Mapping the Implicit Component of Competitiveness: A Conditional Reasoning Theory Approach

Open Access
Author:
Hoffman, Michael Edward
Graduate Program:
Psychology
Degree:
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Dissertation
Date of Defense:
April 24, 2018
Committee Members:
  • James Marshall Lebreton, Dissertation Advisor
  • James Marshall Lebreton, Committee Chair
  • Rick R Jacobs, Committee Member
  • Susan Mohammed, Committee Member
  • Lance Ferris, Outside Member
Keywords:
  • Competitiveness
  • Implicit Personality
  • Conditional Reasoning
  • Explicit Personality
  • Achievement Motivation
  • Motive to Compete
Abstract:
Unlike other motives, research on competitiveness has stagnated due to an overwhelming focus on investigating and measuring the explicit aspects of competitiveness. Using Conditional Reasoning Theory, I expand the model of dispositional competitiveness to include an implicit component, develop and describe an indirect measure capable of assessing this implicit component, and provide an initial feasibility test of the implicit component using this new measure. Results across the five studies show (1) adequate internal consistency, but poor temporal consistency, (2) good construct validity, and (3) mixed findings for criterion-related validity. More specifically, the newly developed measure performed poorly in predicting self-selection into competitive scenarios, performed moderately in predicting interest in competitive activities, and outperformed a self-report measure of explicit competitiveness in predicting competitive behavior in game exercises. Implications of this research and suggestions for improvement of the measure and future research are also discussed.