Term of Award

Spring 1986

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Department

Department of Psychology

Committee Chair

Gary McClure

Committee Member 1

Philip W. Hurst

Committee Member 2

Richard L. Rogers

Abstract

The effects of child versus adult television models presenting pro-nutritional messages via television advertisements were examined in three groups of first-grade children. Group 1 consisted of children viewing child television models with nutritional messages; Group 2 viewed adult television models with nutritional messages; and. Group 3 served as a control group and viewed both child and adults presenting information on animals. Behavioral food preferences were determined by children's food selections during pre- and post-treatment snacktime periods. Attitudinal food preferences and nutrition knowledge were measured by pre- and post-treatment questionnaires. Results indicated that child and adult model groups did not differ significantly from pre- to post-treatment on the Behavior and Nutrition Knowledge measures. Controls chose significantly less nutritional foods and demonstrated less nutrition knowledge during post-treatment conditions as compared to pre-treatment. The child model group held significantly better attitudes toward nutritional foods during posttreatment with the adult model and control groups showing no differences during post-treatment. The child and The child model group held significantly better attitudes toward nutritional foods during post-treatment with the adult model and control groups showing no differences during post-treatment. The child and adult model groups chose significantly more nutritious foods during post-treatment than did the controls; however, there were no significant differences between the child model and the adult model groups during post-treatment. These results were consistent for the behavior, attitude, and knowledge measures. The finding that both adult and child television models can be effective in conveying nutrition information establishes television as a valuable educational technique for teaching nutrition and health practices to young children.

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