Research Article

DOI :10.26650/SP2021-873927   IUP :10.26650/SP2021-873927    Full Text (PDF)

The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture

Mehmet Can SevinçliYasemin Abayhan

Crysel (2014) argued that Schadenfreude can be evaluated as a trait in the face of various unfortunate events in social life. Accordingly, she developed a 12-item scale that consists of two dimensions: benign and malicious Schadenfreude. The present study aims to adapt the Schadenfreude Scale Crysel developed for American culture to Turkish and to examine its psychometric properties. The study’s sample is comprised of 379 university students (183 male, 196 female, Mage = 20.6, SD = 2.48). The participants were given the Toronto Empathy Scale and Benign and Malicious Envy Scale to test the validity of the Schadenfreude Scale. Item analysis, confirmatory factor analysis, and internal consistency were respectively performed on the data obtained from the sample. The item analysis demonstrated the item-total correlation values to be suitable (ranging from .27- .46). As a result of the confirmatory factor analysis, five models were generated, and the obtained findings show the Turkish form of the scale to have adequate fit indexes and a factor structure similar to the original scale. As expected, a positive correlation was found between Schadenfreude and malicious envy, whereas a negative correlation was found between Schadenfreude and empathy. Also, the results revealed no relationship to be present between benign envy and Schadenfreude. As a result, the Turkish form of the Schadenfreude Scale consists of two factors and 11 items. According to the analysis, a variety of evidence was obtained showing the scale to be a valid and reliable measuring tool. Hence, this scale can easily be used to determine the level of Schadenfreude in future research investigating interpersonal processes, emotions, the self, and traits.

DOI :10.26650/SP2021-873927   IUP :10.26650/SP2021-873927    Full Text (PDF)

Başkasının Üzüntüsüne Sevinme Ölçeği’nin Türkçeye Uyarlanması

Mehmet Can SevinçliYasemin Abayhan

Crysel (2014), sosyal yaşamda çeşitli talihsiz olaylar karşısında başkasının üzüntüsüne sevinme duygusunun bir kişilik özelliği olarak ele alınabileceğini ileri sürmüştür. Bu doğrultuda, iyicil ve kötücül başkasının üzüntüsüne sevinme olmak üzere iki faktöre sahip ve toplam 12 maddeden oluşan bir ölçek geliştirmiştir. Bu çalışmanın amacı Crysel (2014) tarafından Amerikan örnekleminde geliştirilen Başkasının Üzüntüsüne Sevinme Ölçeği’ni Türkçeye uyarlamak ve psikometrik özelliklerini incelemektir. Bu çalışmanın örneklemini 379 üniversite öğrencisi (183 erkek, 196 kadın, Ort.yaş = 20.6, SS = 2.48) oluşturmaktadır. Başkasının Üzüntüsüne Sevinme Ölçeği’ne ek olarak katılımcılara geçerlik sınamaları kapsamında Toronto Empati Ölçeği ve BeMaS- Haset ve Gıpta Ölçeği de verilmiştir. Psikometrik sınamalar kapsamında madde analizi, doğrulayıcı faktör analizi, diğer yapılarla ilişkiler ve güvenirlik için tutarlık analizi uygulanmıştır. Madde analizi, ölçek maddelerinin madde toplam korelasyon katsayılarının uygun değerlere sahip olduğunu göstermektedir (.27- .46). Doğrulayıcı faktör analizleri sonucunda toplam beş model sınanmış ve elde edilen bulgular ölçeğin Türkçe formunun yeterli uyum değerlerine sahip olduğunu ve orijinal ölçek ile benzer faktör yapısına sahip olduğunu göstermiştir. Beklenildiği şekilde, faktörlerin kendi aralarındaki ve ölçekle olan ilişkileri anlamlı olduğu gibi; başkasının üzüntüsüne sevinme ile empati arasında negatif yönlü, haset arasında ise pozitif yönlü bir ilişki vardır. Ayrıca, sonuçlar gıpta ile başkasının üzüntüsüne sevinme duygusu arasında istatistiksel olarak anlamlı bir ilişki olmadığını göstermiştir. Sonuç olarak, Başkasının Üzüntüsüne Sevinme Ölçeği’nin Türkçe formu iki faktörden ve 11 maddeden oluşmuştur. Yapılan analizler doğrultusunda ilgili ölçeğin geçerli ve güvenilir bir ölçme aracı olabileceğine ilişkin çeşitli kanıtlar elde edilmiştir. Dolayısıyla, bu ölçek kişiler arası süreçleri, duyguları, benliği ve kişilik özelliklerini inceleyecek gelecek araştırmalarda başkasının üzüntüsüne sevinme duygusunun düzeyini belirlemek için kolayca kullanılabilir. 


According to Festinger (1954), people tend to compare themselves with others. In this regard, people either positively maintain their self-image or enhance their self-esteem (Buunk et al., 2007). Smith (2000) stated emotions to be found based on social comparisons such as admiration, pity, or sympathy. The way one perceives their social environment is closely related to what kind of emotions emerge through social comparisons. For instance, a misfortune that befalls someone causes people to feel not only pity, upset, and empathy but also happiness, joy, and amusement. People occasionally tend to take some pleasure from the misfortune that befalls another, which the literature refers to as schadenfreude. Schadenfreude is a compound word with Schaden meaning harm and Freude meaning joy. Despite discussions regarding to the origin of the word, van Dijk and Ouwerkerk (2014) asserted schadenfreude to be a loanword for English because it derives from German.

