Empathic Accuracy And Computer-mediated Communication: Testing The Effects Of The Target Partner's Attractiveness, Self-disclosure And Trust
Rollings, Kathryn Hyde
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This study examined empathic accuracy in a Computer-Mediated Communication setting. The attractiveness of the perceived interaction partner was manipulated and used as an independent variable. Participants were 48 dyads (N = 96) from the subject pool at the University of Texas at Arlington. It was expected that individuals who were interacting with a more attractive partner would have higher levels of empathic accuracy, and that when there was a more attractive male partner in the dyad, the dyad as a whole would use fewer third-person pronouns and more first- and second-person pronouns. It was also expected that increased self disclosure and increased trust would lead to higher levels of empathic accuracy; these hypotheses were not supported. Finally, it was expected that the relationship between trust and empathic accuracy would be mediated by self-disclosure; however, there was no support for this hypothesis. Additional analyses revealed that participants in this study did exhibit empathic accuracy while interacting via Computer-Mediated Communication. Limitations and Future Directions are discussed.