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But, in the Three Society data, hierarchy is a secondary feature of the self-interest dimension; the primary emphasis is on taking care of oneself. 1. The clusters on the graph form a rough circumplex—a circle of points around two dimensions. The clusters treating people equally, working for social justice, and respecting others’ feelings, found at 12 o’clock, are the highest loading items for altruism. Moving clockwise around the circumplex to 2 o’clock, the clusters being able to adjust and liking art and literature have loadings on both altruism and individualism.

Furthermore, it is likely that much of the variance that has been lost is random noise, since the common variance tends to be contained in the averages of the items that make up the scales. Another objective measure of the effectiveness of multi-item clusters is the reliability of the clusters as scales. Alphas can be calculated for multi-item scales using the mean correlation between the items where n is the number of items that make up the scale (Cronbach 1951). 70. Unfortunately, alphas for item clusters are often misused as a criterion for assessing the value of group results.

What it measures may not be what one thinks it measures (the issue of exactly what is being measured is a question of validity). For questionnaire data, there are different ways to measure reliability. The most direct of these is to give the same questionnaire to the same persons more than once—test-retest reliability, as it is called. To obtain test-retest data, the 328-items questionnaire was given to 25 UCSD undergraduates and then retested on them six weeks later. 53. 48 that Rankin and Grube found for a sample of 236 undergraduates using five-point ratings of the 36 Rokeach value items (Rankin and Grube 1980).

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