Media literacy and cigarette smoking in hungarian adolescents.

" Objective: To assess smoking media literacy in a sample of Hungarian youth and to determine its association with current smoking and susceptibility to future smoking.

Design: Quantitative cross-sectional survey.

Setting: Four elementary and four high schools in Mako, Hungary.

Method: A survey form was administered in regularly-scheduled classes to 546 eighth- and twelfth-grade students that included the smoking media literacy (SML) scale and items assessing cigarette use. Logistic regression was used to examine the relationship of smoking media literacy with current smoking, and also separately for susceptibility to smoking in the future, as dependent dichotomous variables.

Results: Smoking media literacy was lower among the Hungarian adolescents than what has been previously reported in American adolescents. Multivariate logistic regression analysis results showed smoking media literacy to be associated with reduced risk of current smoking status at a similar level to that found in American adolescents. However, unlike previous research in American adolescents, smoking media literacy and susceptibility to future smoking was not associated. Reduced smoking may be most associated with the representation-reality domain of media literacy, which relates recognition of what is portrayed in the media with reality.

Conclusion: Based on this study’s findings, prevention and health promotion planners in Hungary should consider media literacy training as a possible addition to smoking prevention efforts in community- and school-based efforts. "

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