Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Herbert Colle (Committee Member), David Lahuis (Committee Chair), Debra Steele-Johnson (Committee Member)

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


This study examined the extent to which applicants and incumbents use different response processes when responding to personality items. It was hypothesized that applicants' responses to personality items will be more similar to a dominance response model and that incumbents' responses will be more similar to an ideal point response model. I used item response theory to estimate sample data from applicants (N = 1509) and incumbents (N = 1568) who completed the Sixteen Personality Questionnaire Select. Differential item (DIF) and test functioning (DTF) analyses were conducted using the generalized graded unfolding model (GGUM), which is based on ideal point model assumptions. A number of items showed DIF; however, only about a quarter of those were in the hypothesized direction. DTF was significant for three of the twelve scales and two of those were in the hypothesized direction. Implications and limitations are provided.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Psychology

Year Degree Awarded