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Discuss the relationship between persuasion and attitude change - Media Psychology

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Introduction

Discuss the relationship between persuasion and attitude change. According to Schwerin and Newell (1981), behavioural change cannot occur without attitude change having taken place. This process of changing attitudes with the ultimate goal of changing behaviour has led psychologists to look at the 'Science' of persuasion. The Hovland-Yale Model, The model was initially designed to persuade the American public to increase levels of support in the closing stages of world war two. The basic principle of the model is who says what to whom. Source factors are an important factor when it comes to persuasion; experts are more effective because they are more credible than non-experts. Research support for source factors Morton and Campbell (2008) examined the effects of information source on peers' attitudes towards child with autism. ...read more.

Middle

Research support for message factors come from Lewis (2008) provided support for the effectiveness of fear-arousal messages in a drinking campaign. Participants were are too watch two adverts and complete two questionnaires, the first accessing pre-exposure attitudes and behaviour and immediate post exposure altitudes and intentions, and the second two to four weeks later accessing attitudes and behaviours.. They found that although fear-arousing messages were more persuasive in the period immediately after exposure to a message long term attitudes change was more likely with positive campaigns. The third factor is Audience Factors. McGuire (1969) suugested that low-intelluigence audiences are less likely to process the content of a message and therefore are less likely to be influenced by it. High-intelligent audiences are more confident in there own view and therefore are harder to persuade. ...read more.

Conclusion

Methodological problems with the Hovland Yale model as Hovland himself pointed out that it is perhaps inappropriate to generalise from the samples typically used in these studies mainly students and occasionally army personnal these groups had age wealth and education profile that was untypically of the general population. Likewise the experiments were in a position to cut off other stimuli and demand the complete attention of study participants, something that real-life communication sources such as adverting rarely have. To conclude it is clear from the Hovland Yale model, that it is hard for attitudes to change without persuasion, and for behaviour to change attitudes need to first to ensure that there is consistence between attitudes and behaviour to reduce dissonance. This persuasion and attitude change can be seen from T.V adverts such as smoking and HIV/AIDS. ?? ?? ?? ?? Christopher Ball ...read more.

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