Cross Cultural Equivalence

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A Discussion of the Measurement Equivalence in Cross-Cultural Research Cross-cultural comparison, in which the attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of people from different cultural backgrounds are examined, constitutes an important part of psychological researches (Morren, Gelissen, & Vermunt, 2011). In regard to the validity of cultural comparison, one may wonder whether it is possible to achieve such a comparison; after all, people from different cultural contexts have different languages and ideologies, and they may understand and respond to the topic investigated differently. This question has long been addressed in the literature, and the answer to it is to establish equivalence, or comparability. Cultural equivalence is the prerequisite…show more content…
Interrelated with the construct equivalence and linguistic equivalence, metric equivalence can ranges from the equally understanding the meaning of the test items to the similar difficulty of the items to all participants (Buil, Chernatony, & Martinez, 2012). For instance, if one item in an intelligence test ask participants to choose the name of an American president from the following names: Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, LeBron James, and Thomas Jefferson, it would be more difficulty for Chinese participants who have no knowledge about American history than American participants. It is clear from this example that unless the test instruments can be equally understood and each item has similar difficulty to all participants, meaningful comparisons among different cultures cannot be…show more content…
These four types of measurement equivalence differ in the degree of abstraction. While construct and linguistic equivalence deal with the abstract construct and language, metric and scalar equivalence concern the concrete measurement items and scale. Although it is difficulty to draw a clear demarcation for them, it is clear that the more abstract type, such as the construct equivalence, is the precondition for considering the more specific type, such as scalar equivalence. After all, to quote Hui and Triandis (1985), “it does not make sense to talk about the equivalence of a ruler reading when the concepts of length and size are meaningful only to one thing but not to another.” As a result, to attain legitimately comparable data from different cultures, measurement equivalence must be achieved through establishing construct, linguistic, metric, and scalar equivalence, in which the more concrete ones is building on the more abstract ones. Only by then can these data yielding from various cultural contexts be meaningfully compared and

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