Presidential Scholars Theses (1990 – 2006)


Open Access Presidential Scholars Thesis


I have chosen to develop an intervention intended to improve body image in middle/junior high school girls. This project has been conducted in four parts: 1) literature review, 2) initial screening, 3) college interviews, and 4) middle school group interview. My goal in interviewing college women was to compare the ideas and experiences of those with positive and negative body images and incorporate these findings into my intervention. My motivation for interviewing middle school girls was to explore more fully their culture, in particular the media images that are most influential in their lives. I will detail each of these stages separately before revealing my own suggestions for the curriculum. After discussing my ideas for an intervention, I will outline several additional programs to improve body image in girls and women that reach beyond the scope of an intervention.

Though not addressed directly in this project, body image and eating disorders also affect men , particularly gays males and athletes. My reason for limiting this research and curriculum to young women is that there is little research available on men with these types of problems and, from what is known, the motivations for dieting may vary between women and men, particularly male athletes. Also, women are often more directly affected by the media, which plays a key role in the intervention I have designed. My project may focus solely on females, but it is not my intent to imply that these problems do not exist in males. It is simply the case that designing an intervention for both genders or two separate interventions is beyond the scope of this project.

Date of Award



Department of Psychology

Presidential Scholar Designation

A paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation Presidential Scholar

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (50 pages)

Date Digital



©2000 - Elaine Eshbaugh





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