As children develop into adolescents and young adults, they are introduced to many sources that provide direct, as well as subliminal, guidelines that will shape their lives intellectually, socially and emotionally. Media resources such as magazines, television, and the internet provide a multitude of opportunities to be exposed to beneficial, as well as potentially harmful messages. Mental health issues such as depression and body image disturbance, as well as eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia, are prevalent among children and adolescents. Children, especially those who may be vulnerable to these disturbances, may observe the images and messages portrayed in the media and make social comparisons of themselves to what they see. Often times, these images and messages can be negative or unattainable. The current research study surveyed students regarding the average amount of time spent observing media resources per week, their body image, as well as awareness and endorsement of societal appearance standards. Results are likely to have important implications on school curriculum and programs, as well as home-school-community collaboration. Rather than attempting to change the amount of media a child is exposed to, it may be more beneficial for schools and families to focus on how the children perceive what they are observing. This may influence the types of conversations caregivers and teachers have with youngsters, and also aid in the development of prevention and intervention programs.
|Advisor:||Gratz, Zandra, Singer, Muriel|
|School Location:||United States -- New Jersey|
|Source:||MAI 49/06M, Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Mass communications, Gender studies, Physiological psychology|
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