The Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure (MEIM)

The MEIM was originally published in the following article:

Phinney, J. (1992). The Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure: A new scale for use with adolescents and young adults from diverse groups. Journal of Adolescent Research, 7, 156-176.

It has subsequently been used in dozens of studies and has consistently shown good reliability, typically with alphas above .80 across a wide range of ethnic groups and ages.  On the basis of recent work, including a factor analysis of a large sample of adolescents*, it appears that the measure can best be thought of as comprising two factors, ethnic identity search (a developmental and cognitive component) and affirmation, belonging, and commitment (an affective component).  Two items have been dropped and a few minor modifications have been made.  Attached is the current revision of the measure, without the measure of Other-group orientation.  The two factors, with this version, are as follows: ethnic identity search, items 1, 2, 4, 8, and 10;  affirmation, belonging, and commitment, items 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12.  (None of the items are reversed.)  The preferred scoring is to use the mean of the item scores; that is, the mean of the 12 items for an over-all score, and, if desired, the mean of the 5 items for search and the 7 items for affirmation.  Thus the range of scores is from 1 to 4.

The suggested ethnic group names in the first paragraph can be adapted to particular populations.  Items 13, 14, and 15 are used only for purposes of identification and categorization by ethnicity.

The Other-group orientation scale, which was developed with the original MEIM, is not included, as it is considered to be a separate construct.  It can, of course, be used in conjunction with the MEIM.

Translations of the measure into Spanish and French now exist and are available, but we currently have no information on their reliability.

No written permission is required for use of the measure.  However, if you decide to use the measure, please send me a summary of the results and a copy of any papers or publications that result from the study.

 

Jean S. Phinney, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology
California State University, Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA 90032-8227

Phone: 323 343-2261
FAX: 323 343-2281
E-mail: jphinne@calstatela.edu

*Roberts, R., Phinney, J., Masse, L., Chen, Y., Roberts, C., & Romero, A. (1999). The structure of ethnic identity in young adolescents from diverse ethnocultural groups. Journal of Early Adolescence, 19, 301-322.

In this country, people come from many different countries and cultures, and there are many different words to describe the different back­grounds or ethnic groups that people come from. Some examples of the names of ethnic groups are Hispanic or Latino, Black or African American, Asian American, Chinese, Filipino, American Indian, Mexican American, Caucasian or White, Italian American, and many others.  These questions are about your ethnicity or your ethnic group and how you feel about it or react to it.

Please fill in: In terms of ethnic group, I consider myself to be ____________________

Use the numbers below to indicate how much you agree or disagree with each statement.

 

(4) Strongly agree     (3) Agree     (2) Disagree     (1) Strongly disagree 

 

MEIM

  • Name
  • Following are a number of statements with which some people agree and others disagree. There are no right or wrong answers since many people have different opinions. We would like you to indicate your opinion about each statement by choosing the alternative below it which best indicates the extent to which you disagree or agree with that statement. Following is a sample item. Circle the alternative below the statement which best indicates your feeling.
  • Strongly disagreeModerately disagreeSlightly disagreeNeutralSlightly agreeModerately agreeStrongly agree
    1. Canadian hockey players are better than Russian hockey players.
  • In answering this question, you should have circled one of the above alternatives. Some people would circle Strongly Disagree, others would circle Strongly Agree, and still others would circle one of the alternatives in between. Which one you circled would indicate your own feelings based on everything you know and have heard. Note, there is no right or wrong answer. All that is important is that you indicate your personal feeling.

    Please give your immediate reactions to each of the following items. Don’t waste time thinking about each statement. Give your immediate feeling after reading each statement. On the other hand, please do not be careless, as it is important that we obtain your true feelings.
  • Strongly disagreeModerately disagreeSlightly disagreeNeutralSlightly agreeModerately agreeStrongly agree
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