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State of the Art


MICHAEL L. HECHT California State University, Northridge

Satisfying communication is an important determinant of psychological adjustment, and dissatisfying communication is taken as a symptom of pathological states. As Rossiter and Pearce (1975, p. 3) note, Satisfying relationships with other people are established through communication, and our ability to communicate well is important. Accordingly, communication has been ascribed a central role in the development and maintenance of mental health. Participation in therapeutic communication may be the most important aspect of attaining mental health (e.g., Rogers, 1961; Sieburg & Larson, 1971). Numerous writers have stressed the role of communication in the healthy attainment of openness to experience (Rogers, 1961; Bochner & Kelly, 1974), transparency (Jourard, 197I), congruence (Rogers, 1961), and validation or confirmation (Watzlawick, Beavin, & Jackson, 1967; Rossiter & Pearce, 1975). A person whose life is relatively devoid of satisfying communication is likely to experience difficulty adjusting. When dealing with relationships and mental health constructs, then, one emotion is repeatedly discussed: satisfaction. Satisfaction is typically conceived of as the affective response to the fulfillment of expectation-type standards (Hecht, in press, a) and symbolizes an enjoyable, fulfilling experience. The investigation of this outcome would add to our understanding of communication expectations and emotional responses to the communication we send and receive.

Michael L . Hecht is assistant professor in the Department of Interpersonal Communication. University of Montana. This artcle is based on his Ph.D. dissertation (University of Illinois, 1976).

An understanding of communication outcomes such as satisfaction is a prerequisite to an integrative explanation of communication behavior. Not only are such outcomes influential in determining future communication behavior, they also provide a theoretical framework for grouping and assessing the importance of various process elements. Satisfaction, for example, provides a criterion for investigating the variance accounted for by various communication variables as well as indicating interacting variables. Despite repeated calls for research (e.g., Redding, 1966, p. 78), only a few attempts have been made to develop this area (Nilsen, 1953; Level, 1959; Sieburg 8 c Larson, 1971; Roberts & OReilly, 1974; Downs, Medley, Hazen, & Quigley, 1974; Hecht, in press a, b). Measurement forms the basis for theoretical inference and thus is crucial to theory building. Accordingly, this paper will review various approaches to the measurement of communication satisfaction. As an organizational framework, measures of communication satisfaction will be considered separately in the interpersonal, small group, and organizational areas. Satisfaction relates conceptually to expectations which differ in various contexts and this organizational framework suggests the beginnings of a contextual approach to communication satisfaction. Further, this framework reflects the actual divisions among researchers (there has been little interchange among satisfaction researchers in these areas). Finally, since communication satisfaction has been a neglected empirical variable, more general approaches to measuring satisfaction with small groups, organizations, and life in general can provide insight into measurement problems as well as



ysis. These procedures produced five specialized inventories for use in measuring communication satisfaction with immediate or recalled conversations, and when the other is perceived to be a friend, INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION acquaintance, or stranger (Hecht, 1976). In addiSATISFACTION tion, a general communication satisfaction invenThe discussion of satisfaction measurement tory was constructed from those items which diswithin the interpersonal setting will consider the criminated satisfied and dissatisfied respondents conceptual definitions of the variable and will within all five categories (Hecht, in press b). Splitexamine item construction procedures and reliabil- half reliabilities with Spearman-Brown correction ity and validity testing. The development of a con- factors were calculated. Internal consistency is the ceptual foundation is an important step in measure most appropriate model of reliability because perconstruction. Ones theory directs the type of mea- ceptions of satisfaction with a conversation can be sure constructed, orients the search for items or expected to change over time. Unidimensionality categories, and provides the rationale for validation was concluded from the factor analyses and indistrategies. Since interpersonal communication cated the use of one internal consistency coefficient satisfaction has received little theoretical and em- rather than separate coefficients for each dimenpirical attention, various investigations of commu- sion. The reliabilities of the specialized measures nication competence will be examined under the assumption that communicators will generally be ranged from .94 to .97. The general inventory was tested within the same five categories and exhibited satisfied with effective interactions. reliabilities between .90 and .97. Validity was established for the general measure The Corn-Sat Inventories by correlating it with a nonverbal measuring techThe only existing measures of interpersonal nique, and the Faces Scale (Kunin, 1955). These communication satisfaction were constructed by validity coefficients ranged from .64 to .87. TestHecht (1976; in press, b). Hecht adopted a be- retest reliabilities of .60 and .73 have been reported havioral perspective, conceptualizing satisfaction for the Faces Scale when used to measure organizaas the affect associated with the reinforcement of tional communication satisfaction (Roberts & behavior emitted in the presence of discriminative OReilly, 1974). As the maximum concurrent validstimuli (Hecht, in press, a). Seven-step Likert items ity is a function of the product of the reliabilities, the were generated from two types of questionnaires, validity coefficients are exceptionally high. Items for the com-sat inventory were generated interviews, and a review of related literature. Consistent with Hechts conceptualization, these items from respondents perceptions as well as previous were written to reflect responses to discriminative empirical and theoretical work. By constructing the stimuli and the attendant environmental reinforce- items to reflect optimal conditions, Hecht avoided ment or punishment. Item analyses were conducted the assumption common to semantic differentialto identify the most salient of such experiences. type scales that extreme responses represent the Respondents used the items to rate ideal notions of ideal choice. Credibility research, for example, has satisfying and dissatisfying conversations. Items indicated that moderate degrees of a trait may be which did not discriminate were eliminated. The preferred to either extreme (Burgoon, 1976). remaining items were used by a different sample to Semantic differential-type scales score one extreme rate recalled and actual conversations with friends, or the other as the highest possible value. The Likert acquaintances, and strangers. Items were required scaling technique adopted by Hecht resulted in to discriminate between the most and least satisfied items which reflected an optimal condition, and respondents within each of these five categories. degrees of agreement were used to indicate the The remaining items were subjected to factor anal- respondents perception of a conversation. models and theoretical orientations for overcoming these obstacles.



