Date of Award
Robert J. Padgett
Applicants have been shown to fake responses on personality tests when applying for a job to appear as if they have characteristics most similar to ones that management defines as ideal for the given position. The purpose of this study was to propose and test a method to decrease faking on personality tests. Participants took a cognitive ability test, an emotional intelligence measure, and personality scales online. In the second part of the study, participants read an accountant job description and then either played a hand-held game (control condition) or filled out a biographical questionnaire (treatment condition) designed to increase participants' self-awareness. I hypothesized that making participants self-aware would reduce their tendency to fabricate answers on the subsequent personality test. Consistent with past research, the results show significant levels of participant faking in ways that would tend to make a person a better fit for an accountant job however making participants self-aware tended to actually increase participant faking, at least for participants with low cognitive ability or with high emotional intelligence. Possible explanations and implications of the unexpected results are discussed.
Hale, Rebekah Lynn, "Take It But Don't Fake It: Using Self-awareness to Reduce Fabrications on Personality Tests" (2014). Undergraduate Honors Thesis Collection. 204.