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ERIC Number: EJ789741
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Apr
Pages: 27
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 69
ISSN: ISSN-0360-3989
Evaluation of Peer Comforting Strategies by Children and Adolescents
Clark, Ruth Anne; MacGeorge, Erina L.; Robinson, Lakesha
Human Communication Research, v34 n2 p319-345 Apr 2008
Despite the importance of social support across the lifespan and extensive research on supportive communication between adults, little is known about how children or adolescents respond to the comforting efforts of their peers. The current study was designed to examine how 5th, 7th, and 9th graders evaluate six peer comforting strategies (sympathy, account giving, companionship, advice, optimism, and minimization) and to assess moderating effects of age, gender, and situation. Participants (N = 292) read scenarios involving a social rejection or academic failure and rated messages for affective improvement and perceived caring. Results indicated that companionship was the most positively evaluated strategy on both dependent variables, whereas minimization and account were least positively evaluated; sympathy, advice, and optimism received intermediate evaluations. These results were somewhat moderated by age, gender, and situation. Results are discussed with respect to potential differences between adult and tween evaluations and expectations in comforting interactions.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Grade 5; Grade 7; Grade 9
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A