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ERIC Number: ED264552
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Aug
Pages: 49
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Measurement and Effects of Attention to Media News.
Chaffee, Steven H.; Schleuder, Joan
Noting that attention, or increased mental effort, has long been recognized as an important variable in the processing of mass communication messages, this paper examines both methodological and theoretical issues associated with the measurement of attention, particularly to the news and public affairs content in the news media. After a brief review of a number of methods of assessing attention in media research, the paper explores in detail an array of survey measures used in a panel study of the media use and level of knowledge of political and current public affairs issues of adolescents and their parents. Methodological issues addressed in this exploration include the empirical utility of several different ways of asking survey questions about attention, while theoretical issues concern comparisons between use of newspapers and television and researchers' neglect of attention that has led to an underestimation of the importance of television news as a contributor to the public's political knowledge. The paper concludes that the measures discussed are more notable for their utility and general validity than for their reliability or precision, and that attention to news media appears to be a consistent individual difference that accounts for substantial variation in learning beyond the act of simple exposure. (FL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A