The emergence of the television and radio and their effects on children

Article by Mitchell Stephens Few inventions have had as much effect on contemporary American society as television. Before the number of U. By the late s, 98 percent of U.

The emergence of the television and radio and their effects on children

Effects of television viewing on child development |

Our Foremost Tool in the 21st Century Ed Palmer Depending on how one looks at the status of educational television in the world today, one sees either a glass half full or a glass half empty. Great advances have been made worldwide in forging inventive applications. Many different program genres have been used to address diverse audiences for a variety of formal and non-formal learning purposes, with scientifically measured results.

The record of accomplishments is impressive, yet TV is drastically underutilized as a teaching tool in countries that have the highest prevalence of urgent and otherwise unmet education needs. The large gap that exists between the state of the art and the state of practice in the use of television for development has many causes, including a major lapse of international attention to national capacity building and application.

Among the nations that receive the greatest amounts of international assistance in health, education, child rights, ecology and the environment, many now contain 20 to 40 million or more individuals who regularly see TV. This means that in some of the most economically limited countries of the world, tens of millions of households of very meager means have invested in the purchase of The emergence of the television and radio and their effects on children TV set which for them is immensely expensive.

A critical mass of TV viable countries now exists for educational purposes, to justify undertaking unprecedented levels of international coordination in such areas as experience exchange, training, resource development, and national and regional capacity building. Huge numbers of non-literate or marginally literate individuals, for whom formal education has little practical applicability, will live out their lives in print-scarce environments with few or no reading materials in their homes, but with regular access to television.


TV and radio, for as far as we can see into the 21st century, will be their most important outside source of lifelong and lifewide learning. Viewed in this light, the real costs in terms of human survival, quality of life, and productivity in countries that fail to develop educational television more fully must be reckoned with as an important policy consideration.

Television during its earliest stage of growth in a given developing country is useful mainly as a means to reach and influence policy makers in urban settings. We know a great deal today about the role TV often plays in "agenda setting" -- i.

Watching television by kids: How much and why?

During its second intermediary phase of availability, television also begins to function according to the classical two-step model, whereby it reaches significant numbers of influential community opinion leaders, who in turn relay its educational and motivational points to large numbers of individual householders.

Policy makers in countries where television reaches only a fraction of the population need to be aware that this fraction will include a disproportionately large number of community opinion leaders, who can be counted on to further disseminate the practical lessons that they see presented on TV.

In the third mature phase, TV continues to reach policy makers and community opinion leaders and, in addition, reaches significantly large numbers of individual householders. It is during this stage that television begins to reach the "neediest of the needy" in significantly large numbers.

Model uses of TV for national development have emerged in widely separated times and places, but never has a determined human effort been made in a single locale to realize anything approaching the full scope and impact of television in its capacity to teach, illuminate, and empower.

Totally absent in developing countries at the close of the 20th century are exemplars of carefully planned, comprehensive national policies geared to making the best-informed and most rational uses of television to address the highest priority education needs, based on a realistic sense of what these nations actually are going to spend.

A great deal is known -- if not widely known -- about how to use TV effectively as a disseminator of knowledge, shaper of attitudes, and motivator of recommended actions. Television also has been used in documented ways to bring about measured gains in the thinking skills of viewers in such areas as scientific and mathematical reasoning and analysis of distortions in TV news and advertising.

The literature includes, still further, many articles on how to collect and make use of audience data, such as research on pilot productions, to guide improvements in the appeal and educational effectiveness of the completed programs. Others are ones that TV organizations are likely to perpetuate on a sustaining basis.

Still others make use of popular program genres, in which education and entertainment are blended, to be able to attract large viewing-learning audiences during peak TV viewing periods.

The literature on educational uses of TV focuses, variously, on applications of particular TV program genres; research and evaluation practices; evaluation results; design of effective educational and motivational program approaches; specialized producer and researcher training; and patterns of international co-production.

The Japan Prize Contest, now a decades-old tradition, serves as a screening center for identifying and honoring the best educational programs from all over the world, and as a venue for professional exchange. The NHK generously makes its library of prize-winning programs available for study at selected centers located around the world.

Program genres that have been widely used and found to work effectively for education in countries all around the world include communication campaigns based on minute-long public service announcements, somewhat longer program "fillers," soap operas popular dramatic serialsmagazine-style variety series with recurring features, hosted talk shows with live audiences and expert panels, interview shows especially when these contain interesting and informative inserts, animations, popular music specials, news and documentaries, and re-enactments in the form of docu-dramas, to mention just a few.

The following ideas for capacity building to improve educational television in developing countries were chosen more to suggest a range of ways in which capacity can be increased than necessarily in all cases to address top priorities.

Expand and improve technical facilities.

Early findings

Shortages of technical facilities for creating educational TV programs often result from prior failures in national planning. The best results come when planning is comprehensive and open to wide stakeholder participation, and when stakeholders and decision makers alike are well informed on how and how effectively television can be used to serve various national education needs.

Helping them become so informed is a crucial early step in promoting increased investments in technical facilities. An especially important international capacity building activity, one that provides a foundation for other crucially important actions, is to develop an extensive data base on best practices, make it easily available, and actively promote its fullest possible use worldwide.

A data base of this type, available on the internet, could show program excerpts with full motion and sound, illustrating for policy makers and educational TV practitioners alike what television has the demonstrated capacity to accomplish in education.

Countries would be saved the cost of "reinventing the wheel," and could download for each genre technical information on content planning, audience research, presentational design, and evaluation. Planning for global policy implementation.

Many countries that are signatories to the various global policy initiatives e. A capacity building activity is to help interested countries launch this type of planning.

The emergence of the television and radio and their effects on children

Planning for increased channel capacity. When countries increase their TV channel capacity, usually with an increase in satellite-imported programs, special steps are needed to ensure that local educational programming receives adequate consideration, funding and air space.

Countries that wish to improve under-performing educational TV series may be interested in show doctoring, whereby experts come in for a short time to help plan and implement sustainable improvements in such areas as content planning, use of audience research, educational strategies, and technical and artistic production values.

A TV series on grassroots empowerment might feature emulatable forms of community action, which could range from funding a community irrigation system or setting up cooperatives, to improving health conditions.

Train those who invest in or manage educational TV offerings.TELEVISION'S IMPACT ON YOUTH AND CHILDREN'S PLAY. Most American children live in a media-rich environment, with leisure-time use of television, movies, music, video games, and computers playing an important role in their daily lives.

The Effects of Television for Children The Effects of Television for Children Most people own a television, and many households have multiple television sets in their homes. Television is an American is more than just a pass time, but is part of our lifestyle. Some people conclude that the effects of television on children are direct and negative.

According to this view, television is noxious, like cigarette smoke. But whereas cigarettes damage the lungs, television damages the mind. How television has portrayed the family is important because television is a source for learning about family: what families look like, what an ideal family is, how spouses are supposed to behave, how parents are expected to treat their children, and how families resolve problems.

The emergence of the television and radio and their effects on children

There have been some indications that television further effects children's dialect development choice. As children expand their TV patterns Change.

Children's mental capacities, life style, and specific impact Television use as well as the socio-cultural framework. Now with the new leisure cinema, radio, television and newspaper replaced family time because of their new status and the honeymoon type feeling of new options and maybe families became less close and more entwined with the media than each other.

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