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A naturally-occurring intervention in a longitudinal field setting (4 months) was used to examine the presence and biasing impact of a positive reputation on subsequent ratings of work performance (student evaluations of teaching). During pre-semester interactions, first-year MBA students received information from second-year MBAs about their upcoming professors and classes. Favorable information about the two professors and course examined in the present study caused a positive reputation. Results indicated that despite four months of experiencing actual performance, the positive reputation hindered students’ decision-making process resulting in biasedly inflated ratings of instructor performance and halo error judgments of course materials, grading, and amount learned. The problematic implications of using biased student evaluations of teaching to measure faculty performance is discussed, along with suggestions of ways to mitigate against overreliance on this evaluation method and to possibly minimize reputational effects.

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This is an author-produced, peer-reviewed version of this article. © 2022, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 International license. The final, definitive version of this document can be found online at The International Journal of Management Education,