Corresponding Author Information: Augustine I Obasi

Session Abstract: Using the 44-item list of behaviors and attributes of successful priests identified through a focus group study by Ippolito et al. In Fulfillment of Their Mission (2008), and five new items primarily focused on multi-cultural issues, we sought to develop and validate a new psychological measure –“The Behaviors and Attributes Questionnaire (BAQ)” for seminary and clergy evaluations. The overall intention is to integrate the BAQ when finalized into the battery of psychological tests used to evaluate priests, religious, and seminary candidates. The expectation is that the final version of the BAQ will help identify candidates who possess the characteristics of successful priests, attributes that will make them suitable and a good fit for the priesthood. Our Developmental Study with BAQ-S1 (N=195; Priest = 33, Non-Priests = 162) produced ten factors; eight factors related to the Big Five. We used the Developmental Study results to revise items to strengthen the proposed factor structure. Thus, the BAQ-S2 was created for the second study, the Correlate Study (N = 242; Priests 181, Non-Priest = 61). Its three hypotheses are (a) the factor structure would be replicated; (b) BAQ-S2 factors would correlate with the Big Five and Emotional Intelligence (EI), and (c) priests will rate themselves more highly than non-clergymen on the BAQ-S2 factors and total score. Although Factor 1 from both studies is similar, the factor structure was different than expected. We found a strong association between the BAQ-S2 factors and the Big Five and EI. However, few factors had distinct relationships with subcomponents of the Big-Five, or EI. Findings were mixed for the priest vs. non-priest comparisons. Correlations with social desirability and the BAQ-S2 factors were minimal, so there was virtually no positive impression management suggestion. Because there is a good overlap between Factor 1 from both studies and a relationship between the BAQ-S2 factors and the Big Five and EI, the BAQ-S2 might be a useful instrument for the initial and ongoing evaluation of candidates for the priesthood and religious life. Keywords: Behaviors and Attributes Questionnaire (BAQ), seminary, candidates, priests, religious, non-priest, correlation, evaluation, Big Five, Emotional Intelligence.


Augustine I Obasi | Alliant International University, San Diego

Donald Viglione | Alliant International University, San Diego

Gerard McGlone | Georgetown University

Monica Ulibarri | Alliant International University, San Diego

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