Facilitating personal deliberation online: Immediate effects of two ConsiderIt variations

Hans Stiegler, Menno D.T. de Jong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

A healthy democracy requires cognizant citizens who are willing and able to make informed decisions about political issues. ConsiderIt is a software application aimed at facilitating and encouraging personal deliberation. This article reports on a pretest–posttest experimental study (N = 36) into the immediate effects of two possible variations of ConsiderIt: a version with predefined pro and con statements, and one in which users decide for themselves whether statements are pro or con. The participants used ConsiderIt in a controversial case on the position of Greece in the European Union. Data were gathered on changes in standpoint, perceived knowledge, perceived understanding, and general open-mindedness. Irrespective of the variation used, the use of ConsiderIt significantly appeared to affect the users’ standpoint as well as their perceived knowledge and understanding of the subject matter. No effects were found on general open-mindedness. Qualitative data, however, showed that it was still hard for the participants to commit themselves to full deliberative behavior. Based on these findings, it seems interesting to implement the usage of this type of software application in educational settings to contribute to a more deliberative society
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)461-469
JournalComputers in human behavior
Volume51
Issue numberPart A
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • METIS-310743
  • IR-96117

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