Quality of Life Research

, Volume 25, Issue 10, pp 2559–2564 | Cite as

Testing the measurement invariance of the University of Washington Self-Efficacy Scale short form across four diagnostic subgroups

  • Hyewon ChungEmail author
  • Jiseon Kim
  • Ryoungsun Park
  • Alyssa M. Bamer
  • Fraser D. Bocell
  • Dagmar Amtmann
Brief Communication



The University of Washington Self-Efficacy Scale (UW-SES) was originally developed for people with multiple sclerosis (MS) and spinal cord injury (SCI). This study evaluates the measurement invariance of the 6-item short form of the UW-SES across four disability subgroups. Evidence of measurement invariance would extend the UW-SES for use in two additional diagnostic groups: muscular dystrophy (MD) and post-polio syndrome (PPS).


Multi-group confirmatory factor analysis was used to evaluate successive levels of measurement invariance of the 6-item short form, the UW-SES: (a) configural invariance, i.e., equivalent item-factor structures between groups; (b) metric invariance, i.e., equivalent unstandardized factor loadings between groups; and (c) scalar invariance, i.e., equivalent item intercepts between groups. Responses from the four groups with different diagnostic disorders were compared: MD (n = 172), MS (n = 868), PPS (n = 225), and SCI (n = 242).


The results of this study support that the most rigorous form of invariance (i.e., scalar) holds for the 6-item short form of the UW-SES across the four diagnostic subgroups.


The current study suggests that the 6-item short form of the UW-SES has the same meaning across the four diagnostic subgroups. Thus, the 6-item short form is validated for people with MD, MS, PPS, and SCI.


Measurement invariance Multi-group confirmatory factor analysis Self-efficacy Muscular dystrophy Multiple sclerosis Post-polio syndrome Spinal cord injury 



Differential item functioning


Item response theory


Muscular dystrophy


Multi-group confirmatory factor analysis


Multiple sclerosis


Post-polio syndrome


Spinal cord injury


The University of Washington Self-Efficacy Scale



The contents of this publication were developed in part under grants from the U.S. Department of Education, National Institute of Disability and Rehabilitation Research, Grant Numbers H133B080024 and H133B080025. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. This research was also supported in part by a grant from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number 5U01AR052171. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hyewon Chung
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jiseon Kim
    • 2
  • Ryoungsun Park
    • 3
  • Alyssa M. Bamer
    • 2
  • Fraser D. Bocell
    • 2
  • Dagmar Amtmann
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of EducationChungnam National UniversityDaejeonKorea
  2. 2.Department of Rehabilitation MedicineUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  3. 3.Theoretical and Behavioral Foundations DivisionWayne State UniversityDetroitUSA

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