The Effectiveness of Warnings at Reducing the Prevalence of Insufficient Effort Responding

by Caitlin E. Blackmore

Institution: Wright State University
Department: Human Factors and Industrial/Organizational Psychology MS
Degree: MS
Year: 2014
Keywords: Psychological Tests; Psychology; survey research; psychometrics; careless response; random response; inconsistent response; data screening; data cleaning; online surveys
Record ID: 2043311
Full text PDF: http://rave.ohiolink.edu/etdc/view?acc_num=wright1412080619


Unmotivated participants who fail to devote sufficient effort to their survey responses can influence the quality of self-report data. The majority of the published literature on this topic has concerned techniques for detecting insufficient effort responding (IER), whereas little attention has been given to developing effective procedures for preventing IER. There are numerous advantages to preventing IER, one of which is that discarding data is unnecessary. The current study examined the effects of a warning manipulation on the prevalence of IER and the quality of the resulting data. Statistically significant differences between conditions on four of the IER detection measures were observed, indicating a lower prevalence of IER in the warning condition compared to the control condition. Results also supported existing research on IER’s consequences to internal consistency reliability, and demonstrated that a warning manipulation can impact internal consistency reliability estimates. These findings have important implications relevant to both researchers and practitioners who collect self-report data, as they demonstrate the efficacy of an IER intervention that has numerous advantages over the more commonly used IER detection measures.