Homophily Scale


Author of Tool: 

McCroskey, J. C., Richmond, V. P., & Daly, J. A.

Key references: 

McCroskey, J. C., Richmond, V. P., & Daly, J. A. (1975). The development of a measure of perceived homophily in interpersonal communication. Human Communication Research, 1, 323-332. 

Primary use / Purpose: 

Measures perceived homophily in interpersonal communication.


In both an initial investigation and in four subsequent studies employing samples from diverse populations, four dimensions of response were observed for the Homophily Scale. These dimensions were labelled Attitude, Morality, Appearance, and Background. Additional results indicated that opinion leaders are perceived as more homophilous than non-opinion leaders on the dimensions of Attitude, Morality, and Background. The scale is suggested for consideration by researchers concerned with homophily or interpersonal similarity in human communication.


This is a usable measure, but the alpha reliability has not been optimal. New measures are now being tested. There are three dimensions of homophily-attitude, background, and demographic. Demographic homophily can best be measured by observation of the similarity between people’s background. Perceptions of demographic similarity have not proven to be stable. For the other two dimensions, these scales are acceptable, but alpha reliabilities on these measures, particularly on the background dimension, have often fallen below .70. Initial estimates for the new Likert type scales so far have consistently been above .80.


PDF iconHomophily Scale and Instructions

Web link to tool: 


Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 



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