Thursday, November 10
Pretesting Methods
Thu, Nov 10, 3:30 PM - 4:55 PM
Orchid AB
Designing and Testing Question Types

Instrument Development in the Affective Domain (303127)

Robert K Gable, Johnson and Wales University 
*D. Betsy McCoach, University of Connecticut 

Keywords: factor analysis, latent construct

Affective instruments attempt to capture people’s feelings, attitudes, or inner emotional states. In developing an affective instrument, our goal is to be able to differentiate among people in terms of the degree to which they possess a latent construct or in terms of their level on a given latent construct. This talk provides guidelines for creating self-report rating scales to measure affective characteristics or traits, such as attitudes, self-concept, self-efficacy, motivation, values, interests, anxiety, etc. To do this, we create multi-item scales that allow us to measure the construct of interest and which provide scale scores, or measures for each person. An effective affective instrument produces scores that differentiate people in terms of their level on one or more affective characteristics. During the measurement process, people respond to the series of items that define the construct or trait, and ideally, these items should span a continuum so that some items are easier to endorse and some items are harder to endorse. Instruments may measure multiple facets or dimensions of a complex, multidimensional construct or they may measure multiple simpler, unidimensional constructs. This presentation provides an overview of the process of developing multi-item affective measurement instruments and the special role that factor analysis plays in this process.