The Consideration of Future Consequences Scale is comprised of 14 items that tap into an individual’s tendency to think about long-term consequences of his or her actions, or to guide behavior based on short- versus long-term considerations. There are seven statements representative of forward thinking (e.g., “I am ready to sacrifice my current happiness or wellbeing in order to achieve future results.”) and seven reverse-coded statements (e.g.,“Since my everyday work has specific outcomes, it is more important to me than behavior that has distant outcomes.”), Response options range from 1, not at all like me, to 7, very much like me. Higher scores indicate greater consideration of future consequences, or forward-looking behavior.
Whether or not one is considering future or present needs drives behavioral choices. For example, the long-term benefits of quitting smoking, eating healthier foods, or exercising may pale in comparison to immediate pleasures or inconvenience, which ostensibly shapes the value of engaging (or not engaging) in a given behavior (Hall & Fong, 2007). Considering and prioritizing long-term outcomes, as measured by the Consideration of Future Consequences Scale (Strathman, Gleicher, Boninger, & Edwards, 1994), could therefore increase the value of, and promote engagement in, behaviors with long-term benefits.
[+] PMCID, PUBMED ID, or CITATION
Text Citation: Strathman, A., Gleicher, F., Boninger, D. S., & Edwards, C. S. (1994). The consideration of future consequences: Weighing immediate and distant outcomes of behavior. Journal of personality and social psychology, 66(4), 742.
Text Citation: Joireman, J., Shaffer, M., Balliet, D., & Strathman, A. (2012). Promotion orientation explains why future oriented people exercise and eat healthy: Evidence from the two-factor consideration of future consequences 14 scale. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 38, 1272-1287.
Text Citation: Hall, P. A., & Fong, G. T. (2007). Temporal self-regulation theory: A model for individual health behavior. Health Psychology Review, 1(1), 6-52.
This measure has not been measured yet.
This measure has not been influenced yet.
This measure has not been validated yet.
The Science of Behavior Change (SOBC) program seeks to promote basic research on the initiation, personalization and maintenance of behavior change. By integrating work across disciplines, this effort will lead to an improved understanding of the underlying principles of behavior change. The SOBC program aims to implement a mechanisms-focused, experimental medicine approach to behavior change research and to develop the tools required to implement such an approach. The experimental medicine approach involves: identifying an intervention target, developing measures to permit verification of the target, engaging the target through experimentation or intervention, and testing the degree to which target engagement produces the desired behavior change.
Within the SOBC Measures Repository, researchers have access to measures of mechanistic targets that have been (or are in the processing of being) validated by SOBC Research Network Members and other experts in the field. The SOBC Validation Process includes three important stages of evaluation for each proposed measure: Identification, Measurement, and Influence.
The first stage of validation requires a measure to be Identified within the field; there must be theoretical support for the specific measure of the proposed mechanistic target or potential mechanism of behavior change. This evidence may include references for the proposed measure, or theoretical support for the construct that the proposed measure is intended to assess. The second stage of validation requires demonstration that the level and change in level of the chosen mechanistic target can be Measured with the proposed measure (assay). For example, if the proposed measure is a questionnaire, the score on the measure should indicate the activity of the target process, and it must have strong psychometric properties. The third stage of validation requires demonstration that the measure can be Influenced; there must be evidence that the measured target is malleable and responsive to manipulation. Evidence relating to each stage includes at least one peer-reviewed publication or original data presentation (if no peer-reviewed research is available to support the claim) and is evaluated by SOBC Research Network Members and experts in the field.
Once a measure has gone through these three stages, it will then either be Validated or Not validated according to SOBC Research Network standards. If a measure is Validated, then change in the measured target was reliably associated with Behavior Change. If a measure is Not validated, then change in the measured target was not reliably associated with Behavior Change. Why would we share measures that are not validated? The SOBC Research Network values open, rigorous, and transparent research. Our goal is to make meaningful progress and develop replicable and effective interventions in behavior change science. Therefore, the SOBC sees value in providing other researchers in the field with information regarding measures that work and measures that fall short for specific targets. Further, a measure that is not validated for one target in one population may be validated in another target or population.
Want to learn more? For any questions regarding the SOBC Validation Process or Measures Repository, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Has the mechanism been identified as a potential target for behavior change? This section summarizes theoretical support for the mechanism.
Have the psychometric properties of this measure been assessed? This section includes information such as content validity, internal consistency, and test-retest reliability.
Has a study manipulation led to change in the mechanism? This section addresses evidence that this measure is modifiable by experimental manipulation or clinical intervention.
Has a change in this mechanism been associated with behavior change? This section addresses empirical evidence that causing change in the measure reliably produces subsequent behavior change.