Attachment to God Inventory

The Attachment to God Inventory (AGI) developed by Richard Beck and Angie McDonald (2004) consists of 28 items divided into two subscales (14 items each for Avoidant and Anxious Attachment).

The AGI is based on attachment theory as applied to the study of the relationship between Christians and God commonly portrayed as a parent-child relationship and referred to in the literature as attachment to God (e.g., Kirkpatrick, 2012). 

Avoidant attachment refers to a sense of distance from God. People close to God view God as protective. 

Anxious attachment reflects an insecure relationship with God in contrast to a secure relationship.

Participants rate each scale item from 1= disagree strongly to 7 = agree strongly. A sample item from the avoidant subscale is, “I prefer not to depend too much on God.” A sample item from the anxious subscale is, “I worry a lot about my relationship with God.”

Based on two college and one community samples, Beck and McDonald (2004) reported Cronbach alpha values for the subscales: Avoidant, α = .84 and α = .86 and Anxious α = .80 and α = .87.

The AGI in other research

Anxious attachment alpha = .80, 92 Avoidant attachment alpha = .88, 89, Sutton et al. (2018).

Anxious attachment alpha = .87 Avoidant attachment alpha = .86, Sutton, Jordan, & Worthington (2014).

Intercorrelations of AGI scales and other scales from Sutton et al. (2007).

AGI anx= Attachment to God Inventory- Anxious subscale
AGI avoid = Attachment to God Inventory- Avoidant subscale
DWTFS = Deshea Willingness to Forgive Scale
ASCSRFQ = Abbreviated Santa Clara Strength of Religious Faith Questionnaire

Availability: The 28 items of the AGI

The full set of 28 items can be found on page 103 of the Beck and McDonald 2004 article referenced below.

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Beck, R., & McDonald, A. (2004). Attachment to God: The attachment to God inventory, tests of working model correspondence, and an exploration of faith group differences. Journal of Psychology and Theology32, 92–103. (See page 103 for the list of 28 items.)

Kirkpatrick, L. A. (2012). Attachment theory and the evolutionary psychology of religion. International Journal for the Psychology of Religion22(3), 231-241. doi:10.1080/10508619.2012.679556

Sutton, G. W., Jordan, K., & Worthington, E.L., Jr. (2014). Spirituality, hope, compassion, and forgiveness: Contributions of Pentecostal spirituality to godly love. Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 33, 212-226. Academia Link     ResearchGate 

Sutton, G. W., McLeland, K. C., Weaks, K. Cogswell, P. E., & Miphouvieng, R. N. (2007). Does gender matter? An exploration of gender, spirituality, forgiveness and restoration following pastor transgressions. Pastoral Psychology. 55, 645-663. doi 10.1007/ s11089-007-0072-3 Online Link n11144j1655536l2/ Academia link Research Gate Link


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