A Tale of Two Methods, Organizational Research Methods
The structural equation modeling approach to testing for mediation is compared to the Baron and Kenny approach. The approaches are essentially the same when the hypothesis being tested predicts partial mediation. The approaches differ, however, in how each tests for complete mediation. Disparities in both theory and statistical estimators are identified and discussed. A strategy for future tests of mediation is recommended.
Lawrence R. James, Stanley A. Mulaik, Jeanne Brett
James, R. Lawrence, Stanley A. Mulaik, and Jeanne Brett. 2006. A Tale of Two Methods. Organizational Research Methods. 9(2): 233-244.