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Factor Analysis, Confirmatory

  1. Ralph B. D'agostino Sr,
  2. Heidy K. Russell

Published Online: 15 JUL 2005

DOI: 10.1002/0470011815.b2a13014

Encyclopedia of Biostatistics

Encyclopedia of Biostatistics

How to Cite

D'agostino, R. B. and Russell, H. K. 2005. Factor Analysis, Confirmatory. Encyclopedia of Biostatistics. 3.

Author Information

  1. Boston University, Boston, MA, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 JUL 2005


In factor analysis, a common-factor analysis model involves representing each observed variable as a weighted sum of m common-factor scores and one unique-factor score. The collection of these equations for all p variables is called a factor pattern. Sometimes, an investigator may have a hypothesized factor pattern or there may exist a factor matrix from a previous study. An investigator might wish to estimate and test the fit of the data to the hypothesized factor pattern or to the model obtained from a previous study. Performing an analysis to find out how the estimated factor matrix from the data matches the hypothesized factor matrix is called confirmatory factor analysis. Software packages available for this analysis are highlighted.


  • factor analysis;
  • factor pattern;
  • factor matrix;
  • confirmatory factor analysis