Need for Cognition Scale (Cacioppo et al., 1984)

1. I really enjoy a task that involves coming up with solutions to problems.
2. I would prefer a task that is intellectual, difficult, and important to one that is somewhat important but does not require much thought.
3. Learning new ways to think doesn’t excite me very much. (R)
4. I usually end up deliberating about issues even when they do affect me personally.
5. The idea of relying on thought to get my way to the top does not appeal to me. (R)
6. The notion of thinking abstractly is not appealing to me. (R)
7. I only think as hard as I have to. (R)
8. I like tasks that require little thought once I’ve learned them. (R)
9. I prefer to think about small daily projects to long-term ones. (R)
10. I would rather do something that requires little thought than something that is sure to challenge my thinking abilities. (R)
11. I find little satisfaction in deliberating hard and for long hours. (R)
12. I don’t like to have the responsibility of handling a situation that requires a lot of thinking. (R)
13. I feel relief rather than satisfaction after completing a task that required a lot of mental effort. (R)
14. Thinking is not my idea of fun. (R)
15. I try to anticipate and avoid situations where there is a likely chance I’ll have to think in depth about something. (R)
16. I prefer my life to be filled with puzzles that I must solve.
17. I would prefer complex to simple problems.
18. It’s enough for me that something gets the job done, I don’t care how or why it works. (R)
(R) = reverse coded
Measured with a 9-point scale from +4 Very Strong Agreement to -4 Very Strong Disagreement.

Source: Cacioppo, J. T., Petty, R. E., & Kao, C. F. (1984). The efficient assessment of need for cognition. Journal of Personality Assessment, 48, 306–307.

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