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Cleveland, Jeanette N. ; Murphy, Kevin R. 
Personal and Situational Characteristics 
Signs or Samples? 
[Aug 85] 

32p.; Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the 
American Psychological Association (93rd, Los 
Angeles, CA, August 23-27, 1985). 
Reports - Research/Technical (143) — 
Speeches/Conference tapers '150) 

MF01/PC02 Plus Postage. 

♦Administrator Attitudes; ^Employer Employee 
Relationship; Employment Practices; ^Individual 
Characteristics; *Job Performance; ^Personnel 
Evaluation; Stereotypes 
IDENTIFIERS 'Age Bias 

ABSTRACT 

Managers must evaluate the performance, promotabixity 
and potential of workers with very different personal characteristics 
such as age, sex, or race. The research literature indicates that 
these personal characteristics affect decisions. Furthermore, these 
characteristics appear to be more salient and to affect decisions in 
some situations more than in others. Two possible explanations for 
this phenomenon closely parallel Wernimont and Campbell's (1968) 
distinction between signs and samples as indicators of job 
performance. First, personal characteristics may act as a sign to 
guide a manager's expectations about a worker's level of performance. 
On the other hand, person constructs may become salient by being 
either highly consistent or inconsistent with the sample of person 
characteristics or situations. The sign approach suggests that 
researchers should study *he supervisor's beliefs about relationships 
between traits and behaviors, as in Implicit Personality Theory 
research. The sample approach suggests that the relationship between 
traits and behaviors is not context-free and the situation and 
supervisor's perception of the situation should oe studied. Both 
views must be considered in research or the interaction between 
persons and jobs. Several tables and figures are appended. 
( Author /ABL) 



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* Reproductions supplied by EDRS are the best that can be made 

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Personal and Situational C 
Signs or 
Jeanette 

Kevin 
Department o 
Colorado Sta 



aracteristics in Age Bias: 

Samples? 

N. Cleveland 

and 

R. Murphy 

Psychology 
e University 



Running Head: Signs or Samples 



U 8 DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION 

NATIONAL INSTITUTF OF EDUCATION 

EDUCATIONAL AESOUflLES INFORMATION 
f CENTER (EfllC) 

This document has t^een reproduced as 
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Signs or Samples 
-2- 



Abstr&ct 

Manager must evaluate the performance, promotabi 1 i ty and potential of 
workers with very different personal characteristics such as age, sex, or 
race. The research literature indicates that these personal 
characteristics affect decisions. Futhermore, these characteristics appear 
to be more salient (and have effects c-i decisions) in some situations more 
than in others. Two possible explanations for this phenomenon which 
closely parallel Wernimont and Campbell's (1968) distinction between signs 
and samples as indirators of job performance are discussed in the present 
paper. First, personal characteristics may act as a sign to guide 
managers 1 expectations abo^t a worker's level of performance. On the other 
hand, person constructs may become salient by being either highly 
consistent or inconsistent with the sample of person characteristics or 
situations. The present paper suggests that both views must be considered 
in research on the interactions between persons and jobs. 



Signs or Samples 
-3- 

Personal Characteristics and Personnel Decisions: 
Signs or Samples? 

In the work setting, supervisors a^e frequently called upon to evaluate 
employee performance and to make decisions regarding promotions, raises, 
awards, transfers, and the like. There is considerable evidence that 
personal characteristics such as bex, race, and age are related to personnel 
decisions, and it is widely believed that the correlation between personal 
characteristics and personnel decisions is an indication of unfair bias 
against females, minorities, and older workers (Arvey, 1979). During the 
last two decades the issue of bias in personnel decisions has been the 
focus of considerable research by Industrial and Organizational psychologists. 
For the most part, this research has been aimed at uncovering and cataloguing 
specific biases, rather than at understanding the mechanisms which might 
underlie these biases (exceptions include Terborg & 1 1 gen (1975) and 
Heilman (1981)). As a result, I/O psychologists know a great deal about 
what sort of biases exist, but know comparatively little about the way in 
which personal characteristics such as race, sex, or ^ge actually affect 
supervisors 1 decisions or tneir perceptions of different workers 1 levels of 
job performances. 