The com-sat inventories exhibit a number of other strengths. Multiple data collection techniques were utilized to obtain respondent perceptions, thereby incorporating a triangularization methodology. The items were tested to insure their applicability to ideal notions of satisfaction, recalled and immediate measurement, as well as three levels of relationship intimacy. Further, the inventories exhibited high reliability and validity. All these factors contribute to face and content validity claims. Additional implications for satisfaction measurement can be derived from the secondary analyses. In examining the factor structures, content analyses and statistical analyses of the items within each category, differences were noted between recalled and immediate measurement, and among the three levels of relationship. These differences are concluded based on the items observed to load on the various factors and content analyses of the items included in each inventory. In further analysis, mean ratings of each item for highly satisfied respondents were correlated across the two levels of immediacy of measurement and among the three levels of relationship intimacy. Similar correlations were computed for the highly dissatisfied respondents. These correlations corroborated the differences noted above and led to the conclusion that satisfaction measures must be matched with the conditions or context of measurement, specifically immediacy of measurement and relationship intimacy. These differences were found to be most extreme among the least satisfied respondents.

and the high internal consistency coefficients contradicts much of the work in organizational satisfaction. This may be due to the respondents sample, the particular methodologies used, and/or the nature of the interpersonal context.

Trait Approaches to Communication Competence

A number of limitations must also be noted. First, a single-item measure of relationship intimacy was utilized. Although reliability information is not available, this suggests relatively unreliable measurement. Second, the com-sat inventory was limited by choice to social situations. Measures are certainly needed for more formal communication situations. Third, the measure was developed on Caucasian, midwestern college students. Use with other samples will require revalidation. Finally, the unidimensionality indicated by the factor structures

Trait approaches to the measurement of communication competence were taken by Bienvenu (1971); Sieburg and Larson (1971); and Hart, Eadie, and Carlson (1975). Each investigation sought to isolate and measure the traits of effective communicators. This orientation may be empirically and theoretically counterproductive. Traits which are isolated in one sample are not likely to describe effective communication in other contexts. After reviewing empirical investigations of supervisor behavior, Redding (1966) concluded that consistent traits of good and bad communicators could not be isolated. Instead of being an isolated trait, effective communication was found to be situation-bound. The futile search for leadership traits further attests to the problems inherent in this position, and recent investigations of persuasive strategies (Miller, Boster, Roloff, & Siebold, 1977) and impression formation (Rubin, 1977) stress the contextual nature of communication processes. Beyond the empirical viability of the trait approach, there are the theoretical implications of this orientation. The transactional approach to communication implies that the meanings ascribed to messages are a function of mutual and simultaneous reality of the interactants. As Steinfatt notes, there are major differences in the way in which we look at the effects of communication when we separate relationships from perceptions and publicly observable events (1977, p. 7). While Steinfatt assigns the transactional perspective to one of three levels of analysis, Wilmot argues that interpersonal communication is inherently a transaction in which meanings are ascribed between participants in a context (1975, pp. 8-9). The participants themselves are defined in terms of the relationship. The transactional and contextual nature of communication are inconsistent with the trait approach.



Sieburg and Larson. Of the trait approaches to communication competence, Sieburg and Larson (197 1) developed the measure most closely related to interpersonal communication satisfaction. Traits of most and least enjoyable communicators were used to construct a category-based observation system which operationalized communication competence. Their measure considers only the behavior of the other. A literature review and observation of live dyadic and small group interactions led to the identification of 24 categories to describe the clarity and relevancy of an individuals confirming or disconfirming response to anothers communication. Ninety-five experts rated the degree to which each category was typical of a person with whom they most enjoyed conversing and another person with whom they least enjoyed conversing. Data were submitted to separate factor analyses for enjoyable and unenjoyable targets. An orthogonal solution was derived, although no justification was provided for expecting independent dimensions. After correlating loadings on the factors for the enjoyable targets with loadings on the factors for the unenjoyable targets, both first factors were called disconfirming response and both second factors were called confirming response. Limitations. A number of Sieburg and Larsons (1971) techniques merit attention. Their initial item selection procedures were very complete. Since satisfaction is an internal behavior, the addition of self-report data may have proven useful. One must question, however, their decision to limit the scope to the others behavior. If communication is truly a transaction, then the behavior of the communicators cannot reasonably be separated. Other criticisms can be directed at the examination of only extreme examples (most and least enjoyable) and the use of experts as representatives of everyday interactants. Exclusion of the middle ranges of satisfaction assumes that communication behavior is linearly related to satisfaction. No evidence is offered in support of that conclusion. The use of experts implies that their satisfaction is related to the same type of communication behaviors as naive interactants. Again, no evidence is offered in support of this assumption. Finally, intercoder reliabil-

ity and validity evidence are not provided. Due to the scope of the initial literature review and the observational analyses, Sieburg and Larsons categories provide a useful, but limited, starting point in the measurement of interpersonal communication satisfaction.
Bienvenu. Another trait approach was taken by Bienvenu (1971) in the construction of the Interpersonal Communication Inventory for measuring communication effectiveness. The inventory measures patterns, characteristics, and styles of communication, but not content. Fifty-four items were developed from a literature review and the authors experiences. Face validity was established by having experts review the items for relevance to interpersonal communication. Undergraduate and graduate students reviewed the items to insure they were understandable and word changes were made where necessary. The items reflect an attitude or orientation toward communication but not dimensions of actual communication behavior. In other words, the items are not used in conjunction with a specific conversation, but were seen as reflective of communication style. The items were administered to 3 16 respondents. Chi-square tests of differences between the top and bottom quartiles revealed that 50 of 54 items discriminated significantly (p< .Ol). A content analysis revealed four dimensions: selfconcept, listening, clarity of expression, and the ability to cope with angry feelings. Bienvenu selected the 20 items with the highest discriminatory power. Limitations. Bienvenu chose to separate communication content from communication style. This distinction is not productive. The choice of a particular style is dependent upon the content presented. Conversely, content is commonly adapted to the style of delivery. The appropriateness of content and style are not separate issues. One may also question Bienvenus item construction procedures. While the range of the literature review is adequate, Bienvenus failure to incorporate systematic observation or respondent perceptions in his design detracts from content validity claims. Further, by choosing an ordinal scaling



style the range of statistical techniques is limited. Finally, Wanous and Lawlers (1972) findings indicate that scales consisting of items which describe the environment are more valid satisfaction measures than those consisting of items measuring desires or expectations. The empirical evidence provided in support of Bienvenus Interpersonal Communication Inventory is not adequate. While the items were found to discriminate between the top and bottom quartiles, no reliability or validity information is provided. As an enduring trait, stability as well as internal consistency models of reliability are required. Since Bienvenu constructed the items to fit a priori notions of communication competence, the content analysis reveals nothing more than the item construction procedures. Further, while the items were found to discriminate, they were tested for neither internal consistency nor construct validity and therefore one can only guess what is actually being measured. In conclusion, then, the Interpersonal Communication Inventory appears to be a measure which is of interest to those constructing similar scales, but one without value as a measuring instrument without substantial testing.

pal components factor analysis and varimax rotation. Items were selected which loaded a minimum of .40 on one of the factors while loading less than half their maximum weight on any one of the remaining factors. Five items were later dropped: two were overly ambiguous and three did not differentiate on subsequent administrations of the scale. The items were presented in modified Likert style (no neutral point), but were scored dichotomously. It was felt that Likert-type scoring might disguise attitudes by equating subjects who were neutral with others who selected the keyed answers for half the items and the opposite extreme for the remainder. Further, a forced choice situation was desired to prevent respondents from disguising their true attitude. The appearance of Likert-style choices was employed to alleviate respondents suspicions of forced choices on debatable issues. Test-retest reliability for these items was .83.

Hart, Eadie, and Carlson. Hart, Eadie, and Carlsons Rhetsen Scales (1975) are the only measure of communication competence linked to a theoretical approach. Based on Hart and Burkss (1972) definition of the rhetorically sensitive individual, the authors independently generated items operationalizing the five theoretical dimensions of rhetorical sensitivity. These dimensions are not clearly conceptually distinguished, but emphasize the value of flexibility and appropriateness. From these initial items, 75 were selected based on coverage, elimination of duplication, and readability. The 75 items were presented to 262 respondents. Two forms of the item pool were administered to minimize the effects of fatigue and repetition. Items were selected which correlated at least .20 with the total score and differentiated at the .05 level of significance between the top and bottom 27 percent of the distribution of scores. The remaining 37 items were submitted to princi-

Limitations. The methodologies utilized in the development of the Rhetsen scale raise a number of important questions. As noted above, descriptions of the environment have proven to be more valid measures of satisfaction than items of this type (Wanous & Lawler, 1972). In addition, the authors created items to fit a priori notions of communication effectiveness. Lacking a criterion, such a process is of questionable value. The resulting measure should represent communication which is effective when dealing with the three item selectors. It may not include other elements which are important when dealing with different people or groups. To the extent the authors identified the elements representative of the general population, the items reflect general communication effectiveness. But the probability of this is small. The notion of flexibility which lies at the core of the authors philosophy argues that three people cannot possess the full repertoire or flexibility necessary for effective communication in all contexts. Further, the items will only represent those elements of communication of which the authors were consciously aware. As a consequent, content validity argued from the factor analysis of the instrument is weakened since the factors merely reflect the dimensionality built



into the instrument in the construction stage. Fi- agree-disagree continuum, Hart, Eadie, and nally, the orthogonal solution is inconsistent with Carlson should have presented correlational evithe theoretical position which postulates an underly- dence that their scaling technique did not detract ing trait of sensitivity which is characterized by five from the scales reliability. Hart, Eadie, and Carlson declare that they are not related dimensions. The scaling technique also raises some questions. interested in responses to the component parts of the First, while it is true that for Likert-type scoring inventory (1975, p. 9). This claim is not only inconneutral respondents may be confused with respon- sistent with their orthogonal solution which sepadents utilizing the extremes equally, the precision rates components into independent dimensions, but gained by this style is substantial when compared to requires internal consistency evidence as well as the dichotomous scoring. In addition, such balanced stability evidence provided. Further, the orthogonal extremes are unlikely for all but deliberate error solution suggests that each factor should be tested cases. Second, eliminating the neutral point not for internal consistency reliability to be consistent only ignores information but fails to reflect the full with stated scale construction intentions. While range of individual reactions. A neutral response test-retest reliability indicates measurement stabilmay accurately reflect a respondents attitude. ity, the rationale behind the orthogonal rotation While there are grounds for concern that neutral indicates that one must also establish that the items responses mask true feelings, this masking process within a dimension constitute a measure of some will be exaggerated rather than eliminated by re- consistent construct. While important questions have been raised removing the neutral point. Assuming that truly neutral respondents will exist for some of the items, one garding the a priori decisions made in the construcmust ask what response they will be likely to exhibit tion of the Rhetsen instrument, a number of with Hart, Eadie, and Carlsons scoring. When no strengths may be commented on as well. The use of neutral response is permitted the respondent may item analyses and factor analysis provide some exhibit a consistent bias in the direction of the so- basis for content validity claims. In addition, the cially desirable response. The resulting compliant Rhetsen scale was developed from a conceptualizaor good subject typically provides a less accurate tion of communication competence. This theoretireflection of the true range of scores than would cal link provides the rationale for item construction result from a neutral response which masks the true and validation techniques. The instrument has exhibited a hypothesized positive correlation with conattitude. Hart, Eadie, and Carlson (1975) claim that ex- servative political philosophy and has distinguished treme agreement does not differ significantly from groups which were differentiated along sensitivity agreement. This claim seems questionable when lines by other techniques. Further, the instrument viewed in concert with their expressed concern for has confirmed predicted negative correlations with flexibility or adaptation, principles which reflect an a number of other personality traits. As Hart, Eadie, awareness of degrees. While it is true that Likert and Carlson note, this evidence indicates that a scaling primarily reflects the direction of response certain something. . . correlated well with the and not its extremity, extremity can be tapped by scores on the Rhetsen test (1975, p. 22). The initial item construction. The added number of steps theoretical rationale underlying the scale developin the Likert style of scoring contributes to highly ment should provide the basis for specifying that reliable scales of this type consisting of rela- certain something by predicting variables which tively few items. While the test-retest reliability of do not correlate highly with the Rhetsen instrument the 17-itemRhetsen instrument was adequate (.83), (discriminant validity), and by establishing internal Likert scales of similar length commonly produce consistency within the dimensions and high positive higher reliabilities (Edwards & Kenney, 1967, pp. correlations with other related traits (convergent 252-253). Since subjects responded along an validity).



