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Estimating measurement equivalence of the 12-item General Health Questionnaire across ethnic groups in the UK

King, Kirby and Allum, Nicholas and Stoneman, Paul and Cernat, Alexandru (2021) 'Estimating measurement equivalence of the 12-item General Health Questionnaire across ethnic groups in the UK.' Psychological Medicine. pp. 1-9. ISSN 0033-2917

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Background This study investigates the extent to which the GHQ-12 exhibits configural, metric and scalar invariance across six racial-ethnic groups in Britain, using the UK Household Longitudinal Study (N= 35,410). Methods A confirmatory factor analysis was carried out on a white British group in order to establish an adequate measurement model. Secondly, a multi-group confirmatory factor analysis was conducted in order to assess measurement invariance. A sensitivity analysis comparing summated and latent means across groups was carried out. Finally, revised estimates of reliability were derived using two different methods. Results A one-factor model including correlated error terms on the negatively phrased items showed superior fit in all ethnic groups; thus configural invariance held. Tests for equal factor loadings and intercepts also showed adequate fit demonstrating metric and scalar invariance. Latent and summated scale estimates of mean group differences followed the same pattern. Scale reliability using McDonald’s ω is lower than when using the more conventional Cronbach’s α. Reliability across groups is reasonably consistent. Conclusions We find that the GHQ-12 does not display obvious bias in regard to ethnic groups in the UK and that valid comparisons across these groups can be made for the purposes of population research although caution is needed when using as a screening tool.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: GHQ-12, ethnic minority groups, measurement equivalence, scale reliability
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2021 17:59
Last Modified: 09 May 2022 15:29

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