For the weekend of October 1 and 2 it’s time, The Weekend of Science. This weekend is organized annually to give everyone, young and old, an insight into the world of science and technology. Every year at the end of this week they also launch a public survey in which people can participate. This year’s research was designed in Utrecht by Madelijn Strick.
Science related activities were organized across the country during Science Weekend. There was something to do for all ages and interests. For example, nature lovers can enjoy themselves at the University of Wageningen earthworm competition, where pots were run on the ceramic wheel of the Allard Pierson Museum and it was possible to escape from the mobile escape room in Groningen. All these activities are organized to introduce visitors to science in an interactive way. You can also learn about science interactively by participating in scientific research. Each year, during this weekend, a public survey is launched in cooperation with a university or knowledge institution. Anyone can participate in this research, young and old. In order to contribute to science. This year, Madeleine Strick’s Public Survey on behalf of Utrecht University.
Study titled Don’t Make Me Laugh! Prepared by Madelijn for Science Week has to do with humor. This is not an unfamiliar area of the world. In 2009, she actually earned her Ph.D. with a thesis on humor in advertising. The aim of the research at the time was to find out whether humor in advertisements leads to better transmission of information and ultimately an increase in sales of the product in question. The results of this study were amazing for Madeleine. I found humor to work well for getting attention but at the same time distracting from the product on offer. People love to watch humorous ads, but they don’t care much about the product. However, incorporating humor into advertising works well. Because of the humor, the consumer associates the advertisement with feeling good, which leads to more sales of the product.
Because of this research, Madeleine raised the question of what kind of effect humor has on conveying information. In general, you see humor as having a huge impact and can make an impression. You see it when you look at comedians and presenters, but also in tutorials like Het Klokhuis. This program is educational but uses humor to deliver a message to children. For these children, a lot of information is sometimes conveyed, by adding some humor it is easier to process and above all more fun. To find out how humor affects the transmission of information, Madelijn teamed up with Het Klokhuis. Not only by testing the information that was held up, but also by knowing what kind of feeling viewers feel after seeing the Clochis part.
According to Madeleine, every scientific research begins with the formulation of a research question. “You need some ideas that you find interesting to develop further. I’ve done research on humor before and continue to find it interesting enough to do more research. So the inspiration for this research actually came from the previous research I’ve done.” According to Madeline. Then I looked at how to answer the research question. In this case, I approached Het Klokhuis. Everyone knows this program and many children watch it. We soon noticed that many adults also enjoy watching Het Klokhuis, perhaps to a greater degree than children. After all, Klokhuis symbolizes a certain form of youthful feelings. This also applies to myself, I’m a huge fan of Het Cloches and have always wanted to be a presenter, unfortunately that didn’t work out, but now I can still work with Het Cloches.” Madelijn Strick continues to talk about the origins of Public Survey.
In order to investigate, Madeleine and her team had to look at many parts of Clochis. It was decided in advance that there would be a wide mix of different topics to be used in the research. This makes it possible to analyze the effect of humor when dealing with different topics. According to Madeleine, some topics were easier to deal with than others. “Het Klokhuis as a software is very good at crafting humor. The software makes humor very useful in conveying information and still being funny. For many different subjects and for children and adults alike, they never do it in a negative or sarcastic way. That is very clever,” said Strick.
It is possible for everyone from the age of eight to take part in the year-round audience survey: Don’t Make Me Laugh! From Madeleine Strick. Participants first watch a piece of Het Klokhuis, after which they answer questions for 5 minutes. Share and help science by: https://www.uu.nl/humoronderzoek
How did you come to this research as a scientist?
In 2009 she received her Ph.D. with a thesis on humor in advertising. The goal of my research at the time was to check whether humor in advertisements leads to better transmission of information and eventual sales of the product in question.
The results in this study were impressive. We found humor to be very good at getting attention, but at the same time distracting from the product. People love to watch humorous ads, but they don’t care much about the product being promoted. However, incorporating humor into advertising works well. Because of the humor, the consumer associates the advertisement with a good feeling and as a result the sales of the product increase.
Because of this research, the question came to mind: What does humor do when communicating a message? In general, you see humor as having a huge impact and can make an impression. You see that when you look at comedians or presenters like Arjen Lubach, but also with a show like Het Klokhuis. This program is educational but uses humor to deliver a message to children. For these children, a lot of information is sometimes conveyed, by adding some humor it is easier to process and above all more fun.
Through my research I want to find out exactly to what extent humor affects the transmission of information. Not only by testing the information that commented, but also the feeling that viewers left after seeing a part of Clochis.
What do you think good and bad humor consist of?
There are different types of humor. Previous studies have shown that these different types of humor are associated with different feelings in a person’s life. For example, the degree to which a person feels happy. To cite an example, there is relative and connected humor, which are seen as positive forms of humor. Other studies suggest that people who like or use these types of humor tend to be happier, too. Bitter and sarcastic humor in many cases has less resonance.
It is important to note that relative humor and linkage are also seen as nicer qualities. For example, people often look for these forms of humor in a partner. Many forms of humor can be described as positive to a lesser extent, such as self-mockery for example. Self-mockery is fun and constant, but if a lot of self-mockery is practiced, for example if someone is demeaning themselves, it is seen as a negative way of humor that makes the person unhappy. So there are definitely bad and good forms of humor.
Humor is of course at all times and many forms of humor don’t change and it’s always fun or funny. What changes are the topics being joked about. In the past, topics related to the church or the royal family, for example, were out of the question. Then more ethnic or sexual jokes were released. It’s been reversed now and that’s a good thing I just think. To consciously deal with jokes. Of course it’s okay to make some jokes, for example joking with colleagues about his uncomfortable boss or his ugly shoes. It must be possible.
How long have you been conducting such an investigation and what does this process look like?
Every scientific research begins with a research question. You should have some ideas that you find interesting for further development. I’ve done research on humor before and continue to find it interesting enough to research further. This research was actually inspired by previous research that I had.
You will then investigate how to answer the research question. In this case, I approached Het Klokhuis. Everyone knows this program and many children watch it. We soon noticed that many adults also enjoy watching Het Klokhuis, perhaps to a greater degree than children. After all, Klokhuis symbolizes a certain form of youthful feelings. This also applies to myself, I’m a huge fan of Hit Klokhuis and always wanted to be a presenter, unfortunately it didn’t work out, but now I can still work with Klokhuis.
In order to investigate we had to look at many parts of Het Klokhuis. This was very fun to do. Before that we decided to use a mix of different themes for our theme. Some topics were easier to deal with than others. This was actually quite the point so we could compare many different results.
Klokhuis as a program is very good at crafting humor. The program makes humor very useful in conveying information and still being funny. For both children and adults and never do it in a negative or sarcastic way. This is very nice.
Participation in the study is possible for one year. How is your research ultimately presented?
In a year there will be a new edition of Science Weekend, after which the organization will come back to me and I can present my findings and findings. This happens on the site anyway. (Jean Rose)
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