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Karabanova O.A., Molchanov S.V. (2018). Risks of negative impact of information products on mental development and behavior of children and adolescents. National Psychological Journal. 3, 37-26.


Background. The high importance of the media as an institution of socializing the new generation in the modern information society is highlighted. Along with positive opportunities created by the media and the Internet for training and education, it is necessary to point to the growing risks associated with the ambiguity of the impact of the media on the mental and psychological health and also child and adolescent development.

The Objective of the paper is to consider the risks of socialization associated with the openness and accessibility of the information space. There are psychological features of   child and adolescent perception of information products containing aggression and violence, information products of sexual content, products that cause fear and anxiety, and also methods used in the media to justify morally antisocial, deviant, aggressive behaviour and violence.

The Results of the analysis allowed to identify the conditions that determine the degree of vulnerability of the child to violence in media and the desire to mimic aggressive behavior and also forms of cognitive restructuring the moral content of aggressive and deviant behaviour.

The negative consequences of perceiving violence expressed in behaviour, emotional state and cognitive image of the world of children are determined. The effects of adolescent perception of information of sexual content are revealed. Age features of experiencing fears in children aged 3-18 years are shown.

Conclusion. Perceiving violence in the information space by children and adolescents creates risks of mimicking aggressive behaviour, fears and increased anxiety, desensitization to phenomena of violence and aggression and distortion of the worldview, when violence is perceived as a compulsory and natural regulation of relations between people in society. Factors influencing the nature of the perception of violence include age factor, individual psychological and personality features, motives and preferences, genre of information products and the context within which violence is depicted.

Received: 08/03/2018
Accepted: 08/25/2018
Pages: 37-46
DOI: 10.11621/npj.2018.0304

Sections: Psychology of virtual reality;


Keywords: perception of information products; adolescence; child age; media violence; aggression; fear and anxiety; moral justification of aggression;

Available Online 30.09.2018

Table. 1. Age features of experiencing ears in children aged 3 to 18 years

Child’s Age

3-7 years

8-12 years

12-15 years

15-18 years

Objects that cause major fear

Monsters, ghosts, supernatural beings, darkness, animals, strange-looking creatures and fast-moving creatures

Diseases, injuries or death that threatens children or their relations, wars, natural disasters, catastrophes

Diseases, injuries or death that threatens children or their relations, social fears (rejection, non-recognition of social negative assessment), wars, natural disasters, catastrophes

Social fears, death, physical suffering, social political, economic, disasters

Fear of a certain type of harm

Physical harm

Physical harm Psychological harm

Psychological harm Physical harm

Psychological harm Physical harm

Degree of distinction between reality and fiction

Low ("naive realism")

Quite high



Cognitive basis of fear

Aiming at physical qualities of the object

Aiming at the functions of the object, high level of generalization, transferring experience of others to one's own destiny

Aiming at object functions, high level of generalization, ability to construct hypotheses, reasoning and forecasting

Inclusion of events in a broad social context, ability to construct hypotheses and their proof, reasoning and forecasting

Coping with fear

Physical Care Visual desensitization Social and emotional support Transactional object

Cognitive strategies(explanation of threat probability, distinction of fiction and reality)

Cognitive strategies Self-regulation

Cognitive strategies Self-regulation

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Karabanova O.A., Molchanov S.V. (2018). Risks of negative impact of information products on mental development and behavior of children and adolescents. National Psychological Journal. 3, 37-26.

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