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NCJ Number: 48982 Find in a Library
Title: EFFECTS OF TELEVISION ON CHILDREN - WHAT IS THE EVIDENCE?
Author(s): G COMSTOCK
Date Published: 1975
Page Count: 21
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Annotation: THIS LITERATURE REVIEW EXAMINES THE PATTERN OF CHILDREN'S EXPOSURE TO TELEVISION, THE NATURE OF THEIR VIEWING EXPERIENCE, THEIR RESPONSE TO TELEVISION, AND THE EFFECTS OF TELEVISION ON THEIR VALUES.
Abstract: THE LITERATURE WAS PUBLISHED IN THE PERIOD 1955-1975. THE FOLLOWING RESULTS WERE FOUND: (1) CHILDREN WATCH TELEVISION DAILY FOR AT LEAST 2 HOURS, WITH WIDE VARIATION IN VIEWING TIME AMONG INDIVIDUALS; (2) VIEWING INCREASES DURING ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, BUT DECREASES DURING HIGH SCHOOL; (3) VIEWING BY YOUNG PERSONS IS HIGHLY ACTIVE AND DISCONTINUOUS, WITH VIEWERS DOING OTHER THINGS WHILE WATCHING, SUCH AS HOMEWORK; (4) CHILDREN AS YOUNG AS AGE 3 HAVE DEFINITE TASTES FOR TELEVISION PROGRAMS, AND THESE TASTES ARE RELATED TO THE AGE, SEX, AND RACE OF THE CHILD; (5) YOUTH TYPICALLY TURN TO TELEVISION FOR ENTERTAINMENT WHEN THEY ARE LONELY, ANGRY, OR HURT, AND HEAVY CONSUMPTION OF TELEVISION MAY BE A SYMPTOM OF PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS; AND (6) YOUNG PERSONS ARE LIKELY TO FIND THE NEWS CREDIBLE. TELEVISION VIEWING AFFECTS YOUNG PEOPLE, ESPECIALLY WHERE THE ENVIRONMENT DOES NOT SUPPLY FIRST-HAND EXPERIENCE OR INFORMATION, BUT CHILDREN LEARN BEHAVIOR FROM TELEVISION ONLY IN THE ABSENCE OF OTHER REINFORCEMENTS. A CHILD'S ACTUAL PERFORMANCE OF A VIOLENT ACT AFTER VIEWING ONE ON TELEVISION DEPENDS ON VARIOUS FACTORS RELATING TO TELEVISION STIMULI, THE VIEWER, AND THE IMMEDIATE ENVIRONMENT. IN VIEW OF THE EVIDENCE SURVEYED IN THE LITERATURE, IT IS CONCLUDED THAT THE VIEWING OF VIOLENT TELEVISION ENTERTAINMENT MAY INCREASE THE PROBABILITY OF SUBSEQUENT AGGRESSIVE BEHAVIOR OF CHILDREN. MOST BEHAVIORISTS AGREE THAT FRUSTRATED CHILDREN WILL IMITATE VIOLENCE ON TELEVISION IMMEDIATELY AFTER VIEWING IF THE SAME STIMULI EXIST IN LIFE AS WERE PORTRAYED ON THE SCREEN. A BIBLIOGRAPHY IS INCLUDED. (JSP)
Index Term(s): Adolescent attitudes; Deviance; Juveniles; Telecommunications; Televisions; Violence; Youth (Under 15)
Note: PAPER PRESENTED AT THE 1975 TELECOMMUNICATIONS POLICY RESEARCH CONFERENCE AT AIRLIE HOUSE, AIRLIE, VIRGINIA, APRIL 16-19, 1975
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=48982

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