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Voters’ Motivation and Information Processing: A Model of Motivated Information Processing in a Political Campaign

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Abstract:

This study proposed a model of motivation and information processing in a political campaign and tested the model with a computer-based experiment (N = 344). Combining a directional motivation (motivation to a particular candidate which is predicted by strength of party identification) and a nondirectional motivation (motivation to think about election which is predicted by the level of interest in politics) four types of voters were identified. Four types of voters are expected to show different patterns of biased information processing. Voters with strong party identification and high interest in politics were expected to show the highest degree of biased information processing. When specific information about candidates’ issue-position was presented, higher degree of biased processing was also expected. The pattern of biased information processing was examined with candidate evaluation trajectories, which consisted of candidate evaluation at 11 time-points. It was found that participants with strong party identification and high interest in politics were less likely to change the initially preferred candidate, took longer time to change the initially preferred candidate, and changed candidate evaluation more slowly in response to a series of attitudinally incongruent information about candidates than other groups of participants.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

inform (217), candid (190), polit (169), motiv (155), process (117), evalu (107), posit (91), parti (90), issu (88), prefer (82), identif (82), interest (79), particip (70), time (67), chang (64), poll (63), group (58), condit (56), voter (55), effect (54), elect (53),

Author's Keywords:

Motivation Voting Information processing belief trajectories
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Name: International Communication Association
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MLA Citation:

Chung, Sungeun., Waks, Leah., Meffert, Michael. and Xie, Xiaoying. "Voters’ Motivation and Information Processing: A Model of Motivated Information Processing in a Political Campaign" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, TBA, San Francisco, CA, May 23, 2007 <Not Available>. 2013-12-16 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p170140_index.html>

APA Citation:

Chung, S. , Waks, L. , Meffert, M. F. and Xie, X. , 2007-05-23 "Voters’ Motivation and Information Processing: A Model of Motivated Information Processing in a Political Campaign" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, TBA, San Francisco, CA Online <PDF>. 2013-12-16 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p170140_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: This study proposed a model of motivation and information processing in a political campaign and tested the model with a computer-based experiment (N = 344). Combining a directional motivation (motivation to a particular candidate which is predicted by strength of party identification) and a nondirectional motivation (motivation to think about election which is predicted by the level of interest in politics) four types of voters were identified. Four types of voters are expected to show different patterns of biased information processing. Voters with strong party identification and high interest in politics were expected to show the highest degree of biased information processing. When specific information about candidates’ issue-position was presented, higher degree of biased processing was also expected. The pattern of biased information processing was examined with candidate evaluation trajectories, which consisted of candidate evaluation at 11 time-points. It was found that participants with strong party identification and high interest in politics were less likely to change the initially preferred candidate, took longer time to change the initially preferred candidate, and changed candidate evaluation more slowly in response to a series of attitudinally incongruent information about candidates than other groups of participants.

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