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Psychosom Med. 2012 Feb-Mar;74(2):169-77. doi: 10.1097/PSY.0b013e3182433a30. Epub 2012 Jan 27.

Revisiting measurement models in psychosomatic medicine research: a latent variable approach.

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Department of Psychology, University of Miami, PO Box 248185, Coral Gables, FL 33124, USA.


In this article, we describe how a latent variable modeling approach to the specification of measurement error unifies and benefits traditional methods of examining reliability in psychology and medicine. The models presented include classical reliability and generalizability theory to account for measurement error, latent class analysis to assess sensitivity and specificity, and item response theory to improve questionnaire development. We also illustrate how working with latent variables, in addition to addressing measurement error, may help deal with some instances of missing data. Throughout the article, analyses and results from examples and published articles are presented to illustrate the advantage of working with latent variables.

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