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The term hierarchical model refers to a type of data analysis structure whereby the data are organized into a tree-like structure or one that employs multilevel (hierarchical) modeling. The former deals with both a theoretical structure and placement of individual items within categories that may have relationships. The latter deals with a statistical analysis procedure involving nested data and the complexity of the nesting may create complication or difficulty in interpretation. Both cases involve issues of hierarchical modeling but share little in common in terms of description and solution.

The two uses of hierarchical modeling differ in that one element describes a theoretical system used for classification (measurement) and the other describes an approach to statistical analysis. Both systems have important application in the study of ...

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