Date of Award

Spring 1997

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Director

Terry L. Dickinson

Committee Member

Albert S. Glickman

Committee Member

Robert M. McIntyre

Committee Member

Nancy T. Tippins


This research investigated the relationships among past testing experiences, testing attitudes, perceptions of test performance, race, and gender. In addition, the effects of testing information on testing attitudes were studied. Two hundred and twelve applicants to a variety of positions in a large telecommunications company were asked to complete a series of questionnaires before and after employment testing. The questionnaires included measures of testing experience, general and specific testing attitudes, and perceptions of test performance. Scores on the employment test were also obtained as a measure of cognitive ability. Of the 212 participants, half were given a brochure to read that explained the reasons why the company uses employment testing. The remaining half of the participants did not receive the brochure.

It was hypothesized that general testing attitudes would influence specific testing attitudes and that testing experience. general testing attitudes. and cognitive ability would be related. Testing experience and cognitive ability were expected to influence perceptions of test performance. Further, it was hypothesized that race and gender would be related to perceptions of test performance with whites and males perceiving higher levels of performance than African Americans and females. Race was also expected to be related to cognitive ability, testing experience, and general testing attitudes. Perceptions of test performance were also hypothesized to influence specific testing attitudes. Finally, it was expected that participants who received information about testing and corporate testing policy would have more positive post-test testing attitudes than those who do not receive the information.

Relationships among the latent variables were tested via structural model analysis. The results of this analysis yielded support for most of the hypotheses. General testing attitudes were found to influence specific testing attitudes. Also, testing experience was related to general testing attitudes and cognitive ability. Testing experience and cognitive ability were also found to influence perceptions of test performance. In addition, perceptions of test performance influenced specific testing attitudes. Finally, participants who read the testing information brochure had more positive ratings on the beliefs about testing scale than those participants who did not receive the brochure.


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