Target complicity in the confirmation and disconfirmation of erroneous perceiver expectations: Immediate and longer term implications

Dylan M. Smith, Steven Neuberg, T. Nicole Judice, Jeremy C. Biesanz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations


The authors explored the role of target self-presentational goals in the expectation confirmation process within the context of simulated employment interviews. As predicted, applicants encouraged to be deferential inadvertently succumbed to their interviewers' expectations; applicants encouraged to be challenging, to advance their own agenda, did not. The challenging-motivated applicants succeeded in disconfirming negative expectations by presenting favorable information about themselves even in the face of negatively constraining interviewer questions; other theoretically relevant behaviors were not supported as mediators. Of added interest, the self-fulfilling prophecies observed for the deference-motivated applicants carried over to a 2nd interview because of changes in applicant self-perceptions following the 1st interview.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)974-991
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1997


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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