Instructions for Scoring the Job Satisfaction Survey, JSS

Paul E. Spector

Department of Psychology

University of South Florida

  The Job Satisfaction Survey or JSS, has some of its items written in each direction--positive and negative. Scores on each of nine facet subscales, based on 4 items each, can range from 4 to 24; while scores for total job satisfaction, based on the sum of all 36 items, can range from 36 to 216. Each item is scored from 1 to 6 if the original response choices are used. High scores on the scale represent job satisfaction, so the scores on the negatively worded items must be reversed before summing with the positively worded into facet or total scores. A score of 6 representing strongest agreement with a negatively worded item is considered equivalent to a score of 1 representing strongest disagreement on a positively worded item, allowing them to be combined meaningfully. Below is the step by step procedure for scoring.

1. Responses to the items should be numbered from 1 representing strongest disagreement to 6 representing strongest agreement with each. This assumes that the scale has not be modified and the original agree-disagree response choices are used.

2. The negatively worded items should be reverse scored. Below are the reversals for the original item score in the left column and reversed item score in the right. The rightmost values should be substituted for the leftmost. This can also be accomplished by subtracting the original values for the internal items from 7.

1 = 6

2 = 5

3 = 4

4 = 3

5 = 2

6 = 1

3. Negatively worded items are 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 19, 21, 23, 24, 26, 29, 31, 32, 34, 36. Note the reversals are NOT every other one.

4. Sum responses to 4 items for each facet score and all items for total score after the reversals from step 2. Items go into the subscales as shown in the table.



Item numbers


1, 10, 19, 28


2, 11, 20, 33


3, 12, 21, 30

Fringe Benefits

4, 13, 22, 29

Contingent rewards

5, 14, 23, 32

Operating conditions

6, 15, 24, 31


7, 16, 25, 34

Nature of work

8, 17, 27, 35


9, 18, 26, 36

Total satisfaction



5. If some items are missing you must make an adjustment otherwise the score will be too low. The best procedure is to compute the mean score per item for the individual, and substitute that mean for missing items. For example, if a person does not make a response to 1 item, take the total from step 4, divide by the number answered or 3 for a facet or 35 for total, and substitute this number for the missing item by adding it to the total from step 4. An easier but less accurate procedure is to substitute a middle response for each of the missing items. Since the center of the scale is between 3 and 4, either number could be used. One should alternate the two numbers as missing items occur.

Copyright Paul E. Spector, All rights reserved, Last modified December 9, 1999.