• An Investigation of the Reliability and Validity of the Caperton Forgiveness Styles Inventory

      Caperton, Duane (2009-08-26)
      This research was an investigation into the process of forgiveness. The analysis of qualitative interviews with nearly 100 participants suggested four different approaches, or styles, of forgiving and non-forgiving. The Intrapersonal style describes people who forgive other people by focusing on their own thoughts, feelings, and actions. The Interpersonal style describes people who forgive other people by focusing on the thoughts, feelings, and actions of the offending persons. The Easy Going style describes the people who never forgive anyone because they rarely or never feel offended and consequently rarely or never feel the need to forgive others. The Grudge Holder style describes people who rarely or never forgive anyone because they generally prefer to hold on to the offense for various reasons. The 26 item Pilot CFSI inventory was investigated for reliability and for convergent and divergent validity in a sample composed of 131 undergraduate and graduate students. Cronbachs’ alphas of the scales showed the Pilot Caperton Forgiveness Style Inventory (CFSI) inventory to be internally consistent. Multiple regressions of CFSI scale results with IPIP Five Factor Model of Personality inventories, Fear-of-Intimacy relationship anxiety inventories, and demographic information demonstrated appropriate divergent validity for the scales. These results along with a varimax rotation factor analysis led to an 18 item Revised CFSI and a three item Humility scale which clearly mediated the forgiving process in some as yet to be determined way and was wholly unrelated to the non- iv forgiving styles. The Intrapersonal forgivers tended to score high on Openness and somewhat higher on Agreeableness and Conscientiousness. They also scored low on fear of intimate relationships. Individuals who reported being “very active in religion” were the only group which showed a preference for the Intrapersonal style. The Interpersonal forgivers tended to score high on Neuroticism, Extroversion, and Conscientiousness, and they also tended to score low on fear of intimate relationships. The Easy Going non-forgivers scored low on Neuroticism, but scored high on fear of intimate relationships. Males were more likely to score high on Easy Going than any other demographic group. The Grudge Holders tended to score high on Neuroticism and low on Agreeableness, and they were high on fear of intimate relationships. The Caperton Forgiveness Style Inventory is a valid and reliable assessment tool of styles of forgiveness and is appropriate for both clinical and research uses.