Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

3-2006

Abstract

This study used trait activation theory as a theoretical framework to conduct a large-scale test of the interactionist explanation of the convergent and discriminant validity findings obtained in assessment centers. Trait activation theory specifies the conditions in which cross-situationally consistent and inconsistent candidate performances are likely to occur. Results obtained by aggregating correlations across 30 multitrait-multimethod matrices supported the propositions of trait activation theory, shedding a more positive light on the construct validity puzzle in assessment centers. Overall, convergence among assessment center ratings was better between exercises that provided an opportunity to observe behavior related to the same trait, and discrimination among ratings within exercises was generally better for dimensions that were not expressions of the same underlying traits. Implications for assessment center research and practice are discussed.

Keywords

Assessment centers, trait activation, convergent validity, discriminant validity

Discipline

Organizational Behavior and Theory | Social and Behavioral Sciences

Research Areas

Organisational Behaviour and Human Resources

Publication

Journal of Applied Psychology

Volume

91

Issue

2

First Page

247

Last Page

258

ISSN

0021-9010

Identifier

10.1037/0021-9010.91.2.247

Publisher

American Psychological Association

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Additional URL

http://doi.org./10.1037/0021-9010.91.2.247

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