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Psicologia: Reflexão e Crítica

Print version ISSN 0102-7972


ZIVIANI, Cilio; FERES-CARNEIRO, Terezinha  and  MAGALHAES, Andrea Seixas. Sons and daughters' perception of parents as a couple: distinguishing characteristics of a measurement model. Psicol. Reflex. Crit. [online]. 2011, vol.24, n.1, pp.28-39. ISSN 0102-7972.

Perceptions and memories that youths may have of their parents' marital relationship were addressed by a self-report questionnaire, composed by 26 Likert scale items which were taken to constitute the "Perception of Parents as a Couple" instrument. Answers from 1,612 male and female youths produced a matrix of non-negative correlations. The sample was randomly split into calibrating and validating subsamples of 806 people each. Exploratory factor and principal component analyses present a circular plot of loading s after the first and second extractions. In the latter, pairs of similar magnitude, but of opposing signs, not only convey theoretical meaning, but also entail an order - Guttman's circular law of order. A specification search, through a confirmatory factor analysis, performed under a measurement model presenting three pairs of opposing-signs and cross-loaded variables, generated a downward chi-square value for each indicated parameter respecification. Following that ordered list top-down, ten other items were specified to cross-load in the model. Once tested, running the validating subsample data, satisfactory fit indices were obtained. We propose the Möbius strip as a functional analogue to model this kind of circular ordering. Finally, we nominate two theoretical orientations for further research on the explanation of results - the generational psychic transmission reviewed in the introduction contrasted to the cognitive unconscious theory.

Keywords : Parents' marital relationship; Circumplex structure; Möbius strip; Confirmatory factor analysis.

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