Body Image and Selfesteem

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Last updated: June 2, 2019

ABSTRACT This study explored the hypothesis that, because of the media influence in females and males overseas students, female are significantly less satisfied with their body image than male overseas students, there fore is probable for females to have lower self – esteem than males. The current research was accomplished thanks to 40 overseas students from ACL. Initially the students answered a questionnaire in their own classroom; secondly the survey was collected and analysed where it was found interesting results.According to the results, females are less influenced by media than males, although both genders generally agreed that media has a real influence in their body perception, especially magazine on females and television and magazine on males.

Females are normally more dissatisfied with their body image and as a consequence are more likely to have lower self-esteem. This study supports the assumption that females are more dissatisfied with their body and this fact affects their self-confidence and this body perception is influenced by television, movies, films, advertising, magazine, and Internet.INTRODUCTION Females and Males are strongly affected by the environment. For instance, body temperature, appetite, thoughts, mental health or even mood, may vary depending of specific conditions; these circumstances can affect in a positive or negative way. According to this, all the information stored in human brain is what a person has seen, read, hear or learn once. Undoubtedly society have had an evolution over the years, therefore media communications such as television, magazine, Internet, advertising and movies have had become more aggressive in order to attract more people every year.The current research considers the various ways of media effectiveness in overseas students. Self – esteem and Body image, always have been an issue for women and men, especially for younger but in some cultures more than in others.

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The American standard beauty for instance, considers that, thinness and tallness in highly acceptable while obesity and overweight not; according to the previous research done by Molloy and Herzberger (1998). This leads girls or boys to go on diet do exercise and in some cases, extreme makeover such as urgery, which is very common and regularly acceptable in Latin – American and American cultures. Other research has shown that, people who regularly are satisfied with their body image are more likely to have better self – esteem (McMulin and Cairney, 2004). Media frequently reinforces the ideal figure, specifically with the dominance of ultra – thin models and beauty industry (Snooks and Hall, 2002). Others studies have focused in eating disorders as a consequence of body image and self – esteem dissatisfaction mainly in females thought, few consider males.Some others have found that stereotypes of beauty depend of the region of the word. No studies before have analysed male and female overseas students living in Australia. This study aim to prove if the media really make and influence in female and male overseas students from ACL (Australian Centre of Languages) in their body perception and self – esteem.

The hypothesis of this research is that, because of the media influence Female overseas students are considerably less satisfied with their body image than male overseas students, there fore likely to have lower self – esteem.The body perception and self – esteem may be affected by a large amount of factors. However media have influence women all around the word this create the body dissatisfaction, which may enforce women to go on a diet or to obtain any eating disorder. The current study will prove the high levels of body dissatisfaction in females overseas students; this will give to averters more reasons to change their traditional marketing into a social marketing, where sellers can still selling and people do not get offended or denigrated because of the material showed in ads or any other type of media.METHODOLOGY This research was completed to measure the real influence of media (TV, Magazine, Internet, Advertising, and Movies) in males and females overseas students of Australian Centre of Languages (ACL, Sydney, NSW) in their own body perception and self – esteem. Twenty males and twenty-eight females, participated in the study, from a rage of age from 17 to 32 and the majority of them were from Asian countries, however subjects from other nationalities as a Thais, Colombians, and Taiwanese were considered in the study as well.

The participants were selected randomly in three different classrooms of students of diploma in English for Academic Purposes. The technique utilized for the research was a survey with eleven close – ended questions, where each participant had to complete the questions. The first section of the questionnaire was meant to know some demographic data of the participants, including questions related to gender, age and nationality. The next section tried to find more information about the perspective of the body image and – self-confidence of each subject.RESULTS FIGURE 1. (MEDIA INFLUENCE IN FEMALES AND MALES) [pic] The bar chart above shows the percentage of females and males influenced by different types of media communications such as; Advertising, Magazine, Internet, Movies and TV show. It can be seen clearly from the chart that females and males are differently affected by media, for instance females are more likely to be influenced by magazines, while males are more close to TV shows, internet, movies and advertising but in less numbers. It is obvious that TV equally influences females and males.

It is noticeable also that the percentage of females influenced by magazines is almost twice bigger than males; likewise the percentage of males influenced by internet is twice as well. Advertising on the other hand, affects females in less proportion than males (13% and 18% respectively), while movies affects more females in 23% than males 18%. There is a significant difference as well, in females and males influenced by internet, where it can be seen that about twice as many males are influenced by internet than females.It is undeniable that media actually affect or influence a large amount of female and male overseas students; according to the research is 70% for both sexes. FIGUIRE 2.