Close examination of the research on bias in personnel decisions suggests 
two fundamentally different ways in which personal characteristics are 
assumed to affect supervisor's perceptions of workers: (a) personal 
characteristics may be viewed as a direct indicator of poor performance, or 



Signs or Samples 
•4- 



(b) the personal characteristic may become salient because they are not 
representative of the personal characteristics usually encountered in 
acceptable or superior workers. These two different explanations for the 
effects of personal characteristics on personnel decisions parallel 
Wernimont and Campbell's (1965) definition of signs and samples . In this 
paper, we will describe the twc different approaches to explaining bias in 
personnel decisions and will note the relation of each one of these 
approaches to Kelly's (1955) Personal Construct Theory. Results of a 
recent study on age bias in promotion and awards decisions will be used to 
illustrate methods of combining both sign and sample approaches to further 
our understanding of the relationship between personal characteristics and 
personnel decisions. 

A Framework For Studyi ng Personnel Decisions 

Industrial and Organizational psychologists have, for the most part, 
addressed individual biases in isolation. Thus, sex bias is typically 
.viewed as a different phenomenon than bias against minorities, or bias in 
favor of attractive applicants. The intrusions of personal characteristics 
upon personnel decisions might be more profitable viewed as part of the 
more general process by which the supervisor forms and organizes his or her 
perceptions of each individual worker. The fact that demographic 
characteristics such as age, race, or sex are correlated with performance 
judgments and personnel decisions suggests that these personal 
characteristics are somehow linked, in the m.nd of the supervisor, with a 



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Signs or Samples 
-5- 



variety of constructs such as "effective worker", or "candidate for 
promotion". The sign vs. sample approaches suggest that two different 
types of links are implied by the existing research on personnel decision 
biases: (a) direct links (signs), and (b) indirect links which depend upon 
the context in which a worker ;s evaluated (samples). The sign vs. sample 
approaches, in turn, suggest different research designs. Research in which 
personal characteristics are viewed as signs is concerned principally 
with the main effect of worker characteristics upon personnel decisions. 
Research which follows tne sample approach implies an interaction betweeh 
worker characteristics and contextual variables. A simple descriptive 
model of the role of personal variables, acting as both signs and samples, 
in personnel decisions is presented in Figure 1. The implications of this 



Insert Figure 1 about here 
model are discussed below. 

Personal Characteristics as ^ Sign of Performance 

The general model underlying much of the research on personnel decision 
biases is one in which a variable such as age, or race, or sex is correlated 
with some dependent variable, such as performance ratings or promotion 
recommendations. These correlations are often explained in terms of 
stereotypes (Cecil, Paul & Olin, 1973; O'Leary, 1974; Schein, 1973, 1978; 



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6 



Signs or Samples 
-6- 

Terborg, 1977). For example, female workers are generally viewed as more 
nurtu^ant, gentle, timid, reserved, passive, and indecisive than males 
(Broverman, Vogel, Broverman, Clarkson, & Rosenkrantz, 1977). These sex-role 
stereotypes, in turn, are thought to leac to less favorable promotion, 
development, and hiring recommendations for females than for males (Cohen & 
Bunker, 1975), less favorable evaluations of female than of male candidates 
for managerial positions (Rosen & Jerdee, 1974), and less favorable 
evaluations of the supervisory behavior of females than of males (Bartol & 
Butterfield, 1976; Rosen & Jerdee, 1973). 

The sign ap<*oach suggests that personal characteristics lead directly 
to a number of trait judgments about each worker ( e.g, f emale=passi ve, 
male=aggressive). Research in areas such as Implicit Personality Theory, 
trait attribution, or impression formation (Bruner & Tanguiri, 1954; 
Passini & Norman, 1966; Wegner, 1978) is thus cleanly relevant to this 
approach to explaining personnel decision biases. These trait judgments, 
in turn, lead to inferences about the worker's ability to perform 
successfully in a specific job. 

