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Confirmatory Factor Analysis and Invariance Testing of the Young Carer of Parents Inventory (YCOPI)

Objective: Research into youth caregiving in families where a parent experiences a significant medical condition has been hampered by a lack of contextually sensitive measures of the nature and breadth of young caregiving experiences. This study examined the factor structure and measurement invariance of such a measure called the Young Carer of Parents Inventory (YCOPI; Pakenham et al., 2006) using confirmatory factor analysis across 3 groups of youth. The YCOPI has 2 parts: YCOPI-A with 5 factors assessing caregiving experiences that are applicable to all caregiving contexts; YCOPI-B with 4 factors that tap dimensions related to youth caregiving in the context of parent illness. Design: Two samples (ages 9–20 years) were recruited: a community sample of 2,429 youth from which 2 groups were derived (“healthy” family [HF], n = 1760; parental illness [PI], n = 446), and a sample of 130 youth of a parent with multiple sclerosis). Results: With some modification, the YCOPI-A demonstrated a replicable factor structure across 3 groups, and exhibited only partial measurement invariance across the HF and PI groups. The impact of assuming full measurement invariance on latent mean differences appeared small, supporting use of the measure in research and applied settings when estimated using latent factors and controlling for measurement invariance. PI youth reported significantly higher scores than did HF youth on all YCOPI-A subscales. The YCOPI-B requires some modifications, and further development work is recommended. Conclusion: The factor structure that emerged and the addition of new items constitutes the YCOPI-Revised. Findings support the use of the YCOPI-Revised in research and applied settings. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

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Rehabilitation Psychology

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