Friendship is an important bond in the personal and social growth of an individual and plays a prominent role during youth. Most scales to measure it are aimed at children and adolescents but none measure character friendship, a type of selfless friendship with ethical traits an d Aristotelian roots. Therefore, the aim of the research is to design and validate the youth Character Friendship Scale (CFS) in a sample of 1587 young Spanish people. The final version of the CFS is composed of 35 items distributed over three dimensions: "Selfless love and intimacy" (21), "Trust" (7) and "Respect and forgiveness" (7) with ordinal reliability coefficients of 0.94, 0.79 and 0.7 respectively and good model fits (CFI = 0.986; TLI = 0.986; RMSEA = 0.043; SRMR = 0.054; GFI = 0.997). It is concluded that the CFS is a scale with good psychometric properties for measuring character friendship in young adults.

The results obtained from its application will lead to a better understanding of the importance of character friendship for the socioemotional development or happiness of young adults and will enable the development of intervention programmes that enhance aspects of friendship such as trust, respect, forgiveness or mutual knowledge, which can facilitate collaborative relationships and contribute to social cohesion.

Please, cite this article as follows: Romero-Iribas, A., & Camilli-Trujillo, C. (2023). Diseño y validación de una Escala de Amistad de Carácter para jóvenes [Design and validation of a Character Friendship Scale for young adults]. Revista Española de Pedagogía, 81 (286), 529-553. 10.22550/REP81-3-2023-05

Referencias | References

Anderson, A. R., & Fowers, B. J. (2019). An exploratory study of friendship characteristics and their relations with hedonic and eudaimonic well-being. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 1-21. https://doi.org/10.1177/0265407519861152

Aristotle. (1999). Nicomachean ethics (M. Araujo & J. Marías, Trad.). Hackett Publishing Company, Inc.

Bandalos, D. L., & Finney, S. J. (2010). Factor analysis: Exploratory and confirmatory. In R. Hancock, & R. O. Mueller (Eds.), Reviewer’s guide to quantitative methods (pp. 93-114). Routledge.

Bukowski, W. M., Hoza, B., & Boivin, M. (1994). Measuring friendship quality during pre- and early adolescence: The development and psychometric properties of the Friendship Quality Scale. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 11, 471-484. https://doi.org/10.1177/0265407594113011

Bukowski, W. M., & Sippola, L. K. (1996). Friendship and Morality: (How) are they related? In W. M. Bukowski, A. F. Newcomb, & W. Hartup (Eds.), The company they keep: Friendship in childhood and adolescence (pp. 238-262). Cambridge University Press.

Byrne, B. M. (2009). Structural equation modeling with AMOS: basic concepts, applications, and programming (2nd ed.). Routledge.

Cacioppo, J. T., & Cacioppo, S. (2018). Chapter Three - Loneliness in the modern age: An evolutionary theory of loneliness (ETL). Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 58, 127-197. 10.1016/bs.aesp.2018.03.003

Chung, S., Lount, R., Park, H. M., & Park, E. (2018). Friends with performance benefits: A meta-analysis on the relationship between friendship and group performance (2018). Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 44 (1), 63-79. https://doi.org/10.1177/0146167217733069

Clarkson, D. B., & Jennrich, R. I. (1988). Quartic rotation criteria algorithms. Psychometrika, 53, 251-259.

Cohen, J. (1960). A coefficient of agreement for nominal scales. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 20, 37-46. https://doi.org/10.1177/001316446002000104

Conway, J. M., & Huffcutt, A. (2003). A review and evaluation of exploratory factor analysis practices in organizational research. Organizational Research Methods, 6 (2), 147-168. 10.1177/1094428103251541

Cooper, J. (1980). Aristotle on Friendship. Essays on Aristotle’s Ethics. University of California Press.

Croes, E. A, & Antheunis, M. L. (2021). Can we be friends with Mitsuku? A longitudinal study on the process of relationship formation between humans and a social chatbot. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 38 (1), 279-300. https://doi. org/10.1177/0265407520959463

Demir, M. (2019). Perceived playfulness in same-sex friendships and happiness. Current Psychology, 40, 2052-2066. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-018-0099-x

Demir, M., Orthel-Clark, H., & Andelin, A. R. (2014). Friendship and happiness. In I. Boniwell, S. David, & A. C. Ayers (Eds.), Oxford Handbook of Happiness (pp. 860- 873). Oxford University Press.

