ERIC Number: ED172955
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Children's Processing of Motive Information in a Televised Portrayal.
Purdie, Sharon I.; And Others
Second and fifth graders viewed one of two edited versions of a commercial action-adventure television program portraying an aggressive action associated with antisocial motives and punishing consequences. The versions differed only in the amount of time elapsing between the focal action and the motives for that action. Children's comprehension of explicit events in the program and inferences about relations among them (e.g., causality) were assessed using a recognition-memory measure. When motive information was portrayed in close proximity to the aggressive action (proximal-motive version), both second and fifth graders understood the explicit motive and action details and implicit relations between them better than they did when the motives and aggression occurred in different scenes (distal-motive version). Even when children understood the explicit motive and action information, those in the distal-motive version were less likely than those in the proximal-motive version to infer the motive-action relationship. Children in the distal-motive version were less likely than those in the proximal version to evaluate the aggressor negatively. Fifth graders comprehended better than second graders in both versions and were also more likely to infer implicit relations. Additional data indicated that the younger viewers' difficulties were not due to forgetting or interference effects in the course of viewing. Results are discussed in terms of characteristics of children's processing of audiovisual narratives and implications for social-learning and behavioral effects of televised dramatic content. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis. Inst. of Child Development .
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the National Conference of the Association for Childhood Education International (St. Louis, Missouri, April 8-13, 1979)