Document Type


Publication Date



Taylor & Francis


We report psychometric properties, correlates and underlying theory of the Spiritual Modeling Index of Life Environments (SMILE), a measure of perceptions of spiritual models, defined as everyday and prominent people who have functioned for respondents as exemplars of spiritual qualities, such as compassion, self-control, or faith. Demographic, spiritual, and personality correlates were examined in an ethnically diverse sample of college students from California, Connecticut, and Tennessee (N=1010). A summary measure of model influence was constructed from perceived models within family, school, religious organization, and among prominent individuals from both tradition and media. The SMILE, based on concepts from Bandura's (1986) Social Cognitive Theory, was well-received by respondents. The summary measure demonstrated good 7-week test/retest reliability (r=.83); patterns of correlation supporting convergent, divergent, and criterion-related validity; demographic differences in expected directions; and substantial individual heterogeneity. Implications are discussed for further research and for pastoral, educational, and health-focused interventions.


This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Mental Health, Religion & Culture on July 2009,



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.