Social Indicators Research

, 84:189

Examining the relationship between global and domain measures of quality of life by three factor structure models

Original Paper


This study examined the relationship between global and domain measures of quality of life from a psychometric perspective by three different factor structure models. Three hundred and four students at National Taiwan University participated in this study. They completed the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS, a global measurement for quality of life) and the WHOQOL-BREF (a domain-specific measurement for quality of life). Three models were specified to examine the relationships among scores of the SWLS and the WHOQOL-BREF. The first model was a common factor model in which scores of the SWLS and the WHOQOL-BREF were all influenced by a single factor. The second model was a correlated two-factor model in which scores of the SWLS were influenced by one factor and scores of the WHOQOL-BREF influenced by another factor, with these two factors being allowed to be correlated. The third model was a three-factor model, in which one factor (representing quality of life) influenced the scores of the SWLS and the WHOQOL-BREF, another factor (representing global approach) only influenced the scores of the SWLS, and yet another factor (representing domain approach) only influenced the scores of the WHOQOL-BREF. The results showed that the third model was the best, suggesting that global measures (the SWLS) and domain measures (the WHOQOL-BREF) did assess the same construct on quality of life, however, the measurement approaches they adopted (global or domain approach) also have substantial impact on the meaning of scores.


Global Domain-specific Quality of life Measurement Confirmatory factor analysis 


  1. Arrindell, W. A., Heesink, J., & Feij, J. A. (1999). The Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS): Appraisal with 1700 health young adults in the Netherlands. Personality and Individual Differences, 26, 815–826.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Arrindell, W. A., Meeuwesen, L., & Huyse, F. J. (1991). The Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS): Psychometric properties in a non-psychiatric medical outpatients sample. Personality and Individual Differences, 12, 117–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Atienza, F. L., Balaguer, I., & Garcia-Merita, M. L. (2003). Satisfaction with Life Scale: Analysis of factorial invariance across sexes. Personality and Individual Differences, 35, 1255–1260.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Barrett, P. Structural equation modeling: Adjudging model fit. Personality and Individual Differences (in press).Google Scholar
  5. Beauducel, A., & Wittmann, W. (2005). Simulation study on fit indexes in confirmatory factor analysis based on data with slightly distorted simple structure. Structural Equation Modeling, 12, 41–75.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bentler, P. M. (1990). Comparative fit indexes in structural models. Psychological Bulletin, 107, 238–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Browne, M. W., & Cudeck, R. (1993). Alternative ways of assessing model fit. In K. A. Bollen & J. S. Long (Eds.), Testing structural equation models. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  8. Cohen, E. H. (2000). A facet theory approach to examining overall and life facetsatisfaction relationships. Social Indicators Research, 51, 223–237.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Davis, M. H., Morris, M. M., & Kraus, L. A. (1998). Relationship-specific and globalperceptions of social support: Associations with well-being and attachment. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74, 468–481.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Diener, E. (1984). Subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin, 95, 542–575.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Diener, E., Emmons, R. A., Larsen, R. J., & Griffin, S. (1985). The Satisfaction with Life Scale. Journal of Personality Assessment, 49, 71–75.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Diener, E., Suh, E. M., Lucas, R., & Smith, H. (1999). Subjective well-being: Three decades of progress. Psychological Bulletin, 125, 276–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Fan, X., & Sivo, S. A. (2005). Sensitivity of fit indexes to misspecified structural or measurement model components: Rationale of two-index strategy revisited. Structural Equation Modeling, 12, 343–367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Goffin, R. D. Assessing the adequacy of structural equation models: Golden rules and editorial policies. Personality and Individual Differences (in press).Google Scholar