For the most part, research on personal characteristics as signs of 
performance has been context-free. In other words, the trait judgments 
which have been studied in research of this type have been sufficiently 
broad (e.g., active-passive, honest-dishonest, intelligent-unintelligent) 
to suggest that females, or minorities, or older workers are viewed as less 
acceptable for all. types of work than are young, white males. The tendency 
to concentrate upon very broad traits has obscured the fact that two 



ERIC 



7 



Signs or Samples 
-7- 



inferences must be made in connecting personal characteristics with 
personnel decisions. The first inference is from personal characteristics 
to traits. The second inference concerns the abilities or traits which are 
necessary for success in a specific context. Recent attention to specific 
contextual variables suggests a second way in which personal characteristics 
may intrude upon personnel decisions. Rather than leading directly and 
automatically to very general trait inferences, personal characteristics 
may Interact with contextual variables, and may activate different sets of 
trait inferences in different contexts. The method of explaining the 
influence of personal characteristics upon personnel decisions which examines 
the interaction of personal and contextual variables is referred to as a 
sample approach. 

Personal Characteristics as a^ Sampl e of Performance 

In an attempt to better understand biased decision-making, Industrial 
.and Organizational psychologists have begun to examine personnel decisions 
within specific contexts. Important decisions appear to be based on more 
than one set of characteristics. There may be, in fact, situational 
variables that affect the extent to which personal-characteristics-bias 
will influence decisions. In some settings, the context of the decision 
may serve to enhance the influence of such variables as age, or gender of 
the individual. In other situations, these contextual factors may reduce 
or limit the biasing impact of such factors on decisions* For example, 
Cohen and Bunker (1980) found that females were evaluated as more hireable 



8 



Signs or Samples 
-8- 



for a position usually held by a woman (editorial assistant) than for a 
position usually held by a nan (personnel technician). The opposite was 
true for men. Cleveland and Landy (1983) found that older workers .nay not 
be negatively perceived in all situations or for all jobs, but only in 
those positions that are stereot>pically a younger person job. In both 
studies the personal characteristics of the individual were incongruent 
with the characteristics of the majority or typical incumbent. In other 
words, the person being evaluated was not representative in some important 
way, of the sample of persons usually encountered in this context. More 
important, changing the context may lead to substantial changes in the 
links between personal chartacteristics and personnel decisions ( Cohen & 
Bunker, 1980; Heilman, 1981). 

The process which appears to be involved in the sample approach is one 
where the perceiver determines whether the individual (male, female, young, 
old) "fits" into, or is consistent with, the characteristics of the 
situation (Heilman, 1981). The sex or age of the person no longer acts as 
"a sign indicating a specific level of performance or specific set cf traits 
or abilities, but is an element which is consistent or inconsistent with 
the typical context of the decisions. Thus, there is no assumption of a 
specific universal relationship between age, race, or sex and the ability 
to perform the job. Rather, this approach to studying and explaining 
personn3l decision biases concentrates on che direct relationship between 
the person and situation characteristics. Although traits and abilities 
need not be inferred in this approach, the inference may be made that the 



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Signs or Samples 
-9- 



better the match, the more likely the individual possesses the necessary 
traits and abilities to perform in that situation Here, we are primarily 
concerned with the interaction of person and context vari ab1es--not the 
simple main effects of person variables upon decisions. 

There are two principal differences between the sign and the sample 
approaches. First, in the sample approach, personal constructs (e.g., old, 
male) are activated only when they are inconsistent with the characteristics 
of persons usually encountered in that context. Second, the inference is 
not one which proceeds directly from a specific characteristic to a specific 
set of traits. Rather, an^ personal characteristic which is inconsistent, 
or which does not fit the supvisor's stereotype of a particular context may 
affect decisions. It may be that any important discrepancy between the 
person being evaluated and the typical or model worker in a particular 
context leads to the same inference; the person who does not fit a 
particular context may invariably be seen as less likely to succeed than 
another who does fit. 

