Graduation Semester and Year

2021

Language

English

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Amber N Schroeder

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to develop and validate a self-report measure of social media impression management (SMIM), which could be used to examine the prevalence rates of these behaviors among job seekers, as well as to investigate behavioral differences in SMIM across Facebook and LinkedIn. Through examining a series of exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses (Study One, N = 548), a 38-item SMIM scale was produced (as well as a 20-item abbreviated scale) that is comprised of five-factors (i.e., honest self-promotion, deceptive self-promotion, honest ingratiation, deceptive ingratiation, defensive image protection). Through construct validation efforts, several dispositional attributes (e.g., personality-based integrity, honesty-humility, narcissism, psychopathy) were identified that describe job seekers who are prone to engaging in SMIM. Study Two (N = 202) cross-validated the SMIM scale on a new sample of job seekers, and results demonstrated favorable psychometric properties for the 20-item abbreviated SMIM scale. In addition, results demonstrated that a majority of job seekers engage in SMIM to some extent (i.e., 54.56% on Facebook, 53.83% on LinkedIn), with honest and defensive forms occurring more frequently than deceptive behaviors. Further, Study Two hypotheses were supported, such that honest and deceptive self-promotion occurred more frequently on LinkedIn, whereas image protection behaviors were more common on Facebook. This study addresses an important gap in the literature by investigating the extent to which job seekers attempt to foster positive impressions on social media, which has important implications for organizations who choose to cybervet job applicants. Study limitations and several future research directions that can advance this line of research are described.

Keywords

Cybervetting, Social media, Selection, Impression management

Disciplines

Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences

Comments

Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

Included in

Psychology Commons

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