  15. Hoyle, R. H. (1995). The structural equation modeling approach: Basic concepts and fundamental issues. In R. H. Hoyle (Ed.), Structural equation modeling: Concepts, issues, and applications (pp. 1–15). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  16. Hsieh, C. M. (2003). Counting importance: The case of life satisfaction and relative domain importance. Social Indicators Research, 61, 227–240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Hsieh, C. M. (2004). To weight or not to weight: The role of domain importance in quality of life measurement. Social Indicators Research, 68, 163–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hu, L., & Bentler, P. M. (1999). Cutoff criteria for fit indexes in covariance structure analysis: Conventional criteria versus new alternatives. Structural Equation Modeling, 6, 1–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Joreskog, K. G., & Sorbom, D. (1993). LISREL 8: Structural equation modeling with the SIMPLIS command language. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  20. Lance, C. E., Mallard, A. G., & Michalos, A. C. (1995). Tests of the causal directions of global-life facet satisfaction relationships. Social Indicators Research, 34, 69–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Lewis, C. A., Shevlin, M. E., Bunting, B. P., & Joseph, S. (1995). Confirmatory factor analysis of the satisfaction with life scale: Replication and methodological refinement. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 80, 304–306.Google Scholar
  22. Lucas, R. E., Diener, E., & Suh, E. (1996). Discriminant validity of well-being measures. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 71, 616–628.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Markland, D. The golden rule is that there are no golden rules: A commentary on Paul Barrett’s recommendations for reporting model fit in structural equation modeling. Personality and Individual Differences (in press).Google Scholar
  24. Marsh, H. W., Hau, K. T., & Wen, Z. (2004). In search of Golden rules: Comment on hypothesis-testing approaches to setting cutoff values for fit indexes and dangers in overgeneralizing Hu and Bentler’s (1999) findings. Structural Equation Modeling, 11, 320–341.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. McDonald, R. P. (1999). Test theory: A unified treatment. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  26. McIntosh, C. N. Rethinking fit assessment in structural equation modeling: A commentary and elaboration on Barrett. Personality and Individual Differences (in press).Google Scholar
  27. Pavot, W., & Diener, E. (1993). Review of the satisfaction with life scale. Psychological Assessment, 5, 164–172.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Pavot, W., Diener, E., Colvin, C. R., & Sandvik, E. (1991). Further validation of the satisfaction evidence for the cross-method convergence of well-being. Social Indicators Research 28, 1–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ratwani, R. M., Trafton, J. G., & Boehm-Davis, D. A. (2003). ‘Thinking graphically: Extracting local and global information. In R. Alterman & D. Kirsch (Eds.), 25th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society. Boston, MA: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  30. Russell, L. B., Hubley, A. M., Palepu, A., & Zumbo, B. D. (2006). Does weighting capture what’s important? Revisiting subjective importance weighting with a quality of life measure. Social Indicators Research, 75, 141–167.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Sachs, J. (2003). Validation of the Satisfaction with Life Scale in a sample of Hong Kong University students. Psychologia, 46, 225–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Shevlin, M. E., Brunsden, V., & Miles, J. N. V. (1998). Satisfaction with Life Scale: Analysis of factorial invariance, mean structures and reliability. Personality and Individual Differences, 25, 911–916.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Shevlin, M. E., & Bunting, B. P. (1994). Confirmatory factor analysis of the satisfaction with life scale. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 79, 1316–1318.Google Scholar
  34. The WHOQOL Group (1998a). Development of the WHOQOL-BREF Quality of Life Assessment. Psychological Medicine, 28, 551–558.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. The WHOQOL Group (1998b). The World Health Organization Quality of Life Assessment (WHOQOL): Development and general psychometric properties. Social Science & Medicine, 46, 1569–1585.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Westaway, M. S., Maritz, C., & Golele, N. J. (2003). Empirical testing of the satisfaction with life scale: A South African pilot study. Psychological Reports, 92, 551–554.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Wu, C. H., & Yao, G. (2006a). Do we need to weight satisfaction scores with importance ratings? Social Indicators Research, 78, 305–326.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Wu, C. H., & Yao, G. (2006b). Do we need to weight item satisfaction by item importance? A perspective from Locke’s range-of-affect hypothesis. Social Indicators Research, 79, 485–502.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Wu, C. H., & Yao, G. (2006c). Analysis of factorial invariance across genders in the Taiwan version of the satisfaction with life scale. Personality and Individual Differences, 40, 1259–1268.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Yao, G., Chung, C. W., Yu, C. F., & Wang, J. D. (2002). Development and verification of reliability and validity of the WHOHR-QOL-BREF Taiwan version. Journal of the Formosan Medical Association, 101, 342–351.Google Scholar
  41. Yuan, K. H. (2005). Fit indices versus test statistics. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 40, 115–148.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyNational Taiwan UniversityTaipeiTaiwan, ROC

Personalised recommendations