We studied the effects of faking biodata test items by randomly warning 214 of 429 applicants for a nurse's assistant position against faking. While the warning mitigated the propensity to fake, the specific warning effects depended on item transparency. For transparent items, warning reduced the extremeness of item means and increased item variances. For nontransparent items, warning did not have an effect on item means and reduced item variances. These faking effects were best predicted when transparency was operationalized in terms of item‐specific job desirability in addition to the item‐general social desirability. We also demonstrated a psychometric principle: The effect of warning on means at the item level is preserved in scales constructed from those items, but the effect on variances at the item level is masked at the scale level. These results raise new questions regarding the attenuating effects of faking on validity, and regarding the benefit of warning applicants against faking.
|Original language||American English|
|Number of pages||18|
|State||Published - Dec 1993|