Date of Graduation

Spring 2015

Document Type

Honors Research Project


Creative Writing

Research Sponsor

Dr. Sylvia White

First Reader

Juan Eduardo Contreras Barberena

Second Reader

Dr. Tang Tang


Jean McBride

Major: Communications: Radio/TV Broadcasting & Mass Media Production

Project Sponsor: Dr. Sylvia White

Number of Project Credits: 3

Social Media & Audience Participation in Regard to Television

The purpose of my honors project was seeing if social media had an influence on television show ratings and popularity by incorporating audience participation. Especially in regards to television shows that have been around for years, I was interested to see if television ratings went up when using Twitter compared to when they did not use Twitter to increase viewers and audience participation. I surveyed forty-nine collegiate women between the ages of eighteen and twenty-three years. The survey focused on three television shows: American Idol, Project Runway, and Glee. I asked questions starting from if they watched the show, did they use Twitter during the show, does the possibility of their tweets being on-air influence them to use Twitter during the show, and other questions along those lines. After conducting the survey and collecting the data, I found that social media is used during these television shows, but it is too early to determine if social media truly increases audience participation and television ratings. This was a very interesting topic to research and I look forward to seeing how social media affects audience participation in regard to television in years to come.


This is my complete and final honors project submission.