Cognitive and affective processing of campaign messages: Issue -based and image -based strategies

Wonjun Chung, Purdue University


This dissertation examined the interaction between two different political involvements (cognitive versus affective) at two different levels (high versus low) and two different types of campaign messages (issue-based versus image-based) from a campaign message processing perspective. A conceptual model was developed that incorporates these three constraints on campaign message processing. A 2 X 2 X 2 factorial design was employed. Approximately 330 participants were recruited at a big university located in a Mid-Western city. They were randomly assigned to read either an issue-based or an image-based message describing a hypothetic political candidate, while each level of cognitive and affective political involvement was determined through self-report. Results showed that cognitive and affective political involvement interacted with political campaign message type in the realm of the dependent variables, attitude toward the article, attitude toward the candidate, and voting intention with respect to the candidate. Finally, implications of the results are discussed and future research directions suggested.




Dutta-Bergman, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Mass media

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