Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/626158
Title:
Effects of Media Use on Bereavement
Author:
Springer, Sheila
Issue Date:
2017
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
This study applies bereavement and media use theoretical perspectives to examine how survivors use media to cope with spousal loss during the first two years. Specifically, this study explores whether survivors’ television use is associated with grief intensity. Potential associations between television use and grief intensity are explored using an online survey. A media use for coping scale is developed. The relationship between television oscillation (i.e., equal use of television for respite, and to cope with primary and secondary stressors) and grief intensity is also explored, and ten specific moderators of this relationship are examined: recency of loss, type of loss, social support, family proximity and contact, marital relationship quality, economic stability, pre-existing physical and mental health issues, and change in television use. Results were collected from 356 spousal survivors and indicate that television use to cope is associated with grief intensity. Survivors that report high television use in general are using more television for relaxation, companionship, acceptance, positive reinterpretation and growth, and emotional and instrumental support. The most dramatic effects are observed with television use for relaxation and companionship, and the smallest effects with television use for emotional and instrumental support. However, there was no association between television use for respite, or to cope with primary and secondary stressors and grief intensity. Results support the value of social support, family contact at the time of loss, fewer physical health issues, and decreasing general television use in promoting more positive bereavement outcomes. Results support television oscillation as a predictor of grief intensity, but only under certain circumstances. Four of the models show significant moderator effects between television oscillation and grief intensity: social support at the time of loss, family contact at the time of loss, pre-existing physical health issues, and change in television use since the loss. When survivors have less social support at the time of loss, television oscillation is associated with less grief intensity as predicted. However, when survivors have more social support, television oscillation is marginally associated with more grief intensity. Likewise, when survivors have less family contact, television oscillation is associated with less grief intensity as predicted. Conversely, when survivors have more family contact, television oscillation is associated with more grief intensity. When survivors have more pre-existing physical health issues, television oscillation is not associated with grief intensity as predicted. For survivors with fewer pre-existing physical health issues, television oscillation is associated with less grief intensity. When survivors decrease television use by approximately one hour, television oscillation is marginally associated with less grief intensity. On the other hand, when survivors increase television use, television oscillation is not associated with grief intensity. Current general television use was a highly significant control variable in all moderator analyses indicating more television use to cope is associated with more grief intensity. Recency, type of loss, marital relationship quality, family proximity, economic stability, and pre-existing mental health issues did not significantly moderate the relationship between television oscillation and grief intensity. This study extends previous work by merging the bereavement and media use literatures, and in the development of a media use for coping scale. Moreover, it provides important empirical evidence on theoretical models about bereavement. This expands the potential for discussions about the association of individual vulnerabilities with more positive bereavement outcomes.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Cognitive stress theory; Dual process model and integrated risk factor framework; Media effects; Media use for coping; Oscillation; Spousal loss
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; Communication
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Harwood, Jake

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoen_USen
dc.titleEffects of Media Use on Bereavementen_US
dc.creatorSpringer, Sheilaen
dc.contributor.authorSpringer, Sheilaen
dc.date.issued2017-
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en
dc.description.abstractThis study applies bereavement and media use theoretical perspectives to examine how survivors use media to cope with spousal loss during the first two years. Specifically, this study explores whether survivors’ television use is associated with grief intensity. Potential associations between television use and grief intensity are explored using an online survey. A media use for coping scale is developed. The relationship between television oscillation (i.e., equal use of television for respite, and to cope with primary and secondary stressors) and grief intensity is also explored, and ten specific moderators of this relationship are examined: recency of loss, type of loss, social support, family proximity and contact, marital relationship quality, economic stability, pre-existing physical and mental health issues, and change in television use. Results were collected from 356 spousal survivors and indicate that television use to cope is associated with grief intensity. Survivors that report high television use in general are using more television for relaxation, companionship, acceptance, positive reinterpretation and growth, and emotional and instrumental support. The most dramatic effects are observed with television use for relaxation and companionship, and the smallest effects with television use for emotional and instrumental support. However, there was no association between television use for respite, or to cope with primary and secondary stressors and grief intensity. Results support the value of social support, family contact at the time of loss, fewer physical health issues, and decreasing general television use in promoting more positive bereavement outcomes. Results support television oscillation as a predictor of grief intensity, but only under certain circumstances. Four of the models show significant moderator effects between television oscillation and grief intensity: social support at the time of loss, family contact at the time of loss, pre-existing physical health issues, and change in television use since the loss. When survivors have less social support at the time of loss, television oscillation is associated with less grief intensity as predicted. However, when survivors have more social support, television oscillation is marginally associated with more grief intensity. Likewise, when survivors have less family contact, television oscillation is associated with less grief intensity as predicted. Conversely, when survivors have more family contact, television oscillation is associated with more grief intensity. When survivors have more pre-existing physical health issues, television oscillation is not associated with grief intensity as predicted. For survivors with fewer pre-existing physical health issues, television oscillation is associated with less grief intensity. When survivors decrease television use by approximately one hour, television oscillation is marginally associated with less grief intensity. On the other hand, when survivors increase television use, television oscillation is not associated with grief intensity. Current general television use was a highly significant control variable in all moderator analyses indicating more television use to cope is associated with more grief intensity. Recency, type of loss, marital relationship quality, family proximity, economic stability, and pre-existing mental health issues did not significantly moderate the relationship between television oscillation and grief intensity. This study extends previous work by merging the bereavement and media use literatures, and in the development of a media use for coping scale. Moreover, it provides important empirical evidence on theoretical models about bereavement. This expands the potential for discussions about the association of individual vulnerabilities with more positive bereavement outcomes.en
dc.typetexten
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen
dc.subjectCognitive stress theoryen
dc.subjectDual process model and integrated risk factor frameworken
dc.subjectMedia effectsen
dc.subjectMedia use for copingen
dc.subjectOscillationen
dc.subjectSpousal lossen
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen
thesis.degree.disciplineCommunicationen
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen
dc.contributor.advisorHarwood, Jakeen
dc.contributor.committeememberHarwood, Jakeen
dc.contributor.committeememberStevens Aubrey, Jenniferen
dc.contributor.committeememberPitts, Margareten
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