Structural Equation Modeling

This introductory short course is designed to familiarize participants with the philosophy and practice of structural equation modeling / confirmatory path analysis. All course materials, including lectures, datasets, and R scripts, are available for download below. Thanks to Jarrett Byrnes for generous donation of lecture slides: visit his site for more materials!


Grace et al. (2013) “Guidelines for a graph‐theoretic implementation of structural equation modeling.” Ecosphere. PDF

Lefcheck (2015). “piecewiseSEM: Structural equation modeling in R for ecology, evolution, and systematics.” Methods in Ecology & Evolution. PDF


Pre-workshop: Required Packages (ZIP)

Lecture 1: A Brief History of SEM: the underlying concept and motivations of SEM, its history and development, a comparison with a classical ANOVA approach. PDF

Lecture 2: The Basics: terms and definitions relating to SEMs and path coefficients. PDF / R Script (.zip)

Lecture 3: The Process: the two modes of SEM, designing and executing a meta-model. PDF

Lecture 4: Local Estimation: piecewise SEM. PDF / R Script & Data (.zip)

Lecture 5: Mixed Models: fixed vs. random effects, hierarchical models. PDF / R Script & Data (.zip)

Lecture 6: Autocorrelation: identification, consequences, and treatment of spatial and temporal correlations, pseudo-replication. PDF / R Script & Data (.zip)

Lecture 7: Advanced Topics: Interactions, non-linearities, multi-group models, latent and composite vareiables. PDF / R Script & Data (.zip)

Lecture 8: Parting Thoughts: How to Reject a Paper That Uses SEM. PDF

Additional Datasets: PDFs & Data (.zip)


Experimental Design

Meta-analysis in Ecology