Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Certain factors on an application blank may be predictive of length of service and of job success. If personal history items which successfully differentiate between the short-term and long-term employee or the desirable and undesirable employee can be identified, it would assist in the selection process.

A review of recent research concerning factors on an employment application as related to job success reveals that, although considerable research was done in this area during the early 19SO's, there has not been much published in the past two years. Apparently there are three reasons for this: (1) early results indicated high validity but questionable retest reliability so other methods such as testing have gained in popularity; (2) variables in each company required validation in each situation and if there was no new contribution in technique the results were probably not reported; and (3) the lack of adequate criteria for evaluating job performance has created validation problems.

The need for further research on the use of weighted application blanks is indicated by many reports. Unscientific, subjective selection results in weighted bias which is not related to job success. This area was investigated in a research project by Triandis (1963). It is assumed that each manager has a list of characteristics he considers likely to lead to job effectiveness and another list he considers likely to lead to job failure. These characteristics would differ between managers and the weights given to negative characteristics are greater than the weights given to the positive. Some characteristics-- race, sex, and religion--are probably irrelevant to job success but may still have a substantial influence on the decision process. The questionnaire results from personnel managers and students in Illinois and Greece indicate that in both cultures weight 2 is given to characteristics such as age, race, and sex which are probably not correlated with job success but which, under certain conditions, might bar most of the older Negro women candidates from the job. Triandis research indicates the need for further validation of the characteristics that personnel directors consider important for job success.