Professor Russell Publishes New Manuscript

Posted On April 3, 2018
Categories Faculty News, News, Research
Professor Benjamin Russell’s manuscript, Using Semantic Networks to Define the Quality of Arguments, was recently published in the Oxford Academic journal Communication Theory. It can be found in the 1st issue of volume 28 on pages 46-68. You may read the abstract below. You can also find the full online manuscript here or view the PDF version here.

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Communication researchers have deplored the absence of theory-driven criteria of argument quality in persuasion. Probabilistic Persuasion Theory (PPT) aims to offer theoretical criteria which define the quality of arguments, a priori. Past experimental research tested the validity and distinctiveness of cues as argument quality criteria. Drawing on semantic network theory, the present research introduces two new criteria of argument quality—attribute degree centrality and attribute tie strength. Analyses of semantic network data collected on over-the-ear headphones attributes from the environment and cognitive representations are reported. The analysis demonstrates how degree centrality and tie strength can be measured and how semantic networks can be used to distinguish strong and weak arguments.