Media Research Lab      

The Media Research Lab at Iowa State University conducts research on media’s effects on children and adults.  The lab includes a vibrant community of graduate and undergraduate students.  New students are welcome to participate.  Current projects include:


*      The effects of a large-scale anti-obesity intervention on reducing children’s total screen time, increasing fruit/vegetable consumption, and increasing physical activity

*      Longitudinal studies of media violence and aggressive behaviors among children

*      Pathological computer and video game use (colloquially called video game “addiction”)

*      Experimental studies of the effects of violent video games on physiological arousal and aggressive behaviors

*      The relation between video game play and aggression toward women

*      Differences in the effects of video games when played on computers or in a 3D fully-immersive virtual reality environment

*      The effects of beer advertisements on youth drinking

*      The effects of violent TV, movies, and video games on children’s peer relations, aggressive and prosocial behavior

*      The effects of educational TV and videos on children’s prosocial behavior

*      Cross-cultural collaborative research with researchers in Italy and Singapore


Students interested in participating in ongoing research are encouraged to email

National Institute on Media and the Family

The National Institute on Media and the Family is a non-partisan, non-sectarian, non-profit organization, whose mission is to maximize the benefits and minimize the harm of media on children and families through research, education, and advocacy.  Dr. Gentile was the full-time director of research from 1998 – 2003, and served in a part-time capacity until 2009.  The Institute is undergoing transition to become part of the Search Institute.  This may mean that web resources are no longer available, although I have kept the links here for the time being.


Some recent projects include:


*      The MediaWise Video Game Report Card

*      The effects of violent video game habits on adolescent hostility, aggressive behaviours, and school performance

*      A normative study of family media habits

*      A validity test of the movie, television, and video game ratings