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ERIC Number: ED309759
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1988-Aug
Pages: 19
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Cultivation Effects: Television and Foreign Countries.
Winterhoff-Spurk, Peter
This test of Marshall McLuhan's claim that increased exposure to television will develop a perception of the world as a "global village" used estimation of cognitive distance as an operational definition of the global village concept. The first phase of the study tested the hypothesis that "heavy" television viewers' estimates of cognitive distances between foreign cities would be smaller than estimates made by "light" television viewers. Based on their television diaries, 76 German high school students were classified as "heavy,""medium," or "light" viewers and asked to estimate the distance from their home town to three clusters of cities. Contrary to the global village hypothesis, heavy viewers produced the largest estimates of cognitive distance. In the second phase, students were grouped according to the amount of time they spent viewing news and political magazines and their viewing intensity. It was found that the level of intensity of viewing had a significant effect on the subjects' estimation of cognitive distance--i.e., high intensity viewers made lower estimates as they became more familiar with the foreign cities--while the amount of viewing time did not. To further test the "global village" hypothesis, in the final phase of the study a class of 16 students exchanged video letters about their school, home town, and daily activities with American students. When a questionnaire to determine level of prejudice toward Americans was administered to this and a control group, an increased positive attitude toward Americans was observed among the members of the video exchange group, but not the control group. (7 tables, 14 references) (GL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A