Satisfying and Dissatisfying Contexts

A more general approach to satisfaction was taken by Shelly and his colleagues (1972) who sought to analyze the contexts of satisfying interactions. Shelly adopted a classical conditioning conceptualization of satisfaction, defining it as an affect associated with the difference between the amount of reinforcement and the amount of punishment over a short period of time. The analysis is broadly based, examining the physical environment, prior and post-interaction attitudes, prior relationships, and the range of available and performed behaviors. While Shelly did not focus on communication, his approach to measurement and his findings are relevant to the contexts of interpersonal communication Limitations. Shellys technique provides data relesatisfaction. vant to the contexts in which communication ocShelly utilized three methods. The first involved curs. The emphasis on field techniques is to be observing and describing the public places where applauded. Too often investigations of communicapeople characteristically meet to interact. Satisfac- tion variables have been restricted to a laboratory tion sites were defined as places where one or more milieu. As argued previously, communication is persons gathered for a considerable length of contextual. Consequently, the rules or relationships time or where many people gathered together for discovered in the laboratory may not be congruent at least a short period of time (Shelly, 1972, p. 222). with those operating in a different type of environThis technique is based on the questionable assump- ment. tion that people will continue to meet in the places at As a satisfaction measure, Shellys work is only which they have been satisfied in the past. They tangentially related to communication satisfaction. took as indicants of satisfaction the persistence of The combination of observational and self-report the behavior or the number of people involved. techniques has much to offer communication reObservations based on Shellys operational defini- searchers, and the dimensions of measurement (the tion are likely to confound unpleasant and pleasant environment, behaviors engaged in, emotions) prosituations. People remain in an environment andor vide data relevant to the contexts in which commuamong other people for many reasons, some of nication occurs. The emphasis on the environment which may contribute to dissatisfaction. Some peo- is derived from a classical conditioning concepple might have been performing unpleasant job- tualization of satisfaction which many will take related tasks; others may have been constrained by issue with, and the observational technique requires greater specification to insure that the observed ensocial norms from leaving dissatisfying sites. The second technique utilized open-ended ques- vironments do provide an analysis of satisfying contionnaires which asked respondents to recall their texts. reactions to four types of situations. These situations operationalized a pleasant-unpleasant dimen- Conclusion sion and differentiated evening from daytime arousal. The preceding discussion reflects the neglect of The third technique utilized the information the interpersonal communication satisfaction congathered from the observations and the open-ended struct. While one set of contextual-based measures questionnaires to construct a scale which measured of communication satisfaction currently exists

satisfaction-related perceptions of the environment. The respondents were asked to recall a pleasant situation in one location and an unpleasant situation in a second location, and respond to six questions about the environment, 12 questions about the behaviors they engaged in, and six questions about their emotions before, during, and after. The questions took the form of descriptions to which the subjects responded yes or no to indicate whether or not the statement described the pleasant and unpleasant situations. For each question percentages were compiled which indicated the number of times the item was perceived to describe the pleasant situations and unpleasant situations.



GROUP SATISFACTION (Hecht, 1976, in press), they require further testing. Elaboration of the construct to contexts other than At present, there are no measures of group cominformal social settings is needed. Previous remunication satisfaction. Considerable empirical atsearch has isolated the immediacy of measurement tention has been focused on satisfaction with variand relationship intimacy as important contextual ous group processes. As these processes form the variables. Future research should examine other context of group communication, group communivariables such as sex, the degree of relationship stability, length of relationship, negative relation- cation satisfaction research should share many of ships, dominance, and task-oriented communica- the same methodological considerations. The measurement of group satisfaction suffers tion. A second issue focuses on the trait approach to from numerous methodological deficiencies. To communication variables. The position taken in this avoid a long recitation of the most basic methpaper has been that such approaches are inconsistent odological considerations, criticisms will be selecwith the transactional perspective. Whether or not tively sampled in order to reflect the general tenor of such criticisms are theoretically justifiable, those group satisfaction measurement. More systematic adopting trait approaches incur the responsibility of measurement projects will be reviewed at the end of establishing both internal consistency and stability this section. reliability. Validity assessment in the interpersonal commu- Theoretical Limitations nication area has not advanced very far, with the Ambiguity has plagued the group satisfaction possible exception of the Rhetsen instrument. Strategies for convergent and discriminant validity field as researchers have attempted to move from should evolve from a conceptual definition of satis- conceptualization to measurement. Often it is unfaction as well as a general theoretical orientation. clear how the measure utilized was developed from Related to the validity question is the issue of the researchers conceptualization of satisfaction. item generation. Since satisfaction is an internal Trow (1957), for example, conceived of satisfacbehavior, subject self-reports are necessary. How- tion as need fulfillment and yet asked respondents, ever, people are not always aware of the causes of Considering it as a whole, how much did you like their satisfaction, so self-reports should be supple- your job? Mulder conceptualized satisfaction as a mented by observation studies in both field and social comparison process and yet stated, We prelaboratory settings. Content validity is weakened by fer the job-liking scale as a satisfaction measure the failure to incorporate a wide range of initial item (1959, p. 181). Satisfaction and liking have frequently been generation sources. Further, these items will prove equated in the group satisfaction literature. In addimore reliable if they are descriptive of the environtion to Trow (1957) and Mulder (1959), Cohen, ment rather than reflective of desires or expectaBennis, and Wolken (1961) also presented them as tions. synonymous. However, these investigators provide The basis for the study of interpersonal communo theoretical or empirical justification for equating nication satisfaction has been established. In spite satisfaction with any other emotion. Satisfaction is of the criticisms of previous measures, they do commonly conceived of as the affect experienced provide an item pool which should prove useful for when expectation-type standards are fulfilled. The future investigations. While empirical investigapositive or negative emotion experienced when tions of communication effectiveness were prepeople are satisfied or dissatisfied is associated with sented as an input to satisfaction measurement, ulthe link between an internal state and the perceived timately communication satisfaction measures will provide an important criterion for assessing com- environment. Other emotions (e.g., liking and attraction) are commonly conceptualized as the pairmunication behaviors.



ing of some positive or negative state with another person (e.g., Byrne & Krivonos, 1976). While satisfaction is associated with the success or goodness of some internal behavior in dealing with the environment, other emotions are associated with the positive feelings provided by another and become associated with that other. Still other emotions (e.g., cohesion, solidarity) represent more global groupings of specific affects such as satisfaction and attraction. Cohesion, for example, is commonly conceptualized as all of the forces operating to keep a member as a part of the group. Satisfaction should be one of those forces. Similarly, solidarity has been defined as the feeling of togetherness, oneness, or closeness which one person feels toward another (Wheeless, 1976). Solidarity was conceived to be a grouping of interpersonal affective outcomes, of which satisfaction, credibility, and attraction may be dimensions. What is at issue, then, is the precision lost by equating satisfaction with a conceptually distinct affect without empirical or theoretical justification. A comprehensive validation strategy for measures of any one of these affects would incorporate an investigation of its interrelationship with these other specific and global emotions. Lacking such evidence, the assumed congruity between liking and satisfaction should be avoided. Another question involving scaling procedures is limited to the dissonance view of the expectation conceptualization (e.g., Aronson & Carlsmith, 1962). This position maintains that satisfaction occurs at the expectation fulfillment level and decreases at outcome levels above or below. The maximum return, however, is never specified. The position also maintains that we become dissatisfied with deviations from expectations. Is dissatisfaction the same as zero satisfaction? If not, does zero satisfaction represent another point on the continuum or rather a special class of experiences? While numerous researchers have operated from the dissonance perspective, these problems have not been fully addressed.
Item Construction Criticisms

The imprecise nature of the relationship between

conceptualization and measurement dominates group satisfaction measure construction. Generally short group satisfaction measures were constructed by the researcher for one particular study and then discarded. In some studies attitude scales were created by the author for the particular study without pretesting or any indication of systematic construction (e.g., Shaw, 1954,1955, 1958,1959; Hoffman & Maier, 1961; Vannoy & Morrissette, 1969; Bostrom, 1970; Rice & Fey, 1970; Fenton & Hopf, 1976). Other researchers constructed questionnaires without specifying how they were created or providing the reader with sample items (e.g., Hare, 1952; Bavelas, Hastorf, Gross, & Kite, 1965; Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, 1971). The failure to repeat attitude scale and questionnaire measures across studies severely limits the ability to generalize. The ability of a scale to distinguish differences which other known instruments have identified is one measure of a scales validity. Repeated use of a scale facilitates a comparison of the variance explained by the independent variables in one study with the variance explained by independent variables in a second study. Thus the process of grouping studies and deriving conclusions about the causes of communication satisfaction is facilitated by having some communality run through the literature under examination. One such communality is the repeated use of a measure and that measures link to other measures. A related problem concerns the number of items included in group satisfaction measures. Single item scales were used to indicate satisfaction in some studies (e.g., Shaw, 1955, 1958; Bostrom, 1970; Fenton & Hopf, 1976), while others used two (e.g., Hoffman & Maier, 1961; Vannoy & Momssette, 1969; Rice & Fey, 1970), or three item measures (e.g., Shaw, 1954). Shorter measures tend to be less reliable (Ebel, 1972; Wanous & Lawler, 1972) and less valid (Ebel, 1972; Wanous & Lawler, 1972; Locke & Whiting, 1974). The imprecise nature of measure construction can be traced in part to the place of satisfaction in group research. Researchers have typically studied some variable in the group process and used satisfaction as an indicator of its effect. Group satisfaction has been studied almost exclusively as a dependent var-



iable in experiments primarily designed to study another variable. Exceptions can be found in the work of Gross (1954) and a series of studies by Shaw and his colleagues (Shaw & Blum, 1964, 1965; Shaw & Caron, 1965). Gross (1954) found that people who were dissatisfied with their groups were more attracted to others who were similarly dissatisfied. Shaw and Blum (1964, 1965) and Shaw and Caron (1965) investigated the effects of covert and overt satisfaction feedback. They found that overt satisfaction feedback produced greater satisfaction with the group product but did not consistently result in better products. Other manipulations of satisfaction as an independent variable would contribute to our knowledge of the area by providing criteria for evaluating new measures. Consideration of satisfaction as a dependent variable has also had the effect of focusing researchers attention on changes in overall satisfaction. The wide use of global measures of satisfaction has created a number of problems. Smith, Kendall, and Hulin (1969, p. 4) noted that global measures may well mask relationships which involve only one aspect of. . . feelings. Therefore the reliance on global measures of satisfaction may well be a factor in determining whether or not effects of a manipulation will be found as well as inhibiting the specification of the precise nature of those effects. Global measures also tend to involve very few items and are therefore generally less reliable. Global measures also omit consideration of a time frame. McGrath and Altman (1966, p. 74) lament this shortcoming in group research in general. Does a subjects rating of satisfaction indicate hidher reaction to the last group meeting; the people in the group in general or at the last meeting in particular; with small groups in general? A global measure cannot provide answers to these questions. Due to the unspecified time frame, global measures are subject to recall bias. In contrast to global measurement techniques, some researchers have developed narrow operationalizations of satisfaction. Unfortunately these narrow operationalizations are often presented as representations of overall satisfaction. For example, Collins and Guetzkow (1964, p. 188) maintained that satisfaction represents an individuals

subjective evaluation or judgment of the rewards he has received. Collins and Guetzkow failed to consider negative consequences and thus their conceptualization is overly limited. Any attempt at measurement using this conceptualization will produce an incomplete operationalization. An even more extreme example of this problem is the work of Hare (1952) in which satisfaction is taken to represent the chance to express oneself. Certainly such a conception is too limited to be of much value by itself.

Group Satisfaction Measures

Indirect approaches to satisfaction measurement were taken by a number of researchers who attempted to measure satisfaction without asking questions which included the word satisfaction (or synonyms) and without satisfaction-dissatisfaction scales. These attempts have gone in a number of directions. Dunn and Goldman (1966) developed a subliminal measure of satisfaction. Under the guise of a subliminal perception experiment stick figure slides representing four or more people were flashed on a screen for .01 seconds each. Subjects were asked to choose from among positive, negative, or neutral statements to describe the figures. For example, a positive statement read, They are all smiling, while a negative statement read, They are all facing in opposite directions. A neutral statement was, Undecided, or Cant tell. Since the slide appeared for such a short period subjects could not discriminate the figures. Therefore it was assumed they would report their own feelings at the time. Unfortunately Dunn and Goldman neglected to check whether this procedure actually measured satisfaction and did not determine whether the stick figures influenced responses. However, even had the authors performed these checks it is difficult to see the value of such a cumbersome procedure. Surely the disguise introduces as large a source of error as it seeks to eliminate. A different approach to indirect measurement was taken by Shelly (1960) who measured perceived group success, effort, acceptance, and most important member. Unfortunately neither a rationale nor supporting evidence was offered for this as a technique for measuring satisfaction.



A final indirect measure was developed by Hackman and Vidmar ( 1 970) who differentiated between member reactions and common conceptualizations of member satisfaction. They contended that member satisfaction is commonly taken to include only evaluative responses. For this reason they chose to use the term member reactions which they took to include both description and evaluation. Hackman and Vidmar (1970) developed a 20item questionnaire utilizing seven-step Likert scales with items drawn from previous research and a priori speculation. However, the member reaction questionnaire was equated with satisfaction. It is not clear whether this was meant to be a new measure which expands the concept of satisfaction, or an additional dimension with satisfaction to be inferred from the evaluative items. Further, reliability and validity information were not provided. Such information should include internal consistency tests to determine if a construct is being consistently measured. The investigation of dimensions of group satisfaction would facilitate measure construction. While group research has not typically utilized the factor approach, a number of researchers have attempted to incorporate this strategy. Frank and Anderson (197 1) speculated that satisfaction with the group s performance may be entirely independent of an individuals satisfaction with hidher own performance. Crowell and Scheidel(l963) have measured satisfaction with respect to the groups process and product and found that some independent variables were significantly correlated with process satisfaction but not with product satisfaction. Patchen (1958) delineates two types of satisfaction: that which is derived from the use of available rewards and that from the norms governing how those rewards are distributed. However, none of these studies provided an a priori justification for these dimensions. Factor analysis provides one technique for examining the dimensionality of a construct as well as establishing the content validity of a measurement technique. Daley and Weidman (1972) and Yerby (1975) conducted factor analytic investigations of group satisfaction. Daley and Weidman (1972) de-

