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 Department: Department of Psychology
Ability of Offenders with Psychopathic Traits to Simulate Cognitive and Affective Empathy
The accurate assessment of psychopathy constitutes a critical component of forensic assessments addressing offender populations. Among the core characteristics of psychopathy, the interpersonal component of deception and empathic deficits are prominently observed in offenders with psychopathic traits. Given the negative consequences of being classified as a psychopath, offenders may be likely to minimize their psychopathic traits. In particular, no research has investigated whether offenders with psychopathic traits are able to simulate empathy in an effort to mask their cognitive or affective empathy deficits (e.g., lack of remorse about offenses). The present study aims to contribute to the literature with regard to the simulation of empathy. Using a mixed between- and within-subjects design, 81 male detainees were placed into (a) a low psychopathy group, (b) a moderate psychopathy group, or (c) a high psychopathy group based on the Psychopathy Checklist – Revised. For the within-subjects component, all offenders answered empathy questionnaires under genuine and simulation conditions. Results indicate the sample possessed cognitive empathy, but did not display affective empathy under genuine instructions. Under simulation instructions, participants significantly increased their scores on several empathy measures. The implications of simulated empathy and comparisons between groups regarding simulation abilities are discussed.
Absorption, Relaxation, and Imagery Instruction Effects on Thermal Imagery Experience and Finger Temperature
A skill instruction technique based on cognitive behavioral principles was applied to thermal imagery to determine if it could enhance either subjective or physiological responsiveness. The effects of imagery instruction were compared with the effects of muscle relaxation on imagery vividness, thermal imagery involvement, and the finger temperature response. The subjects were 39 male and 29 female volunteers from a minimum security federal prison. The personality characteristic of absorption was used as a classification variable to control for individual differences. It was hypothesized that high absorption individuals would reveal higher levels of imagery vividness, involvement, and finger temperature change; that imagery skill instruction and muscle relaxation would be more effective than a control condition; and that the low absorption group would derive the greatest benefit from the imagery task instruction condition. None of the hypotheses was supported. Finger temperature increased over time during the experimental procedure but remained stable during thermal imagery. The results suggest that nonspecific relaxation effects may best account for finger temperature increases during thermal imagery. Results were discussed in relation to cognitive-behavioral theory and the characteristic of absorption.
Acculturation, Acculturative Stress, and Anxiety Among Hispanic Undergraduates
First generation college students face some unique challenges in the pursuit of higher education. Aside from academic stressors, there are stressors related to social and cultural transitions which may exacerbate pre-existing emotional or psychological distress. Research suggests that acculturation influences psychological well-being and development. The current study examined the relationships between acculturation, acculturative stress, socio-economic status, and symptoms of anxiety among first-generation college students of Hispanic origin. Participants (N = 125) included those who were first in their family to attend college and were primarily female, of traditional college age, and of Mexican heritage. All measures were self-report and were completed online. Overall, this study was inconclusive as most analyses were underpowered. The present study failed to support a relationship between style of acculturation and symptoms of anxiety, although, experiencing Anglo marginality was related to high levels of acculturative stress and anxiety. Finally, regression analysis revealed that acculturative stress, age, and Anglo marginalization were significant predictors of anxiety and accounted for 31% of variance in anxiety. Implications of the present study were discussed. Further study with adequate power is highly recommended.
Acculturation and Depression in Older Mexican American Adults: the Role of Social Support
Despite socioeconomic disadvantages, less acculturated Mexican Americans tend to exhibit better mental health than their more acculturated counterparts. However, in the case of older Mexican American adults, research has demonstrated the opposite to be true (Gonzalez, Haan, & Hinton, 2001). A variable of interest potentially responsible for this difference is social support. Thus, the current study proposed to investigate the mediation and moderation effects that social support has on the relationship between acculturation and depression in older Mexican American adults age 60 or older. Data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) was analyzed. Results showed that the mediating effect of contact with one’s children (-.109*) and the moderating effect of total social support and contact with one’s children (-.127*; -.103*) were statistically significant in the relationship between acculturation and depression. Although these effects are small they may still hold important implications for better understanding this population.
