The Narrative Engageability Scale: A Multidimensional Trait Measure for the Propensity to Become Engaged in a Story

Helena Bilandzic, Freya Sukalla, Cornelia Schnell, Matthias R. Hastall, Rick W. Busselle


This study developed a self-report measure for Narrative Engageability using 4 different data sets (N = 339, N = 514, N = 121, N = 151). Scale development started with an exploratory factor analysis, resulting in a 12-item measure with 4 distinct dimensions: (1) Propensity for Presence, (2) Emotional Engageability, (3) Propensity for Suspense/Curiosity, and (4) Ease of Accepting Unrealism. Each dimension showed good reliability. The Narrative Engageability Scale was then tested on a different data set with a confirmatory factor analysis, in which it achieved good model fit and reliabilities. In terms of convergent validity, Narrative Engageability positively correlated with the existing Transportability Scale and related traits—Need for Affect, Empathy, and Sympathy. Regarding predictive validity, the new scale correlated with state Narrative Engagement and moderated effects on story consistent beliefs.


trait narrative engagement, narrative engageability, transportability, scale development, narratives

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