Self-esteem Test: What Is My Level?

One of the best-known psychology tests for assessing self-esteem is the famous Rosenberg Scale. This is a ten-question test that helps us assess this dimension which is so important for our psychological well-being.
Self-esteem test: what is my level?

The best known and most widely used self-esteem test is, without a doubt, the Rosenberg Scale. It is true that this psychometric instrument is already more than five decades old, but its simplicity continues to please (it only has 10 questions) and its reliability and validity have always been unanimous.

When we talk about self-esteem, it’s obvious that few people really know how to define it. It is simply about the concept we have of ourselves and how we value ourselves.

It should nevertheless be pointed out that this dimension has more nuances, more much more complex brushstrokes which draw a psychological picture full of tones, shapes and singular perspectives.

Self-esteem is the thoughts we have about ourselves every day. These are also the perceptions of how others see us.

We also cannot forget the weight of childhood, education, interaction with our parents, our friends, our companions / companions…  This dimension is a  totum revolutum  which integrates concepts such as identity, consciousness. of self, self-efficacy, etc.

Moreover, to deepen the concept of self-esteem,  it is interesting to consult the multiple works of Morris Rosenberg, professor of sociology at the University of Maryland  and pioneer in the study of this field. It was in one of his books,  The Society and Self-Esteem of the Adolescent,  published in 1965, that he first introduced his Self-Esteem Scale.

This instrument is still one of the most widely used psychometric tools today. Let’s find out why.

A woman doing a self-esteem test

Self-esteem test: the Rosenberg scale

Self-esteem is a subjective psychological construct. We know that its ingredients are created through every experience and through the evaluation we make of them, with what we say to ourselves, and with the way we treat ourselves, we appreciate and we evaluate ourselves in almost all areas of life.

However, there is one nuance to be noted: self-esteem is an emotional dimension. We cannot forget that this skill can fluctuate at any time.

Indeed, it starts above all from the way in which we interpret and face certain events in our vital process. In other words, no one comes into the world with strong self-esteem and keeps it in this ideal state for the rest of their life.

Self-esteem is like a muscle; if we neglect it, it tends to weaken. If we put it to work on a daily basis, everything flows naturally, everything is a little less heavy, and we feel like we have enough strength to face anything.

So a good starting point for knowing what state this “psychological muscle” is in is the most widely recognized self-esteem psychology test so far: the Rosenberg scale.

What is the history of the Rosenberg scale?

Morris Rosenberg developed the scale based on data collected from 5,024 adolescents in US schools. His idea was to try to understand how the social context of people relates to the concept of self-esteem. He knew that factors like education, environment and family could increase or affect this psychological construct.

Rosenberg wanted to develop a self-esteem test to gauge how teens in his country felt. This work culminated in 1960, immediately arousing the interest of the scientific community. Why ? Because the scale demonstrated great reliability and because it still has the same validity over the years, even in other countries of the world.

How is this Rosenberg self-esteem psychology test applied?

One of the most notable facts about this self-esteem test is how easy it is to apply. It consists of 10 questions with four response options (according to the Likert scale) that range from strongly agree to strongly disagree. If you are wondering how this instrument can be valid by having only 10 questions, it is worth pointing out a detail.

In 2001, Dr. Richard W. Robbins reported that to assess self-esteem, only one question was really needed. A question like “Do I have good self-esteem?”. He himself developed the self-esteem scale with a single element (SISE)  by demonstrating, in a study, that it was as effective as the Rosenberg scale.

The self-esteem test


What is this self-esteem psychology test and how is one assessed?

The questions included in the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale are:

  1. I feel like I’m a person worth appreciating, at least as much as everyone else
  2. In general, I am convinced that I have good qualities
  3. I am able to do things as well as most people
  4. I have a positive attitude towards myself
  5. In general, I am satisfied with myself
  6. I feel like I don’t have a lot to be proud of
  7. In general I tend to think that I am a failure
  8. I would like to feel more respect for myself
  9. I sometimes think that I’m really useless
  10. I sometimes believe that I’m not a good person

The person must answer each question by following this type of response:

  • A. Totally agree
  • B. Ok
  • C. Disagree
  • D. Strongly disagree

Interpretation of the self-esteem psychology test

The methodology for evaluating each response follows the following standards:

  • Questions from 1 to 5 -> the answers from A to D are worth 4 to 1 points
  • Questions from 6 to 10 -> the answers from A to D are worth 1 to 4 points

Thus,  if we have a final mark that goes from 30 to 40 points, it means that our self-esteem is satisfactory. If the final mark is between 26 and 29 points, we have an average self-esteem that would be good to improve. Finally, if we got 25 points or less, our self-esteem is low.

In conclusion,  the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale is as simple as it is useful. It is very convenient for evaluating patients, whether in the clinical field or at the level of the general population. It is worth continuing to use this psychological resource.


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