Swipe right on personality: a mobile response latency measure

Nathan W. Weidner, Richard N. Landers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: While high-stakes mobile assessment is increasing, researchers have done little to adapt traditional assessments to this new medium. The present study developed and tested a new response method for personality assessment using a mobile-first gamification design paradigm. Design/methodology/approach: Participants used smartphones to “swipe” right or left to indicate agreement or disagreement with Goldberg's (1992) Big Five adjective indicators. These scores were correlated with responses to a Likert-type measure and participants provided reactions to both measures. Findings: Each of the swipe-based measures was found to be a reliable and valid predictor of the corresponding dimensions measured using the Likert-type scale. Reactions to the swipe measure were mixed when compared to a traditional Likert-type measure. Response latencies of swipes were used as an indicator of self-schema beliefs. Transformed latency scores contributed incremental variance to the prediction of Likert responses beyond the dichotomous responses alone for some personality dimensions. Research limitations/implications: Convergent validity between the two measures was likely attenuated due to differences in scales, response methods, devices, connection speeds, and social desirability effects indicating that the present results may constitute a lower-bound estimate of convergent validity between the two measurement styles. Practical implications: Designing assessments for mobile administration requires balancing trade-offs in speed, ease of use, and number of items relative to the reliability and validity of the measures. Originality/value: Mobile-first designs such as swipe-based responses show potential to enhance future mobile assessment practices with further development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-223
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Managerial Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 18 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited.


  • Personality
  • Psychometrics
  • Selection


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