Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire (Abridged)
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The entire questionnaire will take about 5 minutes.
Please do not rush through the questionnaire.
The aim of this test is to judge your ability to imagine.
The questions in the test will ask you to form mental images of something in your mind.
You will then be asked to rate how clearly or vividly you were able to form that mental image.
For each item on this questionnaire, try to form a visual image, and consider your experience carefully.
Please note that there are no right or wrong answers to the questions, and that it is not necessarily desirable to experience imagery or, if you do, to have more vivid imagery.
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Approximately 5% of people fall into this, the lowest, score band. Your score suggests that your visual imagery is less rich than usual. You may lack visual imagery, the state scientists have described as aphantasia, particularly if your score is toward the lower end of the band.
This score suggests that your visual imagery is less vivid than average, but you score above the range of people lacking imagery altogether, the state termed aphantasia. Around 9% of people fall in the same range as you.
Around 25% or one quarter of participants fall into this band, alongside you. It places you in the lower half of the population for imagery vividness, but your score is not unusually low.
Around 40% of the population fall into this band, the most common range of scores for imagery vividness. This suggests that your visual imagery is typical – neither unusually weak nor unusually strong.
This score suggests that your visual imagery is more vivid than usual. Scores at the upper end of this range are suggestive of ‘hyperphantasia’: exceptionally strong powers of visualisation. About 23% of people score in this range, the highest among the five bands.
1. Conjure up an image of a friend or relative who you frequently see; how clearly can you see the contours of their face, head, shoulders and body?
2. Still imagining that friend or relative, how strongly can you see the characteristic poses of their head and body?
3. How well can you envision the way that friend or relative walks, the length of their step, for example?
4. How vivid do the colors of that person’s clothes look in your mind?
5. Visualise a rising sun and look carefully at the details of that mental picture; how clearly do you see that sun rising above the horizon in a hazy sky?
6. Imagine the sky clearing and surrounding the sun with blueness, how vivid is that image?
7. Clouds appear in your sky and a lightning storm erupts – how well can you see it?
8. A rainbow appears in your sky, how clearly can you make it out?
The Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire (VVIQ) was developed in 1973 by the British psychologist David Marks (Marks, 1973). The VVIQ consists of 16 items in four groups of 4 items in which the participant is invited to consider the image formed in thinking about specific scenes and situations.
The questionnaire has been widely used as a measure of individual differences in vividness of visual imagery. The large body of evidence confirms that the VVIQ is a valid and reliable psychometric measure of visual image vividness.
The University of Exeter has developed an abridged version that lets you see how your mind compares.