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Demand Characteristics in an Experiment on Attitude Change
Susan Roth Sherman
Vol. 30, No. 3 (Sep., 1967), pp. 246-261
Published by: American Sociological Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2786447
Page Count: 16
You can always find the topics here!Topics: Attitude change, Psychological attitudes, Personality psychology, Social psychology, Stereotypes, Psychology, Social interaction, Psychological assessment, Social communication, Experimental psychology
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Results in the typical experiment on attitude change were hypothesized to be vulnerable to interpretation in terms of responsiveness to demand characteristics (DCs), particularly for subjects high in other-directedness (O-D). One hundred twenty-nine coeds participated in an experiment on attitude toward Negroes. Cues both extrinsic and intrinsic to the experimental communication were varied, using a 2 + 3 design. A communication with strong cues but weak appeals caused more change among subject high in O-D only when other cues suggested favorable change. Another communication, with strong cues and strong appeals, caused more change among subjects high in O-D, regardless of other cues. Results in an experiment relating attitude change to communications and to personality factors must be discussed with reference to the specific communication, personality measures, and attitude measures used. Artifactual effects in terms of responsiveness to DCs must be considered in designing and appraising research on attitude change.
Sociometry © 1967 American Sociological Association