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Factor Analysis

SPSS for Windows Intermediate & Advanced Applied Statistics

Zayed University Office of Research SPSS for Windows Workshop Series


Presented by

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Associate Professor
Department of Humanities and Social Sciences
College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Understanding Factor Analysis
2

This workshop discusses factor analysis as an


exploratory and confirmatory multivariate
technique.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Understanding Factor Analysis
3

Factor analysis is commonly used in:


Data reduction

Scale development

The evaluation of the psychometric quality of a measure, and

The assessment of the dimensionality of a set of variables.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Understanding Factor Analysis
4

Regardless of purpose, factor analysis is used in:


the determination of a small number of factors based on a
particular number of inter-related quantitative variables.

Unlike variables directly measured such as speed,


height, weight, etc., some variables such as egoism,
creativity, happiness, religiosity, comfort are not a
single measurable entity.

They are constructs that are derived from the


measurement of other, directly observable variables .

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Understanding Factor Analysis
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Constructs are usually defined as unobservable latent variables. E.g.:


motivation/love/hate/care/altruism/anxiety/worry/stress/product
quality/physical aptitude/democracy /reliability/power.

Example: the construct of teaching effectiveness. Several variables


are used to allow the measurement of such construct (usually several
scale items are used) because the construct may include several
dimensions.

Factor analysis measures not directly observable constructs by


measuring several of its underlying dimensions.

The identification of such underlying dimensions (factors) simplifies


the understanding and description of complex constructs.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Understanding Factor Analysis
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Generally, the number of factors is much smaller than the


number of measures.

Therefore, the expectation is that a factor represents a set of


measures.

From this angle, factor analysis is viewed as a data-


reduction technique as it reduces a large number of
overlapping variables to a smaller set of factors that reflect
construct(s) or different dimensions of contruct(s).

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Understanding Factor Analysis
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The assumption of factor analysis is that underlying


dimensions (factors) can be used to explain complex
phenomena.

Observed correlations between variables result from


their sharing of factors.

Example: Correlations between a persons test scores


might be linked to shared factors such as general
intelligence, critical thinking and reasoning skills,
reading comprehension etc.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Ingredients of a Good Factor Analysis Solution
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A major goal of factor analysis is to represent


relationships among sets of variables parsimoniously
yet keeping factors meaningful.

A good factor solution is both simple and


interpretable.

When factors can be interpreted, new insights are


possible.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Application of Factor Analysis
9

This workshop will examine three common


applications of factor analysis:
Defining indicators of constructs
Defining dimensions for an existing measure
Selecting items or scales to be included in a measure.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Application of Factor Analysis
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Defining indicators of constructs:

Ideally 4 or more measures should be chosen to represent each


construct of interest.

The choice of measures should, as much as possible, be guided by


theory, previous research, and logic.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Application of Factor Analysis
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Defining dimensions for an existing measure:


In this case the variables to be analyzed are chosen by the
initial researcher and not the person conducting the analysis.
Factor analysis is performed on a predetermined set of
items/scales.
Results of factor analysis may not always be satisfactory:
The items or scales may be poor indicators of the construct or
constructs.
There may be too few items or scales to represent each underlying
dimension.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Application of Factor Analysis
12

Selecting items or scales to be included in a measure.


Factor analysis may be conducted to determine what items or
scales should be included and excluded from a measure.
Results of the analysis should not be used alone in making
decisions of inclusions or exclusions. Decisions should be
taken in conjunction with the theory and what is known about
the construct(s) that the items or scales assess.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis
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Factor analysis usually proceeds in four steps:


1st Step: the correlation matrix for all variables is computed

2nd Step: Factor extraction

3rd Step: Factor rotation

4th Step: Make final decisions about the number of underlying


factors

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
The Correlation Matrix
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1st Step: the correlation matrix


Generate a correlation matrix for all variables

Identify variables not related to other variables

If the correlation between variables are small, it is unlikely that


they share common factors (variables must be related to each
other for the factor model to be appropriate).
Think of correlations in absolute value.

