Assessing Measurement Invariance of Familism and Parental Respect Across Race/Ethnicity in Adolescents

Published in: BMC, Medical Research Methodology, v. 12, no. 61, Apr. 30, 2012

Posted on RAND.org on September 01, 2012

by Jeremy N. V. Miles, Regina A. Shih, Joan S. Tucker, Annie Jie Zhou, Elizabeth J. D'Amico

Read More

Access further information on this document at BMC

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

BACKGROUND: Familism and parental respect are culturally derived constructs rooted in Hispanic and Asian cultures, respectively. Measures of these constructs have been utilized in research and found to predict delays in substance use initiation and reduced levels of use. However, given that these measures are explicitly designed to tap constructs that are considered important by different racial/ethnic groups, there is a risk that the measurement properties may not be equivalent across groups. METHODS: This study evaluated the measurement equivalence of measures of familism and parental respect in a large and diverse sample of middle school students in Southern California (n = 5646) using a multiple group confirmatory factor analysis approach. RESULTS: Results showed little evidence of measurement variance across four racial/ethnic groups (African American, Hispanic, Asian, and non-Hispanic White), supporting the continued use of these measures in diverse populations. Some differences between latent variable means were identified – specifically that the Hispanic group and the white group differed on familism. CONCLUSIONS: No evidence of invariance was found. However, the item distributions were highly positively skewed, indicating a tendency for youth to endorse the most positive response, which may reduce the reliability of the measures and suggests that refinement is possible.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.