Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication


Journalism and Mass Communication

First Advisor

Raluca Cozma


There is an increasing tendency for political candidates to frame their campaign advertising more negatively when mentioning their opponents rather than talk positively about themselves. However, some gender differences are likely to influence the amount of negative content in one's advertising. In addition, gender stereotypes are considered as a disadvantage factor for women in campaigns, while some scholars suggest that stereotypes might help to build the reputation of women. As a result, this study examined the 2014 election for U.S. senate in North Carolina, Iowa, Kentucky and Louisiana because these four states were rated as top four states in terms of spending on negative political ads that included a woman and a man candidate (Chris, 2014). Content analysis is used to examine differences in stimuli used in the negative political ads in the 2014 midterm race for U.S. senate. This comparative analysis reveals more similarities than differences between the two gender groups in terms of framing, and male candidate ads (and especially ads sponsored by Super PACs for male candidates) were found to be more negative than female candidate ads.


Copyright Owner

Yiting Huang



File Format


File Size

61 pages