van de Mortel, TF 2008, 'Faking it: social desirability response bias in self-report research', Australian Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 25, no. 4, pp. 40-48.
The abstract and pdf of the published article reprinted in ePublications@SCU with permission of the AJAN
The publisher's version of this article is available at http://www.ajan.com.au/ajan_25.4.html
The tendency for people to present a favourable image of themselves on questionnaires is called socially desirable responding (SDR). SDR confounds research results by creating false relationships or obscuring relationships between variables. Social desirability (SD) scales can be used to detect, minimise, and correct for SDR in order to improve the validity of questionnaire-based research. The aim of this review was to determine the proportion of health-related studies that used questionnaires and used SD scales and estimate the proportion that were potentially affected by SDR.