Parental empathy and family-role interactions as portrayed on commercial television

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
James Michael Shaner (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Mildred Johnson

Abstract: Research studies have found that prosocial behaviors can be learned from viewing select television programs. In a time when the family has been thought of as disintegrating and has few role models for parenting, television could be of prime importance as a source for models of effective parenting and family life in general. This study was a preliminary examination of the potential for television to positively influence parents and future parents. The purpose of this study was to describe television families portrayed on selected programs within the three program formats of Situation Comedies, Action Dramas, and Soap Operas. Data for this study were obtained from nine television programs, with three programs in each program format. Each program was videotape recorded for two consecutive episodes. Two instruments were used as a means of systematically identifying the family behaviors under study. The first instrument, Empathy Measure (Stover, Guerney, & O'Connell, 1971), was used to collect information on the levels of parental empathy by systematically analyzing verbal and nonverbal communications between parents and children.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 1981
Television and families
Television advertising
Television $x Social aspects
Television $x Psychological aspects

Email this document to