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Resonance as Mediator of Prime-Time Messages about Smoking
Unformatted Document Text:  Resonance as Mediator of Messages 8 envelopes. Subjects were shown the treatment twice, a total of 120 seconds. A posttest questionnaire was completed; subjects were then debriefed. Statistical Methods The questionnaires assessed subjects’ attitudes regarding smoking and smokers, smoking background, and identification and parasocial interaction with the protagonist. Attitude measures regarding smoking and smokers were derived by probing opinions and perspectives from the same student population prior to the experiment, using five focus groups (N = 50). From the focus groups, nine items were derived, measuring subjects’ opinions about tobacco use and people who use tobacco. Likert-type items from the instrument were factor analyzed, using the principal components method of extraction and rotating the matrix to a varimax solution. Four items provided a relatively reliable measure of anti-smoking attitudes. People scoring high on this scale tended to agree that “you have to be stupid to smoke these days,” “smokers are basically weak people who give in to their addictions,” and people who smoke “tend to have problems getting their lives together.” Those agreeing with the previous statements tended to disagree that “people have a right to smoke that other people should respect.” As the dependent variable, the set was used in both the pretest and posttest instrument, but the item order varied. Cronbach’s reliability coefficient was .62 for the pretest instrument and .65 for the posttest instrument. Regarding smoking behaviors, family smoking was measured by asking about current tobacco use by subjects, their parents, and significant others (if any). Those indicating any tobacco use in the family were categorized as having a smoking background; those indicating no tobacco use by themselves, their parents, and significant others were classified as having a non-smoking background. Consistent with prior studies of cultivation and resonance, life experiences with tobacco were based on behaviors of the self, the family, and peers, rather than just the smoking behavior of the subject (Shrum & Darmanin Bischak, 2001).

Authors: Lauzen, Martha. and Dozier, David.
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Resonance as Mediator of Messages 8
envelopes. Subjects were shown the treatment twice, a total of 120 seconds. A posttest
questionnaire was completed; subjects were then debriefed.
Statistical Methods
The questionnaires assessed subjects’ attitudes regarding smoking and smokers,
smoking background, and identification and parasocial interaction with the protagonist.
Attitude measures regarding smoking and smokers were derived by probing
opinions and perspectives from the same student population prior to the experiment,
using five focus groups (N = 50). From the focus groups, nine items were derived,
measuring subjects’ opinions about tobacco use and people who use tobacco. Likert-type
items from the instrument were factor analyzed, using the principal components method
of extraction and rotating the matrix to a varimax solution. Four items provided a
relatively reliable measure of anti-smoking attitudes. People scoring high on this scale
tended to agree that “you have to be stupid to smoke these days,” “smokers are basically
weak people who give in to their addictions,” and people who smoke “tend to have
problems getting their lives together.” Those agreeing with the previous statements
tended to disagree that “people have a right to smoke that other people should respect.”
As the dependent variable, the set was used in both the pretest and posttest instrument,
but the item order varied. Cronbach’s reliability coefficient was .62 for the pretest
instrument and .65 for the posttest instrument.
Regarding smoking behaviors, family smoking was measured by asking about
current tobacco use by subjects, their parents, and significant others (if any). Those
indicating any tobacco use in the family were categorized as having a smoking
background; those indicating no tobacco use by themselves, their parents, and significant
others were classified as having a non-smoking background. Consistent with prior studies
of cultivation and resonance, life experiences with tobacco were based on behaviors of
the self, the family, and peers, rather than just the smoking behavior of the subject
(Shrum & Darmanin Bischak, 2001).


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