Master's Theses


Communication Studies

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


This thesis was an experimental research project designed to identify the impacts of negative and positive political advertising on voting behavior. The research also focused on how negative and positive political advertising affects the character image of a candidate. Additionally, the research asked questions to determine if opinions on current political issues make a difference in voting behavior. The subjects (N=134) watched a series of commercials from an actual primary congressional election. The subjects viewed different combinations of advertisements to determine the different impacts. The results of the research suggest that there is a significant difference when comparing the reactions to negative and positive political advertising. Negative advertising can be informative to voters whereas positive advertising attracts more votes.


Willis M. Watt

Date of Award

Fall 1994

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


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