Her research focuses on the impact of mass media on children's cognitive and emotional reactions.Her research focuses on developmental differences in children's reactions to mass media. This study was supported by a grant to the third author from the College of Letters & Science, University of California, Santa Barbara. The authors would like to thank the following women for allowing children to be tested at their center or school: Terry Crump, Assistant Supervisor of Youth Activity at the Santa Barbara Recreation Department; Connie Staugaard, Director of the Salvation Army Day Camp; Principal Nancy Hill at Cleveland Elementary School; and Principal Jennie Dearmin at Adams Elementary School. The authors would also like to thank Jeff Levin for serving as one of the experimenters and Kimberly Schodtler and Gabriel Gasca for coding the videotaped facial expressions.
Prior Exposure to Creatures From a Horror Film
Live Versus Photographic Representations
Article first published online: 17 MAR 2006
Human Communication Research
Volume 20, Issue 1, pages 41–66, September 1993
How to Cite
WEISS, A. J., IMRICH, D. J. and WILSON, B. J. (1993), Prior Exposure to Creatures From a Horror Film. Human Communication Research, 20: 41–66. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-2958.1993.tb00315.x
- Issue published online: 17 MAR 2006
- Article first published online: 17 MAR 2006
This experiment assesses the impact of two exposure strategies on children's emotional and cognitive reactions to a frightening movie scene. Children from two grade levels (kindergarten and first vs. second through fourth) received a desensitization treatment in which modeled exposure to a live earthworm was factorially varied with exposure to graphic photographs of worms taken from a horror film. Children then viewed a frightening scene involving worms taken from this same film. Results indicated that exposure to photographs increased children's enjoyment of the movie segment and reduced fear reactions to the scene. In contrast, the live exposure strategy was effective in reducing fear reactions to the movie only among boys. However, live exposure did alter children's affective reactions to and judgments of worms themselves. The findings are discussed in terms of current theories of desensitization and information processing.