Demir, M., & Özdemir, M. (2010). Friendship, need satisfaction and happiness. Journal of Happiness Studies, 20, 449-469. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-009-9138-5

Demir, M., & Urberg, K. A. (2004). Friendship and adjustment among adolescents. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 88, 68-82. 10.1016/j.jecp.2004.02.006

Demir, M., & Weitekamp, L. A. (2007). I am so happy cause today I found my friend: Friendship and personality as predictors of happiness. Journal of Happiness Studies, 8, 181-211. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10902-006-9012-7

DeSousa, D., Koller, S. H., Welter, G., & Lisboa, C. (2014). Psychometric properties of the Brazilian version of the Friendship Quality Questionnaire in a community sample of children and early adolescents. Universitas Psychologica, 13 (2), 15-23. https://doi.org/10.11144/Javeriana.UPSY13-2.ppbv

Deventer, J., Wagner, J., Lüdtke, O., & Trautwein, U. (2019). Are personality traits and relationship characteristics reciprocally related? Longitudinal analyses of codevelopment in the transition out of high school and beyond. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 116 (2), 331-347. https://doi.org/10.1037/pspp0000191

Dovidio, J. F., Piliavin, J. A., Schroeder, D. A., & Penner, L. A. (2017). The social psychology of prosocial behavior. Pshychology Press.

Drost, E. A. (2011). Validity and reliability in social science research. Educacional Research Perspective, 38, 105-123.

Fabrigar, L. R., Wegener, D. T., MacCallum, C., & Strahan, E. J. (1999). Evaluating the use of exploratory factor analysis in psychological research. Psychological Methods, 4 (3), 272-299. 10.1037/1082-989X.4.3.272

Ferrando, P. J., & Anguiano-Carrasco, C. (2010). El análisis factorial como técnica de investigación en psicología [Factor analysis as a research technique in psychology]. Papeles del Psicólogo, 31 (1), 18-33.

González, T., & Landero, R. (2014). Propiedades psicométricas de la Escala de Apoyo Social de Amigos (AFAR) en una muestra de estudiantes [Psychometric properties of the Social Support from Parents and Friends Scale (AFA-R) in a student sample]. Acta de Investigación Psicológica, 4 (2), 1469-1480.

Green, S. B., & Yang, Y. (2009). Reliability of summed item scores using structural equation modeling: An alternative to coefficient alpha . Psychometrika, 74 (1), 155-167. 10.1007/s11336-008-9099-3

Hair, J., Anderson, R., Tatham, R., & Black, W. (1999). Análisis multivariante [Multivariate analysis] (5th ed.). Prentice Hall.

Hawthorne, G., & Griffith, P. (2000). Measuring social isolation in young adults: Development and initial validation of the friendship scale. Social Indicators Research, 77, 521-548. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11205-005- 7746-y

Healy, M. (2021). Keeping company: Educating for online friendship. British Educational Research Journal, 47 (2), 484-499.

Henson, R. K., & Roberts, J. K. (2006). Use of exploratory factor analysis in published research. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 66, 393-416. https://doi.org/10.1177/0013164405282485

Hoffmann, L., Wilbert, J., Lehofer, M., & Schwab, S. (2021). Are we good friends? – Friendship preferences and the quantity and quality of mutual friendships. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 36 (4), 502-516. 10.1080/08856257.2020.1769980

Horn, J. L. (1965). A rationale and test for the number of factors in a factor analysis. Psychometrika, 30, 179-185. https://doi. org/10.1007/BF02289447

Hoyos‐Valdés, D. (2018). The notion of character friendship and the cultivation of virtue. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour, 48 (1), 66-82. 10.1111/ jtsb.12154

Jago, R., Fox, K. R., Page, A. S., Brockman R., & Thompson, J. L. (2009). Development of scales to assess children’s perceptions of friend and parental influences on physical activity. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 6, 67. 10.1186/1479-5868-6-67

Jöreskog, K. G. (1977). Structural equation models in the social sciences: Specifications, Estimations and testing. In P. R. Krishnaiah (Ed.), Applications of Statistics (pp. 265- 287). North Holland.

Kaiser, H. F. (1970). A second generation Little Jiffy. Psychometrika, 35, 401-415. https:// doi.org/10.1007/BF02291817

Kriesman, D. C. (1969). Social Interaction and Intimacy in Preschizophrenia. Columbia University.

Kristjánsson, K. (2019). Ten un-Aristotelian reasons for the instability of Aristotelian character friendships. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour, 49 (1), 40-58. https://doi.org/10.1111/jtsb.12190

Kristjánsson, K. (2020). Aristotelian character friendship as a ‘method’ of moral education. Studies in Philosophy and Education, 39, 349-364. 10.1007/s11217-020-09717-w

Kristjánsson, K. (2021). Online Aristotelian character friendship as an augmented form of penpalship. Philosophy and Technology, 34, 289-307. 10.1007/s13347-019-00383-6

Kochendorfer, L. B., & Kerns K. A. (2019). A meta-analysis of friendship qualities and romantic relationship outcomes in adolescence. Journal of Research of Adolescence, 30 (1), 4-25. 10.1111/jora.12505

Li, N. P., & Kanazawa, S. (2016). Country roads, take me home… to my friends: How intelligence, population density, and friendship affect modern happiness. British Journal of Psychology, 107 (4), 675-697. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjop.12181

Little, G. (2000). Friendship, being ourselves with others. Scribe Publications.

