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The development of hierarchical factor solutions

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Although simple structure has proved to be a valuable principle for rotation of axes in factor analysis, an oblique factor solution often tends to confound the resulting interpretation. A model is presented here which transforms the oblique factor solution so as to preserve simple structure and, in addition, to provide orthogonal reference axes. Furthermore, this model makes explicit the hierarchical ordering of factors above the first-order domain.

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Grateful acknowledgment is given to Dr. Lloyd G. Humphreys for his encouragement and valuable suggestions in the development of this task. This investigation was carried out under the Air Force Personnel and Training Research Center program in support of Project Nos. 7702 and 7950. Permission is granted for reproduction, translation, publication, and use or disposal in whole or in part by or for the United States Government.

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Schmid, J., Leiman, J.M. The development of hierarchical factor solutions. Psychometrika 22, 53–61 (1957).

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