Title page for ETD etd-06022010-123413

Type of Document Dissertation
Author McFadden, Cara W
URN etd-06022010-123413
Title Development and Validation of the Sense of Competence Scale-Revised (SCS-R)
Degree PhD
Department Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Bodenhorn, Nancy E. Committee Member
Janosik, Steven M. Committee Member
Skaggs, Gary E. Committee Member
Welfare, Laura E. Committee Member
  • instrument validation
  • student development theory
  • instrument development
Date of Defense 2010-05-27
Availability unrestricted

The purpose of this study was to develop an instrument to measure the sense of competence of traditional age college students across the dimensions that define the construct. The Sense of Competence Scale-Revised (SCS-R) was developed to provide a measure of Chickering’s (1969) first vector, an important psychosocial construct. Administrators can use data from the instrument to modify an institution’s academic and social environment to enhance the development of the intellectual, physical, and interpersonal competencies of college students.

During the development and validation, various aspects of the SCS-R were examined in accordance with the validity framework outlined by Messick (1995). According to Messick (1995), the validity of measures can be examined in terms of six forms of evidence; content, substantive, structural, generalizability, external and consequential. The six forms of evidence function as general standards for all educational measurement (Messick, 1995). During the study the content aspect of validity was addressed through the creation of concept maps and test blueprints. In addition, the content aspect of validity was addressed by creating and selecting items by reviewing the literature and hosting brainstorming sessions, items were then reviewed by student development theory experts, pilot tested, field tested and then items with high technical quality were selected for the final instrument. The substantive aspect of validity was addressed through an analysis of item rating scale functioning, person fit to the measurement scales, and item difficulty. The structural aspect of validity was addressed by evidence of the instrument’s dimensionality. The generalizability aspect of validity was addressed through an analysis of item/person reliability.

The evidence generated from the study suggested that the chosen items for the SCS-R provide reliable and valid estimates of a student’s personal assessment of their intellectual, physical and interpersonal abilities.

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