Coefficient alpha: A reliability coefficient for the 21st century?

Yanyun Yang, Samuel B. Green

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

284 Scopus citations


Coefficient alpha is almost universally applied to assess reliability of scales in psychology. We argue that researchers should consider alternatives to coefficient alpha. Our preference is for structural equation modeling (SEM) estimates of reliability because they are informative and allow for an empirical evaluation of the assumptions underlying them. An example is presented to illustrate the advantages of SEM estimates of reliability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-392
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Psychoeducational Assessment
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2011


  • coefficient alpha
  • reliability
  • structural equation modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychology(all)


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