Degree Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2016

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication

Major

Journalism and Mass Communication

First Advisor

Michael Dahlstrom

Abstract

Cell phones represent a technology associated with uncertain risks, yet one that has already been accepted as a normalized part of society. A pair of online experiments examined how individuals cognitively process uncertain risks associated with previously accepted technology when confronted with precautionary information. The second study expanded the initial results by comparing the effects between U.S. and Chinese students. Results suggest that individuals who initially perceived greater benefits from their cell phone showed less change in perceived risk after reading the precautionary message. Perceived risk also had a significant positive relationship with intentions to engage in protective behaviors. The Chinese participants in general displayed more relationships and larger effects that the U.S. participants. An additional line of inquiry explored if messages addressing perceived social norms and self-efficacy would influence dissonance reduction strategies, yet no effects were found in either participant groups.

Copyright Owner

Yang Yang

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

File Size

75 pages

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