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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The relationship between television viewing and school children’s performance on measures of ideational fluency and intelligence Harrison, Linda Faye


A field study was conducted in order to examine the relationship between television viewing and school children's performance on measures of ideational fluency and intelligence, Alternate Uses and Pattern Meanings tasks (measures of ideational fluency), and the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC) Vocabulary and Block Design subtests (measures of intelligence) were administered to Grade four and Grade seven children in three British Columbia towns which varied in television recpetion. All three towns were studied at two times (Phases One and Two), two years and four months apart. One of the towns did not have television reception at the time of Phase One data collection but acquired it soon afterward. Thus at Phase Two, residents of this town had had television reception (CBC) for two years. The second town received CBC at both phases of data collection. The third town received one Canadian (CBC) and three U.S. (ABC, CBS, NBC) channels at both phases. During Phase Two data were collected both from the same children as in Phase One, and from a second cross-sectional sample (Grades 4 and 7) of children in each of the three towns. The total number of subjects in both phases was 443. The results suggested that television exposure is not related to performance on the WISC Block Design and Vocabulary subtests, or to performance on the Pattern Meanings task. The results did indicate, however, that television exposure has a negative effect on performance on the Alternate Uses task.

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