EFFECTS OF SOURCES, PLACEMENT OF SOURCES, AND PERSUASIVE COMMUNICATION ON ATTITUDE, REASON GIVING, AND ACTION INTENTIONS.
HUNTER COLL OF THE CITY UNIV OF NEW YORK
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The current study comprised essentially a second experiment on the effects of placement of the source before vs. after exposure to the communication on communication effectiveness. In addition, data were obtained on effects of the communication and sources on attitude-related cognition and action intentions. 200 college students read a communication urging the admission of Communist China into the UN. The communication was attributed to no named source, to a high prestige author print-medium combination, or to a low prestige author print-medium combination. Half of the latter two subgroups were informed of the attributed source combination before they read the communication and half only afterwards. In addition to these five communication groups, a no-communication control group of 40 students was formed. Posttest measures comprised evaluations of the communication and the sources, attitude on the issue, action intentions and attitude-supporting reasons. Only before-placement of the high prestige combination produced significant attitude change. The complex of effects on action intentions and reason-giving was attributed to the joint influences of initial attitude, the communication, and the sources. Evaluations of the sources did not accord with expectations derived from a simple balance formulation which merely takes account of congruence between the viewpoints of the Ss and the sources. Author