Correlation coefficients greater than 0.3 in absolute value are


indicative of acceptable correlations.
Examine visually the appropriateness of the factor model.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
The Correlation Matrix
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Bartlett Test of Sphericity:


used to test the hypothesis the correlation matrix is an identity matrix
(all diagonal terms are 1 and all off-diagonal terms are 0).

If the value of the test statistic for sphericity is large and the
associated significance level is small, it is unlikely that the
population correlation matrix is an identity.

If the hypothesis that the population correlation matrix is an identity


cannot be rejected because the observed significance level is large,
the use of the factor model should be reconsidered.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
The Correlation Matrix
16

The Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin (KMO) measure of sampling adequacy:


is an index for comparing the magnitude of the observed correlation
coefficients to the magnitude of the partial correlation coefficients.

The closer the KMO measure to 1 indicate a sizeable sampling adequacy


(.8 and higher are great, .7 is acceptable, .6 is mediocre, less than .5 is
unaccaptable ).

Reasonably large values are needed for a good factor analysis. Small KMO
values indicate that a factor analysis of the variables may not be a good
idea.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Extraction
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2nd Step: Factor extraction


The primary objective of this stage is to determine the factors.
Initial decisions can be made here about the number of factors
underlying a set of measured variables.
Estimates of initial factors are obtained using Principal components
analysis.
The principal components analysis is the most commonly used
extraction method . Other factor extraction methods include:
Maximum likelihood method
Principal axis factoring
Alpha method
Unweighted lease squares method
Generalized least square method
Image factoring.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Extraction
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In principal components analysis, linear combinations of


the observed variables are formed.

The 1st principal component is the combination that accounts


for the largest amount of variance in the sample (1st
extracted factor).

The 2nd principle component accounts for the next largest


amount of variance and is uncorrelated with the first (2nd
extracted factor).

Successive components explain progressively smaller portions


of the total sample variance, and all are uncorrelated with
each other.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Extraction
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To decide on how many factors we
need to represent the data, we use
2 statistical criteria: Total Variance Explained

Eigen Values, and Extraction Sums of Squared

The Scree Plot. Initial Eigenvalues Loadings


Comp % of Cumulativ % of Cumulativ
onent Total Variance e% Total Variance e%
The determination of the number 1 3.046 30.465 30.465 3.046 30.465 30.465

of factors is usually done by 2 1.801 18.011 48.476 1.801 18.011 48.476

considering only factors with 3 1.009 10.091 58.566 1.009 10.091 58.566

Eigen values greater than 1. 4 .934 9.336 67.902


5 .840 8.404 76.307
6 .711 7.107 83.414
Factors with a variance less than 1 7 .574 5.737 89.151
are no better than a single 8 .440 4.396 93.547
variable, since each variable is 9 .337 3.368 96.915
expected to have a variance of 1. 10 .308 3.085 100.000
Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Extraction
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The examination of the Scree plot provides a


visual of the total variance associated with
each factor.

The steep slope shows the large factors.

The gradual trailing off (scree) shows the rest


of the factors usually lower than an Eigen
value of 1.

In choosing the number of factors, in addition


to the statistical criteria, one should make
initial decisions based on conceptual and
theoretical grounds.

At this stage, the decision about the number of


factors is not final.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Extraction
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Component Matrix using Principle Component Analysis
Component Matrixa

Component

1 2 3
I discussed my frustrations and feelings with person(s) in school .771 -.271 .121

I tried to develop a step-by-step plan of action to remedy the problems .545 .530 .264

I expressed my emotions to my family and close friends .580 -.311 .265

I read, attended workshops, or sought someother educational approach to correct the .398 .356 -.374
problem

I tried to be emotionally honest with my self about the problems .436 .441 -.368

I sought advice from others on how I should solve the problems .705 -.362 .117

I explored the emotions caused by the problems .594 .184 -.537

I took direct action to try to correct the problems .074 .640 .443

I told someone I could trust about how I felt about the problems .752 -.351 .081

I put aside other activities so that I could work to solve the problems .225 .576 .272

Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis.

a. 3 components extracted.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Rotation
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3rd Step: Factor rotation.


