You are here

Role of Communication, Prior Experience and Beliefs as Factors Influencing Combat Stress Recommendations from Military Spouses

Title: The Role of Communication, Prior Experience and Beliefs as Factors Influencing Combat Stress Recommendations from Military Spouses.
Name(s): Alrutz, Anna Stowe, author
Heald, Gary, professor directing thesis
Figley, Charles, outside committee member
Eveland, Vicki, committee member
School of Communication, degree granting department
Florida State University, degree granting institution
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2006
Publisher: Florida State University
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Florida
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Encouraging help-seeking behavior for Combat Operational Stress Reaction (COSR) among military service members is an important factor in maintaining military readiness and military family quality of life. This research explores the role that military spouses play in encouraging help-seeking behavior among service members using a hybrid model that merged the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) with elements of Protection Motivation Theory (PMT) to understand spouses' behavior intention. Six predictor variables were explored during focus group meetings and ultimately incorporated into questions in an online survey completed by 306 military spouses of service members from all branches of service. The six predictor variables were analyzed using multiple regression and simple regression to determine their significance in predicting spouse behavior intention for service members to seek help at military and nonmilitary treatment facilities. The research focused on five hypotheses and seven research questions. The hypotheses focused on information sources and usefulness about COSR, the amount of direct experience with COSR, the degree of favorable outcomes of COSR medical treatment, the perceived stigma associated with combat stress, the perceived vulnerabilities which included risk and severity, normative beliefs about help-seeking and the perceived military spouse efficacy to encourage help-seeking behavior at both military and nonmilitary treatment faculties. The research questions provided a range of generalized information about the variables. Statistical analyses indicated that spouses who report that they have more military sources that provide useful information, about combat stress, are also more likely to (1) report more favorable beliefs about military care outcomes, (2) recognize the risks and severity of combat stress, and (3) feel that they are capable of effectively making recommendations that service members seek care at a military facility. Spouses with more direct experience with combat stress also are more likely to report favorable beliefs about outcomes resulting from military health care. Spouses who have more favorable outcome beliefs, higher perceptions of risk and severity (vulnerability), plus greater general and personal efficacy are more likely to encourage their service members to seek help at a military care facility. A positive relationship was found between useful nonmilitary information sources about combat stress and behavioral intentions to recommend care at a nonmilitary care facility. In addition, spouses who have more useful nonmilitary information report higher levels of perceived stigma associated with combat stress. Direct behavioral nonmilitary care experiences are positively related to beliefs about favorable outcomes resulting from care at nonmilitary facilities. Three variables were found to be predictors of behavior intentions. The spouses who have (1) favorable outcome beliefs, (2) who experience normative expectations and are motivated to comply with these norms, and (3) who feel greater efficacy are more likely to encourage service members to seek help at a nonmilitary care facility.
Identifier: FSU_migr_etd-0185 (IID)
Submitted Note: A Thesis submitted to the Department of Communication in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Masters of Arts.
Degree Awarded: Degree Awarded: Fall Semester, 2006.
Date of Defense: Date of Defense: December 15, 2006.
Keywords: Help-seeking, Military Spouse, Theory of Planned Behavior, Combat Stress
Bibliography Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Advisory committee: Gary Heald, Professor Directing Thesis; Charles Figley, Outside Committee Member; Vicki Eveland, Committee Member.
Subject(s): Communication
Persistent Link to This Record:
Owner Institution: FSU

Choose the citation style.
Alrutz, A. S. (2006). The Role of Communication, Prior Experience and Beliefs as Factors Influencing Combat Stress Recommendations from Military Spouses. Retrieved from