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Does c’ Test Help, Anytime? -- On Communication Fallacy of “Effect to Mediate”

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Abstract:

Baron and Kenny’s (1986) classic procedure for establishing mediation requires a “c’ test,” namely the simple correlation between independent variable and dependent must be significant. Many authors, including Kenny, later recommended suspending c’ test under some conditions. A couple recent articles recommended to completely repeal the test. Most of the advocates and critics of the test focused on suppression, also known as competitive mediation. This article takes a more comprehensive view. Expanding a typology recently developed by others, we laid out all possible scenarios of three-variable non-recursive models. We grouped the 51 scenarios into three types of mediations and two types of non-mediations. We then examined each type to see if c’ test helps or hinders. We found that c’ test hinders for establishing two types of mediations; it does not help for establishing the third type; it also does not help for rejecting the two types of non-medications. Further, we show that the goal of c’ test, namely “to establish an effect to be mediated,” is a communication fallacy resulted from an equivocation and a pseudo concept. We concluded by supporting the emerging view led by Hayes (2009) that c’ test should be completely repealed for establishing any type of mediations.

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c (255), mediat (255), effect (198), test (184), b (92), non (83), 0 (76), signific (70), help (61), 1 (50), variabl (50), communic (46), fallaci (46), sign (41), non-medi (41), p (39), establish (39), kenni (39), path (38), indirect (38), anytim (37),
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Name: Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication
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http://www.aejmc.org


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p519410_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Zhao, XinShu., Chen, Qimei. and Tong, Bing. "Does c’ Test Help, Anytime? -- On Communication Fallacy of “Effect to Mediate”" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Renaissance Grand & Suites Hotel, St. Louis, MO, Aug 10, 2011 <Not Available>. 2014-11-25 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p519410_index.html>

APA Citation:

Zhao, X. , Chen, Q. and Tong, B. , 2011-08-10 "Does c’ Test Help, Anytime? -- On Communication Fallacy of “Effect to Mediate”" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Renaissance Grand & Suites Hotel, St. Louis, MO Online <APPLICATION/PDF>. 2014-11-25 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p519410_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Baron and Kenny’s (1986) classic procedure for establishing mediation requires a “c’ test,” namely the simple correlation between independent variable and dependent must be significant. Many authors, including Kenny, later recommended suspending c’ test under some conditions. A couple recent articles recommended to completely repeal the test. Most of the advocates and critics of the test focused on suppression, also known as competitive mediation. This article takes a more comprehensive view. Expanding a typology recently developed by others, we laid out all possible scenarios of three-variable non-recursive models. We grouped the 51 scenarios into three types of mediations and two types of non-mediations. We then examined each type to see if c’ test helps or hinders. We found that c’ test hinders for establishing two types of mediations; it does not help for establishing the third type; it also does not help for rejecting the two types of non-medications. Further, we show that the goal of c’ test, namely “to establish an effect to be mediated,” is a communication fallacy resulted from an equivocation and a pseudo concept. We concluded by supporting the emerging view led by Hayes (2009) that c’ test should be completely repealed for establishing any type of mediations.


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