The Exploration of Prototype Perceptions Across a Range of Sun-related Behaviours
1James Cook University, Townsville, Australia
Background. Recent research supports the role of prototype perceptions in predicting a range of health behaviours. The current study adopts the prototype willingness (PW) model as a framework for examining a range of sun-related behaviours including sunbathing, sun protection, and incidental sun exposure. Method. Community participants (N=218) from North Queensland, Australia completed an online survey measuring the PW model variables and their sun-related behaviour. Findings. Results indicated that those who sunbathed rated all three prototypes (protector, incidental, deliberate) to be of similar favourability; in addition, the incidental prototype was perceived to be most similar to themselves. Those who abstained from sunbathing perceived the protector and incidental exposer prototypes to be significantly more favourable than the deliberate tanner. Prototype perceptions also predicted sunbathing and incidental sun exposure. Discussion. This research suggests that prototype perceptions can predict sun-related behaviours. The PW model could inform future interventions to reduce incidental sun exposure in high-risk regions.