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Can I run factor analysis on items that are measured on two different 5 likert scale, that is one scale is measuring frequency ( i.e never , rarely, occasionally, frequently and always) and other agreement ( strongly disagree, disagree, not sure, agree and strongly agree)

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  • $\begingroup$ Have you tried to use the search function? This seems like a question that is likely to have popped up on this site in the past. $\endgroup$
    – Andy
    Apr 17, 2016 at 10:54
  • $\begingroup$ Yes I did, but I did not find anything relevantin this context $\endgroup$
    – user112488
    Apr 17, 2016 at 11:04
  • $\begingroup$ Factor analysis isn't aware of the labels and cannot be. It assumes the levels are just 1 2 3 4 5, for a 5-level likert scale. $\endgroup$
    – ttnphns
    Apr 17, 2016 at 11:10
  • $\begingroup$ So , can I assume the scales mentioned above are measuring the same level and factor analysis can be done on these items with different scales? $\endgroup$
    – user112488
    Apr 17, 2016 at 11:13

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Well, you could do this but why would you?

Factor analysis starts with the correlation or covariance matrix of the items you include. Then it tries to find patterns in order to create latent variables.

What will you do if you find a latent variable that includes both frequencies and agreements? Will that be of any interest? Will you be able to use that latent variable to do anything?

Probably the answers here are 1) Be confused 2) and 3) No.

If that's the case, there is no reason to do the FA this way.

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  • $\begingroup$ you find a latent variable that includes both frequencies and agreements Well, this would sound a bit vague. One thing is to argue that incompatible stimulus measurement units may distort or impede proper correlation between the items. Another thing is to argue that a latent trait can or should itself have "units". $\endgroup$
    – ttnphns
    Apr 17, 2016 at 12:51

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