An Extension of the internal/external frame of reference Model: A response to Bong (1998)

Year: 1999

Author: Marsh, Herbert W., Bong, Mimi, Yeung, Alexander Seeshing

Type of paper: Refereed paper

Bong (1998) extended the internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model by attempting to operationalize the internal and external comparison processes that are central to the model and expanding the range of academic self-concept domains. Bong concluded that the "I/E failed to receive clear support" (p. 102) in relation to predictions that she derived from her extension of the original model. Our critical evaluation and reanalysis, however, reveals potential complications in the operationalization of the internal and external comparisons, the rationale for post hoc confirmatory factor analysis models and the use of correlated uniquenesses, and, thus, the original conclusions. The failure to appropriately operationalize the internal-external distinction based on the items used in the study meant that new tests of this distinction could not be pursued appropriately. The reanalysis, however, provided strong support for the original I/E model and a new extension to incorporate a wider range of academic domains consistent with Bong's original intent.