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Easy elaboration: The subjective experience of message processing and persuasion
Unformatted Document Text:  Subjective Experience 14 All but one participant finished the easy task. About half of the participants completed the difficult task. Participants were as likely to complete the difficult task for the con message or the pro message, χ 2 (1, 31) = .13, ns. Although participants had similar rates of completion for the difficult task, their perceptions of the difficulty varied by completion and message valence. Participants who did not complete the difficult task rated the difficulty of the task the same for the pro message (M = 5.34, SD = 1.14) and the con message (M = 5.07, SD = 1.18), t(17) = .50, ns. Those who did complete the difficult task, however, rated the difficult task as much easier for the con message (M = 4.14, SD = 1.33) than the pro message (M = 5.93, SD = 1.11), t(11) = 2.60, p < .05, r = .62. Notice that the impact of completing the difficult task on the perceived difficulty is not the same for the con message and the pro message. Those who read the pro message rated the difficult task as easier if they did not complete the task; those who read the con message rated the difficult task as easier if they did complete the task. This unexpected variation in perception due to completing the task and the message’s valence may have influenced our hypothesis testing. The hypothesis of this paper that message content and participants’ subjective task experience would influence their evaluations of photo enforcement received weak support. A summary of the attitude results can be seen in Table 1. For those evaluating the pro message, we predicted that participants who completed the easy subjective task would evaluate photo enforcement more positively than would those who completed the difficult subjective task. Participants evaluated the pro messages the same, however, regardless of the subjective task (easy: M = 3.97, SD = 1.95; hard: M = 4.06, SD = 1.64), t(32) = .15, ns, r = .03. Those participants who completed the difficult task rated photo enforcement a little less favorably if they completed the task (M = 3.83, SD = 2.38) than if they

Authors: Smith, Rachel., Goei, Ryan. and Lindsey, Lisa.
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Subjective Experience 14
All but one participant finished the easy task. About half of the participants completed
the difficult task. Participants were as likely to complete the difficult task for the con message or
the pro message,
χ
2
(1, 31) = .13, ns. Although participants had similar rates of completion for
the difficult task, their perceptions of the difficulty varied by completion and message valence.
Participants who did not complete the difficult task rated the difficulty of the task the same for
the pro message (M = 5.34, SD = 1.14) and the con message (M = 5.07, SD = 1.18), t(17) = .50,
ns. Those who did complete the difficult task, however, rated the difficult task as much easier
for the con message (M = 4.14, SD = 1.33) than the pro message (M = 5.93, SD = 1.11), t(11) =
2.60, p < .05, r = .62.
Notice that the impact of completing the difficult task on the perceived
difficulty is not the same for the con message and the pro message. Those who read the pro
message rated the difficult task as easier if they did not complete the task; those who read the con
message rated the difficult task as easier if they did complete the task. This unexpected variation
in perception due to completing the task and the message’s valence may have influenced our
hypothesis testing.
The hypothesis of this paper that message content and participants’ subjective task
experience would influence their evaluations of photo enforcement received weak support. A
summary of the attitude results can be seen in Table 1.
For those evaluating the pro message, we predicted that participants who completed the
easy subjective task would evaluate photo enforcement more positively than would those who
completed the difficult subjective task. Participants evaluated the pro messages the same,
however, regardless of the subjective task (easy: M = 3.97, SD = 1.95; hard: M = 4.06, SD =
1.64), t(32) = .15, ns, r = .03. Those participants who completed the difficult task rated photo
enforcement a little less favorably if they completed the task (M = 3.83, SD = 2.38) than if they


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