Location: Children's Nutrition Research CenterTitle: Descriptive normative nutrition messages to maximize effect in a videogame: Narrative review
|BARANOWSKI, TOM - Children'S Nutrition Research Center (CNRC)|
|Thompson, Deborah - Debbe|
Submitted to: The Games for Health Journal: Research, Development, and Clinical Applications
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/2/2019
Publication Date: 1/3/2020
Citation: Baranowski, T., Thompson, D.J. 2020. Descriptive normative nutrition messages to maximize effect in a videogame: Narrative review. The Games for Health Journal: Research, Development, and Clinical Applications. https://doi.org/10.1089/g4h.2019.0106.
Interpretive Summary: n/a
Technical Abstract: Messages containing descriptive norms have been manipulated and tested for effects on dietary intake in a number of studies. The effects have been mostly small or nonexistent. This narrative review analyzed the structural elements of the nutrition messages most likely related to effectiveness. Elements examined included the following: source, similarity of source to the participant, reference group, identification with or evaluative significance of the reference group, delivery, salience, background, tailoring, gain-loss framing, and whether an assessment of the group norm was conducted before designing the descriptive norm message. Most studies incorporated few of the reviewed structural elements, and message manipulations appeared weak. Controlled, systematic studies are needed to examine the effect of the structural elements, singly and in combination, on behavior and its mediators. Videogames are designed to be delivered in the same way to players; therefore, they offer a controlled environment for extensively and systematically manipulating structural elements of messages and examining the resulting behavioral effects. How this might be accomplished was described. Experimental research was identified as being necessary to delineate the individual and combined element effects, thereby contributing to the body of literature on videogame design and effectiveness.