Journal of Business and Psychology

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 489–500 | Cite as


  • Nora P. Reilly
  • Shawn P. Bocketti
  • Stephen A. Maser
  • Craig L. Wennet


Though covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, job candidates with a record of a disability may be adversely evaluated. Two experiments demonstrate that subtle knowledge of a prior disability creates a bias that can be removed by a structured interview. A job candidate was labeled as having once suffered from depression, substance abuse, cancer, or no disability. The candidate who once suffered from depression or substance abuse was judged more negatively than a control candidate, while a cancer survivor was not. Though disabilities are not perceived equally, benchmarked rating scales can enhance attention to relevant behaviors, thus controlling the potential for bias.


ADA; disability; stigma; structured ratings; situational interview; structured interview; benchmarks; depression; substance abuse; cancer 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nora P. Reilly
    • 1
  • Shawn P. Bocketti
    • 1
  • Stephen A. Maser
    • 1
  • Craig L. Wennet
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyRadford UniversityRadfordUSA

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