Demonstration and evaluation of a method for assessing mediated moderation
Morgan-Lopez, A., & MacKinnon, D. P. (2006). Demonstration and evaluation of a method for assessing mediated moderation. Behavior Research Methods, 38(1), 77-87.
Mediated moderation occurs when the interaction between two variables affects a mediator, which then affects a dependent variable. In this article, we describe the mediated moderation model and evaluate it with a statistical simulation using an adaptation of product-of-coefficients methods to assess mediation. We also demonstrate the use of this method with a substantive example from the adolescent tobacco literature. In the simulation, relative bias (RB) in point estimates and standard errors did not exceed problematic levels of +/- 10% although systematic variability in RB was accounted for by parameter size, sample size, and nonzero direct effects. Power to detect mediated moderation effects appears to be severely compromised under one particular combination of conditions: when the component variables that make up the interaction terms are correlated and partial mediated moderation exists. Implications for the estimation of mediated moderation effects in experimental and nonexperimental research are discussed