The effect of media analysis on attitudes and behaviors regarding body image among college students

Judith Rabak-Wagener, Jo Ann Eickhoff-Shemek, Lisa Kelly-Vance

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Particular strategies of media advocacy can help people contest the dominant body images of fashion advertisements and reframe them to include a broader array of “normal” images. A study with an intervention group (n = 60) and a comparison group (n = 45) of undergraduate college students was conducted to investigate whether analyzing and reframing fashion advertisements changed the students' attitudes and behaviors regarding their own body images. Results from the posttest showed a significant change in beliefs among those in the intervention group but no significant change in behaviors. The comparison group showed no significant change in beliefs or behaviors. Posttest results from the women in the intervention group (n = 44) indicated a significant change in the study participants' beliefs that adult models in advertisements have an ideal body size and shape and that the participants' decisions about dieting or exercising should be based more on looks rather than on health status.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-35
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American College Health Association
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Advertising
  • Body image
  • Fashion
  • Media advocacy
  • Reframing issues

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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