SPHERES OF CONTROL (SOC) inventory
This instrument was developed to differentiate the original locus of control scale (Rotter, 1963) scale into
three major spheres of life: Personal Achievement, Interpersonal Relations, and the Social-Political world.
The SOC inventory contains a separate subscale to measure perceived control in each domain.
Such an inventory seemed necessary because individuals can be high in personal control but low in interpersonal and
socio-political control, for example. Any other combination is possible, although personal is usually higher than
interpersonal, which is usually higher than soci-political control. Research with the three subscales supports this more
Version I was published in a 1983 JPSP article (Paulhus, 1983), which gives complete background information including all the validity studies. The measure was also presented in a compendia assembled by Lefcourt (1981 and 1991).
Version II was never released.
Version III was published in a 1990 PID article (Paulhus & Van Selst, 1990). This is the recommended
version for use. Click here for the instrument. That above article also contains a review of all the literature
up until 1990. There is no recent review that I know of.
Paulhus, D.L., & Christie, R. (1981). Spheres of control: An interactionist approach to assessment of perceived control. In H.L Lefcourt (Ed.), Research with the locus of control construct (pp. 161-188). New York: Academic Press.
Paulhus, D.L. (1983). Sphere specific measures of perceived control. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 44, 1253-1265.
Paulhus, D.L., & Van Selst, M. (1990). The Spheres of Control scale: Ten years of research. Personality and Individual Differences, 11, 1029-1036.
Lefcourt, H.M. (1991). Locus of control. In J.P Robinson, P.R. Shaver, & L.S. Wrightsman (Eds.), Measures of personality and social psychological attitudes (pp. 413-500). San Diego: Academic Press.