Angry Cognitions Scale

by Martin, R. C., & Dahlen, E. R. (2007). The Angry Cognitions Scale: A new inventory for assessing cognitions in anger. Journal of Rational-Emotive and Cognitive Behavior Therapy, 25, 155-173.

Directions: Below are several scenarios followed by types of thoughts people often have in similar situations. For each scenario, imagine that what is being described has just happened to you. Then, read each thought and check off the response indicating how likely you would be to have that thought or one similar to it in that situation. There are no right or wrong answers and you are not being asked whether these thoughts are appropriate - only how likely you would be to have similar thoughts.

You are driving through a residential area when someone backs their car out of a driveway and nearly hits you.

They did that just so I’d have to stop. / They were trying to scare me.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I can’t stand it when things like this happen. / They almost totaled my car.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Nobody knows how to drive anymore. / People are so careless.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They must not have seen me.
Very unlikely            Very likely

People should look where they’re going. / I was here first. They shouldn’t have gotten in my way.
Very unlikely            Very likely

That dumb jerk/ass/bitch!
Very unlikely            Very likely

Your new roommate doesn’t clean up the kitchen after having some friends over.

They knew how upset this makes me and just didn’t care.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I can’t stand dealing with their mess.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They should keep this place clean because I want it clean. / They should respect my home.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Even though I may want to, I can’t control the things that other people do.
Very unlikely            Very likely

That stupid lazy deadbeat/lowlife/slob!
Very unlikely            Very likely

They do this all the time/are always making a mess/never clean up.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Someone bumps into you at the mall and doesn’t apologize.

People are always so careless.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I just can’t stand people sometimes.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I’m sure they wouldn’t have bumped into me if they had seen me.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They’re just too lazy to go around.
Very unlikely            Very likely

That bitch/jerk/idiot!
Very unlikely            Very likely

People need to learn to watch where they are going.
Very unlikely            Very likely

You get home from the drive-thru and realize that you were given the wrong food.

This isn’t rocket science. How can people be so stupid?
Very unlikely            Very likely

People should just do their jobs the right way.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I bet they knew they were screwing up my order and just didn’t care.
Very unlikely            Very likely

This is terrible! / I hate this!
Very unlikely            Very likely

They always screw up my order. / That place is totally worthless.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Oh well, getting angry won’t bring me what I ordered.
Very unlikely            Very likely

You are stuck behind a slow driver on an otherwise open road.

Now I’ll never get where I’m going!
Very unlikely            Very likely

People need to learn to drive!
Very unlikely            Very likely

People are always slowing me down/getting in my way.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They’re doing this just to make me mad.
Very unlikely            Very likely

What a dumb-ass/lowlife/idiot!
Very unlikely            Very likely

Getting angry isn’t going to get me there any sooner.
Very unlikely            Very likely

You are at a store waiting to be helped, but the clerks are talking to each other and ignoring you.

These lazy jerks/bitches/idiots!
Very unlikely            Very likely

Getting angry isn’t going to get me out of here any sooner.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They’re probably ignoring me on purpose just so they don’t have to do their job.
Very unlikely            Very likely

This is terrible. I’m never going to get out of here.
Very unlikely            Very likely

People are so rude. / People like this always slow me down. / Nobody cares about the customer anymore.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I don’t care what they are talking about. They need to get over here and help me now.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Your spouse/significant other doesn’t do something he/she promised he/she would take care of.

They can be so stupid/worthless/irresponsible sometimes.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I can never count on them. / They always forgets to do things.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They should know better than this.
Very unlikely            Very likely

This is a catastrophe! / I can’t believe this is happening. / I can’t trust them at all.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They knew this was important to me and didn’t do it anyway. / They aren't taking me seriously. / They are trying to get back at me for something.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I’m sure there must have been a good reason why they didn’t get this done.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Someone talks down/is condescending to you.

I can’t stand having to hear this.
Very unlikely            Very likely

People are so rude. / They always act this way.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They just think they're better than me. / I know they are just trying to make me upset.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I hate this arrogant/conceited/stuck-up loser!
Very unlikely            Very likely

I shouldn’t have to listen to this. / People can’t talk to me this way.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Even though I don’t like hearing this, I can’t control what others say to me.
Very unlikely            Very likely

Your family doesn’t take your education/career seriously.

They just don’t care about what’s important to me.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I can’t deal with it when they act this way.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I don’t deserve to be treated this way. / They should just be quiet and leave me alone.
Very unlikely            Very likely

They can be so cruel/nasty/selfish sometimes.
Very unlikely            Very likely

People never understand me. / I always have to put up with things like this from people.
Very unlikely            Very likely

I can’t expect them to agree with everything I do or say.
Very unlikely            Very likely


To go beyond is as wrong as to fall short.
~ Confucius
This page was last updated on March 22nd, 2015
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