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6.7: Summary

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    In closing, scale (or index) construction in social science research is a complex process involving several key decisions. Some of these decisions are:

    • Should you use a scale, index, or typology?
    • How do you plan to analyze the data?
    • What is your desired level of measurement (nominal, ordinal, interval, or ratio) or rating scale?
    • How many scale attributes should you use (e.g., 1 to 10; 1 to 7; −3 to +3)?
    • Should you use an odd or even number of attributes (i.e., do you wish to have neutral or mid-point value)?
    • How do you wish to label the scale attributes (especially for semantic differential scales)?
    • Finally, what procedure would you use to generate the scale items (e.g., Thurstone, Likert, or Guttman method) or index components?

    This chapter examined the process and outcomes of scale development. The next chapter will examine how to evaluate the reliability and validity of the scales developed using the above approaches.

    This page titled 6.7: Summary is shared under a CC BY-NC-SA license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Anol Bhattacherjee (Global Text Project) .

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