Reliability reporting practices in youth life satisfaction research

Matt Vassar, William Hale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Due to the emergence of positive psychology in recent years, a growing line of research has focused on aspects of psychological wellness rather than psychopathology. Within the context of positive psychology, life satisfaction has emerged as a key variable of study in relation to adult and youth populations. Accurate measurement of life satisfaction and subsequent interpretation of results requires that the assessment devices yield strong psychometric properties. In terms of consistent measurement, reliability estimates must be calculated with each administration, as changes in sample characteristics may alter the scale's ability to generate reliable scores. Therefore, the present study was designed to address reliability reporting practices for three youth life satisfaction measures. Seventy-three occasions of use were identified in the literature for the three scales examined in this study. Results suggest that greater than half of the life satisfaction studies calculated reliability coefficients from their own data. A discussion of reliability from classical test theory is provided, examples of correct reliability reporting practices are given, and implications for reporting reliability are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)487-496
Number of pages10
JournalSocial Indicators Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007


  • Life Satisfaction
  • Positive psychology
  • Reliability
  • Youth


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