Advertisement

Journal of Gambling Studies

, Volume 24, Issue 3, pp 307–319 | Cite as

The Impact of Social Desirability Biases on Self-Report Among College Student and Problem Gamblers

  • Jeffrey G. Kuentzel
  • Melinda J. Henderson
  • Cam L. Melville
Original Paper

Abstract

The impacts of two types of social desirability bias, self-deceptive enhancement (SDE) and impression management (IM), were examined on self-reports of gambling problems, measured by the South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS), and recent gambling behavior, as measured by the Timeline Followback (TLFB) method, in a sample of college students (N = 191), and a sample of treatment-seeking problem gamblers (N = 49). Consistent with our expectations, IM was negatively associated with SOGS scores in both samples. IM was most highly correlated with SOGS scores among treatment-seeking participants (r = −.44, p < .01). Substantial numbers of participants in both samples had high enough IM scores as to call into question the validity of their self-report gambling data, according to published interpretive guidelines. With respect to SDE, we had predicted that it would be positively related to gambling behaviors and gambling-related problems, but found that SDE was inversely related to SOGS scores in both samples. Very little evidence was found for social desirability effects on TLFB scores. Thus, preliminary evidence was obtained that self-report data on gambling problems, but not on gambling behavior (frequency of gambling and amount of time and money spent), may be susceptible to the effects of impression management in both college students and treatment-seeking gamblers.

Keywords

Gambling Social desirability Self-deceptive enhancement Impression management South Oaks Gambling Screen Timeline Followback 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors wish to thank the research assistants who collected, entered, and checked data including Danijela Zlatevski, Ed Orehek, Robyn Childers, Jessica Beatty, Lissette Waldeck, Brad Rockafellow, Boddie Kamrani, and Marissa Burcham. Findings from an earlier version of this study were presented at the Convention of the National Center for Responsible Gaming, Las Vegas, NV on Dec. 8, 2002.

