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Title:Attendance Decisions: Implications for Absence From Work
Author(s):Harrison, David Andrew
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):McGrath, Joe
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Sociology, Theory and Methods
Psychology, Social
Psychology, Industrial
Abstract:Empirical and theoretical research has made little progress toward an understanding of absence from scheduled work. There is a conceptual and methodological discrepancy between the daily, specific, discrete nature of work absences and the somewhat stable, general, continuous nature of the constructs used to explain absences. Attendance alternatives in home or leisure settings are also not given serious consideration in most studies or theories. This paper argues that to explain and predict work absences, it is important (a) to characterize each instance of absence or attendance as the result of a decision process, (b) to identify the components of that process, and (c) to recognize that the magnitudes of each component can change rapidly over time. A modified version of Fishbein and Ajzen's theory of reasoned action and Ajzen's theory of planned behavior is described and applied to decisions about attendance at work. In light of the modified theory, several general hypotheses about work absence and attendance are proposed. Three studies are presented that test the general hypotheses: (1) a sample survey of community residents' decisions about attending their jobs, (2) a laboratory experiment investigating students' decisions about attending an unrequired experimental session, and (3) a field study of volunteers' decisions about attending work at a shelter for homeless men. Results from the three studies provide strong evidence for the validity and utility of the modified theory. Implications of the results for attempts to influence work absence and attendance are discussed. Several suggestions are made for future research on attendance decisions.
Issue Date:1988
Description:240 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1988.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8908701
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1988

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