Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The principle of congruence in asking questions
by Chiang, I-Chant A., Ph.D., Stanford University, 2008, 60; 3332987
Abstract (Summary)

How do congruity effects facilitate question asking and answering? By changing the wording of questions, question askers are manipulating the concepts being activated in the answering of those questions. The concepts used to answer questions may contain congruent information and therefore facilitate the response or they may contain incongruent information and cause interference in the form of delays or unwanted responses. This study examines congruity effects for abstract, linguistically-based concepts where responses are subjective and not perceptually based, namely the political concepts of "liberal" and "conservative". Even though these concepts are multidimensional in nature, political surveys often use the terms "liberal" and "conservative" in probing the mass public about political figures and issues. How do congruity effects play a role in these political surveys? Three types of congruities are investigated in reaction time and questionnaire experiments: semantic congruity, ingroup congruity, and spatial metaphoric congruity. Semantic congruity and spatial metaphor congruity effects are found for judgments of politicians but only the semantic congruity effect is found for judgments of political issues. Ingroup congruity is not found for either politicians or political issues. In addition, changing the wording of questions affects the outcome of which responses are chosen.

Indexing (document details)
School: Stanford University
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 69/10, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Linguistics, Political science, Cognitive psychology
Keywords: Congruity, Ingroup expertise, Political ideology, Questions, Semantic congruity, Spatial metaphor, Survey methodology
Publication Number: 3332987
ISBN: 978-0-549-85113-4
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