Personality and Rater Leniency: Comparison of Broad and Narrow Measures of Conscientiousness and Agreeableness

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Performance appraisal ratings provide the basis for numerous employment decisions, including retention, promotion, and salary increases. Thus, understanding the factors affecting the accuracy of these ratings is important to organizations and employees. Leniency, one rater error, is a tendency to assign higher ratings in appraisal than is warranted by actual performance. The proposed study examined how personality factors Agreeableness and Conscientiousness relate to rater leniency. The ability of narrower facets of personality to account for more variance in rater leniency than will the broad factors was also examined. The study used undergraduates' (n = 226) evaluations of instructor performance to ... continued below

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Grahek, Myranda May 2007.

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  • Grahek, Myranda

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Performance appraisal ratings provide the basis for numerous employment decisions, including retention, promotion, and salary increases. Thus, understanding the factors affecting the accuracy of these ratings is important to organizations and employees. Leniency, one rater error, is a tendency to assign higher ratings in appraisal than is warranted by actual performance. The proposed study examined how personality factors Agreeableness and Conscientiousness relate to rater leniency. The ability of narrower facets of personality to account for more variance in rater leniency than will the broad factors was also examined. The study used undergraduates' (n = 226) evaluations of instructor performance to test the study's hypotheses. In addition to personality variables, students' social desirability tendency and attitudes toward instructor were predicted to be related to rater leniency. Partial support for the study's hypotheses were found. The Agreeableness factor and three of the corresponding facets (Trust, Altruism and Tender-Mindedness) were positively related to rater leniency as predicted. The hypotheses that the Conscientiousness factor and three of the corresponding facets (Order, Dutifulness, and Deliberation) would be negatively related to rater leniency were not supported. In the current sample the single narrow facet Altruism accounted for more variance in rater leniency than the broad Agreeableness factor. While social desirability did not account for a significant amount of variance in rater leniency, attitude toward instructor was found to have a significant positive relationship accounting for the largest amount of variance in rater leniency.

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  • May 2007

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 28, 2007, 9:56 p.m.

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  • Dec. 15, 2008, 9:56 a.m.

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Grahek, Myranda. Personality and Rater Leniency: Comparison of Broad and Narrow Measures of Conscientiousness and Agreeableness, thesis, May 2007; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3668/: accessed July 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .