The purpose of this study is to see how Alzheimer's disease and dementia are misperceived in the media, how this affects audience viewpoints, and how accurate depictions that challenge those stereotypes may or may not change audience perception. Common stereotypes depicted in the media include Alzheimer’s and dementia being one disease, only individuals older than 60 years old having this disease, and it being a slow and painful progression towards the end of life. Using Stuart Hall’s audience reception theory, I will see if viewers accept, negotiate, or oppose the media that challenges those stereotypes presented to them in contrast to their former knowledge of the disease. Participants took a pre questionnaire that includes information about their prior knowledge of Alzheimer’s and dementia and where they have received that information (from which media platforms and/ or having relatives with the disease). Then they were shown a video depicting characteristics that defy the common stereotypes of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, such as an individual with early on-set Alzheimer’s. After which were presented with a post questionnaire to see if their perception has changed and in what way.
Communication and Media Technologies (MS)
Department, Program, or Center
School of Communication (CLA)
Eun Sook Kwon
Thum, Taylor Dakota, "Alzheimer's Disease, Media Representation, and Audience Reception" (2021). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus