Structural Equation Modeling (SEM)


Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) is a statistical technique that is widely used in psychology and related fields to examine the relationships between observed variables and latent constructs. In SEM, a theoretical model is specified in which the relationships between latent constructs and observed variables are represented by a set of equations.


An example of the application of SEM in counseling psychology might involve examining the relationship between different types of coping strategies and symptoms of depression. The model might include several latent constructs such as avoidant coping, problem-focused coping, and depression, as well as observed variables such as self-reported coping behaviors and measures of depressive symptoms. SEM would allow researchers to test the strength and direction of the relationships between these constructs and variables, as well as the overall fit of the model to the data.

An Example

Smith, J. K., Johnson, L. M., & Jones, R. T. (2022). Structural equation modeling of coping strategies and depression symptoms in college students. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 69(2), 123-135. doi:10.1037/cou0000501


There are several introductory books that explain Structural Equation Modeling. The list here is based on my experience with the publishers of quality materials but there may be other resources more suited to readers using specific software. Local professors may be able to provide additional guidance. Suggestions:

Check for the latest edition.

Check if a book fits your available software.

Multiple Regression and Beyond: An Introduction to Multiple Regression and Structural Equation Modeling 3rd Edition by Timothy Z. Keith on   AMAZON

Structural Equation Modeling With AMOS: Basic Concepts, Applications, and Programming, Third Edition (Multivariate Applications Series) 3rd Edition
 By Barbara M. Byrne  on   AMAZON   [ Notice the AMOS application.]

A Beginner's Guide to Structural Equation Modeling: Fourth Edition 4th Edition

By Schumacker and Lomax  on     AMAZON