Desensitization and arousal/excitation are also included in latter social cognitive theories.
The concept of desensitization has particularly gotten much interest from the scholarly community and general public.
Social learning theory suggests that one way in which human beings learn is by the process of modeling.
Modeling of behavior was observed in Bandura's Bobo Doll experiments.
However the degree to which the simulation was "believable" to the participants, or to which the participants may have responded to "demand characteristics" is unclear (see criticisms below).
Nonetheless, social cognitive theory was arguably the most dominant paradigm of media violence effects for many years, although it has come under recent criticism (e.g. Recent scholarship has suggested that social cognitive theories of aggression are outdated and should be retired.
The studies of violence in mass media analyzes the degree of correlation between themes of violence in media sources (particularly violence in video games, television and films) with real-world aggression and violence over time. However, some scholars argue that media research has methodological problems and that findings are exaggerated.(Ferguson & Kilburn, 2009; Freedman, 2002; Pinker 2002; Savage, 2004) Complaints about the possible deleterious effects of mass media appear throughout history, even Plato was concerned about the effects of plays on youth.
Various media/genres, including dime novels, comic books, jazz, rock and roll, role playing/computer games, television, films, internet (by computer or cell phone) and many others have attracted speculation that consumers of such media may become more aggressive, rebellious or immoral.
This has led some scholars to conclude statements made by some researchers merely fit into a cycle of media-based moral panics (e.g.
Gauntlett, 1995; Trend, 2007; Kutner & Olson, 2008).