Date of Award

4-6-2005

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)

Degree Program

Global Leadership - with a specialization in Educational Leadership

Department

College of Education

First Advisor

Frederick Dembowski

Second Advisor

Carole Warshaw

Third Advisor

Maureen Goldstein

Abstract

This study used a deductive approach examining how online partners' characteristics impacted online users in the following areas: (1) Appearance (including looks, height &weight), (2) Financial Prospects, (3) Age, (4) Self-disclosure, (5) values and beliefs. This study was focused on three important factors of online users: (1) Gender, (2) Age, and (3) Motive.

Quantitative survey methods were used in this study. The research study used descriptive analysis, relationship analysis, Independent-Samples T-Test and ANOVA analysis to test the variables between groups, among groups, and between or among different variables. This research focused on 20 to 45 year olds because most people in this age group are involved in online dating services, and they had the basic technology (computer, Internet, online dating service) skills.

The results show that different genders had different preferences in online partners' weight and ambitions. The results show that age group 1 and group 2 had different preferences in online partners' height and online partners' value and belief. Age group 1 and group 3 had different preferences in online partners' age. The results also show that different motives had different preferences regarding online partners height, financial prospects and age.

There were four limitation of this study: (1) the researcher chose three popular chat rooms in Taiwan instead of all online dating websites. (2) There was no way to find out if the participants responded more than once because the survey was totally anonymous. (3) Time limit. (4) Participants in three specific online chat rooms were selected for inclusion in the sample, constituting a sample of convenience. Thus, the results may not be generalized to any online dating service or population. The contributions of this study are that there are no online dating research surveys conducted using quantitative methods that were not in English. This study was conducted in Taiwan using the Chinese language. In online dating research studies, most researchers used qualitative methods to analyze the topic. This paper used quantitative methods, sending the survey to online users in Taiwan. The results of this study in Taiwan and of those studies in the literature are very consistent.

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