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Watching television - Research Paper Example

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This medium can have significant influence on children from a very young age, and also impacts children’s social and cognitive behavior. Television as a socializing device can be beneficial and…
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Your The 19 September 2009 Watching television: impact of television on children. Television, as we all know, is avery strong medium of acquiring information. This medium can have significant influence on children from a very young age, and also impacts children’s social and cognitive behavior. Television as a socializing device can be beneficial and educational to children. However, it can also have a negative impact on children. The impact of television on children depends on many factors such as their age, their personality, how much they watch, whether they watch alone or under parental guidance etc. To understand this better, a random survey was rolled out to 100 parents of students of a school who belonged to different age groups. This paper draws a research strategy in identifying the impact of television on children and adolescents in the age group of 3 and 20.
Out of the 100 parents, 80 participants responded. Findings indicated 60% (n=48) of responses were from parents of boys and the rest, 40% (n=32) were from parents of girls. Most of these children were between 5 and 15, and a few were between 15 and 20 years. Fifty percent (n=40) of these children spent more than 2 hours watching TV, 40% (n=32) watched for an hour, and the rest (n=8) watched television for more than 4 hours a day.
When asked what they usually watched on television, 62% (n=50) of the parents reported that their kids watched cartoon programs, 26% (n=21) said their kids watched news and movies and the rest 11% (n=9) said their kids watched sports.
Influence of advertisements on children was measured by understanding how often children sought to buy products seen on television. On this, 61% (n=49) of parents reported their children seeking the products. Twenty one percent (n=20) parents reported of such issues cropping up sometimes, and only 14% (n=11) reported that their children very rarely sought for such products, and were not adamant.
The immediate reaction or impact of watching television revealed that only 20% (n=16) parents noticed that their children felt relaxed after watching their favorite program. Maximum parents, 45% (n=36) reported violent or restless behavior from their children. Thirty percent (n=24) of parents reported that their children continued to watch, and about 5% (n=4) of parents did not find any reaction.
Findings of this survey indicated interesting and distinct results. For instance, though the number of children watching television for more than 4 hours a day was relatively less, substantial numbers of children reported to watching cartoon programs. Moreover, more than half of the parents reported influence of television advertisements on their children to a large extent. Different indications can be drawn from these findings. Firstly, the amount of time spent watching television is not directly linked to children’s aggressive behavior. Though aggressive behavior was reported by maximum parents, who thought could have been because of watching certain programs, the amount of time spent watching television was relatively low for maximum children. Secondly, the survey clearly indicates that television advertisements can rule a child’s product choice, which shows the impact of television on their psychology. This is what makes them brand conscious from a very young age (Gunter, Oates, and Blades, 91)
In conclusion, in children, the impacts of watching television can be varied depending upon the programs they watch, the attractive advertisements, or even an attempt to imitate his/her favorite personality or cartoon. This impact certainly leaves the child preoccupied, and even in restless situation, sometimes. Parents’ interventions in such cases can help the child in taking the positive aspects and learn from the negative consequences of watching television.
Survey questionnaire:
Impact of television on children
Question
Option 1
Option 2
Option 3
Option 4
What gender is your kid
Male
Female


How old is your kid
.5-10
.10-15
.15-20
above 20
How many hours of television does he/she watch
less than 1 hour
1 hour
more than 2 hours
more than 4 hours
What program do they watch
News
Movies
Sports
cartoons
How often do your kids buy products advertised on TV
Always
More often
Not always
Never
Do they feel happy and relaxed after watching TV
Happy and relaxed
Restless
Not sure
want to watch more tv
Works cited
Gunter, Barrie, Caroline Oates and Mark Blades. Advertising to children on TV: content, impact and regulation. Mahwah, New Jersey: Laurence Erlbaum associates, Inc, Publishers. 2005. Read More
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