Modeling wording effects does not help in recovering uncontaminated person scores: A systematic evaluation with random intercept item factor analysis
EntityUAM. Departamento de Psicología Social y Metodología
PublisherFrontiers Media SA
10.3389/fpsyg.2021.685326Frontiers In Psychology 12 (2021): 685326
Funded byThis research was partially supported jointly by the Grant PSI2017-85022-P from the Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades (Spain), European Social Fund, and the UAMIIC Chair Psychometric Models and Applications (Instituto de Ingeniería del Conocimiento and Autonomous University of Madrid)
ProjectGobierno de España. PSI2017-85022-P
Subjectsacquiescence; carelessness; factor scores; method factor; structural equation modeling; wording effects; Psicología
Rights© 2021 The Authors
Esta obra está bajo una Licencia Creative Commons Atribución 4.0 Internacional.
The item wording (or keying) effect consists of logically inconsistent answers to positively and negatively worded items that tap into similar (but polarly opposite) content. Previous research has shown that this effect can be successfully modeled through the random intercept item factor analysis (RIIFA) model, as evidenced by the improvements in the model fit in comparison to models that only contain substantive factors. However, little is known regarding the capability of this model in recovering the uncontaminated person scores. To address this issue, the study analyzes the performance of the RIIFA approach across three types of wording effects proposed in the literature: carelessness, item verification difficulty, and acquiescence. In the context of unidimensional substantive models, four independent variables were manipulated, using Monte Carlo methods: type of wording effect, amount of wording effect, sample size, and test length. The results corroborated previous findings by showing that the RIIFA models were consistently able to account for the variance in the data, attaining an excellent fit regardless of the amount of bias. Conversely, the models without the RIIFA factor produced increasingly a poorer fit with greater amounts of wording effects. Surprisingly, however, the RIIFA models were not able to better estimate the uncontaminated person scores for any type of wording effect in comparison to the substantive unidimensional models. The simulation results were then corroborated with an empirical dataset, examining the relationship between learning strategies and personality with grade point average in undergraduate studies. The apparently paradoxical findings regarding the model fit and the recovery of the person scores are explained, considering the properties of the factor models examined
Google Scholar:Nieto, María Dolores - Garrido, Luis Eduardo - Martínez-Molina, Agustín - Abad García, Francisco José
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