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Trait self-control and self-discipline: Structure, validity, and invariance across national groups

Hagger, M.S., Zhang, C-Q, Kangro, E-M, Ries, F., Wang, J.C.K., Heritage, B.ORCID: 0000-0002-6437-7232 and Chan, D.K.C. (2018) Trait self-control and self-discipline: Structure, validity, and invariance across national groups. Current Psychology, 40 . pp. 1015-1030.

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The aim of the present study was to test the validity of the Brief Self-Control Scale (BSCS; Tangney, Baumeister and Boone 2004) including its dimensional structure based on competing one- and two-factor models, discriminant validity from the conceptually-related self-discipline construct, invariance across multiple samples from different national groups, and predictive validity with respect to health-related behaviors. Samples of undergraduate students (total N = 1282) from four national groups completed the brief self-control scale, the self-discipline scale from the NEO-PI-R, and self-report measures of binge drinking, exercise, and healthy eating. Confirmatory factor analytic models supported a two-factor structure of self-control encompassing restraint and non-impulsivity components. The model exhibited good fit in all samples and invariance of factor loadings in multi-sample analysis. The restraint and non-impulsivity components exhibited discriminant validity and were also distinct from self-discipline. Structural equation models revealed that non-impulsivity predicted binge drinking in three of the samples, and restraint predicted exercise in two samples, with no role for self-discipline. Results point to a multi-dimensional structure for trait self-control consistent with previous theory separating impulsive- and control-related components.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Psychology and Exercise Science
Publisher: Springer
Copyright: © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018
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