The sample approach allows for considerable flexibility in defining and 
operationalizing the person variables to be studied. The sign approach has 
been traditionally limited to a set of variables about which people hold 
fairly stable and general stereotypes (e.g., sex, race). The sample 
approach allows one to study person variables which may not lead to universal 
trait attributions, but may in some contexts have a powerful effect 
upon decisions. An example of the flexibility of the sample approach is 
presented in a study by Cleveland and Landy (1983). 



10 



Signs or Samples 
-10- 

An Empirical Example of the Sign and Sample Approache s 

A recent paper by Cleveland and Landy (1983) employed both the sign and 
sample approaches to study the effect of a worker's age on personnel 
decisions in jobs which are either stereotypical ly a younger person's job 
or stereotypical ly an older person's job. Two studies vyere conducted to 
examine the impact of age as a sign or a sample variable. In Study 1, 
managers from a large company were asked to evaluate hypothetical 
employees and make awards recommendations based on the past performance of 
the employee. In Study 2, managers evaluated the profitability of 
hypothetical employees. Thus, the awards decision was primarily concerned 
with rewarding past behavior, whereas, the promotion, recommendation 
involved the prediction of future performance in specific occupations. 
Both studies were similarly designed, using a 3 (Job Stereotype) X 3 (Age) 
X 2 performance Pattern) analysis of variance design. 

Defining Age _a_s _a Sign and _a Sample Variable 

The age of the hypothetical employee was operational ized in two ways: 
(1) the chronological age of the worker, ami (2) the pattern of behaviors 
depicted in 10 performance ratings. Thus, there were two older employees 
(61 or 62 years), two middle-aged employees (40 or 41 years) and two 
younger employees (27 o** 25 years). 

The pattern of 10 performance ratings reflected either a stereotypi cal ly 
younger pattern of behaviors or an older pattern of behaviors. The 10 
performance ratings were assigned by the experimenters using two 



9 

ERIC 



Signs or Samples 
-11- 

predetermined patterns of ratings. In the older performance pattern, five 
performance areas believed to be negatively influenced by the age 
stereotype were rated lower than the other five areas. These target areas 
included self-development skills, interpersonal skills, technical competence, 
problem-solving and attention to detail. In the younger performance pattern, 
these five dimensions were rated higher. Although there were two versions 
of the 10 ratings, the overall level of performance in the two patterns was 
equal; i.e., when the 10 ratings are summed, the total score is the same in 
both the younger and older patterns. These two independent variables, the 
chronological age of the employee and the performance pattern of ratings, 
were considered operati onal izations of the sign approach to decision-making. 
Cleveland and Landy (1983) predicted significant main effects for both 
chronological age and the (age-related) pattern of performance in both the 
awards study and the promotion study. 

The third independent variable in the Cleveland and Landy study was a 
contextual variable— the age stereotype of the job. There were three jobs 
that varied in age stereotype: (a) the job title of Plant Manager 
represented the stereotypically older job; (b) the younger job was 
Intermediate Programmer; and (c) Production Planner represented th2 
age-neutral position. These jobs were classified by age stereotype in a 
previous study by Cleveland and Landy (l»ol). Although there were three 
possible two way interactions only two interactions in the studies 
represented the sample approach, the Job X Age interaction and the Job X 
Pattern interaction. Both of these interactions suggest that the age of 



9 

ERJC 



12 



Signs or Samples 
-12- 



thp pmninyee (de fSn ed either :r> tc.*m5 of l!u unuiuyitdi dye ur performance 
pattern) has an effect upon decisions only when tSe employee's age is 
inconsistent with the stereotype of the job. 
Dependent Vari aMes 

Study 1^ 2. Awards Study - Nineteen subjects were asked to distribute 
money among six hypothetical employees for each of the three age-typed 
jobs. The amount of award money that couid be distributed to one 
"employee" ranged from no money to approximately four months salary. Each 
subject provioed a total of 18 recommendations. 

