Rating versus ranking: What is the best way to reduce response and language bias in cross-national research?
We propose solutions to two recurring problems in cross-national research: response style differences and language bias. In order to do so, we conduct a methodological comparison of two different response formats--rating and ranking. For rating, we assess the effect of changing the commonly used 5-point Likert scales to 7-point Likert scales. For ranking, we evaluate the validity of presenting respondents with short scenarios for which they need to rank their top 3 solutions. Our results - based on two studies of 1965 undergraduate and 1714 MBA students in 16 different countries - confirm our hypotheses that both solutions reduce response and language bias, but show that ranking generally is a superior solution. These findings allow researchers to have greater confidence in the validity of cross-national differences if these response formats are used, instead of the more traditional 5-point Likert scales. In addition, our findings have several practical implications for multinational corporations, relating to issues such as selection interviews, performance appraisals, and cross-cultural training.
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Volume (Year): 18 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (August)
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- Tomasz Lenartowicz & Kendall Roth, 2001. "Does Subculture Within a Country Matter? A Cross-Cultural Study of Motivational Domains and Business Performance in Brazil," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 32(2), pages 305-325, June.
- Hal B Gregersen & Julie M Hite & J Stewart Black, 1996. "Expatriate Performance Appraisal in U.S. Multinational Firms," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 27(4), pages 711-738, December.
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