Date Approved

6-29-2016

Embargo Period

6-30-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. School Psychology

Department

Educational Services and Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Allen, Terri

Subject(s)

Online social networks; News audiences; Social norms

Disciplines

Social Psychology

Abstract

Facebook has played a significant role in society since 2004. Not only do individuals use the social media platform, but most prominent news sources have their own Facebook pages which serve as a primary news source for many people. Individuals can comment publicly under any article, thus creating a type of community in which Facebook users can share their opinions and debate with one another. The purpose of this study was to examine specific news source postings on Facebook on October 1, 2015 through October 2, 2015. The study analyzed the first 500 comments under each article posted about the school shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. The study aimed to investigate whether or not there was a correlation between aggressive and non-aggressive comments and the credibility of the news source. A Between-Groups One-Way ANOVA was used to analyze data. Significant differences were found between type of aggression and news source credibility, and also, total aggression and news source credibility. Implications and limitations of this study are further discussed.

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