Items as Context: Effects of Item Order and Ambiguity on Factor Structure
item order effects, ambiguity, factor structure, factor covariance
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Based on previous work (Darkes, Greenbaum, & Goldman, 1998), we evaluated the effects of item order and ambiguity on factor structure using items from the Disinhibition subscale of the Sensation Seeking Scales Form V (Zuckerman, 1979). Participants completed the items with order of item-group (alcohol, sex, ambiguous) presentation manipulated between respondents. The factor structure varied as a function of item-group order. In addition, factor covariances varied across the 3 item orders as a function of item-group order. Apparently, ambiguous items were interpreted differently (as related either to alcohol use or to sexual behavior) depending on the content of items that preceded them. Results suggest that item order and ambiguity are important considerations in assessment.
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Citation / Publisher Attribution
Basic and Applied Social Psychology, v. 28, issue 1, p. 17-26
Scholar Commons Citation
Weinberger, Andrea H.; Darkes, Jack; Del Boca, Frances K.; Greenbaum, Paul E.; and Goldman, Mark S., "Items as Context: Effects of Item Order and Ambiguity on Factor Structure" (2006). Psychology Faculty Publications. 1395.