Problems associated with the typological measurement of sex roles and androgyny

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Abstract

Four new measures of sex role style--the Bem Sex-Role Inventory (BSRI), the Personal Attributes Questionnaire (PAQ), the Personality Research Form (PRF) ANDRO scale, and the Masculinity and Femininity scales of the Adjective Check List (ACL)--each define sex role style and androgyny in similar conceptual and psychometric terms. Although these scales have often been used interchangeably, the current study examined interscale comparability among these inventories. Although correlations among the respective masculinity and femininity row (continuous) scale scores on the BSRI, PAQ, PRF ANDRO scale, and the ACL were moderately high, a large proportion of the 130 undergraduates were classified into different sex role categories (masculine typed, feminine typed, androgynous, or undifferentiated), with the category depending on the inventory used. In fact, when corrected for chance agreements, the majority of Ss (61%) were actually categorized discrepantly by any pair of inventories. This suggests limited comparability of sex role research findings based on different inventories, and when sex role styles are dichotomized into broad typological quadrants, as is the current practice in sex role research, substantial predictive utility is lost. (6 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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