AbstractsWomens Studies

Social desirability bias in measurements of neuroticism

by Arndís Eva Finnsdóttir 1993

Institution: University of Iceland
Year: 2015
Keywords: Sálfræði
Record ID: 1222096
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/21649


Social desirable responding (SDR) is the tendency to present oneself in an overly positive light on self-reports and is a source of systematic measurement error in self-reports. To estimate the amount of this type of error variance in self-report measurements, a correlation is calculated between a SDR scale and the self-reports. However, some have argued that contents of SDR scales overlap with personality traits, which results in the correlation of the two measurements. In an attempt to determine whether SDR is an artifact in the measurements of personality traits, we’ve compared correlation between SDR and a measure of neuroticism in men and women respectively. Arguing that neuroticism is more socially approved of in women than in men, due to differing gender stereotypes, social desirability and Neuroticism ought to correlate to a greater extend in the sample of men than the sample of women. Data was gathered from 96 women and 83 men, in the age ranging of 21 to 69. Marlowe-Crowne SD scale was used to assess SDR. The subjects’ level of Neuroticism was assessed on six subscales. Results showed that women scored higher on most subscales of neuroticism and the correlation between SDR and neuroticism were more prominent in the sample of men. Despite that, we failed to confirm that the influence of SDR on the measurement of neuroticism is gender biased. Interpretations of gender differences, and implications for the validity of both scales are discussed.