Study 2 - Promotion ^>tudy - Nineteen managers (they did not participate 
in Study 1) made promotion recommendations for each of six employees for 
the three jobs. One of the fo^owing was recommended for each of the 
hypothetical employees; (1) promote immediately (into the stereotype job); 
(2) promote within two years; (3) promote within two to four years; or (4) 
maintain the employee at the present level of employment. Again, each 
subject provided a total of 18 prQmotabi 1 i ty ratings. 

Overall Performance Rating - Prior to making an awards or a promotion 
recommendation, subjects in both studies '/ated the overall level of 
performance of each of the hypothetical employees. Managers were 
'nstructed to review the 10 specific ratings and then rate the employee on 
overall performance using a six-point scale. A rating of "1" represented a 
poor level of performance while a rating of "6" reflected an excellent 
level of performance. In both studies, managers provided 18 ratings of 
overal 1 performance. 



13 



Signs or Samples 
-13- 



Results 

Awards Study 

In Table 1, the results of the separate analysis of variance using both 
the awards recommendation and the overall rating as the criterion are 
shown. There were no main effects involving any of the three independent 
variables. However, one of the interactions which represented the sample 
approach was significant. The significant Job X Pattern, presented in 
Figure 2, indicates that the largest difference in awards money between the 
younger and older patterns was found in the young job. Using the overall 
rating as the criterion, the Job X Pattern interaction, which is also shown 
in Figure 2, indicates that the laryest difference in ratings occurred when 
the job stereotypes are imcompatible with the performance pattern. 
Promotion Study 

The analysis of variance and the omeqa squared values are reported in 
Table 2. Using the promotion rating, one main effect, performance pattern, 
which reflected the sign approach was significant. The result indicated 
that managers viewed the younger pattern of behavior as more promotable 
♦han the older pattern. However, using both the overall rating and the 
promotion recommendation, the Job X Pattern interacticn was again 
significant suggesting that the sample approach may more accurately reflect 
the process underlying the decisions. The Job X Pattern interactions for 
the promotion and overall performance ratings are presented in Figure 3. 
The largest difference in promotion ratings occurred in the younger job. 
This finding is similar to the results in Study 1. In addition, the 



14 



Signs or Samples 
-14- 



interpretation of the interaction using the overall rating was similar to 
the interpretation in Study 1; the largest differences in overall ratings 
occurred when the stereotype of the job was incompatible with the stereotypic 
pattern of behaviors. 

Discussion of Data 
The two studies were similar in a number of respects. First, the ge 
cf the hypothetical employee (a sign) did not have * significant main 
effect upon personnel decisions in either study. There are at least two 
possible explanations for this finding. First, demand characteristics may 
have cued the managers to avoid using chronological age as a basis for 
their judgments. The managers were well aware of the issues and consequences 
of racial, sexual, and age discrimination. A second explanation might be 
that chronological age, a sign variable, does not in this instance 
influence personnel decisions. Rather, it may be that perceived correlates 
of age (variables that are part of the age stereotype, such as ability 
contructs) negatively influence decisions. The pattern of performance 
behaviors (10 areas) is one such operationalization of the age stereotype. 
Similar to chronological age, the pattern also represented a sign of a 
specific person-ability relationship. Although the main effect for 
performance pattern was significant in the promotion decision, it was not 
significant in the awards exercise. Therefore, the sign approach provides 
little information for understanding decision-making. Had this been a 
typical (sign-oriented) study of age bias in personnel decisions, Cleveland 
and Landy (1983) probably would have concluded that worker age has no 
effect upon decisions. 



15 



Signs or Samples 
-15- 



On the other hand, the sample approach in understanding the process of 
decision-making receives support in both the awards and the promotion studies. 
The interaction indicated that in the younger job, employees depicted by 
the older pattern of behaviors received less awards money and were promoted 
less quickly than employees depicted by the younger pattern. In addition, 
the Job X Pattern interaction using the overall performance rating as the 
criterion was significant in both studies. The interpretatio^of the 
interaction suggested that employees were rated lower in overall performance 
when they were depicted by the 10 behaviors as inconsistent with the job 
stereotype. 

