UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A research synthesis of validation practices used to evaluate the satisfaction with life scale Chinni, Mary L.


This thesis had two primary goals. The first was to examine methods and procedures that researchers use in the process of validating the Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS) (Diener, Emmons, Larsen & Griffen, 1985). The second was to suggest a framework to organize and examine validation procedures presented in support of measures found across disciplines and journals. A literature search using the PsycINFO database from 1985 through July 2012 was conducted to capture all published validation studies of the SWLS. Each article was coded for reliability and validity evidence (i.e., test content, response processes, internal structure, relations to other variables, and consequences of testing) as described in the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing (AERA, APA, & NCME, 1999). Each area was further broken down into elements specific to each area to account for the rationale for theoretical decisions made, procedures used, and the completeness of the reporting of validation procedures presented. Results indicate that validation studies for the SWLS focused on internal structure and relations to other variables. Relations to other variables evidence consisted mainly of convergent evidence. Where statistical analyses were conducted, criterion values for interpretation of results were rarely provided. A greater understanding is needed of what constitutes evidence of relations to other variables; how to conceptualize this evidence and provide a rationale for constructs, measures and variables used; and how to describe expected relationships and subsequently evaluate the evidence.

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