Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The influence of superhero characters on moral judgment in school-age children
by Robinson, Elizabeth, Psy.D., Alfred University, 2014, 82; 3618692
Abstract (Summary)

Social learning has been shown to have a significant impact on moral development. Research has established that the progression of moral development is consistent and universal. Several factors can impact the rate at which children progress through the moral stages. Children's moral reasoning can be shaped by observations of media characters. Due to their recent resurgence in popular culture and the media, as well as their consistent popularity with children, superheroes have been identified as potential social models of morality. In a sample of 108 fifth grade students, a significant positive correlation was revealed between superhero knowledge and exposure. The sample was divided by gender due to significant differences in superhero knowledge and exposure as well as level of moral judgment. A linear multiple regression for the males approached but did not reach significance. A linear multiple regression for females also failed to reach significance. Limitations of the current study and implications for future research are discussed.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Lauback, Cris
Commitee: Fugate, Mark, Gagne, Danielle D.
School: Alfred University
Department: Division of Counseling and School Psychology
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-B 75/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Behavioral psychology, Developmental psychology, Cognitive psychology
Keywords: Children, Media, Moral development, Social learning, Superheroes
Publication Number: 3618692
ISBN: 9781303871672
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