Title: Empirical evidence on the validity of using accounting research subjects' self-reported GPA as a proxy measure of actual GPA

Authors: Robert Marley; Steve Platau

Addresses: Department of Accounting, Sykes College of Business University of Tampa, 401 West Kennedy Blvd., Box O, Tampa, FL 33606, USA ' Department of Accounting, Sykes College of Business University of Tampa, 401 West Kennedy Blvd., Box O, Tampa, FL 33606, USA

Abstract: This study investigates the association between accounting subjects' self-reported GPA and their actual GPA. Using accounting seniors as a proxy for accounting research subjects, we administered a survey instrument to obtain self-reported GPAs and then compared subjects' self-reported values to official GPA records. Finding a strong correlation, this study provides empirical evidence suggesting that accounting subjects' self-reported GPA is a valid proxy for accounting subjects' actual GPA. We also find evidence that some accounting subjects systematically misreport their GPA predictable ways. This study should be of interest to accounting behaviourists, who frequently rely on accounting subjects' self-reported GPA in place of obtaining accounting subjects' actual GPA. The practical implications of this study's results are discussed.

Keywords: behavioural accounting research; classical test theory; grade point average; GPA; measurement validity; proxy measures; self-reported GPA.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCA.2017.088716

International Journal of Critical Accounting, 2017 Vol.9 No.3, pp.193 - 205

Available online: 11 Dec 2017 *

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