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To find out if the attitudes of individuals differ between Schizophrenia and Depression due to the influence of news media

Huggett, Charlotte (2013) To find out if the attitudes of individuals differ between Schizophrenia and Depression due to the influence of news media. Manchester Metropolitan University. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

This study investigated the influence of news media on consumers’ attitudes toward people with a psychiatric diagnosis, whether they differed between Schizophrenia and Depression, and if they were influenced by demographic factors. Participants (N=108) completed two online questionnaires, one on Schizophrenia (n=54) and one on Depression (n=54). Both questionnaires used Corrigan’s (2000), Martin, Pescosolido and Tuch’s (2000), and Posey’s (2009) adaption of Day, Edgren and Eshleman’s (2007) scales, and were divided into two parts; pre-intervention and post-intervention. The interventions consisted of two online news reports, one concerning Schizophrenia, the other Depression. There was a significant difference (p<.001) between pre-intervention and post-intervention Attitude and Social Willingness Scale (ASWS) scores. There were also significant differences in attitudes between Schizophrenia and Depression in terms of ASWS and Social Attribution scores (p<.01 and p<.05 respectively). These results indicate that the news media is very influential regarding attitudes towards Schizophrenia and Depression. In addition, there was a significant interaction effect (p<.05) between intervention and first-hand experience on ASWS scores. This indicated that the attitudes of individuals with first-hand experience with mental disorders are less likely to be influenced by news media, than individuals without first-hand experience.

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