Acculturation and Feminist Endorsement on Control of Health and Health Behaviors in Hispanic Females
Hispanic women are the fastest growing population in the United States. Thus, it is important to explore health disparities that affect this population and better understand potential causes. Several explanations have been proposed for disparities that exist including turning to cultural alternatives rather than conventional medicine, low numbers of health insurance enrollments among Hispanics, and acculturation. However, little attention has been given to explanations that take into account the unique experiences of Hispanic women. The present study explored these experiences through investigation of endorsement of feminist attitudes (e.g., gender role adherence and beliefs that men and women should be treated equally in society) and level of acculturation. Undergraduate Hispanic women (18-24 years of age, M = 20.25, SD = 1.51) at the University of North Texas completed measures including the Multidimensional Health Questionnaire, the Acculturation Rating Scale for Mexican Americans-II, and the Liberal Feminist Attitude and Ideology Scale. Although results indicate that acculturation was not significant in the sample, feminist endorsement was found to be positively correlated with health-esteem, health-efficacy, and internal-health locus of control. Limitations and recommended directions for future research are explored.
Acculturation and Sociocultural Influences as Predictors of Family Relationships and Body Image Dissatisfaction in African American, Hispanic American, and European American Women
Ethnic differences in etiological factors linked to body image dissatisfaction and eating disorders were examined. In addition, the interaction of acculturation and body image dissatisfaction in influencing minority women's relationships with their parents was investigated. Participants consisted of 302 undergraduates from three ethnic groups: Caucasian, Hispanic American, and African American women who were administered self-report measures. Differences were not found between the groups in body image dissatisfaction. Low self-esteem, internalization of the thin ideal, and family emphasis on weight and appearance were all related to more body image dissatisfaction for each of these groups; however, differences in degree of endorsement were also noted between the ethnic groups on these factors. Based on the interaction findings (body image x acculturation) separation from one's mother was found in the area of attitudes and emotions for the Hispanic sample but not for the African American sample on any of the parent scales. Areas for future research and implications for diagnosis and treatment of minority populations are also discussed.
Acculturation in African American College Women and Correlates of Eating Disorders
Although eating disorders have been the focus of much research, the inclusion of minority populations has been minimal. A recent review of the literature by Dolan (1991) has found that eating disorders were most likely to be present in non-White women who were exposed to Western societies and cultures. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine personality, physical, and cultural correlates of bulimic symptomatology in a sample of African American college women. The Bulimia Test Revised (BULIT-R) was used to assess bulimia symptoms. The African American Acculturation Scale (AAAS), the Beliefs about Attractiveness Scale Revised (BAAR factors 1 and 2), the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (SES), the Centers for Epidemiological Depression Scale (CES-D), Body Parts Satisfaction Scale (BPSS), and body mass were the independent variables hypothesized to predict bulimic symptoms. Hierarchical regression analysis revealed that body mass, depression, and low self-esteem were the best predictors of bulimic symptomatology, together accounting for 38% of the variance. Beliefs about attractiveness and body satisfaction were related to bulimic symptoms but not when considered simultaneously with the other variables. Acculturation was not predictive of bulimic symptoms. 0-ordered correlations revealed that beliefs about attractiveness and body satisfaction were correlated with bulimic symptoms. Acculturation was not related to any variables except depression. Implications for counseling interventions as well as directions for future research are discussed.
Acculturation Level, Generational Status and Gender: Their Role in Acculturative Stress in Young Adolescent Mexican Americans
The purpose of this study was to determine relationships between acculturation level, generational status, and gender with acculturative stress. Acculturation level was determined by the Acculturation Rating Scale for Mexican Americans-II (ARSMA-II) and acculturative stress was determined by the Societal, Attitudinal, Familial and Environmental Acculturative Stress Scale-Children's Version (SAFE-C). Subjects included 1268 Hispanic children ages 11-15. In order to validate the usefulness of the ARSMA-II with this sample, analyses were conducted between acculturation level and generational status. The Pearson product moment correlation (r=.44) and the ANOVA between the mean acculturation score and generational status were significant. However, the mean acculturation score from this study was considerably lower than the ARSMA-II score; therefore, new acculturation levels were developed to establish local adolescent norms for the ARSMA-II. All analyses involving acculturation levels were conducted using both the ARSMA-II and new acculturation levels because 300 subjects were reclassified with the new norms. Significant results were similar using both acculturation levels; however, there were more between group differences using the new acculturation levels. It was hypothesized that as acculturation level increased toward the Anglo culture, acculturative stress would decrease. The one-way ANOVA confirmed this relationship. It was also hypothesized that as generational status increased, acculturative stress would decrease. A one-way ANOVA also supported this hypothesis. In order to replicate previous findings on gender, a one-way ANOVA was conducted with acculturative stress and acculturation level. Results for both were non-significant. Overall findings indicate that generational status and acculturation level have a significant impact on acculturative stress in Hispanic children; however, gender does not seem to be a factor. Findings emphasize the importance of addressing cultural issues in the assessment, intervention, and treatment of acculturating Hispanic children. Furthermore, the ARSMA-II appears to be a useful instrument in assessing acculturation level in young adolescent Hispanics though new local adolescent norms for the ARSMA-II were developed from this study.