In this step, factors are rotated.

Un-rotated factors are typically not very interpretable


(most factors are correlated with may variables).

Factors are rotated to make them more meaningful and


easier to interpret (each variable is associated with a
minimal number of factors).

Different rotation methods may result in the


identification of somewhat different factors.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Rotation
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The most popular rotational method is Varimax rotations.

Varimax use orthogonal rotations yielding uncorrelated


factors/components.

Varimax attempts to minimize the number of variables that have high


loadings on a factor. This enhances the interpretability of the factors.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Rotation
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Other common rotational method used include Oblique rotations


which yield correlated factors.

Oblique rotations are less frequently used because their results are
more difficult to summarize.

Other rotational methods include:


Quartimax (Orthogonal)
Equamax (Orthogonal)
Promax (oblique)

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Factor Rotation
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A factor is interpreted or named by examining the largest values linking the
factor to the measured variables in the rotated factor matrix.
Rotated Component Matrixa

Component

1 2 3
I discussed my frustrations and feelings with person(s) in school .803 .186 .050

I tried to develop a step-by-step plan of action to remedy the problems .270 .304 .694

I expressed my emotions to my family and close friends .706 -.036 .059

I read, attended workshops, or sought someother educational approach to .050 .633 .145
correct the problem

I tried to be emotionally honest with my self about the problems .042 .685 .222

I sought advice from others on how I should solve the problems .792 .117 -.038

I explored the emotions caused by the problems .248 .782 -.037

I took direct action to try to correct the problems -.120 -.023 .772

I told someone I could trust about how I felt about the problems .815 .172 -.040

I put aside other activities so that I could work to solve the problems -.014 .155 .657

Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis.


Rotation Method: Varimax with Kaiser Normalization.

Dr. Maher Khelifa a. Rotation converged in 5 iterations.


Steps in Factor Analysis:
Making Final Decisions
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4th Step: Making final decisions


The final decision about the number of factors to choose is the number of
factors for the rotated solution that is most interpretable.
To identify factors, group variables that have large loadings for the same
factor.
Plots of loadings provide a visual for variable clusters.
Interpret factors according to the meaning of the variables

This decision should be guided by:


A priori conceptual beliefs about the number of factors from past research or
theory
Eigen values computed in step 2.
The relative interpretability of rotated solutions computed in step 3.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Assumptions Underlying Factor Analysis
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Assumption underlying factor analysis include.


The measured variables are linearly related to the factors + errors.
This assumption is likely to be violated if items limited response scales
(two-point response scale like True/False, Right/Wrong items).
The data should have a bi-variate normal distribution for each pair of
variables.
Observations are independent.
The factor analysis model assumes that variables are determined by
common factors and unique factors. All unique factors are assumed
to be uncorrelated with each other and with the common factors.

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Obtaining a Factor Analysis
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Click:
Analyze and
select
Dimension
Reduction
Factor
A factor
Analysis Box
will appear

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Obtaining a Factor Analysis
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Move
variables/scale
items to
Variable box

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Obtaining a Factor Analysis
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Factor
extraction
When
variables
are in
variable
box,
select:
Extractio
n

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Obtaining a Factor Analysis
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When the factor


extraction Box
appears, select:
Scree Plot

keep all default


selections
including:
Principle component
Analysis
Based on Eigen Value
of 1, and
Un-rotated factor
solution

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Obtaining a Factor Analysis
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During
factor
extraction
keep
factor
rotation
default of:
None
Press
continue

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Obtaining a Factor Analysis
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During Factor
Rotation:
Decide on the
number of factors
based on actor
extraction phase
and enter the
desired number of
factors by choosing:
Fixed number of
factors and
entering the
desired number of
factors to extract.
Under Rotation
Choose Varimax
Press continue
Then OK

Dr. Maher Khelifa


Bibliographical References
34
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Dr. Maher Khelifa


Bibliographical References
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Dr. Maher Khelifa


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Dr. Maher Khelifa