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Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
Media Effects
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Media Effects


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A brief summary of the research deployed in 'media effects' debates.

A brief summary of the research deployed in 'media effects' debates.

Published in: Education, Technology
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  • this is very interesting to know. nice presentation. ritu
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  • Transcript

    • 1. Media effects research Jim Barratt 10 October 2006
    • 2. Aim
      • Introduction to media effects research, with a
      • focus on violence.
      • Part one
      • Types of effects
      • Historical context
      • Hypotheses
      • Methods
      • Public debate
      • Other approaches
      • Part two
      • Clips:
      • Violence
      • TV debate
    • 3. Types of media effects
      • Negative
      • e.g. aggression
      • Positive
      • e.g. 'pro-social behaviour'
      • (Influences
      • Negative: 'moral decline', body image, stereotyping etc.
      • Positive: informed democracy etc.)
    • 4. Historical context
      • 1930s: Payne Fund studies
      • 1960s: Behavioural science
      • 1980s: Moral crusade
    • 5. Hypotheses (1)
      • Imitation
      • Social Learning Theory- Bandura et al (1960s). Children
      • learn by imitating significant others.
      • Identification
      • As above but viewers more likely to imitate characters they
      • identify with.
      • Triggering
      • Media provide cues for behaviour, e.g. violence rather than
      • talk used to resolve conflict.
    • 6. Hypotheses (2)
      • Instigation (arousal)
      • Viewing arouses people and when levels of arousal reach a
      • peak it results in an outburst of violence.
      • Desensitisation
      • Viewers' responses to real life violence are dulled by
      • exposure to media violence.
      • Disinhibition
      • Everyone has a propensity for violence but we are
      • socialised to inhibit our impulses. Media weaken our
      • inhibitions.
    • 7. Hypotheses (3)
      • Reinforement
      • In contrast this theory says only certain people have a
      • violent disposition and the media reinforce this
      • propensity.
      • This has found the strongest support in the
      • research literature, but causality is hard to prove:
      • Are violent people more likely to watch violent films
      • (i.e. correlation), or do violent portrayals increase violent
      • tendencies (i.e. causality)?
    • 8. Hypotheses (4)
      • Cultivation - an ideological effect
      • Gerbner et al (1970/80s): media cultivate in viewers a
      • particular view of the world, including about levels of
      • violence and crime (e.g. leading to a greater fear of crime).
      • Catharsis - pro-social effect
      • Feshbach and Singer (1970s): following Aristotle, drama
      • provides a safe outlet for venting aggression etc. without
      • resorting to violence.
    • 9. Methods (1)
      • Laboratory studies
      • 'From the point of view of testing scientific theories in a rigorous
      • manner…experimental laboratory studies are without doubt the
      • method of choice' (Eysenck and Nias, 1980)
      • Pros
      • Can control experimental conditions;
      • Use of control groups;
      • Can be easily replicated.
      • Cons
      • Artificial conditions (i.e. not 'real life');
      • Heavy reliance on undergraduate students as participants;
      • Experimenter effects (e.g. coercion).
    • 10. Methods (2)
      • Surveys
      • e.g. Parliamentary Group Video Enquiry, 1983.
      • Pros
      • Provides insights into self-reported viewing habits and opinions about violence;
      • Sampling enables statistical generalisation.
      • Cons
      • Self-reported behaviour may be unreliable due to poor recollection, desire to please the researcher or avoid being seen in negative light;
      • Can only establish correlation between viewing habits and violence, not causation;
      • Questions must be unambiguous and not leading.
    • 11. Methods (3)
      • Natural or found experiments
      • e.g. Hennigan et al (1982), which looked at different uptake rates of TV
      • in the USA in late 1940s/early 1950s compared with local crime rates.
      • Pros
      • Wholly naturalistic research conditions.
      • Cons
      • Cannot control confounding variables (e.g. cinemagoing in the Hennigan study);
      • Difficult to find proper experimental controls.
    • 12. Methods (4)
      • Longitudinal studies
      • e.g. Children in the Community study (Johnson et al, 2002), which
      • found aggressive individuals are more likely to be heavy TV viewers.
      • Pros
      • Can measure change over time and longer-term 'effects'.
      • Cons
      • Tend to be survey or interview based, reliant on self-reported data.
      • Can establish a correlation not causality.
    • 13. Public debate
      • Prevailing view in public discourse:
      • Media are powerful, audiences are passive
      • 'Television is a powerful medium, and young people are
      • uniquely susceptible to it' (Strasburger, 1995)
      • Other key element: the protection of children and calls for greater censorship
    • 14. Other approaches
      • The growth of reception studies, which look at audience interpretation, coupled with what is known as the 'ethnographic' turn in research has led to a reappraisal by media academics of the audience as 'active'.
      • Work by researchers like David Buckingham (IoE) and Sonia Livingstone (LSE) has revisited the child audience to find out what they make of the media they consume.
      • This tradition is not without its own challenges (not least a reliance on children's accounts of their behaviour) but it does shift focus from censorship to media education.
    • 15.