Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

Kenneth DeBono




expertise, ads, effectiveness, psycholgy


The current study aimed to explore the relationship between the two routes to persuasion proposed in the Elaboration Likelihood Model of persuasion, the central route and the peripheral route, and an individual’s self-esteem. It was hypothesized that individuals with low self-esteem would be more likely to follow the peripheral route to persuasion due to a lack of cognitive resources needed to enter the central route, while those high in self-esteem were thought to be more likely to follow the central route. Participants were first asked to fill out a series of three short questionnaires, one of which was the Rosenberg Self-Esteem scale. They were then given 30 seconds to read an advertisement for a showerhead. Participants could have been exposed to one of four ads. Some of the ads had relatively strong arguments for the showerhead and others had relatively weak arguments. Also, in some ads the spokesperson was an expert on showerheads, in others, he was a non-expert. The results revealed that individuals with low self-esteem were more persuaded by the expert than non-expert source and that high self-esteem individuals were more persuaded by the strong rather than the weak arguments.