Lloret-Segura, S., Ferreres-Traver, A., Hernández-Baeza, A., & Tomás-Marco, I. (2014). El análisis factorial exploratorio de los ítems: una guía práctica, revisada y actualizada. Anales de Psicología, 30 (3), 1151-1169. http://dx.doi.org/10.6018/analesps.30.3.199361

Lorenzo-Seva, U., & Ferrando, P. J. (2006). FACTOR: A computer program to fit the exploratory Factor Analysis model. Behavioral Research Methods, 38, 88-91. https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03192753

Martínez-Priego, C., & Romero-Iribas, A. (2021). The emotions behind character friendship: From other-oriented emotions to the ‘bonding feeling’. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour, 51 (3), 468-488. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jtsb.12277

Mendelson, M. J., & Aboud, F. E. (1999). Measuring friendship quality in late adolescents and young adults: McGill friendship ques- tionnaires. Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science / Revue canadienne des sciences du comportement, 31 (2), 130-132. https://doi.org/10.1037/h0087080

Navarro, E., Expósito, E., López, E., & Thoilliez, B. (2014). EPIBI: Escala de Percepción de Indicadores de Bienestar Infantil. Validación del instrumento utilizando modelos politómicos de Rasch [EPIBI: Perception Scale of ChildWell-being Indicators. Validation of the instrument using polytomous Rasch models]. Revista de Educación, 364, 39-65. 10.4438/1988-592X-RE-2014-364-254

O’Connor, R. A. G., van den Bedem, N., Blijd-Hoogewys, E. M. A., Stockmann, L., & Rieffe, C. (2022). Friendship quality among autistic and non-autistic (pre-) adolescents: Protective or risk factor for mental health? Autism, 26 (8), 2041-2051. https://doi.org/10.1177/13623613211073448

Parker, J., & Asher, S. (1993). Friendship and Friendship Quality in Middle Childhood: links with Peer Group Acceptance and Feelings of Loneliness and Social Satisfaction. Developmental Psychology, 29 (4), 611-621. 10.1037/0012-1649.29.4.611

Peets, K., & Hodges, E. (2018). Authenticity in friendships and well‐being in adolescence. Social Development, 27 (1), 140-153. https://doi.org/10.1111/sode.12254

Pérez Guerrero, J. (2021). Personalised education as a school community of friendship. Journal of Philosophy of Education, 55 (2), 371-382. 10.1111/1467-9752.12557

Pittman, L., & Richmond, A. (2010). University belonging, friendship quality, and psychological adjustment during the transition to college. The Journal of Experimental Education, 76 (4), 343-361. https://doi. org/10.3200/JEXE.76.4.343-362

Pérez-Gil, J.A., Chacón, S., & Moreno, R. (2000). Validez de constructo: el uso del análisis factorial exploratorio-confirmatorio para obtener evidencias de validez [Construct validity: the use of exploratory-confirmatory factor analysis to obtain evidence of validity.]. Psicothema, 12 (2), 442-446.

Ryff, C. D., & Singer, B. H. (2002). From social structure to biology: Integrative science in pursuit of human health and well‐being. In R. Snyder, & S. J. Lopez (Eds.), Handbook of positive psychology (pp. 541-554). Oxford University Press.

Rodríguez, L. M., Resett, S., Grinóveno, M., & Moreno, J. E. (2015). Propiedades psicométricas de la Escala de Calidad de la Amistad en español [Psychometric properties of Children’s Friendship Quality Scale in Spanish]. Anuario de Psicología, 45 (2), 219-234.

Romero-Iribas, A., & Martínez Priego, C. (2017). Topografía de las relaciones interpersonales en la postmodernidad: amistad y educación [Topography of interpersonal relationships in post- modernity: friendship and education]. Revista Española de Pedagogía, 75 (267), 309-322. 10.22550/REP75-2-2017-08

Romero-Iribas, A. (2021). Friendship, self-knowledge, and core texts: A pathway for character education at university. In E. Brooks, E. Cohen de Lara, A. Sánchez-Ostiz, & J. M. Torralba (Eds.), Literature and Character Education in Universities (pp. 170-185). Routledge.