Acculturation, Parental Control, and Adjustment among Asian Indian Women
The present study examines the relationship between acculturation, parental control, and psychological adjustment among adult first and second-generation Asian Indian women who have immigrated, or whose parents have immigrated to the United States, from the Indian state of Kerala. Data from 73 participants indicate second-generation immigrants report poorer psychological adjustment than do their counterparts. Additionally, regression analyses reveal discomfort towards Kerala culture significantly predicts depressive symptoms, while high maternal control predicts self-esteem. Qualitative data were collected to provide richer understanding of immigrants' adaptation to the U.S. Implications of this research may impact mental health practitioners' ability to improve quality of life with Asian Indian women from Kerala.
Acculturative Processes and Their Impact on Self-Reports of Psychological Distress in Mexican-American Adolescents
The current study examined the effects of acculturative processes on the self-report of behavioral problems in Hispanic children ages 11-14. Acculturation was measured by the Acculturation Rating Scale for Mexican Americans-II (ARSMA-II) (ã Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, CA, (Cuellar, Arnold, and Maldonado, 1995) and the self-report of behavioral symptoms was assessed using the Youth Self-Report (ã T.M. Achenbach, Burlington, VT, (Achenbach, 1991). It was hypothesized that while both the linear and orthogonal categories of acculturation would account for a significant proportion of the variance in behavior problems in this age group, the orthogonal model would account for a larger proportion of variance due to its multidimensional nature. As well, it was hypothesized that the experimental Marginalization scales of the ARSMA-II would be predictive of behavioral problems. Multivariate analysis of variance was used to test these hypotheses and results were non-significant for the linear, orthogonal, and marginalization categories. The effects of the ethnic/cultural homogeneity of the region from which the sample was drawn, the buffering of social support, and the developmental aspects of ethnic identity are discussed as factors which may have influenced the potential impact of acculturative stress on psychological and behavioral functioning.
An Actor-Partner Interdependence Model of Attachment Processes, Conflict Resolution, and Psychological Abuse on Relationship Quality in a Community Sample of Heterosexual Couples.
The purpose of this study is to determine whether adult attachment style, psychological abuse in the marriage, conflict resolution strategies, and gender are associated with relational quality in childless couples in the early years of their marriage. Data were collected from 92 married couples who were recruited from university campuses, churches, and community organizations through e-mails, flyers, newspaper advertisements and mailings. Conceptualizing the interdependence of dyadic data from the actor-partner interdependence model (APIM), multilevel linear modeling (MLM) was used to analyze differences within and between couples. It was hypothesized that higher levels of attachment anxiety or avoidance, psychological abuse, and maladaptive conflict resolution strategies would be associated with lower relational quality. Results indicated that attachment avoidance had stronger associations with relational quality than did attachment anxiety, and that higher levels of attachment avoidance were associated with lower relational quality. Additionally, findings indicated a direct negative relationship between both actor and partner psychological abuse and the actor's relational quality. The discussion section addresses strengths and limitations of the present study as well as directions for future research.
ADHD Symptomology and Overweight Among College Men
Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a childhood disorder that often persists into adulthood. Among adults, ADHD is highly comorbid with addictive behaviors (e.g., substance abuse and dependence), and depressive disorders. Recently, an association between ADHD and obesity has been reported in the literature; emotional and binge eating may be “addictive behaviors” that contribute to weight gain in this population. The purpose of this study was to test competing models of the hypothesized link between ADHD symptomology and overweight. Specifically, in Model 1, symptoms of depression are expected to mediate the relationship between symptoms of impulsivity and inattention and emotional and binge eating which, in turn, leads to weight gain (i.e., increased BMI). In Model 2, however, the impulsive symptoms have direct relationships with emotional and binge eating in addition to being mediated by depressive symptoms. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was employed to test how the models fit the data of 790 college men. Both models fit the data well, with Model 2 being preferred because of its greater connection to theory. All paths were significant indicating that increased impulsive and inattentive symptoms predicted increased symptoms of depression that, in turn, predicted increased emotional/binge eating, which has a direct and positive relationship with increased BMI. Moreover, impulsive symptoms were also directly related to emotional/binge eating, suggesting different paths to overweight across ADHD subtypes. The findings of the current study elucidate the links between ADHD symptoms and overweight (i.e., increased BMI).
