Explaining Gender Differences in Responses to Supportive Messages: Two Tests of a Dual-Process Approach

Explaining Gender Differences in Responses to Supportive Messages: Two Tests of a Dual-Process... We propose a comprehensive explanation for gender differences in responses to supportive communication grounded in a dual-process theory of communication outcomes. Two studies confirmed consistent gender differences in responses by US college students to supportive communication and assessed the mediating effects of an ability factor (cognitive complexity) and two motivational factors (expressive and instrumental orientations) on situation elaboration and message evaluation. Study 1 focused on everyday comforting contexts (N = 318), whereas Study 2 focused on bereavement (N = 103). Both studies found that cognitive complexity mediated gender differences in situation elaboration and further found that cognitive complexity and expressive orientation collectively mediated gender differences in evaluative responses to supportive messages. Theoretical and pragmatic implications of the results are discussed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Explaining Gender Differences in Responses to Supportive Messages: Two Tests of a Dual-Process Approach

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11199-009-9623-7
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

We propose a comprehensive explanation for gender differences in responses to supportive communication grounded in a dual-process theory of communication outcomes. Two studies confirmed consistent gender differences in responses by US college students to supportive communication and assessed the mediating effects of an ability factor (cognitive complexity) and two motivational factors (expressive and instrumental orientations) on situation elaboration and message evaluation. Study 1 focused on everyday comforting contexts (N = 318), whereas Study 2 focused on bereavement (N = 103). Both studies found that cognitive complexity mediated gender differences in situation elaboration and further found that cognitive complexity and expressive orientation collectively mediated gender differences in evaluative responses to supportive messages. Theoretical and pragmatic implications of the results are discussed.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Apr 21, 2009

References

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