University of Twente Student Theses


Misinformation about Travel Vaccines and the Perceived Credibility Assessment by University Students

Boenke, Lisa (2019) Misinformation about Travel Vaccines and the Perceived Credibility Assessment by University Students.

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Abstract:The present study examines three determinants, authority, medium, and advertisements, of perceived credibility in the context of travel vaccines. An experimental online study with a set of three separate between-subjects designs was administered to a predominantly female university student convenience sample (N = 225). It contained three experiments with two conditions each, to which participants were randomly assigned. Participants were shown mock tweets, Facebook posts, and online news articles. Independent samples t-tests were conducted. Results showed authority to be a positive determinant of perceived credibility (p = .001; d = -.51) in a health information context, which is consistent with previous research. Daily Twitter use was not a moderating variable (p = .825), most likely because social media use does not indicate immediate trust toward it. Advertisements were found to be a negative determinant (p = .007), most likely because it decreases the perception of professionalism. There was no difference between the Facebook and online newspaper condition. Overall findings indicate that misinformation posted on non-health-specialized media is not perceived as credible by university students. Future research is recommended to focus on diminishing factors for perceived credibility, and to take into account both source and user-characteristics to gain a complete picture.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
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