This research is contextualized in a special crisis situation, the SARS epidemic, in Macao to test a model of behavior prediction. We tackle questions and specify conditions in four areas through the analysis of the interrelationships among patterns of media use, modes of information processing, evaluative responses, and behaviors. A total probability sample of 526 Macao residents aged 15 or above was interviewed during the peak SARS outbreak period from May 7 to 10, 2003 in Macao. Corresponding to our research hypothesis, the data shed light on four aspects: first, fear of SARS might imply a stronger affective element than what would be expected from an attitude based on rational reasoning; second, a clear society–personal distinction at the cognitive level is identified; third, cognitive activities of two kinds of information processors, central processing mode and peripheral processing mode, have been shown to predict fear and behavior in opposite directions; and last, the role of attitude serving as a mediating mechanism between information processing and behavior is supported, in line with the O-S-O-R conception.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Information processing