Measurement invariance of the perceived online racism scale across age and gender



The Perceived Online Racism Scale (PORS) is the first measure specifically developed to assess online racist interpersonal interactions and exposure to online racist content. To advance and strengthen the psychometric foundation of the PORS, the current study evaluated the measurement invariance of PORS across gender and age, two major demographic categories that can differentially affect how racism is perceived. Based on the framework of intersectionality, the salience and significance of social identities, such as gender and age, influence how racism is perceived with different meanings and interpretations. The current study examined data collected through an online survey from 946 racial/ethnic minority participants (59% women, mean age = 27.42) in the United States. Measurement invariance across gender (men and women) and age groups (ages 18 to 24, 25 to 39, and 40 to 64) was tested via comparison of a series of models with increasing constraints. Measurement invariance across configural, metric, and scalar models for age and gender was supported. Latent means were compared across gender and age groups. The results advance the psychometric property of the PORS as a general measure of online racism. Differences in the PORS scores reflect true differences among gender and age groups rather than response bias. Implications for future research are discussed.

Online racism, perceived online racism, measurement invariance, age, gender

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