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Nonequivalence of on-line and paper-and-pencil psychological tests: The case of the prospective memory questionnaire

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jacqueline Rodgers


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There is growing evidence that Internet-mediated psychological tests can have satisfactory psychometric properties and can measure the same constructs as traditional versions. However, equivalence cannot be taken for granted. The prospective memory questionnaire (PMQ; Hannon, Adams, Harrington, Fries-Dias, & Gibson, 1995) was used in an on-line study exploring links between drug use and memory (Rodgers et al., 2003). The PMQ has four factor-analytically derived subscales. In a large (N = 763) sample tested via the Internet, only two factors could be recovered; the other two subscales were essentially meaningless. This demonstration of nonequivalence underlines the importance of on-line test validation. Without examination of its psychometric properties, one cannot be sure that a test administered via the Internet actually measures the intended construct. Copyright 2005 Psychonomic Society, Inc.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Buchanan T, Ali T, Heffernan TM, Ling J, Parrott AC, Rodgers J, Scholey AB

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Behavior Research Methods

Year: 2005

Volume: 37

Issue: 1

Pages: 148-154

Print publication date: 01/02/2005

ISSN (print): 1554-351X

ISSN (electronic): 1554-3528

Publisher: Psychonomic Society, Inc.

PubMed id: 16097355