Read the von Sonderen, Sanderman, and Coyne (2013) article….

Read the von Sonderen, Sanderman, and Coyne (2013) article.  Discuss the following issues related to reverse-scored items. References Ineffectiveness of reverse wording of questionnaire items: Let’s learn from cows in the rain.

Reverse-scored items, also known as negatively worded items, are commonly used in questionnaire research. These items are designed to measure a construct by using statements that require respondents to provide a response opposite to what they would typically endorse. For example, a positively worded item may ask, “I enjoy spending time with friends,” while a reverse-scored item on the same construct might ask, “I do not enjoy spending time with friends.” The logic behind using reverse-scored items is to control for response bias and increase the validity of the measurements.

However, the effectiveness of reverse-scored items has been a topic of debate among researchers. In the article “Ineffectiveness of reverse wording of questionnaire items: Let’s learn from cows in the rain,” von Sonderen, Sanderman, and Coyne (2013) shed light on this issue by examining the psychometric properties and measurement characteristics of reverse-scored items.

One of the main arguments against using reverse-scored items is that respondents may misinterpret the statements and provide incorrect responses. Research has shown that people tend to read questionnaires with a positive bias, meaning they are more likely to agree with statements rather than disagree. This positive response bias can lead to response artifacts, such as acquiescence or social desirability bias. If respondents misinterpret reverse-scored items and provide responses that are consistent with their positive bias, it can lead to measurement error and affect the overall validity of the measurement.

The findings of von Sonderen et al. (2013) support this argument. They conducted a series of studies using different samples and measures. In one study, they examined data from 134 respondents who completed a 66-item questionnaire. The questionnaire contained 20 reverse-scored items and 46 positively worded items. The results showed that the reliability coefficients for the positively worded items were consistently higher than those for the reverse-scored items. This indicates that the reverse-scored items were less reliable and had more measurement error.

Furthermore, the researchers investigated the relationship between the reverse-scored items and other variables to determine their validity. They found that the reverse-scored items had weaker correlations with other variables compared to the positively worded items. This suggests that the reverse-scored items may not be accurately measuring the intended constructs.

Another issue with reverse-scored items is the cognitive load they impose on respondents. The process of understanding and responding to reverse-scored items requires additional cognitive effort, as respondents need to mentally reverse the statements and then provide their response. This increased cognitive load can lead to respondent fatigue and reduce the quality of the data obtained.

Von Sonderen et al. (2013) conducted a study to investigate this issue by comparing response times for reverse-scored items and positively worded items. They found that respondents took significantly longer to respond to reverse-scored items compared to positively worded items. This suggests that the cognitive load imposed by reverse-scored items can affect response times and potentially introduce measurement error.

In conclusion, the article by von Sonderen, Sanderman, and Coyne (2013) highlights the ineffectiveness of reverse-scored items in questionnaire research. The findings of their studies support the argument that reverse-scored items may lead to misinterpretation, measurement error, and reduced validity of measurements. Additionally, the cognitive load imposed by reverse-scored items can affect response times and introduce additional sources of measurement error. Researchers should carefully consider the potential drawbacks of using reverse-scored items and explore alternative approaches to improve the validity and reliability of their measurements. Cows in the rain may have their own issues to deal with, but there is much to be learned from their lack of complexity when it comes to questionnaire design.