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What is persuasion
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the process of creating, reinforcing, or changing people's beliefs or actions.
Benefits of studying persuasion
-the instrumental function
(develop communication competence)
-knowledge and awareness
(overcome habitual persuasion)
-the defensive function
(third person effect)
-the debunking function
-well being and self worth
third person effect
the assumption by most people that others are more prone to being influenced by persuasive messages (such as those in media campaigns) than they themselves are
Persuasion vs. Propaganda
Propaganda- the dissertation of biased ideas and opinions often using lies and deception. has a specific agenda, institutional in nature.
Pure persuasion means
all the ingredients for what most people would consider to be persuasion are present.
Less clear-cut cases of influence. Example moving because someone smells bad
dual process model of persuasion
a model that accounts for the two basic ways that attitude change occurs - with and without much thought
Elaboration Likelihood Model (ELM)
a model of persuasion maintaining that there are two different routes to persuasion: the central route and the peripheral route
central route persuasion
occurs when interested people focus on the arguments and respond with favorable thoughts
peripheral route persuasion
occurs when people are influenced by incidental cues, such as a speaker's attractiveness
Heuristic Model of Persuasion
assumption that individuals rely on two different modes of information processing.
Processing of information in a persuasive message that involves careful consideration of message content and ideas.
the process by which attitudes or beliefs are changed by appeals to habit or emotion. relies on mental shortcuts
Unimodel of Persuasion
A single route to persuasion. simply more or less thought in messages
examples of peripheral cues
-reciprocation: the reciever agrees with the message because of the internal drive to return the favor
-consistency: using thoughts from the past
-social proof: peer pressure
information processing theory
theory argues that to be persuaded, you must attend to and comprehend a persuasive message. then compare own position to the source
Order of information processing
Standardized self report scales
-Semantic differential scale
(1) strongly agree, (2) agree, (3) neutral, (4), disagree, (5) strongly disagree
do you think snakes are the best pets?
semantic differential scale
bad 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 good
scale uses bipolar adjective pairs to measure attitudes?
criticism of attitude scales
social desirability- people will want to show the most positive qualities
-dont want to appear unintelligent
-agree with any statement (acquiescence bias)
Theory of Reasoned Action
Assumes that people are rational decision makers who make use of all the information available to them.
-Intentions are the best guide to their behavior
subjective norm component.
Ask to make a plan to walk more, 20 minutes a day
an individual's perceptions about whether significant others think he or she should (or should not) perform the behavior in question
Theory of Planned Behavior
Behavior is not always in our control, internal and external (lack of knowledge or skills)
important people in my life would disapprove if I smoked cigarettes, I should be less likely to smoke cigarettes.
there should be a correlation between attitudes and behavior.
example: the more unfavorable a persons attitude is towards something (cancer), the more they will be yearning to prevent it
Persistance of attitudes
attitudes are interrealted and exist in elaborate social networks. attitudes formed via central processing are more persistent than peripheral processing
distinctive product image that is linked to favorable qualities. may be tangible or intangible in nature
Methods of Maintaining Consistency
-modifying one or both attitudes
denying or ignoring any inconsistency. "i really dont like that jacket after all"
rationalizing or making excuses. "that cow is already dead, so what difference does it make"
focusing on a higher or larger level. "no one is perfect"
convincing others to change or that they did the right thing. "ill just have to convince my friends that I'm not a hypocrite when they see me in my new jacket"
three main assumptions of consistency
whenever there is a consistency among our beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors, we live in a psychological harmony
inconsistency is unpleasant and causes tension
people will strive to deny, reduce, or eliminate psychological inconsistency through attitude belief/change
a theory holding that people try to maintain balance among their beliefs, cognitions, and sentiments
Triangle for balance theory
P- person (bottom left)
O-other person (top)
X-attitude object (bottom right)
limitations of balance theory
Only 1 triad at a time
Not accounting for the strength of the attitudes
Not clear which element will change to restore the balance
after making a decision or performing a behavior, a person worries whether he or she did the right thing. the person is therefore motivated to reduce the resulting dissonance. post decision theory
TCD is concerned with the relationships among cognitions
what can be done to reduce dissonance
Changing cognitions- change one to make it consistent with the other
Adding positive cognitions- add one or more consonant cognitions