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Keywords:

  • autonomic nervous system;
  • exploratory structural equation modeling;
  • father–child relations;
  • longitudinal analysis;
  • measurement invariance

This study investigated the common assumption that measures of father involvement are invariant across child age, gender, and reporter. Measurement invariance was tested with 320 families who were interviewed at child ages 10, 12, and 14. Criterion validity was also examined, using observational, survey, and physiologic measures with factor rotation type considered. It was found that invariance did not hold across gender for child report but did hold for mother and father reports. Differing factors were found across time and reporter. Child report and orthogonally rotated solutions demonstrated the greatest criterion validity. The findings suggest that typical father involvement assumptions may not hold and, when this is the case, involvement should be conceptualized in light of varying involvement domains. Implications for conceptualizing and analytically examining father involvement are considered.