A new approach for mediation analysis: Is Baron and Kenny’s method still valid

Sait Gürbüz, Mehmet Emin Bayık

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Baron and Kenny's (1986) causal steps approach has been widely used by researchers in mediation analyses. Yet, recently, some researchers have begun to argue that Baron and Kenny's approach is not an appropriate method for mediation analysis, and that contemporary or new methods that are based on bootstrapping would yield more valid and reliable results in mediation analysis. The aim of the current study was to discuss basic assumptions between the causal steps approach and new approach in mediation analysis and show statistical differences between the two approaches by using real data set. As a result, it can be stated that the validity of the causal steps approach, which has been used extensively in the analysis of mediation models until today, is controversial, and the use of a new approach based on the bootstrap technique in psychology and behavior research may bring more valid results.
Original languageTurkish
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
JournalTürk Psikoloji Dergisi
Issue number88
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2021


  • Baron and Kenny method
  • mediation models
  • causal steps approach
  • contemporary approach
  • mediation analysis

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