RE-LOOKING INDIVIDUALISM-COLLECTIVISM: SELF-INTEREST AS AN ASPECT OF COLLECTIVISM
Sng, Y.T. and Nair, E., National University of Singapore, Singapore
This study addressed the common problem of low alpha reliabilities found in many instruments designed to measure individualism-collectivism. To investigate the possibility that this was due to a flawed or incomplete conceptualization of the construct, items were developed to measure individualism, collectivism, and a new construct, collectivism with self- interest. The 41-item questionnaire was administered to 60 male and 62 female undergraduate students in the National University of Singapore who were between 19 and 25 years of age. Principal components factor analysis extracted the three a priori factors as predicted. Cronbach alpha reliabilities were .81 for the 41-item scale, .89 for the individualism scale, .76 for the collectivism measure, and .79 for the 16-item scale that measured collectivism with self-interest. Results are discussed in relation to measurement concerns in individualism-collectivism research, problems in conceptualization of the construct, and the import of these issues on the future of cross-cultural research in psychology.