Funny selves: Development of the Humor Efficacy and Identity Short Scales (HEISS)

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Paul Silvia, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Although humor is a universal feature of human communication, people vary widely in how they create and use humor. Guided by a broader model of creative self-beliefs, we developed the Humor Efficacy and Identity Short Scales (HEISS), a pair of 4-item scales measuring humor self-efficacy (“I can” beliefs reflecting confidence about one's ability to be funny) and humor identity (“I am” beliefs reflecting the centrality of humor ability to one's self-concept). Using a large sample of English speakers (n = 1842), an item response theory analysis found a suitable range of item difficulty, good item discrimination, and essentially zero gender-based differential item functioning. Three follow-up samples with English (n = 304, n = 400) and Polish (n = 385) speakers found conceptually consistent relationships with humor backgrounds and experiences (e.g., taking classes and holding jobs involving humor), with Big 5 personality traits, and with humor styles and playfulness. Taken together, these scales show promise for research on people's humor self-concepts and for studies of gendered aspects of humor use, creation, and appreciation.

Additional Information

Personality and Individual Differences 182, 111093.
Language: English
Date: 2021
humor, self-efficacy, identity, self-concept, creativity

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