Demystifying Psychometric Research Designs: An Overview of the Major Approaches to Factor Analysis

Date(s) - Wednesday
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm


Presenter: Michael T. Kalkbrenner, Ph.D., NCC, Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology

Time: 12:30pm-1:30pm

Location: O’Donnell Hall, 300

The presentation will begin with an overview of the most common approaches to factor analysis that are used in social sciences research, including exploratory factor analysis (EFA), confirmatory factor analysis (CFA), multiple-group CFA, and higher-order CFA. Participants will learn about best practices for conducting psychometric research, including writing research questions and determining if one should utilize existing instrumentation from the literature or if they should develop their own measure. Original data will be presented to provide examples of how to match research questions with the appropriate psychometric analysis. Attendees will participate in an experiential learning activity in which they will be given a factor matrix and work together to: 1. Cluster items into their appropriate factors and, 2. Name the latent trait of each factor. The presentation will conclude with a group discussion about the utility of factor analysis for enhancing the rigor of methodology in social sciences research.