The use of various structural equation modelling methods in social work research continues to expand. As more social work researchers become acquainted with structural equation modelling (SEM), there has been an increase in the application of the methods in social work academic journals. The study reported here is a systematic review of the literature covering SEM studies in social work journals that were published between February 2007 and March 2012. Among the factors associated with the increased use of SEM in social work research are the availability of user-friendly statistical software, such as LISREL, AMOS and EQS, as well as additional software including Mplus, SAS (Proc Calis), Mx and R (lavaan.org). Based on the 2010 Journal Citation Reports, the review found that, indeed, there is improvement in both the number and quality of SEM studies. Specifically, n = 59 studies were published in seventeen social work journals within the specified time frame. Discussion is directed towards improving SEM application in social work research.
- Literature review
- Social work education
- Social work journals
- Social work research
- Structural equation modelling