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How widespread is graphology in personnel selection practice? A case study of a job market myth


Bangerter, Adrian; König, Cornelius J; Blatti, Sandrine; Salvisberg, Alexander (2009). How widespread is graphology in personnel selection practice? A case study of a job market myth. International Journal of Selection and Assessment, 17(2):219-230.

Abstract

Graphology is allegedly widely used in personnel selection in Europe. This is a myth: a widespread but false belief. We explored this myth in five studies. Study 1 established that job ads rarely require handwritten letters. Study 2 showed that handwritten letters serve multiple purposes but are seldom used for handwriting analysis. In Study 3, job market actors overestimated the frequency with which handwritten letters are subjected to graphological analysis. In Study 4, we showed experimentally that people expect graphology to be used when job ads require submission of a handwritten letter. Study 5 showed that advice books may transmit the myth. The myth may foster tolerant attitudes toward graphology, thereby facilitating its persistence in selection practice.

Abstract

Graphology is allegedly widely used in personnel selection in Europe. This is a myth: a widespread but false belief. We explored this myth in five studies. Study 1 established that job ads rarely require handwritten letters. Study 2 showed that handwritten letters serve multiple purposes but are seldom used for handwriting analysis. In Study 3, job market actors overestimated the frequency with which handwritten letters are subjected to graphological analysis. In Study 4, we showed experimentally that people expect graphology to be used when job ads require submission of a handwritten letter. Study 5 showed that advice books may transmit the myth. The myth may foster tolerant attitudes toward graphology, thereby facilitating its persistence in selection practice.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Sociology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > General Business, Management and Accounting
Social Sciences & Humanities > Applied Psychology
Social Sciences & Humanities > General Psychology
Social Sciences & Humanities > Strategy and Management
Social Sciences & Humanities > Management of Technology and Innovation
Language:English
Date:11 May 2009
Deposited On:21 Dec 2009 11:54
Last Modified:08 May 2020 07:20
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN:0965-075X
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2389.2009.00464.x

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