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Hopkins to Present 'Ideographical Empowerment' Thesis

April 9, 2013

Hopkins, a strategic communication major and Spanish minor, is the daughter of Kevin and Lori Hopkins. Her paper is titled, "Ideographical Empowerment: The Vroom Factor in Hispanic Targeted Advertisements."

Using an interview, focus group and advertisement analyses based on Singh and Bartikowski's (2009) coding schema, Hopkins addressed the following questions in her thesis: As advertisers seek to engage the Hispanic community, what cultural values emerge as ideographs in both consumer advertisements (2010 Ram Truck advertisements) and public service announcements (vaccination campaign from the Center for Disease Control)? To what extent do ideographs differ in the Ram Truck consumer advertisements versus the vaccination campaign from the CDC? To what extent do ideographs reflect historical roots of the culture?

"Ideographs in Hispanic advertising should represent cultural ideals that attract the attention of Hispanic consumers and serve to build a stronger relationship between objective of the advertisement and the consumer," Hopkins said. "Generally, the research indicated the existence of ideographs in the PSAs, but only one was found in the Dodge advertisements as well. Moreover, the research indicated connections of the ideographs to Catholic ideologies."

Hopkins said she chose her thesis topic to combine her two areas of study, strategic communication and Spanish. Following graduation, she plans to attend graduate school to pursue a master's degree in public relations.

Presentations by students in OBU's Honors Program last approximately one hour. Individually, the projects reflect extensive and intense study and attention, said Dr. Karen Youmans, professor of English who directs the program. Collectively, the projects represent an important commitment of the OBU community to careful study and good writing, she said.

The Honors Program builds on the foundation of OBU's basic liberal arts curriculum. Courses taken in common by Honors Program students are spread out across the years at OBU. In addition to these courses, all Honors Program graduates complete at least two of three "capstone" activities including study abroad, a service practicum and a senior thesis.