Wolfe and Naimark (Using rational-emotive therapy effectively. Plenum, New York, 265–301, 1991) claim that women, through sex-role stereotyping, may develop sex-role beliefs that are not helpful. However, there is a dearth of research in this area with one of the major problems being the lack of an instrument to measure such sex-role beliefs. To date the Bem Sex Role Inventory has been the main instrument used to measure gender schema. As it has been criticised extensively, a new instrument to measure gender schema was proposed. The O’Kelly Women’s Belief Scales was therefore developed within a rational-emotive behaviour therapy framework, reflecting the belief processes of demandingness, awfulising, low frustration tolerance and negative self rating. Following the development of the scale, questionnaires were sent to 2,562 women working at a large, multi-site, teaching hospital. Data from the 974 respondents resulted in the development of five subscales of the O’Kelly Women’s Belief Scales: General Traditional Beliefs, Demands, Awfulising, Low Frustration Tolerance and Negative Self Rating. Each of these subscales loaded on one factor and had high internal consistency. The scales were shown to have test–retest reliability and concurrent, divergent and construct validity.