Attitudes to farm animal welfare: Factor structure and personality correlates in farmers and agriculture students

Elizabeth J. Austin*, Ian J. Deary, Gareth Edwards-Jones, Dale Arey

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


Although the there is considerable public interest in farm animal welfare, relatively little work has been done on the welfare attitudes of farmers. We describe the development of a welfare attitude scale, the EFAWS. The factor structure and correlates of this scale were examined in Scottish pig and sheep farmers, and in agriculture students. The EFAWS was found to have a hierarchical structure, with two superordinate dimensions corresponding to welfare and business orientations being present in both groups. Five narrower facets were extracted for farmers and six for students, with the two factor structures being similar. Factor scores were found to be correlated significantly with personality traits, knowledge about welfare, and farm welfare scores in interpretable ways.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-120
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Individual Differences
Issue number3
Publication statusPrint publication - 1 Sep 2005


  • Animal welfare
  • Attitudes
  • Factor analysis
  • Farmers
  • Personality

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