Journalism 101

University of Nevada, Reno

Donica Mensing

Media Effects Theories

Understanding what effects the media has on individuals and society has been of interest to researchers for decades. Our understanding of media effects has gone through three primary phases:


Powerful Effects -- 1920s to 1940s


Minimalist Effects Theory -- 1940s to 1960s (approx.)


Cumulative Effects Theory -- 1960s to present


Uses and Gratifications Studies


For more information, see Vivian, Chapter 15, Media Effects

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