Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

School

School of Education

Program

Educational Psychology MA

First Advisor

Nadia Nosworthy

Second Advisor

Jimmy Kijai

Third Advisor

Elvin Gabriel

Abstract

Purpose of the Study

More than ever before, young adults have access to television content. Television programs are no longer relegated to the television set, but can be accessed on desktops, laptops, tablets, and even smartphones. The accessibility of television has increasingly allowed young adults to spend a significant portion of their day viewing these programs. Gathering information on how this viewing is related to their dating and academic habits is important to better understand the decision-making and outcomes for young adults in these two central areas of their lives. The purpose of this study was to measure the relationship between television viewing, dating behavior, dating expectations, dating well-being, academic achievement, and academic behavior of young adults.

Method

The current research was designed as a quantitative non-experimental descriptive study utilizing survey methodology. The instrument, called the Milmine Social Interaction, Academic, and Media Instrument (MSIAAMI), was used to gather information on participants television viewing habits, dating behaviors, dating expectations, dating relationship well-being, academic achievement, and academic behaviors. The data was gathered from 202 graduate and undergraduate students attending Andrews University in the Spring 2015 semester. Canonical correlational analyses were used to determine the existence of relationships between television viewing, dating, and academics. ANOVAs, zero-order correlations, and t-tests were used to provide additional descriptive information on the sample.

Results

There was no significant relationship found between television viewing and dating, as well as between dating and academics. A significant relationship was found between television viewing and academics. In particular, it was found that total viewing and entertainment viewing were positively related to skipping class and procrastinating. Participants watched television for an average of about 79 minutes, spent 201 minutes doing homework, 192 minutes studying, and 154 minutes with their dating partner each day. Physical attractiveness was more important for men while women reported that receiving kind acts and compliments was more important.

Conclusions

Although most of the results turned out to be non-significant, there were still many interesting findings. Further research is needed in order to clarify and provide support for these results. This study helped grow the understanding of how one of the most influential media impacts the young adult’s dating and academics as well as how dating influences academics.

Subject Area

Youth on television, Television viewers, Dating (Social customs), Academic achievement, Young adults--Conduct of life

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