Background: Racism and associated discrimination are pervasive and persistent challenges with multiple cumulative deleterious effects contributing to inequities in various health outcomes. Globally, research over the past decade has shown consistent associations between racism and negative health concerns. Such research confirms that race endures as one of the strongest predictors of poor health. Due to the lack of validated Australian measures of racist attitudes, RACES (Racism, Acceptance, and Cultural-Ethnocentrism Scale) was developed. Methods: Here, we examine RACES' psychometric properties, including the latent structure, utilising Item Response Theory (IRT). Unidimensional and Multidimensional Rating Scale Model (RSM) Rasch analyses were utilised with 296 Victorian primary school students and 182 adolescents and 220 adults from the Australian community. Results: RACES was demonstrated to be a robust 24-item three-dimensional scale of Accepting Attitudes (12 items), Racist Attitudes (8 items), and Ethnocentric Attitudes (4 items). RSM Rasch analyses provide strong support for the instrument as a robust measure of racist attitudes in the Australian context, and for the overall factorial and construct validity of RACES across primary school children, adolescents, and adults. Conclusions: RACES provides a reliable and valid measure that can be utilised across the lifespan to evaluate attitudes towards all racial, ethnic, cultural, and religious groups. A core function of RACES is to assess the effectiveness of interventions to reduce community levels of racism and in turn inequities in health outcomes within Australia.
- Item Response Theory
- Rasch analysis