Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Carl Kell, Larry Caillouet, Judith Hoover

Degree Program

Department of Communication

Degree Type

Master of Arts


Samples of several populations, made up of both traditional and non-traditional students attending the University of Tennessee at Martin were shown different "newscasts," each newscast depicting a different style of news presentation. One style was the "Formal" newscast, and the other was the "Informal" style.

The Formal style is characterized by direct eye-camera contact by the newscaster, a direct style of presentation, and no interaction between newscasters. The Informal style is characterized by interaction between newscasters, a more Informal presentation of the facts, and a relaxed atmosphere as the newscast progresses. The study attempted to find whether either style increased short-term retention of the news facts via a questionnaire administered following a video tape of a newscast.

One group was shown an Informal newscast, while another separate group was shown a Formal newscast made up of the same stories. The questionnaire was administered following the completion of the tape. An analysis of the results shows there is no significant difference in retention of facts between the styles of newscasts. The only difference was an observed increase in interest with the Informal newscast, but this observance was not quantitatively analyzed and awaits further study.


Broadcast and Video Studies | Communication | Journalism Studies | Mass Communication | Social and Behavioral Sciences