Self-other judgments of doping likelihood and anticipated guilt in hypothetical situations

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Objectives: Self-other correspondence refers to people judging themselves to be similar to others. We were interested in determining whether athletes’ judgments of other athletes’ doping likelihood in hypothetical situations differed from judgments of their own doping likelihood in the same situations. Our aim was to examine self-other correspondence in doping likelihood, doping-related anticipated guilt, and the relationship between doping likelihood and moral traits.
Design: Using a within-participants design, doping likelihood and anticipated guilt were measured in hypothetical situations as a function of perspective (self, other). A questionnaire assessed moral traits.
Method: Athletes (N = 156) rated their own and another athlete’s likelihood of doping and feelings of anticipated guilt in hypothetical situations. They also completed a questionnaire measuring moral agency, moral identity, moral perfectionism, moral values, moral disengagement and self-regulatory efficacy, collectively referred to here as moral traits.
Results: Doping likelihood was higher and anticipated guilt was lower for other compared to self ratings. Self-other differences in doping likelihood were mediated by self-other differences in anticipated guilt. Moral traits correlated more strongly with self than other doping likelihood.
Conclusions: The current study revealed self-other differences in doping likelihood, affective self-sanction of doping, and moral self-regulation of doping. These manifestations of self-other divergence reveal that the other-referenced method yields an overestimate of doping likelihood that is relatively disconnected from moral self-regulation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-53
Number of pages8
JournalPsychology of Sport and Exercise
Early online date14 Nov 2018
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019


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