School Psychology Forum

Structural Analysis of Character Education: A Cross- Cultural Investigation

By Stephen Sivo, Shannon Karl, Jesse Fox, Gordon Taub & Edward Robinson

Cross-Cultural Action Research in School Psychology, pp. 34-44

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ABSTRACT: The primary objective of this cross-cultural investigation is to compare patterns in student responses to an empirically scrutinized character education measure administered to students in four school districts in Florida with students in a school in Kenya. In this way, the generalizability of findings for scale scores could be compared across cultures. To this end, we conduct a mean structure analysis using structural equation modeling to observe whether multivariate mean differences exist among the factor structures underlying student responses. The results suggest that while students at a school in Kenya rated their school higher on the four scales, overall the latent scores for students within school districts in the United States appear higher. Thus, with respect to the underlying construct of character, this character education measure evidences some multicultural bias at the level of the latent scores. Based on these results, it is concluded that the character education measure does not completely yield generalizable results across cultures.