References

  1. American Psychiatric Association. (1987). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (3rd rev. ed.). Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  2. American Psychiatric Association. (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  3. Barrick, M. R., & Mount, M. K. (1996). Effects of impression management and self-deception on the predictive validity of personality constructs. Journal of Applied Psychology, 81, 261–272.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chen, P. Y., Dai, T., Spector, P. E., & Jex, S. M. (1997). Relation between negative affectivity and positive affectivity: Effects of judged desirability of scale items and respondents’ social desirability. Journal of Personality Assessment, 69(1), 183–198.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Crowne, D. P., & Marlowe, D. (1964). The approval motive: Studies in evaluative dependence. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  6. Henderson, M. J. (2004). Psychological correlates of comorbid gambling in psychiatric outpatients: A pilot study. Substance Use & Misuse, 39(9), 1341–1352.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Hogan, J., & Ones, D. S. (1997). Conscientiousness and integrity at work. In R. Hogan, J. Johnson, & S. Briggs (Eds.), Handbook of personality psychology (pp. 849–870). San Diego, CA: Academic Press Inc.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Ladouceur, R., Bouchard, C., Rhéaume, N., Jacques, C., Ferland, F., Leblond, J., & Walker, M. (2000). Is the SOGS an accurate measure of pathological gambling among children, adolescents, and adults? Journal of Gambling Studies, 16, 1–24.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Langens, T. A., & Mörth, S. (2003). Repressive coping and the use of passive and active coping strategies. Personality and Individual Differences, 35, 461–473.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Lesieur, H. R., & Blume, S. B. (1987). The South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS): A new instrument for the identification of pathological gamblers. American Journal of Psychiatry, 144(9), 1184–1188.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Li, A., & Bagger, J. (2007). The Balanced Inventory of Desirable Responding (BIDR): A reliability generalization study. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 67(3), 525–544.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Meston, C. M., Heiman, J. R., Trapnell, P. D., & Paulhus, D. L. (1998). Socially desirable responding and sexuality self-reports. Journal of Sex Research, 35, 148–157.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Morf, C. C., & Rhodewalt, F. (2001). Unraveling the paradoxes of narcissism: A dynamic self-regulatory processing model. Psychological Inquiry, 12, 177–196.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Nisbett, R. E., & Wilson, T. D. (1977). Telling more than we can know: Verbal reports on mental processes. Psychological Review, 84, 231–259.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Paulhus, D. L. (1984). Two-component models of socially desirable responding. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 46, 598–609.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Paulhus, D. L. (1998a). Interpersonal and intrapsychic adaptiveness of trait self-enhancement: A mixed blessing. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74, 1197–1208.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Paulhus, D. L. (1998b). Paulhus Deception Scales (formerly known as the Balanced Inventory of Desirable Responding). Toronto, Ontario: Multi-Health Systems.Google Scholar
  18. Paulhus, D. L. (2002). Socially desirable responding: The evolution of a construct. In H. I. Braun, D. N. Jackson, & D. E. Wiley (Eds.), The role of constructs in psychology and educational measurement (pp. 49–69). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  19. Paulhus, D. L., Bruce, M. N., & Trapnell, P. D. (1995). Effects of self-presentation strategies on personality profiles and structure. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 21, 100–108.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Paulhus, D. L., Harms, P. D., Bruce, M. N., & Lysy, D. C. (2003). The over-claiming technique: Measuring self-enhancement independent of ability. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 890–894.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Paulhus, D. L., & John, O. P. (1998). Egoistic and moralistic biases: The interplay of self-deceptive mechanisms with basic traits and motives. Journal of Personality, 66(6), 1025–1060.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Paulhus, D. L., & Reid, D. B. (1991). Enhancement and denial in socially desirable responding. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 60, 307–317.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Pauls, C. A., & Stemmler, G. (2003). Substance and bias in social desirability responding. Personality and Individual Differences, 35, 263–275.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Peterson, J. B., DeYoung, C. G., Driver-Linn, E., Seguine, J. R., Higgins, D. M., Arseneault, L., & Tremblay, R. E. (2003). Self-deception and failure to modulate responses despite accruing evidence of error. Journal of Research in Personality, 37, 205–223.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Petry, N. M., & Armentano, C. (1999). Prevalence, assessment, and treatment of pathological gambling: A review. Psychiatric Services, 50, 1021–1027.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Robins, R. W., Tracy, J. L., Trzesniewski, K., Potter, J., & Gosling, S. D. (2001). Personality correlates of self-esteem. Journal of Research in Personality, 35, 463–482.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Sinha, R. R., & Krueger, J. (1998). Idiographic self-evaluation and bias. Journal of Research in Personality, 32, 131–155.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Smith, D. B., & Ellingson, J. E. (2002). Substance versus style: A new look at social desirability in motivating contexts. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87, 211–219.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Sobell, L. C., & Sobell, M. B. (1996). Timeline Follow-Back: A calendar method for assessing alcohol and drug use. Toronto, Ontario: Addiction Research Foundation.Google Scholar
  30. Stinchfield, R. (2002). Reliability, validity, and classification accuracy of the South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS). Addictive Behaviors, 27, 1–19.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Stöber, J., Dette, D. E., & Musch, J. (2002). Comparing continuous and dichotomous scoring of the Balanced Inventory of Desirable Responding. Journal of Personality Assessment, 78(2), 370–389.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Weinstock, J., Whelan, J. P., & Meyers, A. W. (2004). Behavioral assessment of gambling: An application of the Timeline Followback method. Psychological Assessment, 16(1), 72–80.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeffrey G. Kuentzel
    • 1
  • Melinda J. Henderson
    • 1
  • Cam L. Melville
    • 2
  1. 1.Wayne State University, Psychology ClinicDetroitUSA
  2. 2.McNeese State UniversityLake CharlesUSA

Personalised recommendations