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ERIC Number: EJ917488
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Mar
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 69
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Men's Media Use, Sexual Cognitions, and Sexual Risk Behavior: Testing a Mediational Model
Ward, L. Monique; Epstein, Marina; Caruthers, Allison; Merriwether, Ann
Developmental Psychology, v47 n2 p592-602 Mar 2011
Efforts to link media use to adolescents' sexual initiation have produced somewhat inconsistent results, perhaps as a result of the limited framing of the question. This study sought to expand current approaches by sampling college students instead of high school students, by investigating a range of sexual behaviors and media formats, and by testing a model that featured sexual cognitions as mediators. We tested our model with a sample of 796 heterosexual, male college students who reported on their regular consumption of 4 media (prime-time TV programs, music videos, movies, and men's magazines); their attitudes toward abstinence, the male sexual role, and nonrelational sex; their perceptions of peer sexual behavior; and several aspects of their sexual behavior (e.g., number of sexual partners). Findings revealed strong support for our mediated model, with exposure to men's magazines and movies contributing most strongly to their sexual cognitions, and with men's cognitions, in turn, contributing heavily to their sexual behavior. Some direct connections from media use to sexual behavior also emerged. Together, the findings provide insight into both potential mechanisms for and new approaches to addressing this issue. (Contains 3 tables and 2 figures.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A