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Examining the Correlates of Physical Activity for Whites, Blacks and Hispanics in a National Sample: The Role of Demographics, Social Connections and Self-Efficacy
Unformatted Document Text:  7 method is especially useful for comparing various possible models of the observed data (Bentler, 1980, 1990). Model specification Latent variable structural equation modeling was employed to examine the determinants of physical activity. Age, gender, education and income were specified as exogenous variables while social connections, self-efficacy and physical activity were endogenous latent variables. Social connections and self-efficacy were specified to mediate the path from age, gender, education and income to physical activity. All indicators from the latent variables have loadings, with the latent variable representing the measured construct. One of the loadings for each endogenous variable has to be constrained at a value of 1.0 for identification of the structural model (Maruyama, 1998). There was a correlation among the residuals of the indicators for the latent variables as it is assumed that these indicators share common variances. The hypothesized model was tested in the samples for Whites, Blacks and Hispanics respectively. Model Fit Statistics We used both absolute and comparative fit statistics to evaluate the hypothesized model. As the absolute index (chi-square, goodness of fit [GFI]) is dependent on the sample size, there is a higher probability that a correct statistical model with large sample size will be rejected even when it should not be rejected (Bentler, 1980; Maruyama, 1998). Comparative

Authors: Siu, Wanda. and Doyle, Kenneth.
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7
method is especially useful for comparing various possible models of the observed data
(Bentler, 1980, 1990).
Model specification
Latent variable structural equation modeling was employed to examine the determinants
of physical activity. Age, gender, education and income were specified as exogenous
variables while social connections, self-efficacy and physical activity were endogenous latent
variables. Social connections and self-efficacy were specified to mediate the path from age,
gender, education and income to physical activity. All indicators from the latent variables
have loadings, with the latent variable representing the measured construct. One of the
loadings for each endogenous variable has to be constrained at a value of 1.0 for
identification of the structural model (Maruyama, 1998). There was a correlation among the
residuals of the indicators for the latent variables as it is assumed that these indicators share
common variances. The hypothesized model was tested in the samples for Whites, Blacks and
Hispanics respectively.
Model Fit Statistics
We used both absolute and comparative fit statistics to evaluate the hypothesized model.
As the absolute index (chi-square, goodness of fit [GFI]) is dependent on the sample size,
there is a higher probability that a correct statistical model with large sample size will be
rejected even when it should not be rejected (Bentler, 1980; Maruyama, 1998). Comparative


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