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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)



First Advisor

Kenneth D. Day

First Committee Member

B. Jan Timmons

Second Committee Member

Carol Ann Hall


The present study applies three distinct theoretically grounded research methodologies to the research phase of a public relations campaign. The researcher examines the distinctions of each method, the strengths and weaknesses of the data generated, and the implications of mass communication theory as it relates to public relations campaigns. Drawing from DeFleur and Ball-Rokeach's (1989) overview of three theoretical approaches to mass mediated persuasion, the study implements research methodologies from the psychodynamic, the sociocultural, and the meaning construction paradigms. The study examines how the assumptions of each approach might influence a practitioner in each stage of campaign construction. The author concludes that the often implicit theoretical assumptions which guide public relations practitioners have a significant impact on every phase of a public relations campaign.



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