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Television Program and Pro-Social Behavior in Children

Children spend a substantial amount of their time watching television more than the time they spend sleeping. Over time, there has been an ever-increasing awareness of the significance of children’s television. It is pointed out that several researchers have contended that children get to learn pro-social behaviors from television (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009). The definition of prosocial behavior can be given as that behavior that is “socially desirable and in which some way benefits another person, or society at large” (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009, p.51). The media has a large amount of potential for the creation of prosocial behavior. A large number of studies that concern children and prosocial behavior have been mentioned. In one of these researches, it was found out that the prosocial acts come about per hour on several hours of television programming (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009). However, the researchers have come to notice that situational comedy programs did not exhibit a very large number of prosocial outcomes in comparison to other kinds of programs like drama and adventure or action. Moreover, it was also noted that the prosocial acts were often depicted as “rewarding and internally motivated” (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009, p.51). In the same way, the heroes are normally presented with “more prosocial behaviors than villains” (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009, p.51).

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It is pointed out that even if the researches that were conducted by Potter and Ware established that the comedy programs did not contain a large number of prosocial acts, another researcher, Brown, demonstrated that entertainment television encourages prosocial acts (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009). Brown showed that a large number of entertainment programs have given an illustration of how individuals can engage in copying and facilitating positive interactions. The researcher pointed out that a large number of nations across the globe are engaging in the integration of prosocial messages into entertainment television programs to boost prosocial development (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009, p.51). It is believed that the television comedies “were potential influencing agents on children’s prosocial behavior” (Valkenburg & Janssen, 2008, p.10). Making use of comedies like the Full House and Cosby Show, children are in a position to engage in identifying prosocial themes. It has also been noticed that the children “who understood the prosocial themes, performed prosocial behaviors in their interactions” (Punyanunt-Carter & Carter, 2009, p.51).

References

Punyanunt-Carter, M.N. & Carter, S. L. (2009). What do children learn about pro-social behavior from the media? JAASEP, 1(1), 51 – 56.

Valkenburg, P. M., & Janssen, S. C. (2008). What do children value in entertainment programs? A cross-cultural investigation. Journal of Communication, 49(2), 3- 21.

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StudyCorgi. 2022. "Television Program and Pro-Social Behavior in Children." May 27, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/television-program-and-pro-social-behavior-in-children/.

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StudyCorgi. (2022) 'Television Program and Pro-Social Behavior in Children'. 27 May.

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