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I'm working on my dissertation which is a multiple case study examining the use of performance information. My dissertation chair states that I need to use confirmatory factor analysis (CFA); however, after months of learning SPSS and completing other analyses through the system, I have just found out that CFA cannot be completed in SPSS without AMOS, and my school does not support AMOS.

I've been working with a committee member and have been examining 2 and 3 factors related to my dependent variables which would help examine the underlying dimensions and associations with each factor but I'm concerned that I'll still be required to use CFA and have to learn a new statistical system.

So my questions are:

  1. Can exploratory factor analysis (EFA) be conducted on dependent variables? and
  2. Is there a strong argument to use EFA over CFA?
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    $\begingroup$ Use Lavaan in R, it's free. $\endgroup$ – Jeremy Miles Dec 5 '15 at 18:53
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  1. EFA can be conducted on dependent variables. Then you can use the factor saved scores in the regression.

  2. Often practical data do not commensurate with the theoretical factors. So, you could also try an EFA separately, that is, try both. See if the results match.

Please see these links:

Difference between exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis in determining construct independence

Differences on exploratory factor analysis, confirmatory factor analysis and principal component analysis

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