Date of Award


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Jeanette Pope

Second Advisor

Dr. Barbara Whitehead

Third Advisor

Dr. Jennifer Adams


This paper will examine how individual identities can affect both their news media preferences and their belief in climate change. Identity impacts what news sources an individual finds trustworthy, and therefore what news sources they read and watch. Identity also affects an individual’s belief that climate change is already happening, and that it is manmade. Media preferences can also shape those beliefs, based on the way they frame the same story, and what rhetoric is used within each frame. The media uses rhetoric and framing to influence individuals’ knowledge on particular topics, which impacts their voting behaviors. A person’s identity can influence many things, including their chosen media source. This identity can have several different implications, including the knowledge that they have on climate change and climate change policy based solely on the media sources that they trust. Media sources have the power to influence individuals’ knowledge of climate change and climate change policy because of the way that they present the same news story.

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