Although many studies conventionally measure schadenfreude in response to social circumstances (Dvash & Shamay-Tsoory, 2011; Feather & McKee, 2014; Piskorz & Piskorz, 2009; Smith et. al., 1996), research examining schadenfreude as a trait has been scarce. In a study by Crysel (2014), schadenfreude was measured as a trait through a scale involving 12 items. The findings showed schadenfreude to be influenced by individual differences and to be conceptualizable as a trait instead of an emotional reaction to social cues. Hence, this study aims to adapt Crysel’s Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish and to assess its psychometric properties.


The present study aims to investigate the validity and reliability of the Turkish version of the Schadenfreude Scale developed by Crysel (2014). The translation of the scale was carried out in line with the literature. Firstly, all items were translated into Turkish by the current study’s researchers. Subsequently, these items were reexamined by an expert in the field, and the expert’s opinions were taken to provide clarity and linguistic equivalency to Turkish grammar and culture. Lastly, the Turkish form of the scale took its final form. The research sample consists of students selected using the convenience sampling method in order to remain consistent with the original study. The study recruited 379 psychology students (48.3% male, 51.7% female) from a public university. As data collection tools, participants were given the Benign and Malicious Envy Scale (Lange & Crusius, 2015) and the Toronto Empathy Questionnaire (Spreng et al., 2009) along with the Schadenfreude Scale. Finally, item, confirmatory factor, construct validity, and internal consistency analyses were conducted to examine the psychometric properties of the Schadenfreude Scale.


Firstly, the item analysis results show the item-total correlations of the scale items to vary between .27 and .46. Hence, the representativeness and distinctiveness of these items are sufficient. As a result, each item is consistent with the whole scale. Secondly, confirmatory factor analysis was performed for the structural validity. According to the results, the final model was found to be statistically acceptable (χ2 = 61.095, df = 40, χ2 / df = 1.53, AGFI = .95, GFI = .97, CFI = .96, NFI = .90, RMSEA = .03). The results indicate the Turkish form of the scale to consist of 11 items and two factors, just as in Crysel’s (2014) study. The correlation analysis expectedly displayed a significantly positive correlation to exist between the Turkish form of the scale and the factor of malicious envy from the Benign and Malicious Envy Scale (r (377) = .29), whereas a significantly negative correlation was shown to exist between the Turkish form of the scale and the Toronto Empathy Questionnaire (r (377) = -.39). Also, the results show a significantly positive relationship to exist between malicious Schadenfreude and benign Schadenfreude (r (377) = .34). As expected, both malicious and benign Schadenfreude have a significant relationship with the Toronto Empathy Questionnaire (respectively, r (377) = -.47, and r (377) = -.20). The findings regarding the relationship between the Turkish form of the overall scale and its two factors (malicious and benign Schadenfreude) demonstrate a significant relationship to exist between them (respectively, r (377) = .87 and r (377) = .76). Lastly, the analysis revealed no relationship to exist among benign envy, the adapted scale, or its two factors (respectively, r (377) = .00, r (377) = -.01, and r (377) = .02). Lastly, an internal consistency analysis revealed Cronbach’s alpha to be acceptable (.71). In addition, the coefficients for the two factors from the adapted scale were found to be acceptable (respectively, .62 and .71). As a result, the psychometric properties of the adapted scale were found to be sufficient.


The current study has aimed to fill the gap in the Turkish literature regarding the measurement of schadenfreude as a trait. As a result, the Schadenfreude Scale developed by Crysel (2014) has been adapted into Turkish as a statistically valid and reliable measurement tool. The results show support for the validity and reliability of the Turkish form of the scale. The scale consists of 11 items and two factors (i.e., benign and malicious schadenfreude). Compared to the original scale, Turk culture is believed to be able to affect a differentiation regarding the number of items on the adapted scale because social events can be interpreted or perceived differently in different cultures. Consequently, this scale is found to be employable in future research on emotions, interpersonal and intrapersonal processes, the self, and personality traits on account of it having features that are easy to use and useful for assessing. 

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Sevinçli, M.C., & Abayhan, Y. (2022). The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture. Studies in Psychology, 42(2), 291-317.


Sevinçli M C, Abayhan Y. The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture. Studies in Psychology. 2022;42(2):291-317.


Sevinçli, M.C.; Abayhan, Y. The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture. Studies in Psychology, [Publisher Location], v. 42, n. 2, p. 291-317, 2022.

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Sevinçli, Mehmet Can, and Yasemin Abayhan. 2022. “The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture.” Studies in Psychology 42, no. 2: 291-317.

Chicago: Humanities Style

Sevinçli, Mehmet Can, and Yasemin Abayhan. The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture.” Studies in Psychology 42, no. 2 (Mar. 2024): 291-317.

Harvard: Australian Style

Sevinçli, MC & Abayhan, Y 2022, 'The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture', Studies in Psychology, vol. 42, no. 2, pp. 291-317, viewed 3 Mar. 2024,

Harvard: Author-Date Style

Sevinçli, M.C. and Abayhan, Y. (2022) ‘The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture’, Studies in Psychology, 42(2), pp. 291-317. (3 Mar. 2024).


Sevinçli, Mehmet Can, and Yasemin Abayhan. The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture.” Studies in Psychology, vol. 42, no. 2, 2022, pp. 291-317. [Database Container],


Sevinçli MC, Abayhan Y. The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture. Studies in Psychology [Internet]. 3 Mar. 2024 [cited 3 Mar. 2024];42(2):291-317. Available from: doi: 10.26650/SP2021-873927


Sevinçli, MehmetCan - Abayhan, Yasemin. The Adaptation of the Schadenfreude Scale into Turkish Culture”. Studies in Psychology 42/2 (Mar. 2024): 291-317.


Published Online05.08.2022


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