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Valenced news frames and public support for the EU
Unformatted Document Text:  RUNNING HEAD: Valenced news frames and public support for the EU 12 the EU is important for the future of The Netherlands. Responses were averaged in order to create a measure of general support for the EU with Cronbach’s α .75. Support for enlargement of the EU. Support for EU enlargement was measured with five items on 7-point scales: (1) Enlargement of the EU is a good thing; (2) The enlargement will be important for the future of the EU; (3) The Netherlands will benefit from the enlargement of the EU; (4) I will personally benefit from the enlargement of the EU; (5) The enlargement of the EU will have negative effects on the Dutch economy. Responses were recoded when needed and averaged to an index of support of the EU enlargement with an α of .75. Evaluation EU. An open-ended thought-listing measure asking participants to provide their general thoughts and feelings that come to mind when thinking about the EU was used to investigate evaluations of the EU. Each thought was coded as positive, neutral or negative. Advantages of EU enlargement. A second open-ended question asked participants to list potential advantages and disadvantages as consequences of the enlargement. The total number of both advantages and disadvantages was counted. Control variables. In addition to the effect of exposure to the valenced news frame, other variables were expected to affect the nature of participants’ responses. Based on previous research, it was expected that political knowledge, political efficacy, and the degree of issue elaboration would influence the responses (Pinkleton & Austin, 2002; Price, Tewksbury, & Powers 1997; Rhee, 1997). Political knowledge and political efficacy were expected to be positive predictors of EU support. Issue elaboration, measured as verbosity (i.e. number of words listed for the open-ended question), was included as an individual-level control to ensure that differences in the open-ended answers were not artifacts of the volume of the answer as suggested by Rhee (1997). Political knowledge was measured by seven factual questions, averaged to range from 0 to 1 (M = .15, SD = .18). 11 Internal political efficacy was measured by six standard items and averaged to form a scale from 1 to 7(M = 4.46, SD = .75) ( α = .59). 12 Between-experimental condition comparisons were made while simultaneously assessing the influence of exposure to the experimental news stories and controlling for the intervening variables. This was done by using Ordinary Least Squares regression analyses.

Authors: De Vreese, Claes. and Boomgaarden, Hajo.
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RUNNING HEAD: Valenced news frames and public support for the EU
12
the EU is important for the future of The Netherlands. Responses were averaged in order to
create a measure of general support for the EU with Cronbach’s
α
.75.
Support for enlargement of the EU. Support for EU enlargement was measured with
five items on 7-point scales: (1) Enlargement of the EU is a good thing; (2) The enlargement
will be important for the future of the EU; (3) The Netherlands will benefit from the
enlargement of the EU; (4) I will personally benefit from the enlargement of the EU; (5) The
enlargement of the EU will have negative effects on the Dutch economy. Responses were
recoded when needed and averaged to an index of support of the EU enlargement with an
α
of .75.
Evaluation EU. An open-ended thought-listing measure asking participants to provide
their general thoughts and feelings that come to mind when thinking about the EU was used
to investigate evaluations of the EU. Each thought was coded as positive, neutral or negative.
Advantages of EU enlargement. A second open-ended question asked participants to
list potential advantages and disadvantages as consequences of the enlargement. The total
number of both advantages and disadvantages was counted.
Control variables. In addition to the effect of exposure to the valenced news frame,
other variables were expected to affect the nature of participants’ responses. Based on
previous research, it was expected that political knowledge, political efficacy, and the degree
of issue elaboration would influence the responses (Pinkleton & Austin, 2002; Price,
Tewksbury, & Powers 1997; Rhee, 1997). Political knowledge and political efficacy were
expected to be positive predictors of EU support. Issue elaboration, measured as verbosity
(i.e. number of words listed for the open-ended question), was included as an individual-level
control to ensure that differences in the open-ended answers were not artifacts of the volume
of the answer as suggested by Rhee (1997). Political knowledge was measured by seven
factual questions, averaged to range from 0 to 1 (M = .15, SD = .18).
11
Internal political
efficacy was measured by six standard items and averaged to form a scale from 1 to 7(M =
4.46, SD = .75) (
α
= .59).
12
Between-experimental condition comparisons were made while simultaneously
assessing the influence of exposure to the experimental news stories and controlling for the
intervening variables. This was done by using Ordinary Least Squares regression analyses.


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