Forgiveness Scale for Teenagers

This tool was developed by Child Trends for the Templeton Foundation, as part of the Flourishing Children Project. It includes three items that measure forgiveness in teenagers. Forgiveness is defined as overcoming negative feelings in response to the perception of being harmed by another person(s). 


Administration Method
Number of Questions
Creator(s) of Tool
Measure developed by Child Trends for the Flourishing Children Project, funded by the Templeton Foundation. For more information on positive indicators, search the Child Trends web page at
Scoring / Benchmarking
You may calculate a total score by associating the following numeric values with the answer options: Not at all like me=0; A little like me=1; Somewhat like me=2; A lot like me=3; and Exactly like me=4. The maximum score for this scale equals 12. Total scores allow for quick overviews of how individuals are doing, as well as easy comparisons in aggregate between pre- and post-tests.
Background / Quality
This scale has been tested with a nationally representative sample of teenagers aged 12-17. It has been found to have marginal reliability (alpha=.56) and concurrent validity (associated with lower likelihood of smoking, fighting, and depressive symptoms). The lack of strong reliability is likely a result of this scale only having three items.
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