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SAS Global Forum 2011 Statistics and Data Analysis Paper 352-2011 Scale Measurement: Comparing Factor Analysis and Variable Clustering

By Albert Liau, Teck Kiang Tan and Angeline Khoo


In the social sciences, factor analytical methods are commonly used in the scale measurement in examining the structure of scales. This paper provides an alternative way of examining the structure of scale measurement using variable cluster analysis. Three analytical methods are illustrated in this paper, namely exploratory factor analysis, confirmatory factor analysis and variable clustering analysis. As variable cluster analysis is rarely used and not widely discussed in the literature, the advantages, benefits and limitations of using this method are discussed. Comparison of variable clustering to the factor analytical approach is illustrated using the personal strength scale. PROC VARCLUS, PROC FACTOR, and PROC CALIS are the three SAS procedures for these three analytical methods. The syntaxes of the three procedures are given and the results are interpreted and compared

Year: 2013
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