The psychometric evaluation of the sense of belonging instrument (SOBI) with Iranian older adults

Kelly Ann Allen, Gökmen Arslan, Heather Craig, Sedigheh Arefi, Ameneh Yaghoobzadeh, Hamid Sharif Nia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Background: A sense of belonging is a significant predictor of mental health and well-being in later life. A sense of belonging in childhood and adolescence contributes to a number of adult behavioural and psychological outcomes. A high sense of belonging has been associated with better health, longevity, psychological well-being, and disease recovery. Methods: In this study, the Persian version of the Sense of Belonging Instrument (SOBI) for older adults in Iran was evaluated psychometrically to develop an accurate measure for belonging. Participants in the study were 302 older adults, 60 years old and above, living independently in Iran and chosen through convenience sampling. Results: An exploratory factor analysis indicated that the four-factor structure, which included 16 items, accounted for 54.12% of the total variance, and was characterized by strong factor loadings, with values ranging from.50 to.87. Thereafter, a confirmatory factor analysis confirmed the four-factor latent structure of the SOBI, providing adequate data-model fit statistics. All latent structures were characterized by adequate-to-strong latent construct (H) internal reliability (α) coefficients. Conclusions: The Persian version of the SOBI is a useful tool in understanding older adult patients’ sense of belonging when living independently within the community. The implications for practice and research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number211
Number of pages8
JournalBMC Geriatrics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Aging
  • Belonging
  • Older adult
  • Psychometric
  • Sense of belonging

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