Differential Item Functioning in a Spanish Translation of the PTSD Checklist

Detection and Evaluation of Impact

by Maria Orlando Edelen, Grant N. Marshall

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This study demonstrated the application of an innovative item response theory (IRT) based approach to evaluating measurement equivalence, comparing a newly developed Spanish version of the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist-Civilian Version (PCL-C) with the established English version. Basic principles and practical issues faced in the application of IRT methods for instrument evaluation are discussed. Data were derived from a study of the mental health consequences of community violence in both Spanish speakers (n = 102) and English speakers (n = 284). Results of differential item functioning (DIF) analyses revealed that the 2 versions were not fully equivalent on an item-by-item basis in that 6 of the 17 items displayed uniform DIF. No bias was observed, however, at the composite PCL-C scale score, indicating that the 2 language versions can be combined for scale-level analyses.

Reprinted with permission from Psychological Assessment, Vol. 14, No. 1, March 2002, pp. 50-59. Copyright © 2002, American Psychological Association, Inc.

Originally published in: Psychological Assessment, Vol. 14, No. 1, March 2002, pp. 50-59.

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