Media summaries:summary of media influences on pro and anti social behaviour

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Psychology media revision
Media summaries- summary of influences of media on pro/anti social behaviour
Pro social behaviour
Social learning theory observation of role models leads to a mental representation
which is reinforced by vicarious reinforcement. When a child acts out that
behaviour it is modified by direct experience. Positive reinforcement encourages
behaviours to be repeated leading to high levels of self efficacy.
evidence- Poulos children watch Lassie, more likely to help puppies in distress.
This shows that children learn pro social messages according to SLT. behaviour
needs to be explicitly modelled therefore pro social messages are harder to learn
than anti social ones. only ST don't know about LT effects of SLT.
evidence- Johnston and Ettema- several thousand 9-12 yr olds watched
Freestyle TV series (aims to reduce sex role stereotypes) once a week for 13
weeks. Found they became less stereotyped in their beliefs. This shows that
children are influenced by pro social messages in the way SLT states. when they
watched Freestyle with a teacher led discussion, effects were greater suggesting
other factors influence the learning of pro social messages, on its own SLT doesn't
account for all ways children learn.
Cognitive priming watching pro social TV activates pro social schemas in our
memory, making behaviours linked to those schemas more likely.
Evidence- Holloway participants in waiting room listened to a positive news
story; other group didn't listen to anything. All participants told they were taking
part in a study involving bargaining with another participant who was actually a
stooge. Those who heard the positive news story were more co-operative in their
bargaining. 2nd study found co-operation was even higher if it involved someone
who intentionally gave help. This shows that different messages activate different
schemas. only relates to ST findings in male participants.
Parental mediation if parents discuss programs with the child they are more likely
to learn the messages from them.
evidence- Coates and Hartup- 4/5 yr olds watched a video of a man doing 20
novel things. Half had to describe to their parents what was happening, other half
didn't. Those who described what was happening remembered 12/20 actions and
those who didn't only remembered 6/20 actions. This shows that PM increases the
positive effects of the media. Also conducted with 7/8 yr olds and here PM
didn't improve recall. Therefore PM only works with young children.

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Psychology media revision
another study focusing on pro social messages from Power Rangers found
children under 8 couldn't identify them. this shows that PM may help children
learn pro social messages in the media.
General evaluation points
all explanations explain individual/cultural differences
all explanations are deterministic; whilst this ignores free will it helps with
useful applications
explanations on their own are reductionist which only gives a limited
understanding.…read more

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Psychology media revision
Murray compared MRI scans of 8 children who watched violent and non violent
TV programs. Found that amydala (area that regulates emotions, arousal and
attention) and areas responsible for storing episodic memories were active
suggesting aggressive acts viewed may be stored as aggressive scripts for later
use. This shows that there may be a biological base for cognitive priming.…read more


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