veloped items from a review of previous measures of group satisfaction. The items were administered and the data subjected to factor analysis. Three dimensions were revealed: satisfaction with the group, satisfaction with the leader, and satisfaction with ones self. Yerby (1975) chose 14 items from 20 developed by Hackman and Vidmar (1974), administered them, and submitted the data to factor analysis. Yerby utilized a varimax solution without explaining why she felt the factors should be independent. Two factors were revealed: interpersonal relations and task involvement. The differences between the dimensions revealed may be attributable to the method of item selection. Both studies used items from other measures without complementing these procedures with items generated from self-report or observational data. Further, neither study presents reliability or validity information for the items selected. As Smith, Kendall, and Hulin (1969, p. 26) note, factor analysis may reveal only the dimensionality of the measure o f . . . satisfaction employed in the study and not the dimensionality o f . . . satisfaction itself. While these studies begin the process of examining the facets or dimensions of group satisfaction, failure to generate and test items represents a serious methodological flaw. Conclusion This review indicates that while group satisfaction has been widely studied, the variable has been poorly operationalized. Researchers interested in this area would do well to construct group satisfaction measures from a zero base. Items should be constructed from respondents perceptions and observational studies (e.g., Sieburg & Larson, 1971; Shelly, 1972) and tested and factor analyzed, and reliability and validity information generated. Developing items from a wide range of sources enables later factor analysis to provide evidence of content validity. Such evidence can be supplemented by proper reliability testing. If independent dimensions have been created through an orthogonal factor analysis solution, then each dimension should be tested for internal consistency. Unidimensional or oblique solutions should establish


36 1

internal consistency reliability for the overall measure. This type of reliability information bolsters content validity arguments by indicating the degree to which a construct has been isolated and consistently measured. Further, if group satisfaction has been conceptualized as an enduring affect, stability reliability is also essential. Finally, ones conceptualization of the variable should be used to guide convergent and discriminant validity strategies. A general view of the variable would indicate at least moderate correlations with global emotional constructs (e.g., cohesion and solidarity) and even higher correlations with other more specific affects (e.g., attraction). Group processes unrelated to expectations can be expected to have near-zero correlations with satisfaction as it is commonly conceptualized. Only after new measures of group satisfaction have been developed, tested, and used to replicate previous research will much confidence be accorded the empirical findings in the field. ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION SATISFACTION The most extensive satisfaction measurement research has been in the organizational area. In addition to a number of measures of organizational communication satisfaction, research has examined satisfaction measurement issues and has systematically constructed and tested measures of satisfaction with the organization. Two early investigations of organizational communication measurement were conducted by Nilsen (1953) and Level (1959). Nilsen utilized highly unstructured interviews and follow-up questionnaires constructed based on the elicited responses. Out of the organizational communication efficiency literature Nilsen developed the following interview questions: Would you tell me some of the things you like or dont like about work at the factory? Would you tell me what you feel would be some of the problems operators run into here? (Nilsen, 1953, p. 123) The interviews were complimented by direct observation of the work environment and processes, and content analysis was applied. While Nilsens methodology produced a large amount of useful data, a number of problems must be noted. First, the

interview procedures did not provide for consistent methods of data storage. Sometimes interviewers recorded their impression on cards during the interview, while other times impressions were recorded afterwards. Further, in the latter method the time lag between the interview and the impression recording was not specified. Such inconsistencies may introduce unwanted sources of bias. The use of tape recording equipment or the establishment of consistent recording procedures would have overcome this problem. The second problem is a result of the unstructured nature of the interviews and the observations. While the flexibility afforded interviewers the opportunity to probe and adjust to the nuances of the specific respondent, the lack of structure meant that the results of one interview are not comparable to those of any of the other interviews. The unstructured nature of the observations suffer similar limitations. Neither style of data collection facilitates replication or generalization across contexts. While the lack of structure in the interviews and the observations is more in line with the vicissitudes of the context, both methods suffer similar weaknesses. Had Nilsen chosen a more structured measurement technique for either the interviews or the observations (e.g., category-based interaction analysis), then the weaknesses of one method would have been offset by the strengths of the other, and vice versa. Level (1959) constructed forced-choice items from a review of the communication efficiency literature as well as consultation with management personnel. The items dealt with the amount of general information workers received from management, advance notification about changes in policies, procedures, or working conditions, explanations of company policy, information about the companys expectations, communication style of supervisors, perceived freedom to discuss matters with supervisors, the perception of being properly informed about vacation policy, salary increases, insurance, personal accounts, and absences, the methods by which information is obtained, and the preferred methods of acquiring information. While the style of measurement improved upon Nilsens in terms of replicability and quantification,



it does not insure that the various dimensions of organizational communication satisfaction receive adequate coverage. A review of the communication efficiency literature, while relevant, does not insure that all the dimensions of satisfaction will be tapped. Self-report and observation styles of item creation would have overcome this problem. As part of a measure of organizational communication, Roberts and OReilly (1974) utilized the Faces Scale as a measure of communication satisfaction. The Faces Scale, originally a measure of organizational satisfaction (Kunin, 1955), consists of a series of sketched faces which range by degree from positive to negative expressions. Kunin argued that this nonverbal style of measurement would be more effective than verbal styles because the respondent would not have to translate herlhis feelings into words. As an organizational satisfaction measure the Faces Scale was found to provide moderate discrimination among five areas of job satisfaction, good convergence with a graphic measurement scale, and wider and more nearly unimodal distributions than three other scales (Locke, Smith, Kendall, Hulin, & Miller, 1964). When compared to the Job Description Index (a measure of organizational satisfaction) the Faces Scale was shown to provide consistent convergent and discriminant validity (Smith, Kendall, & Hulin, 1969). In addition, the Faces Scale was found to validate well with the Hoppock Job Satisfaction Blank (r = .75, Dunham & Herman, 1975) and the scores were found to be stable when male and female faces were utilized by male and female respondents (Dunham & Herman, 1975). As a measure of organizational communication satisfaction, the Faces Scale was found to have test-retest reliabilities of .60 and .73 with two small samples (Roberts & OReilly, 1975). Hecht (in press b) used the Faces Scale as a validation strategy and found that it correlated with the general Com-Sat Inventory at .64 for recalled conversations, .87 for conversations just completed, .79 when the other was a friend, and .73 when the other was an acquaintance. It may be concluded, therefore, that the Faces Scale provides a quick and easily administered global measure of communication satisfaction with moderate test-

