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The measurement equivalence of web-based and paper-and-pencil measures of transformational leadership: A multinational test

Michael Cole, Arthur G. Bedeian & Hubert S. Feild

abstract Multigroup confirmatory factor analysis was applied to the responses of 4, 909 employees of a multinational organization with locations in 50 countries to examine the measurement equivalence of otherwise identical Web-based and paper-and-pencil versions of 20 items comprising the transformational leadership component of Bass and Avolio's Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire. The results supported configural, metric, scalar, measurement error, and relational equivalence across administration modes, indicating that the psychometric properties of the 20 items were similar whether administered as a paper-and-pencil or Web-based measure. Although caution is always advised when considering multiple modes of administration, the results suggest that there are minimal measurement differences for well-developed, psychometrically sound instruments applied using either a paper-and-pencil or an online format. Thus, the results open a methodological door for survey researchers wishing to (a) assess transformational leadership with a Web-based platform and (b) compare or combine responses collected with paper-and-pencil and Web-based applications.
   
type journal paper
   
keywords transformation, leadership, multinational
   
language English
kind of paper journal article
date of appearance 1-7-2006
journal Organizational Research Methods
publisher Sage (Thousand Oaks, Calif.)
ISSN 1094-4281
ISSN (online) 1552-7425
DOI 10.1177/1094428106287434
volume of journal 9
number of issue 3
page(s) 339-369
review double-blind review
   
citation Cole, M., Bedeian, A. G., & Feild, H. S. (2006). The measurement equivalence of web-based and paper-and-pencil measures of transformational leadership: A multinational test. Organizational Research Methods, 9(3), 339-369, DOI:10.1177/1094428106287434.