Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 12-1-2021

Faculty Advisor(s)

Dr. Ann Gordon


From Covid-19 to Qanon to a global warming hoax, we live in a world drowning in misinformation spread on the internet. Q-anonymous, a purposed government “leaker” is an alleged high-level government informant, according to Qanon followers, who posted cryptic messages about a satanic government on the now-defunct forum website, 8chan. This project will examine the possible relationship between a belief in various conspiracy theories associated with Qanon and how the Coronavirus affected rates of belief, utilizing the Chapman Survey of American Fears, a national study using a representative sample of U.S. adults. I expect to find that partisanship will play a large role in predicting rates of belief in Qanon. I believe I will find this relationship to be dependent on the nature of the conspiracy theories themselves. Conspiracy theories that stress governmental lies and secret groups of great control likely will likely have gained support in light of the Coronavirus outbreak and subsequent shutdowns. In this project, Questions on partisanship, Qanon and two COVID19 related conspiracy theories will be used to test for the aforementioned ideas. I expect believers in COVID19 related conspiracy theories to have a higher belief in the notion the government is hiding information about Qanon. With this project, I hope to identify the links between conspiracy theory belief, Qanon, and the Covid-19 virus in order to better understand public attitudes on the subject.


Presented at the virtual Fall 2021 Student Scholar Symposium at Chapman University. This scholarship is part of the Chapman University COVID-19 Archives.