Publication Date

2018-07-01

Availability

Embargoed

Embargo Period

2020-06-30

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)

Department

Communication (Communication)

Date of Defense

2018-05-17

First Committee Member

Soyoon Kim

Second Committee Member

Susan E Morgan

Third Committee Member

Nicholas Carcioppolo

Fourth Committee Member

Soyeon Ahn

Abstract

Health games have become an innovative tool for strengthening interventions, and these games are found to be effective in improving health outcomes. However, an underexplored question in ongoing research is why games are able to produce the desirable outcomes. To address this question, the current study evaluates the effectiveness of a specific game feature: interactivity. Considering that the effect of interactivity depends on how it is conceptualized and categorized, the current study focuses on two types of narrative-based interactivity: character-based interactivity and plot-based interactivity. Using a narrative-based digital health game, the current study examines how these two interactivity features affect message processing and behavioral outcomes, and how transportability and need for cognition moderate these effects. Findings of the current study contribute to the research of health games, and inform health practice by helping interventionists design effective games with appropriate interactivity features that are tailored to the needs of the target population.

Keywords

health games; interactivity; narrative persuasion

Available for download on Tuesday, June 30, 2020

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