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Hispanic Women's Preferences for Breast Health Information: Subjective Cultural Influences on Source, Message, and Channel
Unformatted Document Text:  Breast Cancer Communication Preferences 21 appeals, but our study illustrates that certain types of women have a preference for fear messages as well. This study also has important implications for theorizing about communication preference use. These results are consistent with the social information processing model (Fulk, Schmitz, & Steinfield, 1990) and the uses and gratifications approach (Dobos, 1992) to channel usage. These theoretical perspectives note that communication channel usage is guided, in part, by the subjective evaluations of channel performance and function. The choice of particular communication sources, channels, and media are often strategic (e.g., in communication campaigns) and to improve the acceptance of these choices, strategists should examine subjective cultural variables to better understand the subjective evaluation of communication preferences. Thus, the current study extends social information processing and uses and gratification approaches by demonstrating the importance of subjective cultural variables. Limitations and Conclusions There are several limitations of this study that need to be noted. First, the sample was one of convenience and thus caution should be made about generalizing from the current study. Second (and related to the first limitation), while the sample had a nice range of demographic variables, it also included many English speakers, was weighted toward higher income and education levels, and contained a majority of married individuals. Despite the limited external validity created by the first two limitations, the internal validity of the study is strong. The third limitation is that the study was based on self-report of communication preferences rather than actual use of communication. An obvious future direction is to design a study that examines how these women actually use communication about breast health and whether subjective culture is a factor in those choices.

Authors: DeVargas, Felicia., Sanchez, Christina. and Oetzel, John.
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Breast Cancer Communication Preferences
21
appeals, but our study illustrates that certain types of women have a preference for fear messages as
well.
This study also has important implications for theorizing about communication preference use.
These results are consistent with the social information processing model (Fulk, Schmitz, & Steinfield,
1990) and the uses and gratifications approach (Dobos, 1992) to channel usage. These theoretical
perspectives note that communication channel usage is guided, in part, by the subjective evaluations of
channel performance and function. The choice of particular communication sources, channels, and
media are often strategic (e.g., in communication campaigns) and to improve the acceptance of these
choices, strategists should examine subjective cultural variables to better understand the subjective
evaluation of communication preferences. Thus, the current study extends social information
processing and uses and gratification approaches by demonstrating the importance of subjective
cultural variables.
Limitations and Conclusions
There are several limitations of this study that need to be noted. First, the sample was one of
convenience and thus caution should be made about generalizing from the current study. Second (and
related to the first limitation), while the sample had a nice range of demographic variables, it also
included many English speakers, was weighted toward higher income and education levels, and
contained a majority of married individuals. Despite the limited external validity created by the first
two limitations, the internal validity of the study is strong. The third limitation is that the study was
based on self-report of communication preferences rather than actual use of communication. An
obvious future direction is to design a study that examines how these women actually use
communication about breast health and whether subjective culture is a factor in those choices.


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