Recent Research Projects
Below are brief summaries of research studies and theses that were conducted through the Adult Development and Psychometrics Lab in the last year or so.
Homelessness and Housing in Transition (HHiT) Study
The HHiT Study was a 5 year longitudinal study in Vancouver, Ottawa, and Toronto that started in late 2008. The study was conducted by REACH3, a team of researchers and community partners across Canada, and funded by CIHR. Drs. Anita Palepu and Anita Hubley were the Vancouver investigators and our community partners were Liz Evans and Sarah Evans of the Portland Hotel Society (PHS) Community Services. The goal of this study was to identify the resources and risk factors associated with housing transitions and to determine if they are associated with significant changes in health and health determinants. Participants were 1200 homeless and vulnerably housed individuals (400 per city) who took part in annual in-person interview surveys of approximately 90 minutes. The interview survey asked about housing history, physical and mental health status, health conditions, use of health services, depressive and anxiety symptoms, risk behaviours, quality of life, and social support. Analysis of various stages of this project is ongoing.
Study of Memory, Age, and Wellbeing
The purpose of this study was to (1) explore how memory, feelings about age, and wellbeing are connected in older men and women, and (2) collect additional normative data on the Memory Test for Older Adults (MTOA). In this study, participants are asked to try different memory tasks as well as answer questions about their feelings about their age, life, and “being you”. This study closed at the end of 2017 with data analysis planned for summer, 2018.
Study of Subjective Age and Personality
This study was initially conducted for Mihaela Launeanu’s Master’s thesis and then additional data were gathered later for publication purposes. The purpose of this study was to examine what aspects of personality influence one’s subjective age in a sample of men and women ages 26-85 years. The age that you feel or act is called “subjective age” and it can have an impact on the things you buy, the activities you take part in, and the types of friends and social connections you make.
A Research Synthesis of Validation Practices Used to Evaluate the Satisfaction with Life Scale
Mary Chinni conducted this research for her M.A. thesis to examine methods and procedures that researchers use in the process of validating the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS). She conducted a literature search to capture all published validation studies of the SWLS from 1985 through 2012 using the PsycINFO database. Each article was coded for reliability and validity evidence as described in the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing (AERA, APA, & NCME, 1999). Results indicated that validation studies for the SWLS focused on internal structure and relations to other variables. Where statistical analyses were conducted, criterion values for interpretation of results were rarely provided. Relations to variables evidence consisted mainly of relationships to conceptually related variables. A greater understanding of what constitutes evidence of relations to other variables; how to conceptualize this evidence and provide a rationale for constructs, measures and variables used; and how to describe expected relationships and subsequently evaluate the evidence is needed.
Quality of Life for Homeless and Hard-to-House Individuals (QoLHHI): Content Validation
Lara Russell used three groups of content experts to (a) gather validity evidence based on content for two sections of the Quality of Life for Homeless and Hard-to-House Individuals (QoLHHI) Survey, and (b) determine if judgmental studies using content experts, a popular method for content validation, can be improved. Quantitative and textual validity evidence was collected from 11 subject matter experts (researchers working with individuals who are homeless and vulnerably housed (HVH)), 16 experiential experts (individuals who were HVH), and 8 practical experts (individuals who had administered the QoLHHI). In terms of evidence based on content for the QoLHHI, over 85% of the content elements were endorsed, indicating good evidence for validity. Overall, the content of these two sections of the QoLHHI appears likely to produce scores that lead to supportable and appropriate inferences. With regards to methodology, a new approach to content validation is proposed giving greater attention to the experts’ textual feedback, which is where their knowledge, experience, and insight are best expressed.
Quality of Life for Homeless and Hard-to-House Individuals (QoLHHI): Construct Validation of the Health and Living Conditions Sections
The purpose of this multi-site project conducted by a REACH3 team led by Dr. Hubley was to provide validation evidence for the Quality of Life in Homeless and Hard-to-House Individuals (QoLHHI) Health and Living Conditions Impact and Overall MDT Satisfaction scales. Data was gathered from 240 homeless and vulnerably housed individuals (HVHI) recruited from sites in Vancouver, Calgary, and Ottawa and 50 stably housed (SH) individuals recruited primarily from the general community in Vancouver. A subset of 75 HVHI were asked to return one week later to take part in a retest session.
The Meaning of ‘Home’: A Comparison of Homeless, Vulnerably Housed, and Stably Housed Adults
The purpose of this small project conducted by Dr. Hubley and two volunteer R.A.s was to examine the meaning of ‘home’ to 120 homeless, vulnerably housed, and stably housed men and women in Vancouver and area.
Comparability of the Rey-Osterrieth and Modified Taylor Complex Figures
The purpose of this study led by Dr. Hubley was to determine if two versions of a visual memory test are equally easy or difficult and if they measure visual memory the same way. Comparisons were also made to determine if performance on the two tests was related in the same way to performance on other neuropsychological tests of memory and ability. Data collection took place with over 140 older adults ages 55+.
A Comparison of the Hubley Depression Scale for Older Adults and the Geriatric Depression Scale: Criterion, Convergent, and Discriminant Validity
Sherrie Myers conducted this study for her Master’s thesis. She examined and compared the psychometric properties of the HDS-OA, GDS, and GDS-15 using a sample of 18 depressed and 18 non-depressed older adults. Her study findings revealed high internal consistency for the HDS-OA, evidence of convergent validity with the GDS and GDS-15, evidence of discriminant validity when correlated with anxiety, cognitive status, and self-rated health scores, and a significant difference between group scores, which attests to the ability of the HDS-OA to differentiate between individuals with and without depression. In these analyses, the HDS-OA performed as well as the GDS and GDS-15. The HDS-OA revealed higher sensitivity than the GDS and GDS-15, however, indicating slightly better performance in accurately identifying individuals with depression.