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A Communicative Approach to Road Rage: Accounts of Driving and Retaliation
Unformatted Document Text:  Road Rage 11 helpful. The next section sought a written description (account) of the road rage incident: At this time, please describe how the aggressive driving event occurred. Describe as specifically as possible what happened in sequence. Please be exact in terms of describing the behaviors and actions that occurred in the order they happened. Also, we are interested in your own thoughts and emotional reactions. Please use both sides of this sheet, if you need. Once finished, please return this sheet and a signed consent form to the researcher. Thank you. Responses to this instruction provided the data for analysis. Data Description and Coding Before coding any of the data, the researchers read through all the accounts to determine the most appropriate and beneficial method in which to understand the descriptions and answer the research questions. After independently reading the accounts, the researchers jointly decided that five event categories would be most applicable to describe the accounts provided by participants. First, the Initiating Incident was the behavior, whether enacted by the participant or the other driver, that instigated the road rage. Second, Emotional Reactions concern emotions that participants nominated, which followed the initiating incident and before the conclusion of the incident. Third, Reactions to the Incident refer to actual behaviors that the respondent described between the participant and the driver of the other car. Fourth, Final Emotions were those that were said to occur after the event concluded. Finally, Attributions (i.e., explanations) given to the other driver or the participant were coded. These five categories were inclusive in coding almost all the accounts. However, categories offered in the coding scheme were often times not mentioned in the accounts. For example, attributions were offered in only 59.4% of the accounts. The Coding Categories The procedure used to develop the coding scheme followed Cupach and Metts’ (1986) procedure used to study accounts for relational termination. After reading through all the data, the researchers decided on the general categories for analyzing the data, as stated above. These categories were then defined and refined as the researchers used the data to test the adequacy of the coding categories. First, 25% of the data was used to identify specific behaviors that were applicable under each category. For example, initiating

Authors: Canary, Daniel., Mikkelson, Alan., Switzer, Frank. and Bailey, Carrie.
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Road Rage 11
helpful. The next section sought a written description (account) of the road rage incident:
At this time, please describe how the aggressive driving event occurred. Describe as specifically as
possible what happened in sequence. Please be exact in terms of describing the behaviors and
actions that occurred in the order they happened. Also, we are interested in your own thoughts and
emotional reactions. Please use both sides of this sheet, if you need. Once finished, please return
this sheet and a signed consent form to the researcher. Thank you.
Responses to this instruction provided the data for analysis.
Data Description and Coding
Before coding any of the data, the researchers read through all the accounts to determine the most
appropriate and beneficial method in which to understand the descriptions and answer the research
questions. After independently reading the accounts, the researchers jointly decided that five event
categories would be most applicable to describe the accounts provided by participants. First, the Initiating
Incident was the behavior, whether enacted by the participant or the other driver, that instigated the road
rage. Second, Emotional Reactions concern emotions that participants nominated, which followed the
initiating incident and before the conclusion of the incident. Third, Reactions to the Incident refer to actual
behaviors that the respondent described between the participant and the driver of the other car. Fourth,
Final Emotions were those that were said to occur after the event concluded. Finally, Attributions (i.e.,
explanations) given to the other driver or the participant were coded. These five categories were inclusive in
coding almost all the accounts. However, categories offered in the coding scheme were often times not
mentioned in the accounts. For example, attributions were offered in only 59.4% of the accounts.
The Coding Categories
The procedure used to develop the coding scheme followed Cupach and Metts’ (1986) procedure
used to study accounts for relational termination. After reading through all the data, the researchers decided
on the general categories for analyzing the data, as stated above. These categories were then defined and
refined as the researchers used the data to test the adequacy of the coding categories. First, 25% of the data
was used to identify specific behaviors that were applicable under each category. For example, initiating


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