Kerlinger's criterial referents theory revisited

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Kerlinger's criterial referents theory of attitudes was tested cross culturally by administering an education attitude referents (i.e., single words and short phrases) summated-rating scale to 713 indi viduals in Israel. The theory's claim of a dualistic structure of educa tional attitudes was tested with the aid of Radial Parcelling Analy sis, avoiding rotational procedures. Two distinct clusters of referents, corresponding to Traditional and Progressive attitudes, appeared even without the aid of rotation and supported Kerlinger's theory. In addition, the response pattern to criterial and non-crite rial referents was examined. A J-shape response pattern was discov ered for criterial referents, while the responses to non-criterial refer ents were diffused, and randomly scattered across the five possible categories of each item. Thus, the results indicated an empirical cross-cultural validity of the theory, but also raised questions con cerning the adequacy of measuring attitudes without referring to their criteriality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)923-930
Number of pages8
JournalEducational and Psychological Measurement
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1980


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