Publication Date


Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Master of Arts


Under the conditional reasoning (CR; James, 1998) system of personality measurement, items are constructed to have the appearance of a logic or reasoning test. This characteristic of CR tests is designed to combat response distortion by test takers in personality testing. The CR system was used to develop the Conditional Reasoning Test of Aggression (CRT-A; James & Mclntyre, 2000), a tool used to screen employees whose scores indicate an aggressive disposition. An assumption of the CRT-A is that respondents are unaware of the construct being measured. This study examines the effect of informing respondents that the CRT-A measures aggression. A sample of 80 participants from a large southeastern university in the United States were randomly assigned to either the control (CRT-A standard administration) or experimental (respondents are aware the test is a personality measure of aggression) group. Results revealed no CRT-A score differences between groups, suggesting that the CRT-A is robust to violations of the assumption that test takers be under the impression that the test is a measure of reasoning. Descriptive statistics and effect size are reported. A discussion of the implications of the present findings and suggestions for future research is also provided.



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