Carnegie Mellon University

Giving Support


Giving Support – Interpersonal Support Evaluation List (GS-ISEL)



Copyright Information

Copyright is owned by Dr. Cohen

Primary Reference

Cohen, S., Mermelstein, R., Kamarck, T., & Hoberman, H. (1985). Measuring the functional components of social support. In I. G. Sarason & B. Sarason (Eds.), Social support: Theory, research and applications (pp. 73-94). The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff.   (Note: REFERENCE IS TO ORIGINAL SCALE).


To assess perceived demonstration to others of three types of social support (appraisal, belonging, and tangible).

Type of Measure

This is a modification of the original Interpersonal Support Evaluation List (ISEL) developed for this study.  Rather than evaluating the extent to which participants perceive that support is available to them, this measure evaluates the perceived demonstration of social support to others.


Participants indicate the extent to which sentences describing their demonstration of different types of social support to others in their lives are true or false. No timeframe or referent period is used.


0 = Definitely False, 1 = Probably False, 2 = Probably True, 3 = Definitely True

Number of Items


Sample Items

  • People think of me as someone who would accompany them on a trip for a day. (tangible)
  • People think of me as someone who they could go to ball games, concerts, or plays with. (belonging)
  • People think of me as someone who could suggest how to deal with a personal problem. (appraisal)


Internal consistency in PCS3 (Cronbach’s α; n = 213)

  • Overall Support: 0.88
  • Appraisal Subscale: 0.84
  • Belonging Subscale: 0.77
  • Tangible Subscale: 0.71


Appraisal Subscale: Sum items: 2, 4, 6, 11
Belonging Subscale: Sum items: 1, 5, 7, 9
Tangible Subscale: Sum items: 3, 8, 10, 12
Overall Support: Sum of 3 Subscales