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Effects of Helper and Recipient Sex on the Experience and Outcomes of Comforting Messages: An Experimental Investigation
Unformatted Document Text:  Effects of Helper and Recipient Sex 18 Participant Ratings of Perceived Helper Competence Three scales were developed to measure perceived helper competence. The Sensitivity scale consisted of eight items (e.g., “S/he was a good listener, “S/he gave positive feedback”) that were drawn from the Ratings of Alter Competence Scale (Spitzberg, 1988). Each of these items was rated on a Likert scale that ranged from 1 (very strongly disagree) to 7 (very strongly agree). Inter-item reliability for this scale was excellent, = .95. The Conversational Engagement scale consisted of 7 reverse-coded items (e.g., “S/he appeared tired and sleepy,” “S/he spoke too rapidly”) that were rated on a Likert scale that ranged from 1 (very strongly disagree) to 7 (very strongly agree). These items were also drawn from the Ratings of Alter Competence Scale (Spitzberg, 1988), and inter-item reliability for this scale was also quite good, = .86. The Normativeness scale was adapted from a scale used by Burgoon, Newton, Walther, and Baesler (1989), and consisted of eight items rated on a Likert scale that ranged from 1 (very strongly disagree) to 7 (very strongly agree). The scale contained four items that measured the expectedness of behavior (e.g., “My conversational partner’s behavior was how I would expect most people to behave in this situation”) and four items that measured interaction enjoyment (e.g., “I enjoyed interacting with my conversational partner”). However, a subsequent principal components factor analysis extracted only one factor with an eigenvalue greater than 1.0 (item communalities ranged from .45 to .79; the factor accounted for 67.45% of the variance). Therefore, the Normativeness scale was treated as a unidimensional scale. Inter-item reliability for this scale was excellent at = .93. Results

Authors: Jones, Susanne. and Burleson, Brant.
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Effects of Helper and Recipient Sex 18
Participant Ratings of Perceived Helper Competence
Three scales were developed to measure perceived helper competence. The Sensitivity
scale consisted of eight items (e.g., “S/he was a good listener, “S/he gave positive feedback”)
that were drawn from the Ratings of Alter Competence Scale (Spitzberg, 1988). Each of these
items was rated on a Likert scale that ranged from 1 (very strongly disagree) to 7 (very strongly
agree). Inter-item reliability for this scale was excellent, = .95.
The Conversational Engagement scale consisted of 7 reverse-coded items (e.g., “S/he
appeared tired and sleepy,” “S/he spoke too rapidly”) that were rated on a Likert scale that
ranged from 1 (very strongly disagree) to 7 (very strongly agree). These items were also drawn
from the Ratings of Alter Competence Scale (Spitzberg, 1988), and inter-item reliability for this
scale was also quite good, = .86.
The Normativeness scale was adapted from a scale used by Burgoon, Newton, Walther,
and Baesler (1989), and consisted of eight items rated on a Likert scale that ranged from 1 (very
strongly disagree) to 7 (very strongly agree). The scale contained four items that measured the
expectedness of behavior (e.g., “My conversational partner’s behavior was how I would expect
most people to behave in this situation”) and four items that measured interaction enjoyment
(e.g., “I enjoyed interacting with my conversational partner”). However, a subsequent principal
components factor analysis extracted only one factor with an eigenvalue greater than 1.0 (item
communalities ranged from .45 to .79; the factor accounted for 67.45% of the variance).
Therefore, the Normativeness scale was treated as a unidimensional scale. Inter-item reliability
for this scale was excellent at = .93.
Results


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