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Association of Various Components of Media Literacy and Adolescent Smoking

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Objective: To determine which specific aspects of media literacy were most strongly associated with smoking outcomes.

Methods: Students at a public high school responded to cross-sectional survey items measuring smoking outcomes, components of media literacy, and other variables.

Results: Of the 1211 participants, 19 were current smokers (N = 216) and 40 of the nonsmokers (N 342) were susceptible to smoking. In the adjusted models, current smoking was most strongly related to representation-reality domain items, but susceptibility to smoking was associated with each of the media literacy domains.

Conclusion: Varied relationships exist between individual facets of media literacy and smoking outcomes.

Keywords: Media literacy; health education; health promotion; prevention; smoking

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1 Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine; Center for Research on Health Care; Division of Adolescent Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA.

Publication date: March 1, 2009

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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