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In survey research, construct validity addresses the issue of how well whatever is purported to be measured actually has been measured. That is, merely because a researcher claims that a survey has measured presidential approval, fear of crime, belief in extraterrestrial life, or any of a host of other social constructs does not mean that the measures have yielded reliable or valid data. Thus, it does not mean the constructs claimed to be measured by the researcher actually are the ones that have been measured.

In most cases, for survey measures to have high construct validity they also should have good “face validity.” Face validity is a commonsensical notion that something should at least appear on the surface (or “at face value”) to be measuring what ...

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