validity and Reliability – essential concepts of evaluation, which indicate how well an instrument measures a construct - as well as additional properties that are worthy of consideration when selecting an instrument of measurement.

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