Summary and Recommendations 
There are two different approaches for explaining the effects of 
personal characteristics upon personnel decisions: (a) the sign approach, 
which implies a direct link between person variables and decisions, and (b) 
th«; sample approach, which involves the consideration of both personal and 
situational characteristics. There are several advantages to considering 
both sign and sample approaches in research on personnel decisions biases. 
First, the consideration of both approaches directs researchers 1 attention 
to the frequently ignored question of how personal characteristics 
of employees affect the supervisor's decisions. The sign approach sugge rf s 
that we should study the supervisor's beliefs about the relationships 
between traits and behaviors (as in Implicit Personality Theory research); 
whereas, the sample approach suggests that the relationship beteween traits 
and behaviors is not context-free and that we should study the situation 



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Signs or Samples 
-16- 



an d the supervisor's perception of the situation. Second, the 
consideration of both approaches significantly broadens the scope of 
research in this area. Researchers need not limit themselves to the small 
set of person characteristics which have been studied in existing 
sign-oriented research, but rather can study a variety of person-situation 
interactions. Third, it is important to consider both personal and 
contextual characteristics in order to develop a more sophisticated 
understanding of bias in the workplace. Bias is only rarely an all-or-none 
phenomenon; situational factors may either accentuate or suppress the 
biasing effects of personal characteristics upon personnel decisions. 

The sample approach suggests that we need sound theories of "the 
situation". This has been an important concern in research on personality, 
but has not been adequately addressed in personnel research. For example, 
we do not know why supervisors view particular personal characteristics as 
either consistent or inconsistent with the job. "It is possible that 
supervisors are primarily affected by the actual distribution of males, 
females, young persons, older persons, etc.; their theories of the job may 
be grounded in reality. Another possibility is that supervisors 1 perceptions 
of the job are the product of stereotypes and implicit theories; supervisors 
may view females as not fitting into a stereotypical ly male job, even in 
the face of many instances of successful female performance. 

The sample approach suggests three areas for future research. First, 
as noted above, research on supervisors' theories of the job should be 
given high priority. Second, research is needed on the parameters of the 



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Signs or Samples 
-17- 



*ack of fit model. It seems likely that some personal characteristics have 
a stronger effect upon decisions in a wide variety of contexts than others. 
It also seems likely that some personal characteristics woula i ot greatly 
affect decisions under any circumstances. At present, we know little about 
the limits of the lack of fit model. Third, research is needed on methods 
of broadening supervisors 1 theory of the job. A supervisor with a very 
narrow conception of the typical worker may exhibit bias against a wide 
variety of workers who do not "fit". It is possible that we can most 
effectively combat unfair bias in decisions by broadening supervisors' 
theories of the job. Incorporating the sign and sample approaches within 
our research designs may lead to further understanding of personnel 
decision-making. 



18 



Signs or Samples 
-18- 



References 

Arvey, R.D. ( 1979) . Fairness in Selecting Emp l oyees . Addison-Wesley Publishing 
Co. 

Bartol , K.M. & Butterfield, D. (1976). Sex effects on evaluating leaders. 

Journal of Applied Psychology, fil,J[4)_, 4*6-545. 
Broverman, I.K., Vogel, S., Broverman, O.M., Clarkson, F. & Rosenkrantz, P. 

(1972). Sex role stereotyping: A current appraisal. Journal of Social 

Issues, 28, 59-78. 
Bruner, J.S., & Taguiri, R. (1954). The perception of people. In G. 

Lindzey (Ed.), The Handbook of Social Psychology , (V.2), Reading, Mass.: 

Addison-Wesley. 

