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The Reliability of Measurement and the Cross-Time Stability of Individual and Family Variables

Publication Abstract

Thornton, Arland, and Georgina Binstock. 2001. "The Reliability of Measurement and the Cross-Time Stability of Individual and Family Variables." Journal of Marriage and Family, 63(3): 881-894.

Using data from a 31-year panel study, we evaluate both the reliability, of measurement of family, attitudes, relationships, and self-concepts and the stability of these variables across time. We also compare the reliability of measurement and the stability of variables across time in these domains of family life with the reliability and stability, of behavioral dimensions. Our results provide considerable support for the hypothesis that family, relationships, attitudes, and self-concepts can be measured reliably. We also demonstrate that self-concepts and family, relationships and attitudes have high levels of stability across significant periods of time, and that these are comparable to those for the behavioral indicators we examined.

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