Romero-Iribas, A., & Martínez-Priego, C. (2022). Las emociones asociadas a la amistad cívica: una perspectiva psicoeducativa [Emotions associated with civic friendship: a psycho-educational perspective]. Estudios sobre Educación, 43, 9-27. https://doi.org/10.15581/004.43.001

Rosseel, Y. (2012). Lavaan: An R package for structural equation modelling. Journal of Statistical Software, 48 (2), 1-36. https://doi.org/10.18637/jss.v048.i02

Rotenberg, K. J., & Morgan, C. J. (1995). Development of a scale to measure individual differences in children´s trust-value basis of friendship. The Journal of Genetic Psychology, 156 (4), 489-502. 10.1080/00221325.1995.9914839

Ruiz, M. A., Pardo, A., & San Martín, R. (2010). Modelos de ecuaciones estructurales. Papeles del Psicólogo, 31 (1), 34-45.

Sánchez, M., Haynes, A., Parada, J. C., & Demir, M. (2018). Friendship maintenance mediates the relationship between compassion for others and happiness. Current Psychology, 39, 581-592. 10.1007/s12144-017-9779-1

Sharabany, R. (1994). Intimate Friendship Scale: Conceptual underpinning, psychometric properties and construct validity. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 11 (3), 449-469. https://doi.org/10.1177/0265407594113010

Simpson, D. D., & Mc Bride, A. A. (1992). Family, friends and self (FFS). Assessment scales for Mexican American youth. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 14 (3), 327-340. 10.1177/07399863920143003

Stevic, A., Koban, K., Binder, A., & Matthes, J. (2022). You are not alone: Smartphone use, friendship satisfaction, and anxiety during the COVID-19 crisis. Mobile Media & Communication, 10 (2), 294-315. https://doi. org/10.1177/20501579211051820

Taniguchi, H. (2015). Interpersonal mattering in friendship as a predictor of happiness in Japan: The case of tokyoites. Journal of Happiness Studies, 16 (6), 1475-1491. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-014-9570-z

Tavakol, M., & Dennick, R. (2011). Making sense of Cronbach’s alpha. International Journal of Medical Education, 2, 53-55. https://doi. org/10.5116/ijme.4dfb.8dfd

Vázquez, C, Hervás, G, Rahona, J. J., & Gómez, D. (2009). Bienestar psicológico y salud: aportaciones desde la psicología positiva [Psychological well-being and health. Contributions of positive psychology]. Anuario de Psicología Clínica y de la Salud, 5, 15-28. https://hdl.handle.net/11441/132719

Walker, D. I., Curren R., & Jones, C. (2016). Good friendships among children: A theoretical and empirical investigation. The Theory of Social Behaviour, 46 (3), 286-309. 10.1111/jtsb.12100

Weiss, M. R., & Smith. A. L. (2002). Friendship quality in youth sport: Relations to age, gender and motivation variables. Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 24, 420-437.

Wilkinson, R. B. (2008). Development and properties of the adolescent friendship attachment scale. Journal of Youth Adolescence, 37, 1270-1279. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10964-006-9141-7

Xia, Y., & Yang, Y. (2018). The influence of number of categories and threshold values on fit indices in structural equation modeling with ordered categorical data. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 53 (5), 731-755. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00273171.2018.1480346

Xia, Y., & Yang, Y. (2019). RMSEA, CFI, and TLI in structural equation modeling with ordered categorical data: The story they tell depends on the estimation methods. Behavior Research Methods, 51 (1), 409-428. http://dx.doi.org/10.3758/s13428-018-1055-2

Zumbo, B. D., Gadermann, A. M., & Zeisser, C. (2007). Ordinal versions of coefficients alpha and theta for Likert rating scales. Journal of Modern Applied Statistical Methods, 6 (1), 21-29. http://doi.org/10.22237/jmasm/1177992180

Author Biography

Ana Romero-Iribas holds a PhD in Philosophy from the Universidad de Navarra and is Associate Professor at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, where she teaches Educational Ethics. Fullbright Fellow at Harvard (2022-2023). Member of the Research and Educational Improve- ment (IMEI) and AVANTE Teaching Inno- vation groups at the URJC. Her research focuses on the ethics of education and the philosophy of friendship and interpersonal relationships. Visiting Scholar at the uni- versities of Harvard, Leeds and Navarra.


Celia Camilli-Trujillo. PhD in Edu- cation from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Associate Professor in the De- partment of Research and Psychology in Education (UCM) in Research Methodolo- gy subjects. Member of the Adaptive Ped- agogy Research Group (PROFICIENCyIn +EDU, RTI2018-096761-B-I00. MCI/AEI/ FEDER, UE, PROFICIENCyIn+E, EDU 2015-63844-R. MINECO/FEDER). Her lines of interest focus on systematic re- views, qualitative research, and mixed methods research.


Licencia Creative Commons | Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Esta obra está bajo una licencia internacional Creative Commons Atribución-NoComercial 4.0.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License



Palabras clave | Keywords

character friendship, factorial analysis, friendship, scale, selflessness, validation, young adults