Adolescent Behavior Problems and Interparental Conflict: the Moderating Role of Parent-child Attachment
The current study examined the role that parent-child attachment plays in the relationship between marital conflict and the development of behavior problems in adolescents. To evaluate the hypothesis that attachment moderates this relationship, 57 families were recruited via e-mail invitation sent to families that participated in local church youth groups, school organizations, and a treatment program designed for adolescents with behavior problems. One custodial parent and his/her adolescent child completed an online or paper version of a survey consisting of the Achenbach’s Behavior Checklists, the Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment, and the Children’s Perception of Interparental Conflict Scale. Hypotheses were evaluated using Baron and Kenny’s (1986) procedures to test moderating effects with multiple regression analyses. Mother attachment demonstrated a significant moderation effect between the intensity of interparental conflict and the parent’s report of externalizing behavior problems. Specifically, at low conflict intensity levels, relative to low attachment security, high attachment security was associated with fewer externalizing behavior problems, whereas at high intensities of interparental conflict high attachment security was associated with more externalizing behavior problems.
Adolescent Insomnia as a Predictor of Early Adulthood Outcomes
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Recent research found insomnia is a risk factor for psychiatric disorders in adults. To see if the same would be true in adolescents, the current study re-analyzed data from a national longitudinal study collected by ADDHealth that evaluated health behaviors in 4552 adolescents (mean age 14.9 years [SD 1.7]) at baseline and again 7-8 years later (n = 3489) during young adulthood. Insomnia was reported by 9.2% of the adolescents. Cross-sectionally, adolescent insomnia was associated with alcohol, cannabis, non-cannabis drugs, and tobacco use, and depression after controlling for gender and ethnicity. Prospectively, adolescent insomnia was a significant risk factor for depression diagnosis, suicidal ideation, and the use of depression and stress prescription medications in young adulthood after controlling for gender, ethnicity, and significant baseline variable. In addition, a trend was noted for suicidal attempts.
Adolescent Psychopathy in an Adjudicated Male Population: The Role of Sensation Seeking, Impulsivity, and Externalizing Disorders
Psychopathy, as conceptualized by Cleckley (1941), describes a constellation of psychological and behavioral correlates including superficial charm, untruthfulness, lack of remorse or shame, poor judgment, and failure to learn from experience. Based on Cleckley's initial work, Hare (1991) developed a two-factor model of psychopathy. The purpose of this study was to investigate the roles that sensation seeking, impulsivity, ADHD, conduct disorder, and oppositional defiant disorder have on adolescents classified as psychopaths. The participants consisted of 79 adjudicated male adolescents in a maximum-security facility. As hypothesized, adolescent male psychopaths had higher levels of sensation seeking, impulsivity, conduct disorder and oppositional defiant disorder. A discriminant function analysis found that sensation seeking, impulsivity, ADHD, Conduct Disorder, and Oppositional Defiant Disorder was moderately useful in classifying adolescent psychopathy. The results suggest that behavioral dysregulation is an important aspect of adolescent psychopathy. The relationship of these data to theories of adolescent psychopathy is discussed.
Adolescent Self-Mutilating Behaviors: Experiential Avoidance Coupled with Imitation?
Repetitive self-mutilation (RSM) has become increasingly prevalent among adolescents. Empirical research has pinpointed several correlates of this behavior, but the initiation and maintenance of RSM among adolescents are not well understood. The experiential avoidance model (EAM) proposes that self-mutilation is a behavior that allows for the avoidance or alteration of unwanted internal experiences, and that it is negatively reinforced with repetition. The current study explored the usefulness of the EAM as an explanatory theory for adolescent RSM, with the additional incorporation of issues of social context. Adolescents (N = 211) from three school-based samples completed self-report questionnaires. One-third of students reported at least one incident of purposeful, non-suicidal self-mutilation and 16% had engaged in self-mutilation repeatedly within the past 6 months. Both regression and group analyses indicated that adolescents who engage in RSM report greater psychological distress, a greater incidence of functionally equivalent behaviors, and greater exposure to self-mutilation among peers and/or in the media, when compared to their counterparts who have not engaged in RSM. Suicidal ideation/behaviors were consistently the strongest predictors of current self-mutilation behaviors. Clinical implications, limitations, and suggestions for future research are discussed.
