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Religion, Communication, and Social Capital
Unformatted Document Text:  Religion, Communication, and Social Capital --17-- generating approach proceeds in two steps. In the first step, an initial model is specified, based not necessarily on specific hypotheses about single paths between variables, but “at least some tentative ideas of what a suitable model should be” (Jöreskog, 1993, p. 313). In the second step, based on this core model, paths can be freed or fixed based on the so-called Lagrangian Multiplier (LM) test (Bollen, 1987). All parameters that are added based on the LM test should be meaningful and substantively interpretable. Standardized beta coefficients are presented to allow for the comparison of the relative influence of all the effects in the model. All coefficients are significant at the .05 level. Several measures of goodness-of-fit are provided in order to evaluate whether our model as theorized fits the data. RESULTS The final model fit the data exceptionally well with a Chi-square of 76.30 (df = 66, N = 1555) which translates into a BIC statistic of -408.44. The Goodness-of-Fit-Index (GFI) was .99 and the Adjusted Goodness-of-Fit-Index (AGFI) – controlling for multivariate nonnormality – was .99. Our model accounted for 29 percent of the variance in strength of religious belief, 21 percent in church attendance, 9 percent in church-based political discussion networks, 11 percent in secular political discussion networks, 45 percent in political discussion diversity, 18 percent in newspaper use, 15 percent in national television use, 37 percent in political knowledge, 23 percent in political efficacy, 3 percent in political trust, and 21 percent in social trust. As previously outlined, the main focus of this paper is on the relationships among the endogenous variables in our model, and how these endogenous relationships vary across evangelical versus mainline Protestants. Figure 1 displays the direct effects among endogenous variables. Not shown, but controlled for, are the eight exogenous controls. Our model specified

Authors: Nisbet, Matthew., Moy, Patricia. and Scheufele, Dietram.
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Religion, Communication, and Social Capital
--17--
generating approach proceeds in two steps. In the first step, an initial model is specified, based
not necessarily on specific hypotheses about single paths between variables, but “at least some
tentative ideas of what a suitable model should be” (Jöreskog, 1993, p. 313). In the second step,
based on this core model, paths can be freed or fixed based on the so-called Lagrangian
Multiplier (LM) test (Bollen, 1987). All parameters that are added based on the LM test should
be meaningful and substantively interpretable.
Standardized beta coefficients are presented to allow for the comparison of the relative
influence of all the effects in the model. All coefficients are significant at the .05 level. Several
measures of goodness-of-fit are provided in order to evaluate whether our model as theorized fits
the data.
RESULTS
The final model fit the data exceptionally well with a Chi-square of 76.30 (df = 66, N =
1555) which translates into a BIC statistic of -408.44. The Goodness-of-Fit-Index (GFI) was .99
and the Adjusted Goodness-of-Fit-Index (AGFI) – controlling for multivariate nonnormality –
was .99. Our model accounted for 29 percent of the variance in strength of religious belief, 21
percent in church attendance, 9 percent in church-based political discussion networks, 11 percent
in secular political discussion networks, 45 percent in political discussion diversity, 18 percent in
newspaper use, 15 percent in national television use, 37 percent in political knowledge, 23
percent in political efficacy, 3 percent in political trust, and 21 percent in social trust.
As previously outlined, the main focus of this paper is on the relationships among the
endogenous variables in our model, and how these endogenous relationships vary across
evangelical versus mainline Protestants. Figure 1 displays the direct effects among endogenous
variables. Not shown, but controlled for, are the eight exogenous controls. Our model specified


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