Document Type



Doctor of Education


Counselor Education

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Susan Kashubeck-West


Kent Butler

Mark Pope

Debra Zand


This dissertation is an investigation of the psychometric properties of the Spiritual Well-Being Scale (SWBS) (Paloutzian & Ellison) using a sample of African American women recruited from the community. The purpose was to determine the appropriateness of using the SWBS with a sample not included in the earlier norming studies (Ledbetter et al., 1991). The sample consisted of 168 African American women who were parents or guardians of youth attending middle school in a Midwestern urban area. The women completed a survey including demographic information, parent scales, and the SWBS. Construct validity of the SWBS was examined by conducting a confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) with three different models previously proposed; the two-factor model developed by the creators of the SWBS (Paloutzian & Ellison, 1982); a five-factor model (Miller, Fleming & Brown-Anderson, 1998); a three-factor model (Scott, Agresti & Fitchett, 1998). Each of the three models fit the data poorly, therefore, an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was conducted and resulted in a new three-factor model. The new model was assess for fit using CFA and model modification was conducted via item deletion until a new 6-item two-factor model (Model D) resulted. Additionally, Cronbach¿s alphas were calculated to determine reliability and correlational analyses were conducted to assess for convergent and discriminant validity. While reliability was adequate for the three models tested and the new three-factor model; Model D had much lower reliabilities. The results of the convergent validity analyses demonstrated that parent supervision was related to the various forms of the spiritual well-being measure described in this study. The results of the discriminant validity analyses demonstrated that the SWBS, Model D, and their subscales were not correlated with the demographic variables. The results indicated that the SWBS may not be a valid instrument to use with a community sample of African American women and demonstrated the need to develop a more culturally appropriate spiritual well-being instrument.

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