Communication Professor Confirms What the Body Already Knows
Zheng Wang, assistant professor of communication, is lead author of a new study examining people’s bodily responses while watching presidential campaign ads. The results showed that partisan participants reacted strongly to ads featuring their favored candidate, but barely responded to ads featuring the rival candidate.
“If people are exposed to information in ads regarding a candidate they oppose, they respond by basically tuning out,” said Wang. “A lot of research has shown that, behaviorally, we tend to selectively expose ourselves to information that reinforces our existing opinions. But this study further suggests that even when exposed to information, our attention to what is presented is highly selective as well."
Wang co-authored the study with Alyssa Morey, a graduate student in communication and Jatin Srivastava, an assistant professor at Ohio University. Their results appear in a recent issue of the journal Communication Research.
Read the entire press release, courtesy of Jeff Grabmeier, senior director of research and innovation communications, Ohio State Research and Innovation Communications.