Predicting intentions to practice COVID-19 preventative behaviors in the United States: A test of the risk perception attitude framework and the theory of normative social behavior

  • Ying Cheng (Creator)
  • Rain Wuyu Liu (Creator)
  • Taylor A. Foerster (Creator)



This study examined risk perceptions, efficacy beliefs, social norms, and their interactions as predictors of people’s intention to practice four COVID-19 preventative behaviors among a U.S. sample with quotas on age, sex, ethnicity, and region (N = 336). This online survey found that perceived injunctive norms predicted intentions to clean and disinfect (β = 0.20), practice social distancing (β = 0.14), and wear a face mask (β = 0.24). Additionally, efficacy beliefs were found to attenuate the association between descriptive norm perceptions and intention to wash hands (B = −0.15) and wear a face mask(B = −0.12). The results revealed the importance of considering both psychological and social factors to promote COVID-19 preventative behaviors.
Date made available2021
PublisherSAGE Journals

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