Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Chris Allen

Second Advisor

Robert Carlson

Third Advisor

Mary Ann Powell


This study explored the relationship between television influence and the young adult‘s perception of marriage. The participants were 178, college-aged males and females (median age 20) from a large Midwestern university. How much television participants watched and the types of programs they watched were examined. Participants were asked where they got their information about marriage and how they thought marriage was displayed on TV. Two hypotheses were tested -- H1: Female students are more likely than male students to use TV programs for ideas on what marriage is really like; H2: Television has a greater influence over female students than male students with regard to their thoughts and behaviors about love and marriage. Neither hypothesis was supported.

However, some gender differences were found. In terms of TV watching, males ranked the Sports, TV Movies, and Educational categories higher than females; females ranked the Drama and Reality categories higher than males. Females ranked their friends as a source on love and marriage higher than males ranked their friends as a source.


A Thesis Presented to the School of Communication And the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Copyright 2011 by Gina A. Svendsen.

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