More New Research From UM COMM Authors
Current and future faculty members and graduate students from the University of Maryland's Department of Communication have recently published new research in the discipline's leading journals.
Professor Edward Fink, along with Ph.D. alumna Elena Bessarabova (Ph.D., 2009) and former UM faculty member Monique Turner, are the authors of a new essay appearing in Human Communication Research. Entitled "Reactance, Restoration, and Cognitive Structure: Comparative Statics," their essay examined the effects of freedom threat on cognitive structures, using recycling as its topic. The results of a 2(Freedom Threat: low vs. high) × 2(Postscript: restoration vs. filler) plus 1(Control) experiment indicated that, relative to the control condition, high freedom threat created a boomerang effect for the targeted attitude (recycling) as the attitude and behavioral intention changed in the opposite direction to the one advocated in the message. For the associated but untargeted attitude (energy conservation), reactance effects were less pronounced. Furthermore, a restoration postscript was examined as a reactance mitigation strategy. The restoration postscript was effective for high- but not low-threat messages.
Ph.D. alumna Ahnlee Jang (Ph.D., 2012) and current doctoral student Hyunhee Kim are the co-authors of an article appearing in the Journal of Public Relations Research. Entitled "Cultural Identity, Social Capital, and Social Control of Young Korean Americans: Extending the Theory of Intercultural Public Relations," the essay uses 10 in-depth interviews and 2 focus groups to examine how young Korean Americans perceive cultural identity, utilize social capital, and identify conflicts that arise between themselves and their significant others, particularly focusing on how they integrate Korean and American culture. The findings reveal that young Korean Americans have multifaceted, situational identities, which go beyond existing cultural stereotypes, maximize their religious-based social capital and human capital, and experience a varying range of cultural tensions and conflicts in social settings. Therefore, situational cultural identity, a new category of intercultural public relations is suggested, and implications for the practice of public relations are discussed.
Future assistant professor Amber Westcott-Baker is the co-author of an essay appearing in Communication Monographs. Entitled "A Multilevel Analysis of Antimarijuana Public Service Announcement Effectiveness," the essay contrasts and tests competing predictions of antidrug message effectiveness from 3 recent publications that draw on ELM, AMIE, and LC4MP. The analysis uses televised antimarijuana messages, young-adult samples, and a multilevel modeling approach. Significant interactions between individual- and message-level factors were found predicting message effectiveness as theory dictates; these results replicate some, but not all of the findings from the aforementioned publications.