The Effects of Sibling Coviewing on Preschoolers' Reactions to a Suspenseful Movie Scene

Barbara J. Wilson, Audrey J. Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This experiment assesses the impact of watching television with an older sibling on preschoolers' reactions to a suspenseful movie scene. Preschoolers viewed one of two versions of the scene (normal, dream) either alone or with an older sibling. The two versions were identical except that the dream version included a prologue and an epilogue. Both the prologue and epilogue used standard production techniques to convey that the story was just a dream. Results revealed that coviewing had both negative and positive effects. Unexpectedly, watching with an older sibling tended to reduce preschoolers' ability to recognize the dream in the program. However, preschoolers who viewed with an older sibling were less emotionally aroused and liked the program more than did those who watched alone. Mediating processes during coviewing, such as the nature of the talk and visual attention to the television, were used to explain the results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)214-248
Number of pages35
JournalCommunication Research
Volume20
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Communication
  • Linguistics and Language

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