BODY IMAGE OF OVERSEAS STUDENTS [pic] The figure above shows the percentage of females and males who think their body is overweight, underweight and the people who is satisfied. It is clear from the graph that a higher number of participants think they are overweight, and as expected the percentage of girls is higher than de percentage of males. Females are less likely to seem themselves underweight, according to the research only 7%.In contrast a large percent of males seem themselves underweight (30%), which is more than three times bigger. Finally it can be seen also that, both females and males seem themselves satisfied in similar figures, because the percentage of females is 29% and the percentage or males is 30% FIGURE 3. ACTIONS TO CHANGE OVERSEAS STUDENT’S APPARIENCE [pic] The chart above shows the different actions that females and males will consider to do in order to change anything they dislike in their bodies, which includes: exercise, gym, personal trainer, diet, surgery and make up.It can be seen that do exercise is the most recurrent action to take for women, while for men is go to a gym. On the other hand surgery is not an option for any of the participants in the research.

While the action do exercise by your self, is considerably more common on females almost twice than men, the option Go to the gym is more accepted in males around three times. Go on a diet it is also an option to change their body looks for both genders, because the percentage of females and males is the same (20%). This option is also twice as popular as make up for women and personal trainer for men.Finally make up was not as popular as expected on females, however some males (3%), will use make up to change anything they dislike.

Figure 4. Overseas students who think that a good body image gives self – esteem. [pic] The graph above shows the whether, overseas students think that when they have good body perception they experiment they feel better with themselves, so they are more likely to have better self – esteem.

It is clear from the graph that in average, both females and males normally agree that having a goof perception of their body give them more confidence to perform well in society.The percentage of males who think a good body image brings self – esteem is slightly bigger than females but in only 3 percent which is not a big difference. However the females who agreed with this statement are almost eight times bigger than the females who did not agree. Similarly the males who said yes to the question are almost eight times higher. Figure 5. Overseas students who think they have been influenced by media [pic] The diagram on top shows if, overseas students may think or feel any influence by Television, Magazine, Advertising, Movies or films in any time of their life.It can be seen in the graph that the majority of subjects think they have felt some influence by media.

This is especially true for both females and males; even so, more males than females accept they have been influenced by any type of media. The percentage of females who are influenced by media is more than twice than the females who think they are not affected by media. On the other hand the negative respond of males is only 2% percent less than females, which is not a significant difference. It is clear also that there is a considerable difference between affirmative responses and the negative responses in females and males.For instance, the affirmative response in males is almost 50% high than a negative response. DISCUSSION The main purpose of the research was to identify the media influence on overseas student’s body perception and if this is the main factor for women to have less self–confidence than males.

The hypothesis of this study was that; females are more dissatisfied with their body image than male overseas student, caused by media, therefore are less likely to have lower self-esteem than males. According to the results, the majority of overseas students do believe that media had influenced their body image.Surprisingly more males than females believe in the influence of media.

However, the results show that the majority of females generally think they are overweight, rather than satisfied with they weight. On the other hand is undeniable that females believe that a good appearance gives them more self–esteem. Consequently the hypothesis is completely supported by the results of the survey. In fact media affects both genders, although it is evident that more males than females indicate that they have been affected by media. This finding is supported by some of the previous research done in the past. For instance a research completed by Thompson and Heinberg in 1999, clearly shows that there is sufficient evidence of the strong role of printed and visual media in some eating and body image disorders, especially in the creation of the ideal figure or appearance. This proposal is also supported by a study done by Shin and Cubo, 2005. In this study it is been said that, the idea of thinness and beauty comes from fashion, advertising and films.

A possible explanation for this could be that companies need to sell every day more, they need to leave behind their competitors who are every day stronger, therefore they must have very innovating marketing campaigns and place them every where. Since a good looking woman is everywhere to sell an image and by the way a product, not only in television or internet but in buses, mail, e–mail, walls, train stations, shops, restaurants and bars, this image begin to penetrate in peoples mind becoming that image in an icon.So any girl may think is not enough to have a standard size, but instead she needs to pursuit the perfect body showed everywhere. Secondly, it is interesting as well the fact that females think they are generally overweight (64%). These results show how dissatisfied female overseas students are with themselves. Certainly, a small proportion of females feel satisfied with their body (29%) and only 7% think they are underweight. This is clearly supported by a study done in 1988 by Tiggemann and Rothbium where it was found that more than the 50% of the female responders perceive themselves overweight, even when only 20% were really obese.This shows that weight is really an issue for females who in order to change this dissatisfaction are tempted go on a diet and some of them are more likely to have eating disturbance.

Other previous research demonstrates that female show greater body dissatisfaction when they were exposed to the thin – ideal females images (Tiggemann and Mcgill, 2004). Females tend to have more body dissatisfaction than males, because males may have a high regard for slim and slender females rather than overweight. So females in order to be more accepted or admired tend to imitate the ideal super thin girl.Finally the last finding showed the extremely thigh relation between body image and self–esteem.

