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Predicting Individual Score Elevation in an Applicant Setting: The Influence of Individual Differences and Situational Perceptions


Jennifer Bott, Department of Marketing and Management, Ball State University, Miller College of Business, Muncie, IN 47306. E-mail:


Previous research has indicated that applicants can increase their scores on non-cognitive measures by half of 1 standard deviation (e.g., Rosse, Stecher, Miller, & Levin, 1998; Viswesvaran & Ones, 1999). Two influential factors have been proposed to influence this elevation: individual differences and situational influences (e.g., Douglas, McDaniel, & Snell, 1996). The current study examined how individual differences and motivation (expectancy theory) predicted individual response elevation from a general to a job applicant context using a conscientiousness measure. Results indicated that elevation was primarily predicted by emotional stability, instrumentality, and the interaction between expectancy and instrumentality. Practical implications and future research directions are discussed.