Friedrich, L. K., & Stein, A. H. (1973). Aggressive and prosocial television programs and the natural behavior or preschool children. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 38 (151), 1-63.

Abstract:  93 children in a 9-wk nursery school session were shown 1 of 3 types of TV programs each day during the middle 4 wks of the session: aggressive cartoons, prosocial programs, and neutral films. The effects of the programs were assessed by the changes in behavior that occurred from the baseline period to the periods during and after exposure to the programs. Ss who saw the aggressive programs showed a decline in tolerance of delay and rule obedience. Aggressive programs increased aggressive behavior only in Ss who initially ranked higher in aggression. Ss exposed to the prosocial programs showed higher levels of task persistence and somewhat higher levels of rule obedience and delay tolerance than those in the neutral condition. These differences were especially pronounced for children with above-average intelligence. Prosocial behavior increased after exposure to the prosocial program for Ss of lower socioeconomic status, but not for those of higher status. Neither attention to the programs nor knowledge about their content was consistently related to behavior change. Home viewing patterns did not predict baseline behavior. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2004 APA, all rights reserved)