Thesis Title

Theatre Attendance: Media and Interpersonal Communication in Persuasion

Date of Graduation

Spring 2006

Degree

Master of Arts in Communication

Department

Communication

Committee Chair

Gloria Galanes

Keywords

communication, persuasion, theatre attendance, media, quantitative

Subject Categories

Communication

Abstract

The thesis examines the role of media and interpersonal communication in the process of persuasion as it relates to attending performing arts events. This study uses published research and the author’s pilot study to examine dissemination of information. The three main theories used are Katz and Lazarsfeld’s Two-Step Flow of Communication (1964), Roger’s Innovation Diffusion (1995), and McCombs and Shaw’s Agenda-Setting Function of Mass Media (1972). These theories describe opinion sharer’s dissemination of information among groups of people. A quantitative study examined four hypotheses and one research question. Two hypotheses were supported indicated a small segment of the study population served as opinion sharers and they heard about the performing arts events they attended from significantly more source categories than non-opinion sharers. Two hypotheses were not supported to reflect there were no significant differences between opinion sharers and non-opinion sharers in level of education and when they first heard about and obtained tickets to the event which they attended. The research question reflected that opinion sharers are significantly more likely than non-opinion sharers to hear about the event they attended from television and the performing arts center’s web site as well as from radio and interpersonal communication.

Copyright

© Diana Ka Nelson

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