The Factor Structure and Invariance of an Observational Checklist to Measure Children’s Emergent Literacy Skill Development across Male and Female Samples

Jason C. Immekus


Study purpose was to test the factor structure of the Jumpstart School Success Checklist (JSSC) and tests its measurement invariance (factor structure similarity) across male and female samples, based on national Jumpstart data (N = 5,545). Factor analytic results supported conceptualizing the JSSC item-level data in terms of a bifactor model (Gibbons & Hedeker, 1992), where each scale item related to a primary factor (Literacy) in addition to one sub-domain: Language Arts or Social Relationships. A comparison of the equivalence of the JSSC factor structure across sex groups indicated that the scale’s factor structure met partial measurement invariance (Bryne, Shavelson, & Muthén, 1989). A follow-up latent means structure analysis reported that females had slightly higher latent means across the factors than males. Study implications pertain to (a) the degree to which the JSSC scores function across sex groups, and (b) how factorial invariance research can be used to examine raters’ assessment of students’ literacy skill development.

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Journal of Educational and Developmental Psychology   ISSN 1927-0526 (Print)   ISSN 1927-0534 (Online)

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