The measures I have create are free to use for either research or practice purposes.

You don’t need to contact me to use them for research or in your clinical practice. Please feel free to use them for clinical or research purposes or adapt them into other languages without contacting me.

If you haven’t already, please read this review paper that we wrote about the various substance use stigma measures that have been published, to help you figure out what measures you should be using.

Researchers often select the wrong stigma measure and this paper provides some guidance on how to select the best one. Here’s what we say in the article about selecting appropriate measures, but please read the whole article to understand the context:

Those wishing to study individual level interventions to reduce substance use-related shame or stigma face the choice of appropriate outcome measures (Luoma et al., 2023). For example, one recent review of interventions to reduce SUS among health care providers found studies using a wide range of measures, some of which had limited psychometric evaluation (Magnan et al., 2024). Certain stigma manifestations are unlikely to be reduced by individual-level interventions. For example, perceived stigma could increase as a stigma intervention might prompt higher awareness of stigma in society. Similarly, measures of experiences with enacted stigma, such as in the SU-SMS (Smith et al., 2016) or MMT-SMS (Smith et al., 2020) are not likely to be reduced due to intervention as these are reports of past events. Instead, more proximal measures of personal stigmatizing attitudes, stigma-related coping, or personal experiences with stigmatizing behavior are most likely to be useful as outcome measurements. For example, interventions for public stigma might benefit from assessing desire for social distance, as measured in the SDS-SU (Brown, 2011), or negative social responses toward drug users, as measured by the SDUS (Palamar et al., 2011), rather than perceived stigma. Similarly, for measures targeting internalized stigma or substance use related shame, measures such as the shame subscale from the PODS (Treeby et al., 2020) or the self-devaluation or stigma coping scales from the SASSS (Luoma et al., 2013) are more likely to be responsive to intervention. Regardless, response to intervention has yet to be assessed in any psychometric study we found.

In addition to the psychometrically studied measures in our review, we also pulled together a bunch of other substance use stigma measures as well that had not yet been evaluated. If you want to study those, here’s where you can find that last as well

Here are the measures I’ve created:

Again: You don’t need to contact me to use them for research or in your clinical practice. Please feel free to use them for clinical or research purposes or adapt them into other languages without contacting me.

Substance Abuse Self-Stigma Scale

Acceptance and Action Questionnaire for Substance Abuse

Perceived Stigma of Substance Abuse Scale

  • Citation: Luoma, J. B.,O’Hair, A. K., Kohlenberg, B. S., Hayes, S. C., Fletcher, L. (2010). The development and psychometric properties of a new measure of perceived stigma toward substance users. Substance Use and Misuse, 45, 47-57. Download article here.
  • Download the Perceived Stigma of Substance Abuse Scale and scoring instructions.
  • For researchers interested in this measure, please note that this is a measure of perceived stigma. This isn’t a measure the person’s personal attitudes toward substance users, but a measure of how frequent they think stigma is in society. It’s a measure of perceived public stigma, in other words. You could also call it a measure of stigma awareness. Thus, if you are designing an intervention to reduce stigma in a group, for example health care providers, you wouldn’t expect this measure to go down. It might even go up if people become more aware of the types of stigma targeting substance users. Instead, you need to find a measure of personal stigma toward substance users.

ACT Knowledge Questionnaire

The ACT Knowledge Questionnaire (download here) is a 16 item measure of conceptual knowledge of ACT for use in studies and evaluation of the training of therapists who are learning ACT.  It was original created for use in the following study:

Luoma, J. B. & Plumb, J. (2013). Improving Therapist Psychological Flexibility While Training Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: A Pilot Study. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy 42(1), 1-8. DOI:10.1080/16506073.2012.701662

It has since been used in other studies and has been revised to a shorter version that is available for use. More info on the original can be found here and info on the revised version at the links below:

Other scales:

Self-Stigma Treatment Manual and Fidelity Coding System

Anyone looking for the treatment manual that I helped create for shame and self-stigma related to substance use can find it here. Any ACBS member can download it free of charge and use it in your research.

The fidelity coding  manual is also found at that website.