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Scale Development

Scale Development
Theory and Applications

Fifth Edition

February 2022 | 320 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Scale Development: Theory and Applications, by Robert F. DeVellis and new co-author Carolyn T. Thorpe, demystifies measurement by emphasizing a logical rather than strictly mathematical understanding of concepts. The Fifth Edition includes a new chapter that lays out the key concepts that distinguish indices from scales, contrasts various types of indices, suggests approaches for developing them, reviews validity and reliability issues, and discusses in broad terms some analytic approaches. All chapters have been updated, and the book strikes a balance between including relevant topics and highlighting recent developments in measurement while retaining an accessible, user-friendly approach to the material covered.
About the Authors
Chapter 1 • Overview
General Perspectives on Measurement

Historical Origins of Measurement in Social  Science

Later Developments in Measurement

The Role of Measurement in the Social Sciences

Summary and Preview


Chapter 2 • Understanding the Latent Variable
Constructs Versus Measures

Latent Variable as the Presumed Cause of Scale Item Values

Path Diagrams

Further Elaboration of the Measurement  Model

Parallel Tests

Alternative Models

Choosing a Causal Model



Chapter 3 • Scale Reliability
Methods Based on the Analysis of Variance

Continuous Versus Dichotomous Items

Internal Consistency

Coefficient Alpha

Remedies to Alpha’s Limitations

Coefficient Omega (?)

Reliability Based on Correlations Between Scale Scores

Reliability and Statistical Power

Generalizability Theory




Chapter 4 • Scale Validity
Content Validity

Criterion-Related Validity

Construct Validity

What About Face Validity?


Chapter 5 • Guidelines in Scale Development
Step 1: Determine Clearly What It Is You Want to Measure

Step 2: Generate an Item Pool

Step 3: Determine the Format for Measurement

Step 4: Have Initial Item Pool Reviewed by  Experts

Step 5: Cognitive Interviewing

Step 6: Consider Inclusion of Validation  Items

Step 7: Administer Items to a Development  Sample

Step 8: Evaluate the Items

Step 9: Optimize Scale Length



Chapter 6 • Factor Analysis
Overview of Factor Analysis

Conceptual Description of Factor Analysis

Bifactor and Hierarchical Factor Models

Interpreting Factors

Principal Components Versus Common  Factors

Confirmatory Factor Analysis

Using Factor Analysis in Scale Development

Sample Size



Chapter 7 • The Index
How an Index Differs From a Scale

Rules of Thumb for Differentiating an Index From a Scale

Is It a Scale or an Index? Formal Methods for Distinguishing Effect and Causal Indicators

Steps in Developing and Evaluating an  Index

Hybrid Measures

Methods Based on Structural Equation Modeling

Criticisms of Index Composites



Chapter 8 • An Overview of Item Response Theory
Item Difficulty

Item Discrimination

Guessing, or False Positives

Item-Characteristic Curves

IRT Applied to Multiresponse Items


Chapter 9 • Measurement in the Broader Research Context
Before Scale Development

After Scale Administration

Final Thoughts



The book have everything what is need it for the course. The graduate students will find very useful the procedure and recommendations of the authors. The title is very well written and straight to the point.

Dr Rafael Cruz Reyes
Business Administration, Universidad de Monterrey
February 13, 2023

It is a good text, thorough and rigorous.

Dr Kristin Mauldin
Psychology Dept, Northwest University
December 19, 2022