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Measurement Equivalence of the Revised Helping Alliance Questionnaire Across African American and Non-Latino White Substance Using Adult Outpatients.

Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment 2013;45(2):173-178. [doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2013.02.002]

Frank R. Dillon, PhD (Florida International University).

Analyses of the effectiveness of substance abuse treatments across racial/ethnic groups should ensure that outcome measures have the same conceptual meaning (i.e., measurement equivalence) across groups. Because racial groups differ in perceptions and experiences of the therapeutic alliance, this study investigated measurement equivalence properties of the Revised Helping Alliance Questionnaire (HAq-II) across racial groups. The sample included 138 African Americans and 133 non-Latino White participants, age 18-64 years, who participated in a randomized clinical trial investigating the effectiveness of Motivational Enhancement Therapy in the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN-0004). Results demonstrated configural invariance and two forms of metric invariance (weak and strong/scalar), suggesting that conceptualizations of therapeutic alliance and overall levels of endorsement of therapeutic alliance were comparable across racial groups. The groups indicated partial, strict metric nonequivalence. No studies to date reported measurement equivalence properties of the HAq-II.

Conclusions: Findings support valid measurement and interpretation of HAq-II outcomes. This secondary analysis study contributes to the growing literature on how substance abuse treatment researchers can ensure unbiased assessment when studying treatment outcomes across racial/ethnic minority groups. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2013)

Keywords: African Americans | CTN platform/ancillary study | Helping Alliance Questionnaire (HAQ-II) | Minority groups | Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET) | Motivational interviewing (MI) | Therapeutic alliance | Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment (journal)

Document No: 972, PMID: 23522849.

Submitted by CTN Dissemination Librarians, 3/28/2013

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Supported by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to the University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute.
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