Erica Scharrer

Erica Scharrer, Ph.D.
Professor & Chair
S330 Integrative Learning Center
413 545-1311 (leave message)

My research interests involve the study of media content, opinions of media, media effects, and media literacy, particularly regarding gender and/or aggression. I am also quite interested in the role of media in the lives of children and adolescents, and I study young people's responses to media literacy education.

My recent articles have appeared in Sex Roles, Journal of Advertising, Journal of Children and Media, Mass Communication and Society, and Critical Studies in Media Communication. I've co-authored three books with first author, George Comstock, including Media and the American Child (Elsevier, 2007) and edited Media Effects/Media Psychology (Wiley-Blackwell, 2013), part of the International Encyclopedia of Media Studies.  


PhD, Syracuse University

Courses Taught: 

Undergraduate: Social Impact of Media; Children, Teens, and Media; Media Violence. Graduate: Quantitative Methods; Media Literacy; Media Effects, Content Analysis


with co-authors Laras Sekarasih, Christine J. Olson, Gamze Onut, & Kylie Lanthorn. "Effectiveness of a school-based media literacy curriculum in encouraging critical attitudes about advertising content and form among boys and girls." Journal of Advertising, 2019.

with co-authors Christine J. Olson, Kylie Lanthorn, Gamze Onut, and Laras Sekarasih. "Producing PSAs on consumer culture: Youth reception of advertising." Critical Studies in Media Communication, 36, 58-64. doi: 10.1080/15295036.2018.1526390. 2019.

with co-author Greg Blackburn. "Cultivating conceptions of masculinity: Overall television use, genre viewing, and perceptions of norms regarding masculine gender roles." Mass Communication & Society. DOI: 2018.

with co-author Greg Blackburn. "Video game playing and beliefs about masculinity among male and female emerging adults." Sex Roles: A Journal of Research. DOI: 10.1007/s11199-018-0934-4. 2018

with co-author Greg Blackburn. "Is reality TV a Bad Girls Club? The ability of overall television and docusoap reality television exposure to cultivate approval of aggression." Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, DOI: 10.1177/1077699017706482. 2017.

with co-authors Karen Dill-Shackleford, Srividya Ramasubramanian, Elizabeth Behm-Morawitz, Melinda Burgess, and Dafna Lemish. "Social groups stories in the media and child development." Pediatrics, 140 (issue supplement 2), S157-S161. DOI: 2017.

with co-authors Laras Sekarasih, Kimberly Walsh McDermott, Donica O’Malley, Christine Olson. "To guide or to be the sage: children’s responses to varying facilitator prompts following a media literacy education curriculum in the United States." Journal of Children and Media, DOI: 10.1080/17482798.2016.1157503. 2016.

with co-authors Laras Sekarasih, Kavita Nayar, Donica O’Malley, and Christine Olson. "Entertaining audiences, ensuring inclusivity, and considering media influence: Sixth-graders’ understanding of media producers’ responsibility." Communication Review, 19(2), 128-152. 2016.

with co-author Srividya Ramasubramanian. "The role of media literacy education in influencing stereotypes of race and ethnicity." Journal of Social Issues, 71(1), 170-184. 2015.

with co-authors Laras Sekarasih and Kimberly Walsh. "Media violence is made to attract and entertain': Responses to media literacy lessons on the effects of and institutional motives behind media violence." Journal of Media Literacy Education, 6(3), 1-13. 2015.

with co-authors Karen Dill-Shackleford, Melanie C. Green, Craig Wetterer, and Lee Shackleford. "Setting the stage for social change: Using live theater to dispel myths about intimate partner violence." Journal of Health Communication, 20(8), 969-976. 2015.

with co-author Greg Blackburn. "Images of injury: Graphic news visuals’ effects on attitudes toward the use of unmanned drones." Mass Communication & Society, 18(6), 799-820. 2015.




Current Projects: 

Current work includes the study of associations between young people's media use and their views of masculine gender roles and norms and a co-authored book on the role of (or potential for) quantitative research in efforts toward social justice.