Academic journal article Psychology in Russia

Multimethod Approach to Measuring Values in a School Context: Exploring the Association between Congruence -- Discrepancy Index (CO DI) and Task Commitment

Academic journal article Psychology in Russia

Multimethod Approach to Measuring Values in a School Context: Exploring the Association between Congruence -- Discrepancy Index (CO DI) and Task Commitment

Article excerpt

Since the turn of the century the value theory proposed by Schwartz (1992) has become a widespread and dominant approach to human values. It is recognized as a unifying theory that suggests a comprehensive set of 10 types of values. The theory establishes nearly universal relationships among motivations that underline values and therefore provides an a priori model for verifying empirical data. Although the theory is supported by consistent results obtained largely from normative populations of educated adults (Schwartz, Melech, Lehmann, Burgess, & Harris, 2001), considerable deviations from the theoretical propositions were revealed in educationally and culturally specific samples (Schwartz et al., 2001). Schwartz and colleagues (2001) attributed such discrepancies mostly to the method effect. The method effect refers to the extent to which an instrument by itself affects the obtained results. Inconsistency was found between the findings from comparison studies of the value orientations of delinquent and nondelinquent adolescents. Several studies showed that delinquents and nondelinquents shared the same hierarchy of values (Romero, Sobral, Luengo, & Marzoa, 2001; Zieman & Benson, 1983), while others showed differences in value orientations between the two studied groups (Goff & Goddard, 1999). However, sample characteristics and method effects were investigated separately in value studies. Method effects were extensively studied as a "ranking versus rating" issue.

One may propose that different methods that elicit personal values lead to different value priorities or hierarchies (Hansson, 2001). Comparison studies using ranking and rating methods have led to controversial results (Krosnick & Alwin, 1988; Maio & Olson, 1994; Rankin & Grube, 1980). In some of them discrepancies in value hierarchies gained by different methods were found, while in other studies using both methods led to similar results. Discussions of the issue have revealed the strengths and weaknesses of both methods. Some studies were aimed at assessing whether ranking or rating scales produce similar results and at determining which of the scales is preferable (Maio, Roese, Seligman & Katz, 1996), while others pointed out alternatives (McCarty & Shrum, 2000). Discussion of the studies resulted in the argument that each method might represent personal value systems in a specific way (Ovadia, 2004).

Most of the studies on the values domain have been carried out using a method for measuring values that does not allow for testing the abovementioned hypothesis. In order to do so one has to investigate the differences between the methods that are responsible for the divergent results. Such differences may refer to the form of the instrument, the scale, the content, or the activity of the subject while performing the task.

In the domain of values, a number of studies have been carried out to compare the results obtained with different methods of measurement (Lindeman & Verkasalo, 2005; Schwartz et al., 2001). However, such studies were focused more on the convergence between the results gained by different scales than on the differences between them.

In triangulation studies the researcher adopts competitive methodologies (for example quantitative and qualitative approaches) dealing with the same phenomena (Jick, 1979). Such studies may deal with the common or overlapping variance of the methods as well as with the unique variance, which is often neglected. Triangulation studies of unique variance have a comprehensive and complete approach to the construct, evaluating it from different perspectives. The researcher aims to explain the discrepancies between the results of different methods that may shed light on the nature of the object under study. Such studies have been done in the value domain using a multitrait-multimethod matrix (Schwartz et al., 2001). In the triangulation approach the discrepancies between the results for different methods of measuring values can be examined as a separate independent variable. …

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