Content Analysis

In 1978, Gerbner, Gross, Jackson-Beeck, Jeffries-Fox, and Signorielli defined violence as ” The overt expression of physical force (with or without weapon) against self or other, compelling action against one’s will on pain of being hurt or killed, or actually hurting or killing. Must be plausible and credible; no idle threats, verbal abuse, or comic gestures with no credible violent consequences. May be intentional or accidental; violent accidents, catastrophes, acts of nature are included.”

For this assignment, you will watch three television shows and analyze them for verbal and physical violence portrayed in the show. Use the attached document “Content Analysis,” to complete the first part of the assignment.



PSY 452 – Experimental Psychology

Content Analysis Instructions


To better understand the concept of non-experimental designs, be sure to read all the assigned readings for this Topic before beginning the assignment:


  1. For this assignment, you will watch three television shows from the genres listed below and analyze them for verbal and physical violence portrayed in the show. Choose a show that fits the following genres:
    1. Situation comedy
    2. Cartoon
    3. Drama

Tally Sheet


  1. On the Tally Sheet template below, tally the number of times you see a mode of aggression on the selected program.
    1. Rate the overall violence using a 5-point scale from 1 (not at all violent) to 5 (extremely violent).
  2. Collapse your data within each program category.
  3. Determine the average number of acts per program hour for each mode of aggression.
  4. Determine the average violence for each program and compare the prominent modes of aggression across the programs.





Describe what was discovered in this content analysis.

State the findings of the study. Explain how the study is reliable and/or valid. Use the textbook to support your answer.  Myers, A., & Hansen, C. H. (2012). Experimental psychology (7th ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth. ISBN-13: 9780495602316

Use the content categories from the tally sheet to explain how the three programs differ from each other in relation to violence.

Copy and paste the tally sheet from “Content Analysis” below at the end of your paper so it is included it in your study.


  Program #1 Program #2 Program #3
Program Name      
Length in Minutes      
Number of Acts involving:


1.      Violence to Body


2.      Use of Weapon      
3.      Physical Threat      
4.      Verbal Threat      
5.      Sarcasm or Symbolism      
Total number of Aggressive Acts      
Overall Violence Rate:

1 (none) to 5 (extremely violent)



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