Cecil, E., Paul, R., & Olins, R. (1973). Perceived importance of selected 

variables used to evaluate male and female job applicants. Personnel 

P sychology, 26, 397-404. 
Cleveland, J.N. & Landy, F.J. (1981). Age perceptions of jobs: 

Convergence of two questions. 
Cleveland, J.N., & Landy, F.J. (1983). The effects of person and job 

stereotypes on two personnel decisions. Journal of Applied Psychology, 

68(4) , 609-619. 

Cohen, S., & Bunker, K. (1975). Subtle effects of sex role stereotypes on 
recruiters 1 hiring decisions. Journal of Applied Psychology, 60 , 566-572. 

Ksilman, M. (1983). Sex bias in work settings: The lack of fit model. 
Research in Organizational Behavior, 5^, 269-298. 

Kelly, G.A. (1955). A Theory of Personality: The Psychology of Personal 



ERIC 



19 



Signs or Samples 
-19- 

Co nstructs. W.W. Norton: Nfew York. 

O'Leary, V.E. ( 1974) . Some attitudinal barriers to occupational aspirations in 
women. Psychological Bulletin, 81, 809-826. 

Passini, F. & Norman, W. (1966). A universal conception of personality 
structure. Journal of Personal i ty and Social Psychology, _4, 44-49. 

Rosen, B., & Jerdee, T. (1973). Influence of sex-role stereotypes on eva- 
luation* male and female supervisory behavior. Journal of Applied Psychology, 
57^ 44-48. 

loosen, B., & Jerdee, T. (1974). Effects of applicant's sex and difficulty of 

the job on evaluations of candidates for managerial positions. Journal of 

Applied Psychology, 59, 511-512. 
Schein, V.E. (1973). The relationship between sex-role stereotypes and 

requisite management characteristics. Journal of Applied Psychology, 57 , 95-100. 
Schein, V.E. (1978). Sex-role stereotyping, ability and performance: Prior 

research and new directions. Personal Psychology, 31 , 259-268. 
Terborg, J. (1977). Women in management. Journal of Applied Psychology, 62, 

647-664. 

Terborg, J. & Ilgen, D. (1975). A theoretical approach to sex discrimination 
in traditionally masculine occupations. Organizational Behavior and Human 
Performance, 13, 352-376. 

Wernimont, P. & Campbell, J. P. (1968). Signs, samples, and criteria. Journal 
of Applied Psychology, 52, 372-376. 



20 



Mean 20 

Percent , c 
lb 

Total 

Award 12 



6.0 

Mean 

5.0. 

Overal 1 
Performance^ Q 



Rating 



3.0 



Signs or Samples 
-19- 



20.70 



Younger Pattern 

16.70 16.68 

16.37 16.58 



, Older Pattern 
11.83 



Younger Neutral Older 



JOB STEREOTYPE 



Younger Pattern 




3.80 



4.22 



Older Pattern 



4.20 



Younger Neutral Older 



(a) 



(b) 



JOB STEREOTYPE 

Figure 2 - Awards Recommendation-The Job X Performanc Pattern 

Interaction Using the Percentage of Award (a) and the 
Overall Rating (b) as the Criteria 



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21 



Mean 1 '° 
Probability 2 0 
Rating 

3.0 
4.0 



1.52 



Younger Pattern 
2.09 




2.78 



2.19 



Older Pattern 



2.34 
2.57 



Younger Neutral Older 



JOB STEREOTYPE 



Signs or Samples 
-20- 



(a) 



Mean 
Overall 
Perfromance 
Rating 



6.0 I- 
5.0 

4.0 

3.0 



4 7 j Younger Pattern 

4.33 *.49 



3.92 




Pattern 



Younger Neutral Older 



JOB STEREOTYPE 



(b) 



Figure 3 . Promotion Decision—The Job X Performance Pattern 

Interaction Using the Promotabi 1 i t; Rating (a) and the 
Overall Rating (b) as the Criteria 



0 

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22 



Signs or Samples 
-21- 

Table 1 

ANOVA Results for Study 1: Percentage of Total Awards and Overal' Performance Rating 



df MS F- Value 3 Onega 2 

%Tota1 Overall XTotal Overall %Total Overall %Total Overall 

Source of Variation Award 0 Rating 0 Award 0 Rating 0 Award 0 Rating 0 Award h Rating 0 



Mean 


1 


1 


92845. 


