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Measuring individual differences in generic beliefs in conspiracy theories across cultures: conspiracy mentality questionnaire.
Front Psychol 2013; 4:225FP

Abstract

Conspiracy theories are ubiquitous when it comes to explaining political events and societal phenomena. Individuals differ not only in the degree to which they believe in specific conspiracy theories, but also in their general susceptibility to explanations based on such theories, that is, their conspiracy mentality. We present the Conspiracy Mentality Questionnaire (CMQ), an instrument designed to efficiently assess differences in the generic tendency to engage in conspiracist ideation within and across cultures. The CMQ is available in English, German, and Turkish. In four studies, we examined the CMQ's factorial structure, reliability, measurement equivalence across cultures, and its convergent, discriminant, and predictive validity. Analyses based on a cross-cultural sample (Study 1a; N = 7,766) supported the conceptualization of conspiracy mentality as a one-dimensional construct across the three language versions of the CMQ that is stable across time (Study 1b; N = 141). Multi-group confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated cross-cultural measurement equivalence of the CMQ items. The instrument could therefore be used to examine differences in conspiracy mentality between European, North American, and Middle Eastern cultures. In Studies 2-4 (total N = 476), we report (re-)analyses of three datasets demonstrating the validity of the CMQ in student and working population samples in the UK and Germany. First, attesting to its convergent validity, the CMQ was highly correlated with another measure of generic conspiracy belief. Second, the CMQ showed patterns of meaningful associations with personality measures (e.g., Big Five dimensions, schizotypy), other generalized political attitudes (e.g., social dominance orientation and right-wing authoritarianism), and further individual differences (e.g., paranormal belief, lack of socio-political control). Finally, the CMQ predicted beliefs in specific conspiracy theories over and above other individual difference measures.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Psychology, Zukunftskolleg, University of Konstanz Konstanz, Germany.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

23641227

Citation

Bruder, Martin, et al. "Measuring Individual Differences in Generic Beliefs in Conspiracy Theories Across Cultures: Conspiracy Mentality Questionnaire." Frontiers in Psychology, vol. 4, 2013, p. 225.
Bruder M, Haffke P, Neave N, et al. Measuring individual differences in generic beliefs in conspiracy theories across cultures: conspiracy mentality questionnaire. Front Psychol. 2013;4:225.
Bruder, M., Haffke, P., Neave, N., Nouripanah, N., & Imhoff, R. (2013). Measuring individual differences in generic beliefs in conspiracy theories across cultures: conspiracy mentality questionnaire. Frontiers in Psychology, 4, p. 225. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00225.
Bruder M, et al. Measuring Individual Differences in Generic Beliefs in Conspiracy Theories Across Cultures: Conspiracy Mentality Questionnaire. Front Psychol. 2013;4:225. PubMed PMID: 23641227.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Measuring individual differences in generic beliefs in conspiracy theories across cultures: conspiracy mentality questionnaire. AU - Bruder,Martin, AU - Haffke,Peter, AU - Neave,Nick, AU - Nouripanah,Nina, AU - Imhoff,Roland, Y1 - 2013/04/30/ PY - 2012/12/20/received PY - 2013/04/11/accepted PY - 2013/5/4/entrez PY - 2013/5/4/pubmed PY - 2013/5/4/medline KW - conspiracy mentality KW - conspiracy theories KW - cross-cultural research KW - generalized political attitudes KW - measurement equivalence KW - psychometric instrument SP - 225 EP - 225 JF - Frontiers in psychology JO - Front Psychol VL - 4 N2 - Conspiracy theories are ubiquitous when it comes to explaining political events and societal phenomena. Individuals differ not only in the degree to which they believe in specific conspiracy theories, but also in their general susceptibility to explanations based on such theories, that is, their conspiracy mentality. We present the Conspiracy Mentality Questionnaire (CMQ), an instrument designed to efficiently assess differences in the generic tendency to engage in conspiracist ideation within and across cultures. The CMQ is available in English, German, and Turkish. In four studies, we examined the CMQ's factorial structure, reliability, measurement equivalence across cultures, and its convergent, discriminant, and predictive validity. Analyses based on a cross-cultural sample (Study 1a; N = 7,766) supported the conceptualization of conspiracy mentality as a one-dimensional construct across the three language versions of the CMQ that is stable across time (Study 1b; N = 141). Multi-group confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated cross-cultural measurement equivalence of the CMQ items. The instrument could therefore be used to examine differences in conspiracy mentality between European, North American, and Middle Eastern cultures. In Studies 2-4 (total N = 476), we report (re-)analyses of three datasets demonstrating the validity of the CMQ in student and working population samples in the UK and Germany. First, attesting to its convergent validity, the CMQ was highly correlated with another measure of generic conspiracy belief. Second, the CMQ showed patterns of meaningful associations with personality measures (e.g., Big Five dimensions, schizotypy), other generalized political attitudes (e.g., social dominance orientation and right-wing authoritarianism), and further individual differences (e.g., paranormal belief, lack of socio-political control). Finally, the CMQ predicted beliefs in specific conspiracy theories over and above other individual difference measures. SN - 1664-1078 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/23641227/Measuring_individual_differences_in_generic_beliefs_in_conspiracy_theories_across_cultures:_conspiracy_mentality_questionnaire_ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00225 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -