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Social Desirability Bias

In the context of participating in a psychology study, social desirability bias refers to the tendency to present one's self in a favorable way rather than to give accurate answers. In other words, participants have a tendency to answer in ways that make them look good in the eyes of others, regardless of the accuracy of their answers. For example, most people would deny that they drive after drinking alcohol because it reflects poorly on them and others would most likely disapprove.

Psychologists have long been interested in people's thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and have often relied on self-reports to gather information. For example, a person may be asked to indicate which items in a list of characteristics describe him or her. The underlying assumption in ...

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