Abstract

Cultivation theory, which is the theoretical foundation for many studies examining media effects, asserts that prolonged exposure to problematic attitudes cultivates acceptance of said attitudes (Gerbner, Gross, Morgan, Signorielli & Shanahan, 2002). Beyond the cultivation of attitudes through lyrical and visual content, common explanations for the association between substance use references in media and perceived substance use risk include sensation-seeking (Arnett, 1991; Weisskirch & Murphy, 2004; Oberle & Garcia, 2015), peer substance use (Mulder et al., 2010), and the effects of mainstream and non-mainstream music genres (ter Bogt et al., 2012; Mulder et al., 2009). This study utilized an experimental design which examined the effect of substance use references in mainstream (pop) music compared to three proposed non-mainstream genres (reggae, electronic dance music [EDM], and psytrance [psychedelic-trance]) on participants' perceived substance use risk (PSUR). Higher levels of reported recent substance use were moderately and significantly associated with lower levels of PSUR (r (836) = -.36, p < .001). Recent substance use, group, substance use priming, age, race, and sex significantly impacted PSUR (F (5, 799) = 25.04, p < .05), explaining roughly 12% more of the variance (R2 = .135) than models not including recent substance use as a predictor. While exposure to mainstream and nonmainstream genres did not result in significant differences in participants' PSUR, there was a statistically significant difference in substance use priming between groups. Liking particular music genres was also still associated with higher levels of recent substance use, as previous studies have shown (Chen, Miller, Grube & Waiters, 2006; Mulder et al., 2009; ter Bogt et al., 2012; Forsyth, Barnard & McKeganey, 1997).

Thesis Completion

2019

Semester

Fall

Thesis Chair

Wright, Chrysalis

Co-Chair

Saunders, W. Steven

Degree

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

College

College of Sciences

Department

Psychology

Degree Program

Psychology

Language

English

Access Status

Campus Access

Length of Campus-only Access

5 years

Release Date

12-1-2024

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