Predicting Repeated Behavior from Intention: The Issue of Scale Correspondence

Authors

  • Kerry S. Courneya

    Corresponding author
    1. University of Calgary
      Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Keny S. Courneya, Ph.D., Faculty of Physical Education, University of Calgary, 2500 University Drive N.W., Calgary, Alberta, T2N 1N4 Canada.
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Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Keny S. Courneya, Ph.D., Faculty of Physical Education, University of Calgary, 2500 University Drive N.W., Calgary, Alberta, T2N 1N4 Canada.

Abstract

The present study examined the issue of scale correspondence (Courneya & McAuley, 1993), using the repeated behavior of regular physical activity. Scale correspondence refers to the consistency of the scales between intention and behavior assessments when examining repeated behaviors. Eighty-five undergraduate students completed five different self-report scales that have been used for intention and repeated behaviors. The time period between intention assessment and reported behavior was one month. The results indicated that violating scale correspondence, particularly the continuous/dichotomous distinction, resulted in attenuated correlations. Moreover, not all forms of scale correspondence were equally satisfactory, with the continuous-open form being the most effective. Discussion focused on: (a) implications for the theories of reasoned action and planned behavior, (b) the conceptual basis of the intention construct, (c) the prevalence of single-item assessments of intention, and (d) the possible contribution of shared method variance to the improved correlations.

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