Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Psychology



First Reader/Committee Chair

Janet Kottke


The purpose of the current study was to examine the effect of a blind selection process on gender discrimination. Due to persistent gender discrimination in selection processes, the intention of the current study was to investigate a blind selection process as a means to decrease gender discrimination against women. A total of 391 individuals were recruited through SONA and convenience sampling to participate in the current study. Materials included a selection scenario, three applicant résumés with applicant names and three with applicant ID numbers, a rank order form, and measures for procedural justice and fairness, modern sexism inventory, and the attitudes towards women scale. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three conditions; one with applicant names, one with applicant ID numbers with no explanation for the ID numbers, and one with applicant ID numbers without an explanation. Results illustrated partial support for hypothesis 1a (H1a) and H2a, such that there was a significant difference in rank orders (H1a) and job suitability scores (H2a) as a function of condition assignment, though in the opposite direction than hypothesized. There was support for H1b, H1c, H2b, and H2c such that in blind conditions, qualified applicants received similar rank orders (H1b) and job suitability scores (H2b), while the unqualified applicant received the lowest rank order (H1c) and job suitability scores (H2c). Procedural justice scores were similar between the two blind conditions, and as such, H3a and H3b was not supported. Participants with an explanation perceived blind conditions as fair and non-blind conditions as unfair, thus H3c was supported. However, H3d was not supported, as participants without an explanation still perceived a blind process as fair and a non-blind process as unfair. Neither H4a nor H4b were supported, as sexism did not serve as a covariate with rank orders as a function of condition assignment. Last, H5 was not supported, as participants across all three conditions were similarly confident in their rank order decisions. Limitations included an imbalanced sample of primarily female (N = 320) psychology students (N = 380). Possible explanations for results obtained include the effects of similarity bias, identification, sophistication and education, and experimenter effects. Results expand the current body of literature in personnel selection processes and create implications for blind selection processes and practical use in organizations to decrease gender discrimination.