retest reliabilities. As a single itein measure, internal consistency reliability cannot be assessed. The final measure of organizational communication satisfaction reviewed was developed by Downs, Hazen, Medley, and Quiggins (1974). From an examination of the literature, other satisfaction measures, three pilot studies, and interviews, 88 items were constructed. Each item was responded to on five different Likert-type scales:
1. How satisfied are you with these aspects of your

job? Dissatisfied I 2 3 4 5 6 7 Satisfied 2. How much of each quality or characteristic is present on your job? Uncharacteristic I 2 3 4 5 6 7 Characteristic 3. How important are the qualities or characteristics to you? Unimportant I 2 3 4 5 6 7 Important 4. How much of each quality or characteristic would you like to be associated with your job? Would not like 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Would like 5. How much of each quality or characteristic do you think should be associated with your job? Should not be characteristic 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Should be characteristic (Downs et al., 1974, p. 8) Each participant responded to the 88 items on three of the five scales to avoid fatigue. The five scale types reflect five different conceptualizations of satisfaction. Nine methods of defining satisfaction were tested, including global and facet measurement, and importance weightings of facets. Item analyses were conducted on the data from the first scale above. The differences between the upper and lower quartiles were subject to t tests. Most questions discriminated significantly between the groups at the .05 level of significance. Five separate factor analyses were performed with varimax solutions. Items with loadings of .50 or more were considered to load significantly on a factor. Downs et al. (1974) provided no justification for requiring factors to be independent. Three important results emerged. First, organizational communication satisfaction was clearly multidimensional. Second, the three strongest factors



(communication climate, communication with component correlated more highly with overall supervisors, integration into the organization) were satisfaction than did the least important component. relatively stable across the five scaling styles. Ewen (1964) reports a .99 correlation between Third, importance scales proved to be the least weighted and unweighted versions of the Job Devaluable procedure. scription Index and concludes that summing across The thoroughness of the construction of this satis- facets seems to diminish or eliminate the promifaction measure is apparent. While one could com- nence of the most important component. h c k e ment on the fatigue factor in requiring respondents found that importance weighting did not improve to complete 264 scales (88 items multiplied by three the psychometric properties of satisfaction meascaling styles), the strategies employed in this study sures and found no lawful relationship between are exemplary. Input into initial item construction satisfaction and importance (Smith, Kendall, & Huwas obtained from a wide variety of sources and h , 1969, p. 17). items were tested and factor analyzed for a variety A second area of research investigated the indeof scaling styles. Internal consistency reliability for pendence of satisfaction and dissatisfaction. Herzeach dimension and validity information for the bergs Two-Factor Theory (Herzberg, Mausner, & measure as a whole are lacking. Snyderman, 1959) had posited two separate satisfaction factors: satisfiers contributing only to satisfaction and dissatisfiers contributing only to dissatSatisfaction Measurement Issues isfaction. In addition to the data originally reported A number of researchers have examined aspects by Herzberg et al. (1959) in support of the twoof satisfaction measurement. Wanous and Lawler factor approach, Schwartz, Jenusaitis, and Stark (1972) devised nine measures designed to examine (1963), Saleh (1964), and Myers (1964) reported differences between need and expectation mea- successful replications. On the other hand, the resures, and direct, subtractive, and multiplicative sults of Friedlander (1964), Halpern (1966), Ewen, models. Results indicated that the evaluation of how Smith, Hulin, and Locke (1966), Graen (1966), much of expected things there are present in a job Burke (1966), Schneider and Locke (1971), Waters correlated most highly with overall satisfaction and Waters (1972), Locke (1973), and Wanous measures. Further, it was found that direct mea- (1974) contradict the independence assumption. surement was superior to other models. The authors House and Wigdor (1967) concluded that the indecautioned, however, that direct measures of ex- pendence findings were method bound. It appears pected or desired conditions may already contain unlikely, therefore, that satisfaction and dissatisfacthe judgment of discrepancies. Finally, Wanous and tion are separate, independent dimensions. Lawler concluded that the weighting of facets of Organizational Satisfaction Measures satisfaction was no better, and in several cases worse, than unweighted versions (Wanous & Space precludes a complete discussion of meaLawler, 1972, p. 103). They did note, however, sures of satisfaction with organizations. Some of the that importance weighting may be indicative of the more prominent measures include the Brayfieldinfluence of a particular force. Roth Scales (Brayfield & Roth, 1951), the Job DeOther researchers have addressed themselves to scription Index (Smith, Kendall, & Hulin, 1969), the issue of importance weightings. Youngberg, and the Critical Incidents Methodology (developed Hedberg, and Baxter (1962) concluded that impor- by Herzberg et al., 1959, and modified by Duntance weighting improved satisfaction measure- nette, Campbell, & Hakel, 1967; Schneider & ment. Schaffer (1953), Decker (1955), and Downs, Locke, 1971; Locke, 1973). While concerned with et al. (1974), found that importance weightings did satisfaction with the organization, these provide not improve a variety of organizational satisfaction excellent models for communication satisfaction measures. Schaffer did find that the most important measurement procedures.



Life Satisfaction Measures

Robinson and Shaver (1969) provide a review of early measures of life satisfaction. The measures they review consist of one, two, or three items used in interview situations, with reported test-retest reliabilities between .43 and .70. These measures make no attempt to differentiate satisfaction from other emotions such as happiness. Their validity, therefore, is suspect. A more recent questionnaire measure of life satisfaction (associated with aging) was created by Hutchinson (1975) using single items to operationalize what he felt to be the five dimensions of life satisfaction: loneliness, worry, unhappiness because of nonusefulness, present feelings of happiness, present life Satisfaction. No justification is provided for these dimensions and neither reliability nor validity information is available. Hutchinson does not differentiate satisfaction from other emotions and his measure contains a dimension with the same label as the content domain. Neugarten, Havighurst, and Tobin (1961) developed an observation coding scheme as well as two self-report measures of life satisfaction as a criterion for successful adjustment to aging. As in earlier studies, they do not differentiate satisfaction from other aspects of adjustment: Use of the life satisfaction title was only appended post hoc with reservations about its descriptive adequacy after other labels (e.g., morale) had been rejected. Neugarten et al. (1961) conducted four rounds of panel interviews with two groups of respondents: 50-70 year olds; 70-90 year olds. From the early interviews five components of life satisfaction were identified: zest, resolution and fortitude, congruence between desired and achieved goals, positive self-concept, and mood. Later factor analysis (Adams, 1969) did not support the existence of this structure. A second analysis (Klemmack, Carlson, & Edwards, 1974) revealed that the index is not distinct from a measure of social isolation. Using a five-step scale, judges rated transcripts of the fourth round of interviews on each of the five components and achieved 94 percent exact agreement or disagreement of one step. Judges ratings correlated at .78. Correlations among the components ranged

