The Differentiation in the Family System Scale (DIFS; Anderson & Sabatelli, 1992) is a popular scale used to assess emotional connectedness and separateness within the context of family-of-origin experiences. This current study contributes to the research on family patterns of interaction by assessing the measurement invariance of DIFS for Americans and Koreans. The results indicated that the factor structure and loadings of the DIFS were invariant across both samples; however, latent means should not be compared across two groups because strong invariance was not met. It implies that there may be bias when participants from different cultures respond to the particular items. The findings challenge the practice, often used by internationally based researchers, of using translated versions of scales developed for use with U.S. based samples/populations. The non-invariance of some items is discussed in terms of the linguistic and cultural differences that would influence responses to translated measurement for Koreans. This research emphasizes the need for culturally grounded measures that integrate cultural factors into the measurement of marriage and family constructs.


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pp. 379-397
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