Strong Words Or Moderate Words: A Comparison of the Reliability and Validity of Responses on Attitude Scales (Report) by Psychology (Irvine)

Strong Words Or Moderate Words: A Comparison of the Reliability and Validity of Responses on Attitude Scales (Report)

By Psychology (Irvine)

  • Release Date: 2011-02-01
  • Category: Psychology

Brief Description

Introduction Teachers of psychological measurement, as well as authors of textbooks in these areas, often make recommendations as to the type of wording that is best when composing items for attitude scales (Fink, 1995; Fowler, 1995; Leedy, 1997; Mangione, 1995; Shuman & Presser, 1981). One rule-of-thumb that seems to have arisen is that attitude scales made of strongly worded statements--"I love", "I hate", "always"--will produce more reliable and valid scores than scales made of moderately worded statements--"I like", "I dislike", "sometimes". Positions taken in the literature which suggest that strongly-worded statements are best include advice to use precise wording and avoid potentially vague adverbs (Bourque & Fielder, 1995), recommendations to choose adverbs that have agreed upon meaning (Best & Kahn, 1989), and suggestions to use clearly favorable or clearly unfavorable wording (Henerson, Morris, & Fitz-Gibbon, 1987).

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