from .48 to .84. The ratings had a .39 correlation with a measure of socioeconomic status. Two self-report indices were also created. The first (LSIA) consisted of 25 attitude statements responded to by marking agree, disagree, or (?). The second (LSIB) consisted of 17 open-ended and checklist items. Item analyses eliminated five items from LSIA and seven items from LSIB. When compared to the judges ratings, LSIA correlated at . 5 5 , while LSIB correlated at .58. When LSIA and LSIB were combined, they correlated at .61 with the judges ratings. Clinical judgments were used as a validating device, correlating .64 with the judges ratings, .39 with LSIA, and .47 with LSIB. The size of these correlations was inhibited due to a measurement artifact: the judges ratings, LSIA and LSIB, and the clinical judgments were made at interviews separated by as much as 18 months. The authors concluded that the instrument may be used with caution and is most appropriate when used with those over 65. This instrument might provide a useful start for further measure construction. A number of other life satisfaction measures are also available for gerontological research. Cavan, Burgess, Havighurst, and Goldhamer (1949) developed an attitude survey which contains a happiness subscale. Carp (1967) constructed a sentence completion task in which responses are scored negative, positive, and neutral. Carp (1975) also developed a Thematic Apperception Picture task which scored responses as positive or negative. In sum, then, measures of life satisfaction have been constructed in the context of gerontological research. Even within this context, the measures do not exhibit consistent validity to recommend their unqualified use. Life satisfaction measurement needs are still unfulfilled in other settings. CONCLUSION The measurement of communication satisfaction has not progressed very far. In fact, the measurement of satisfaction has been advanced significantly only within the organizational area. As a result, research of the most basic nature is necessary.



Listed below are a number of suggestions for this research: 1. Approaches to measurement must be linked to theoretical orientations. Much previous research has been conducted atheoretically. The group satisfaction area is particularly lacking in theoretical foundations. If measures are to be judged valid, they must be examined on conceptual as well as operational bases. 2. Trait approaches will not prove useful in satisfaction measurement because satisfaction is, by nature, context specific and transactional. What is satisfying when communicating with one person in a situation may not be satisfying with a different person or with the same person in a different situation. 3. Measures of satisfaction should reflect the process nature of communication. This implies that the items attend to a wide spectrum of elements, as well as the phases of conversational development. Items should be written to describe the communication process and not traits or attitudes existing prior to the interaction. Too many satisfaction studies have adopted input/ output orientations to the exclusion of process variables. Avoiding global measures, specifying the facets of satisfaction in terms of interaction processes, and writing descriptive rather than evaluative items are important process considerations. To wit, the initial construction of items is extremely important. Items should be generated from both self-report and observational bases. As an internal state, the most logical access is via self-reports. This method insures that the respondent population be sampled during the construction of items thereby imparting psychological meaning to factor analytic techniques and improving content and face validity. Exclusive reliance on self-reports, however, neglects those aspects of satisfaction of which the respondent is unaware. Therefore, observational analyses and theoretical treatments of communication satisfaction and communication competence should also prove useful in generating items. 4. As noted previously, satisfaction is contextual.





If satisfaction names an affective response to a type of expectation, then the context should influence the salient expectations and establish the parameters for satisfaction. The construction of satisfaction measures should, therefore, be context specific. Some of the distinctions which may prove useful include: public and private communication (Phillips, 1976), level of intimacy (Gilbert & Horenstein, 1975; Gilbert & Whiteneck, 1976; Berger, Gardner, Clatterbuck, & Schulman, 1976), goal or purpose (Hecht, in press b; Phillips, 1976), and level of relationship (Hecht, in press b). Satisfaction should be compared to other affects, specifically liking and happiness. It will be necessary to determine whether these name the same internal response or can be differentiated. On a theoretical level, Byrne and Krivonos (1976) conceptualize liking as the affect associated with positive reinforcement in a classical conditioning paradigm. Hecht (in press, a), utilizing an operant conditioning paradigm, has conceptualized satisfaction as the affect associated with the positive reinforcement of behavior emitted in the presence of discriminative stimuli. These approaches present liking and satisfaction as conceptually related but distinct affects. Gross (1954) found that satisfied people tend to like each other. This implies a causal relationship which may be spurious if the affects are not truly distinct. The relationship awaits empirical examination. Observational and indirect measures of satisfaction would compliment the paper and pencil, self-report strategies which presently dominate the field. Sieburg and Larsons (1971) categories may provide a useful system for category-based observation. Global measures may mask relationships and are therefore less preferable than facet measures. Satisfaction and dissatisfaction do not appear to constitute separate dimensions. However, previous research indicates that in the initial stages of measure development it would be wise to elicit responses applicable to dissatisfaction as well as satisfaction. Such a strategy was em-



ployed by Herzberg et al. (1959) as part of the critical incidents methodology; Smith, Kendall, and H u h (1969) in the construction of the Job Description Index, and Hecht (in press b) in the construction of the Com-Sat Inventory. This method overcomes the respondents bias to recall positive events and may be useful as a form of item analysis (e.g., Darnell, 1970). 9. Importance weightings are of little value. 10. Requiring one response per item works as well or better than more complicated scoring techniques, and is more quickly and easily administered. 11. Reliability and validity assessment are essential. Validation strategies should incorporate different measurement techniques.

The investigation of communication satisfaction can make a number of contributions to our understanding of the communication process. First, communication satisfaction provides an outcome measure of process effects. Second, communication satisfaction may serve as a determinant of other immediate and future communication behaviors. Third, it provides a criterion for assessing communication competence. Finally, on a theoretical level, it furthers our understanding of the relationship between internal behaviors and perceived environmental contingencies. Before such contributions can be realized, however, successful measurement procedures must be established. While a few such procedures are presently available, more work is needed in the area. NOTE
The author wishes to thank Professors Ken Andersen and Fred Hilpert of the University of Illinois and D r .William Wilmot of the University of Montana for their comments on various stages of the manuscript.

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