, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 121–163 | Cite as

Factors Predicting the Intent to Engage in Arguments in Close Relationships: A Revised Model

  • Ioana A. CioneaEmail author
  • Adam S. Richards
  • Sara K. Straub


This manuscript examines argument engagement in close relationships (friendships and romantic relationships). Two pilot studies were conducted to identify what factors naïve actors report matter to them when considering whether to engage in an interpersonal argument, and to develop and pre-test measurement scales for these factors. The main study examined which of these factors predicted participants’ behavioral intent to engage in an argument about different topics (personal or public) and with different partners (friend or romantic partner). Results indicated intent to engage was predicted by five factors: one’s orientation to the topic, one’s preparedness for an argument, the costs of arguing, the effort involved in arguing, and one’s right to speak one’s mind. Several of these factors are new contributions to argument engagement research. A discussion of these results and their implications are presented.


Argument engagement Interpersonal arguments Decision to engage in arguments Costs and benefits of arguing 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ioana A. Cionea
    • 1
    Email author
  • Adam S. Richards
    • 2
  • Sara K. Straub
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of CommunicationUniversity of OklahomaNormanUSA
  2. 2.Department of Communication StudiesTexas Christian UniversityFort WorthUSA
  3. 3.Department of CommunicationUniversity of OklahomaNormanUSA

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