Media Psychology | DIM 106

Instructor: Antonis Gardikiotis
Course Description

The course focuses on the relationship between the media and their audience from a psychological perspective. It discusses how audiences use and make sense of media content, and how are affected by it, behaviorally, cognitively and emotionally. Both theory and research will be used to understand this relationship, as it is examined across different media (e.g. traditional, new media), genres (e.g. entertainment, news), and effects (e.g. learning, aggression). The course employs an intergroup perspective to the analysis of media – audience relationship, that is, it focuses on how social categorization influence communication.


Course Objectives

  • Understand the concepts and theories of media psychology.
  • Understand functioning of media audiences
  • Understand the many forms of media effects
  • Comprehend the psychological processes underlying media effects.


Learning Outcomes

  1. Define core concepts and theories of media psychology.
  2. Identify different kinds of media effects.
  3. Explain the psychological processes underlying media effects.
  4. Analyze and synthesize relevant research
  5. Write about media effects phenomena.


Class/Learning activities

Lectures, group work, in-class presentations, independent study, written assignments.



Type of work Description Hours
Lectures Thirteen 3-hours lectures 39
Independent study Study of class materials and readings 40-50
Readings presentation Presenting and leading a discussion on two relative topics 20-30
Midterm paper Preparation and writing (1.500-2.000 words) 40-45
In-class presentation Conference type presentation of final paper 10-20
Final paper Preparation and written synthesis of a relative topic (3.000-3.500 words) 100-120
Total workload 249-289



Type of assessment Learning outcome Impact on final grade Date of assessment
Participation in group discussion 1-2 10% On a regular basis
Reading presentation 1-3 20% (2X10%) On a regular basis
Written assignment(midterm paper) 3-5 20% 6th-7th week
Presentation 1-4 10% 12th week
Written assignment (final paper) 3-5 40% 13th week


Required Reading

Giles, H. (Ed.) (2012). The handbook of intergroup communication. New York: Routledge.

Nabi, R., & Oliver, M. B. (Eds.). (2009). The sage handbook of media processes and effects. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.


Suggested Reading

Brock, T., & Green, M. (Eds.) (2005). Persuasion: Psychological insights and perspectives (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Bryant, J., & Oliver, M. B. (Eds.). (2009). Media effects: Advances in theory and research (3rd ed.). New York: Erlbaum.

Giles, D. (2003). Media psychology. London: Erlbaum.

Harris, R. J. (2009). A cognitive psychology of mass communication (5th ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

Harwood, J., & Giles, H. (Eds.) (2005). Intergroup communication: Multiple perspectives. New York: Peter Lang.

Liνingstone, S. M. (1998). Making sense of teleνision (2nd ed.). Oxford: Pergamon.

Nightingale, V. (Ed.). The handbook of media audiences. Chichester: Wiley.

Perry, D. K. (1996). Theory and research in mass communication. Mahwah, N.J.: Erlbaum.

Preiss, R. W., Gayle, B. M., Burrell, N., Allen, M., & Bryant, J. (Eds.) (2007). Mass media effects research: Advances through meta-analysis. Mahwah: Erlbaum.

Ruddock, A. (2000). Understanding audiences: Theory and method. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.