Exploring the relationship between attitude similarity, likeability,and construal of student leaders

Tan, Terri Su-May, and Singh, Smita (2015) Exploring the relationship between attitude similarity, likeability,and construal of student leaders. In: Proceedings of the Asian Congress of Applied Psychology. pp. 39-57. From: ACAP 2015: Asian Congress of Applied Psychology, 19-20 May 2015, Singapore.

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The similarity-attraction link has received largely consistent support across decades, with prior research on organizational leadership demonstrating how similarity positively influences employees' appraisals of their supervisors and facilitates leader-member exchanges (LMX). However, little research has applied this similarity-attraction link in understanding how similarity impacts perceptions of student leaders within a college context, where student body elections are common practice. Drawing on Construal Level Theory (CLT), this research explored how attitude similarity influenced undergraduates' likeability and mental representations of their student leaders. 124 undergraduates were presented with a hypothetical student leader who held either similar or dissimilar attitudes from them on a number of pertinent school issues. Additionally, information about the leader was framed either in terms of general character traits (high-level construal condition), or contextualized behaviours (low-level construal condition). Participants then completed a Leader Evaluation Scale (LES), which was an overall measure of likeability towards the leader. While analyses revealed significant effects of attitude similarity and construal level on likeability of student leaders, CLT was unsupported in this context. Results obtained support previous research conducted in this direction, and reinforce the integral role of attitude similarity in promoting positive first impressions towards student leaders in college.

Item ID: 40098
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISBN: 978-981-4723-38-1
Keywords: similarity, attitudes, construal level theory, likeability, student leadership
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Date Deposited: 19 Aug 2015 04:04
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1702 Cognitive Science > 170202 Decision Making @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 100%
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