Obesity in Children and Impact of Advertising Research Proposal

Excerpt from Research Proposal :

Participants will be recruited with announcements in local newspapers and school newsletters. Flyers are posted in the nurse's offices and in the clinic. Response cards will be given to parents who indicate an interest in participating in the study. See the participation invitation -- Appendix 1.


Once enrolled, participants will answer a series of questions related to food choices, influences, physical activities and food and beverage advertisements. The first measure will involve showing the children a set of distinct images. The children will then be asked 1) what company the image belongs to; 2) what they feel about that company; 3) if the images make them feel good/bad/nothing; 4) if they enjoy the food; 5) how they feel after eating the food; and, 6) what their parents think of the type of food or company. The following 15 images are examples of popular logos. These 15 will be used as well as 15 others of a similar nature to make for a total of 30 images. Each parent and child/adolescent will view the flashcard separately from one another and have as much time as they need to discuss the nature of the logo. However, the time will be monitored in the case that the logo doesn't mean anything to the individual or they are unfamiliar with it.

Image 1: McDonald's

Image 2: Burger King

Image 3: Cheetos

Image 4: Carl's Jr.

Image 4: Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC)

Image 5: Taco Bell ("Yo quiero Taco Bell")

Image 6: Mountain Dew

Image 7: Pepsi

Image 8: Wendy's

Image 9: Tony the Tiger (Frosted Flakes, "They're grrrrreat!")

Image 10: Lucky Charms Leprechaun

Image 11: Coca-Cola

Image 12: Red Bull

Image 13: Dairy Queen (Blizzard)

Image 14: Kool-Aid

Image 15: Captain Crunch Cereal

These fifteen sets of images are some of the most popular logo/images used in advertising and the questions asked will illustrate how familiar the children and adolescents are with the brand and in what way the advertisement might encourage them to want to buy and eat the foods associated with the brand. Seven more images will be utilized to assess how familiar children and adolescents are with popular food logos and how they feel about the brand. The parents will also be shown the logos after the child/adolescent and they will be asked: 1) how they feel about the brand/company; 2) what they feel about their child or adolescent eating the food or beverage; 3) if they themselves eat the food/beverage; 4) if yes to either of these, what the reasons are for eating or drinking them (ex: economical, tastes good, convenient -- no time to cook, etc., ambivalence); 5) whether or not they feel that buying these products are good, healthy choices for their children.


Random surveys will be conducted with parents and children/adolescents at a hospital clinic as well as in local grocery stores. Both the parents and the child/children will look at the logos and be asked questions (as noted above). The survey will have 15 sets of images to consider. A series of questions gathered pertain to child obesity and advertisement. Some examples of questions found in the questionnaire (Appendix 3) are: 1) What factors influence your child's food choices? A) cartoon ads; B) fast food ads; C) Beverage Ads; D) Internet access; or, E) Parental influence. 2) What types of physical activities does your child take part in and how often? A) Do you participate in physical activities with your children? Ex: skating, biking, walking, etc. Children and parents alike will be asked about how often they are having fast foods for meals, what is available at home for snacks, do the children eat different foods from what the parents consume, and how often dinner is being prepared at home. The questionnaires will be recorded manually and then electronically checked for authenticity.


1. Participation Invitation

2. Confirmation of Consent for Research Study

3. Questionnaire




I ____ agree to participate in a research study with Parent/Legal Guardian

(Weight Management Intervention Clinic). My child is 5 to 18 years of age. (Please circle age of child). he/she has a BMI greater than 30%. I understand that this is completely voluntary and anonymous. I agree to allow my child to participate in the study as well. Please let my signature below serve as my consent. Please be advised that my child ____ has granted assent to participate in this research study. My child and I do speak and understand English. We do have our own transportation to the clinic. I understand that we will participate in this study for a question and answer session

Print Name


RQ1- What are the ranges of factors influencing your children's food choices?

a) Cartoon ads

b) Fast food ads

c) Beverage ads

d) Internet access

e) Parental Influence

RQ2- What type of physical activities does your child take part in and how often?

a) Do you participant in physical activities with you children ex; skating, biking, walking?

RQ3- How much time does your child spend watching television advertisements and what do they say about them?

a) Does your child request food and beverages they see in television ads?

b) Do these ads appeal to your child?

Additional Questions include:

How often per week is your child having fast foods for meals?

How often is dinner being prepared at home?

What is available at home for snacks?

Do you serve your children different foods than you consume?


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