A Laboratory Experiment Examining the Effects of Resume Format (Paper or Video or Both) on Applicant Evaluation, Employing Resume Stimulus Materials Generated by MBA Students


Experimental research often involves balancing control and realism. The purpose of this case study is to describe and explain the choices made during the research study design phase, as well as the implications of those decisions for the internal, ecological, and external validity of the research. The objective of the experiment described in this case study was to test the effect of resume format (traditional resumes vs video resumes) on applicant evaluation. The resume stimulus materials used in the experimental manipulation were developed by MBA students as they completed a Management Skills Development course and prepared to enter the job market. The use of naturalistic stimulus materials (i.e., materials derived from individuals in real situations, rather than by the researchers themselves) not only added to the realism of the research but also posed some interesting research challenges. These challenges as well as some solutions will be discussed in this case study.

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