Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Departmental Honors


Journalism and Communication


Health programs in Utah's curriculum focus mainly on the after effects of media's influence--eating disorders, low self-esteem and other destructive teenage behavior--and no one puts the correct amount of blame on television or the advertisements that promote buying to be beautiful. However, studies have found a strong correlation in teens between media consumption and negative behaviors. Teens are, after all, a main target for over $30 million ad dollars every year. Utah has curriculum in place for media literacy, but it is scattered throughout multiple subjects and is never rightly treated as its own. Because of this, we propose protecting our teens in public schools through empowerment. We propose that the curriculum is developed to teach teenagers how to dissect the 3,000 advertisements they see every day. Just as our students need to be literate in reading and math to function in the world around them, in this information-driven age so should our students be media literate.



Faculty Mentor

Edward Pease

Departmental Honors Advisor

Penny Byrne