The majority of respondents agreed that when they feel satisfied with their body image, they tend to feel better with themselves. This is especially true for both genders and also supported by a study done in 2003 by McMullin and Cairney, where it was found that females who think they are unattractive, overweight, too short, too tall experience lower self–esteem than others who feel satisfied with their body image. This could be due to when a girl feels nice-looking she could get more things than an unattractive.Good-looking actress and modeless obtain better payment than a standard woman. Also prettier get better jobs because the interviewer may have others intensions. It is undeniable that people react better in front of a good looking person, some others even feel ashamed of talking to them, but in fact beauty is more accepted in the society than ugliness.

The possible implications of the study could be that, parents, schools and the government have the responsibility of create a strong personality on children, to prevent possible mental and eating disorders in the future, caused by low self–esteem and body image dissatisfaction.This will allow young people to judge instead of copy a stereotype just because commonly acceptable. Family values and professional skills should be developed as well. The current research covers 3 important facts. The first one is that a large amount of people does not think media have a real influence in their perception.

Females generally are more dissatisfied with the body image than males. The third one was that the result of having less self – esteem is caused by the thigh relation with body image and self–esteem.In spite of these important findings some results may be unrealistic; due to the small amount of the sample. Moreover the participants in the survey were tired of responding so many questioners the same day. Future research should be done in this area but focused in collateral effects of the body image dissatisfaction and low self – esteem particularly in young women.

It would be interesting to analysed in depth the results and possible implications for future generations. REFERENCE LIST McMullin, J. A. , & Carney, J. 2004). Self-Esteem and the intersection of age, class, and gender. Retrieved April 10, 2010, from Molloy, B.

, & Herzberger, S. D. , Body Image and self- esteem: A comparison of African American and Caucasian Women. Retrieved April 15, 2020, from Shin, M. Y.

, & Kubo, C. (2005). Body shape preference and body dissatisfaction of Taiwanese and Japanese female college students. Retrieved, April 18, 2010, from Thompson, J. K. , & Heinberg, L.

J. , (1999). The medias influence on body image disturbance and eating disorders.

Retrieved, April 20, 2010, from Tiggemann, M. & Mcgill, B. , (2004). The role of social comparison in the effect if magazine and advertising on women’s mood and body dissatisfaction.

Retrieved, April 16, 2010, from Tiggemann, M. & Rothbium, E. D. , (1988).

Gender differences in social consequences of perceived overweight in the United Sates and Australia. Retrieved, April 16, 2010, from APPENDIX |QUESTIONNAIRE BODY IMAGE AND SELF-STEM | |1.General Data |  |  |  |  |  | |Male |  |  |Country |  |  | |Female |  |  |Age |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |2. Do you think your body image is influenced by media?   |  | |Yes |  |  |  |  |  | |No |  |  |  |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |3.

If yes, which media are you influenced by? |  |  | |a. Advertising |  |  |d.Movies |  |  | |b. Magazine |  |  |e. TV |  |  | |c.

Internet |  |  |  |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |4. have you ever compared your body with models or celebrities?   |  | |Yes |  |  |  |  |  | |No |  |  |  |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |5. Do you think you are? |  |  |  |  |  | |a.Overweight |  |  |How many kilos over? |  |  | |b. Underweight |  |  |How many kilos under? |  |  | |c.

Satisfied |  |  |  | |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |6. In order to improve your body image, what would you like to do?   |  | |a. Do exercise by your self |  |  |d.

Go on a diet |  |  | |b. Go to the gym |  |  |e. Surgery |  |  | |c. Personal Trainer |  |  |f. Make up |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |7.Have you ever been on a diet |  |  |  |  | |Yes |  |  |If so did it work? |  |  | |No |  |  |Yes |  |  | |  |  |  |No |  |  | |8. Do you go on a diet regularly?   |  |  |  | |Yes |  |  |  |  |  | |No |  |  |  |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |9. What makes you go on a diet |  |  |  |  | |a.

Media |  |  |d. Boyfriend/Girlfriend |  |  | |b. Family |  |  |e. Self – esteem |  |  | |c. friends |  |  |f. Can not fit into clothes |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |10.If you have good body image, will you have high self – esteem? |  |  | |Yes |  |  |  |  |  | |No |  |  | |  |  | |  |  |  |  |  |  | |11.

What else gives you self – esteem?   |  |  | |a. Love |  |  |d. Occupation |  |  | |b.

Money |  |  |e. Other (Please specify) |  |  | |c. Education |  |  |  |  |  |

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