Assessing Internal Consistency in Counseling Research

Document Type


Publication Date



In counseling research, reliability is an extremely important concept. Reliability of scores refers to how consistent scores remain across time, instruments, and conditions. The most commonly reported methods of assessing reliability are Cronbach’s alpha and Kuder-Richardson's index of reliability, otherwise known as measures of internal consistency. The purpose of this article is to describe internal consistency reliability coefficients, delineate the history of these coefficients, depict contemporary issues in counseling research, and present recommendations for practice.