Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department


Committee Member

Jason Thatcher, Committee Co-Chair

Committee Member

Phil Roth, Committee Co-Chair

Committee Member

Joseph Mazer

Committee Member

DeWayne Moore


Research indicates employers use social media, such as Facebook and LinkedIn, to make decision regarding would-be employees. A scarce amount of academic research specifically examines the decision-making processes employers use when using social media to select the best job applicant for the job. This study focuses on how social media impacts hiring processes, investigating the impact of political attitudes expressed on social media impact managers’ evaluations of how “hireable” job candidates are. This study also examines how individuating information, also known as job-related information, presented on social media influences employer decisions to hire job candidates. To test the research model, an experimental design was used. Three separate political conditions were used to test how applicant attitudes about legalizing marijuana, the Affordable Healthcare Act and gun control laws, as well as high and low levels of individuating information, displayed on Facebook and LinkedIn profiles affect hireability evaluations. Whether social media platform influences decision-making was also tested. Structural Equation Modeling, a combination of path analysis and factor analysis, was employed to test the model relationships. Our results indicate a number of significant relationships, including relationships between similarity, liking, and hireability in all three conditions, individuating information and hireability, with moderating effects of social media platform proving significant in some political conditions as well.



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