Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Chwalisz, Kathleen


This study is an investigation of how exposure to different media content influences self-objectification, body image, and rape myths acceptance (RMA) in female college students. The purpose of this study was to further explore the effects of immediate media exposure on body image, self-objectification, and RMA, as well as address the gap in the literature regarding the relationship between these variables (Dakanalis et al., 2015; Fox et al., 2015). One hundred and one students that identified as female were randomly assigned to three experimental conditions using a partially blind design. The students watched a short video pertaining to the condition they were assigned (i.e. sexualized content, consent content, control content) and then completed a survey, which included measures of self-objectification, negative body image, positive body image, rape myths acceptance, and demographic variables. Results indicate here was no difference between self-objectification, body image, and RMA scores among participants that were assigned to different experimental conditions. Body image was found to be directly related to RMA, and there was a difference in RMA scores among participants that remembered the university training and those who did not. The present study’s finding expands the knowledge of body image and RMA, and supports the need for interventions targeting attitudes and beliefs regarding rape and consent in college female students. Key words: media, self-objectification, body image, rape myths acceptance, college students.




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