Deeper Stats: 3 Belief Systems

Factor Analysis of 15 Death Penalty Opinions

The 15 opinions in the left column were subjected to exploratory factor analysis (EFA) using principal components to extract factors. Three factors with eigenvalues greater than 1.0 were rotated to a Varimax solution. The rotated Varimax table is displayed at right. Cross-loadings of .20 or higher are shown. Three factors emerged.


The 7 items on Factor 1, the 'Death Penalty Moral & Just' factor, reflects a pro-death penalty system and accounted for 39.2% of the explained variance (Cronbach's alpha=.80).


The 4 opinions on Factor 2, 'Death Penalty Is Unfair', reflect the belief system that the death penalty is unfair to the poor, persons of color, and the innocent. Factor 2 account for 12.0% of the explained variance (Cronbach's alpha=.85).


The 4 opinions on Factor 3, 'Death Penalty Is Immoral', reflects a belief system that capital punishment is morally wrong. Factor 3 accounts for 7.4% of the explained variance (Cronbach's alpha=.85).


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