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Going through the motions : Testing the measurement perspective, dimensionality and internal consistency of the three-dimensional adjustment scale

Annamaria Kubovcikova (Department of Management, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark)

Journal of Global Mobility

ISSN: 2049-8799

Article publication date: 13 June 2016

294

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to test the properties of the well-known three-dimensional adjustment scale, established by Black et al. (1988, 1989), namely, its dimensionality and internal consistency. The theoretical basis of the construct is discussed in relation to formative and reflective measurement approaches.

Design/methodology/approach

Two different ways of organizing the adjustment items (random/non-random) were used to assess the internal consistency of the three-dimensional adjustment scale. The quantitative analysis presented is based on survey data from 468 assigned expatriates in Asia that were subjected to an exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis as well as a structural equation modeling – more specifically the multiple indicators multiple causes model (MIMIC).

Findings

The study revealed that the adjustment construct is possibly misspecified, especially the general adjustment dimension, that was tested as a formative, not a reflective scale. There is further evidence that the wrong measurement approach skewed the coefficient that connects adjustment to performance, which is the key construct in its nomological network. Moreover, the dimensionality and the internal consistency of the scale are deteriorated to a large extent by randomization of the items. The findings highlight the need for a clear concept definition that would lead to an appropriate operationalization of the construct.

Originality/value

The study is one of the few rigorously testing the properties of a construct that has been used for almost 30 years, thus yielding some novel conclusions about its stability and consistency.

Keywords

Citation

Kubovcikova, A. (2016), "Going through the motions : Testing the measurement perspective, dimensionality and internal consistency of the three-dimensional adjustment scale", Journal of Global Mobility, Vol. 4 No. 2, pp. 149-175. https://doi.org/10.1108/JGM-11-2015-0050

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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