69 


5000.90 


29131.40** 


2046.71** 


Error 


18 


144 


3. 


19 


2.44 






Job Stereotype 


2 


2 


4. 


16 


0.70 


2.21 


0.13 


Error 


36 


28 


1. 


88 


0.54 






Target Age 


2 


2 


20. 


65 


0.10 


1.02 


1.44 


Error 


36 


28 


20. 


30 


0.07 






Performance Pattern 


1 


1 


787. 


61 


f 5.35 


3.97 


2.o3 


Error 


18 


14 


198. 


33 


2.11 






Job X Target Age 


4 


4 


18. 


76 


0.04 


0.95 


0.33 


Error 


74 


56 


19. 


82 


0.11 







23 

ERIC 



24 



Job X Pattern 2 

Error 36 

Target Age X Pattern 2 

Error 36 

Job X Age X Pattern 4 

Error 74 



2 



28 
2 

28 
4 

56 



730.90 
93.53 

185.08 
19.32 
5.90 
26.44 



8.67 
1.38 
0.77 
0.13 
0.03 
0.16 



9.58 



0.22 



Signs or Samples 
-22- 

Table 1 (cont. ) 



7.81** 6.26** 



6.04** 



0.71 



,30 



.06 



.50 



.04 



Probability reported based on Greenhouse-Grisser probability (corrections for symmetry violations). 
**£ .001 

^The sample sizes using the precentage of total award andthe overall rating as the criteria were 19 and 15, 
respectively. 



26 



ERIC co 



Signs or Samples 
-23- 



Table 2 

ANOVA Results for Study 2: Promotion Rating and Overall Performance Rating 



df MS F-Value a Onega 2 

Promo Overall Promo Overall Promo Overall Promo Overall 

Source of Variation Rating 0 Rating 0 Rating 0 Rating 0 Rating 0 Rating 0 Rating 0 Rating 0 



Error 


17 


12 


2.70 


1.56 










Job Stereotype 


2 


2 


3. 7 


0.13 


5.26** 


0.53 


.03 




Error 


34 


24 


0.66 


0.25 










Target Age 


2 


2 


2.50 


0.13 


2.63 


0.25 


.02 




Error 


34 


24 


0.95 


0.53 










Performance Pattern 


11 


1 


7.71 


0.43 


5.98** 


0.03 


.02 




Error 


17 


121 


1.29 


1.43 










Job X Target Age 


4 


4 


0.70 


0.02 


0.90 


0.18 






Error 


68 


48 


0.77 


0.13 










Job X Pattern 


2 


2 


18.45 


7.72 


18.95** 


16.79"* 


.34 


.72 


Error 


34 


24 


0 97 


0.45 











ERIC 27 



Target Age X Pattern 2 

Error 34 

Job X Age X Pattern 4 

Error 68 



2 

24 
4 
48 



0.39 
0.23 
0.11 
0.58 



0.03 
0.13 
0.18 
0.10 



1.69 



0.19 



Signs or Samples 
-24- 

Table 2 (cont.) 
0.24 

1.76 



Probability reproted based on Greenhouse-Geis-,er probability (corrections for symmetry violations), 
** p .001 

b The sample sizes using the promotion rating and the overall rating as the criteria wer-? 18 and 13, 
respectively. 



23 



ERIC 



30 



Signs or Samples 
-25- 



Personal Characteristics 
as a SIGN 



Personal Characteristic 
3|to Trait/Ability 
Inference 



An Inference that 

^| Ability ^Succesoful 

Performance 



Judgment or Decision 



Personal Characteristics 




The Match ("Fit") 


As a SAMPLE 


> 


Between Person and 






Situation 






Characteristics 



I I 

Figure 1, A model depicti ng the Inference Made in Viewing Personal Characteristics as a Sign or a 
Sample of Performance 



32