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News Media Study, 1957 (ICPSR 3511)

Principal Investigator(s): Withey, Stephen B.; Davis, Robert C.


This study contains data on the use of the news media by 1,919 adults in the United States in 1957 and their attitudes toward science and scientists. Closed and open-ended questions were asked to explore the role of the mass media in informing the public about developments in science, as well as respondents' use of newspapers, magazines, radio, and television, and the programs of interest to them. Additional questions explored respondents' use of the media as a source of scientific information, their assessments of the medium that provided a major source of their entertainment, news, and science information, their attitudes toward science and its effects on society, their understanding of the meaning of scientific studies, their opinions of the character of scientists and their freedom to engage in any kind of research, their concept of causality, and their views of earth satellites. Demographic variables include age, sex, race, education, marital status, family composition, religion, and group memberships. See the related collection, SURVEY OF CONSUMER ATTITUDES AND BEHAVIOR, SPRING 1958: NEWS MEDIA (ICPSR 3632). Approximately 25 percent of the news media survey was repeated in a national survey in spring 1958, six months after the launching of the Russian Sputnik.

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Study Description


Withey, Stephen B., and Robert C. Davis. News Media Study, 1957. ICPSR03511-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1999. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR03511.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR03511.v1

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This study was funded by:

  • National Association of Science Writers

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    adults, attitudes, information sources, knowledge (awareness), mass media, media influence, news media, newspapers, radios, science, scientists, television, United States

Time Period:   

  • 1957

Date of Collection:   

  • 1957

Universe:    Adults living in private dwelling units in the United States in 1957.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Produced by the Institute for Social Research, Social Science Archive, Ann Arbor, MI, 197?.


Sample:    Area probability sampling of 1,919 adults living in private dwelling units in the United States in 1957.

Data Source:

personal interviews


Original ICPSR Release:   1984-06-20

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