Psicothema was founded in Asturias (northern Spain) in 1989, and is published jointly by the Psychology Faculty of the University of Oviedo and the Psychological Association of the Principality of Asturias (Colegio Oficial de Psicólogos del Principado de Asturias).
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Seven methods to determine the dimensionality of tests: application to the General Self-Efficacy Scale in twenty-six countries

Greibin Villegas Barahona1,2, Nerea González García1, Ana Belén Sánchez-García1, Mercedes Sánchez Barba1,and María Purificación Galindo-Villardón1

1 Universidad de Salamanca and
2 Universidad Estatal a Distancia Costa Rica

Background: One of the most important concepts within Cognitive Social Theory as framed by Bandura is the perceived self-efficacy; this concept became widespread in 1981 when Mathias Jerusalem and Ralf Schwarzer, using 10 items, established a one-dimensional and universal construct of this scale. The main purpose of this study is to show that the General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSE) is not a one-dimensional and universal construct, as is currently assumed. Method: The data from 19,719 people from 26 countries were analyzed. In order to identify and understand invariance we applied seven multivariate statistical techniques. Results: The findings suggest the existence of a multidimensional structure and differential item functioning by country. Insofar as there is differential item functioning by country and it is not possible to universalize it, and there are several items on the scale that statistically constitute additional factors. The results confirm that the self-efficacy construct is neither universal nor unidimensional. Conclusions: A psychometric instrument must be valued and used with great care; the one in question is being used in a generalized way.

Siete métodos para evaluar la dimensionalidad de los test: aplicación a la General Self-Efficacy Scale en veintiséis países. Antecedentes: uno de los conceptos más importantes en la Teoría Social Cognitiva desarrollada por Bandura es la auto-eficacia percibida. Este concepto ha sido generalizado en 1981 por Mathias Jerusalem and Ralf Schwarzer con una escala de 10 ítems, quienes establecieron que esta escala es un constructo unidimensional y universal. El objetivo principal de este trabajo es demostrar que la Escala General de Autoeficacia (GSE) no es un constructo unidimensional ni universal, como actualmente se asume. Método: los datos analizados corresponden a 19.719 personas de 26 países. Con el fin de identificar y entender la invariancia hemos utilizado siete técnicas estadísticas multivariantes. Resultados: los hallazgos sugieren la existencia de una estructura multidimensional y un funcionamiento diferencial por país. En la medida que haya funcionamiento diferencial por país, no es posible universalizar el constructo. También existen varios ítems de la escala que constituyen factores adicionales. El resultado confirma que el constructo auto-eficacia no es universal ni unidimensional. Conclusiones: un instrumento psicométrico debe ser evaluado y usado con extremo cuidado, la escala GSE analizada está siendo utilizada de manera general.


Impact factor 2021:   JCR (WOS): 4.104 (Q1)   |   SJR (Scopus) : 1.308 (Q1)    |  CiteScore 2020: 5,3