ERIC Number: ED261439
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Upward-Directed Persuasive Communication and Attribution of Success and Failure toward an Understanding of the Role of Gender.
Andrews, Patricia Hayes
A study was conducted to examine the impact of gender on upward communication (subordinates to superiors) in organizations. It was hypothesized that women would (1) report less self-confidence when approaching a communicative performance situation, (2) rate themselves less successfully following persuasive presentations, and (3) be more likely to attribute their success to external factors and their failures to internal factors than would men. It was also thought that subjects would rate male power figures as making a more positive impression than female power figures, and that men were more likely to advance criterion-based arguments and women to advance arguments of their own creation and based on human relationships and responsibility, to justify decisions. Subjects were 40 male and 40 female college students in public speaking classes. Subjects read a medical case study and two criteria for decision making and were asked to make a decision and present supporting arguments to a professionally dressed male or female "confederate" graduate student in the role of hospital administrator. The confederate then evaluated the arguments, and gave recommendations to the researcher. Subjects completed a questionnaire after their presentations. The results supported the hypotheses, although low self-confidence did not affect performance as rated by the confederates. Men and women also used different criteria in developing their cases, and were often sensitive to the gender of the listener in choosing their arguments. (HTH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Communication, Language and Gender Conference (Oxford, OH, October 14-16, 1985).