Adult Attachment, Acculturation and Help-seeking of Latino College Students
Based on theoretical reasoning and empirical evidence, the present study examined the unique and shared effects of attachment anxiety, attachment avoidance, and acculturation on attitudes toward seeking professional help among Latino college students. The research participants included 149 bilingual Latino college students from a large, public southwestern university. Results of a multiple regression analysis indicated that attachment avoidance was positively associated with both the recognition of need for psychological help and stigma of seeking professional help. Acculturation to American society was found to be statistically insignificant in predicting help-seeking attitudes in this sample of the population. Findings from exploratory questions suggested that Latino individuals would most likely seek help from parents, close friends, and then professionals. This study suggested that Latino individuals with high attachment avoidance acknowledge the potential benefit of professional help-seeking but distrust the process of approaching others for help. Limitations, implications, and future research directions will be discussed.
Adult Attachment and Posttraumatic Growth in Sexual Assault Survivors.
Posttraumatic growth, defined as positive psychological changes in the aftermath of adversity and suffering, is a relatively recent focus in psychological research. The addition of this concept to the literature has provided a new, more resiliency-based framework through which to view survivors of various forms of trauma. Despite estimates that over half of all sexual assaults are not reported to the authorities, current crime statistics indicate that 1 in 4 women are sexually assaulted in their lifetime (Campbell & Wasco, 2005). Given the large percentage of the population that is impacted by sexual assault, it is essential that professionals better understand the factors that influence the successful healing and growth that can occur post-trauma. The purpose of this study was to further expand the literature on posttraumatic growth in sexual assault survivors by considering this phenomenon through the lens of attachment theory. Specifically, this study tested a proposed model of the inter-relationships among subjective and objective perceptions of threat during the sexual assault, adult romantic attachment, and posttraumatic growth. It was hypothesized that adult romantic attachment and parent-child attachment would mediate the relationship between subjective, or perceived threat, defined as the victim's perception of life threat, and objective threat, defined as the severity of the sexually aggressive act perpetrated on the victim, and posttraumatic growth. Finally, it was hypothesized that subjective threat appraisal would better predict posttraumatic growth than objective threat appraisal. Contrary to hypotheses, results of the study indicated that adult romantic attachment and parent-child attachment did not mediate the relationship between subjective and objective threat appraisal and posttraumatic growth. Thus, both path analytic models were not viable. However, exploratory analysis indicated that both subjective and objective threat appraisal were directly related to posttraumatic growth, with subjective perceived threat appraisal accounting for more of the variance.
Adult Attachment Patterns, Mental Representation of Self, and Faith: Mediators of Childhood Trauma and Affect-Behavior Regulations in Adulthood
The purpose of this study was to investigate psychological mechanism by which four intra- and inter-personal characteristics of an individual (anxious and avoidant adult attachment patterns, images of self, and religious faith) mediate the relationship between childhood trauma and each of three affect-behavior regulation problems in adulthood (symptoms of depression, disordered eating behaviors, and substance abuse). A total of 401 college student participants completed a packet of 18 surveys including 10 surveys used in the present study. Structural equation modeling was used to test each of three hypothesized structural models (Depression, Eating Disturbances, and Substance Abuse). A series of multi-group analyses conducted to test if each of three hypothesized models is invariant across gender indicated no significant difference between females and males. Thus, the data were combined across gender to test for mediated effects in each of three hypothesized models. The results indicated: (a) for the hypothesized model for depression, anxious attachment patterns, avoidant attachment patterns, and negative self-images, but not religious faith, fully mediated the relationship between childhood trauma and symptoms of depression; (b) for the model for eating disturbances, anxious attachment and negative images of self, but not avoidant attachment and religious faith, fully mediated the association between childhood trauma and disordered eating behaviors; and (3) for the mode for substance abuse, anxious attachment and poor religious faith, but not avoidant attachment and negative self-images, fully mediated the relationship between childhood trauma and substance abuse. The findings of the present study have noteworthy implications for treatment. When clients who suffer from symptoms of depression, disordered eating behaviors, and/or substance abuse report a history of repetitive abuse and neglect by primary caregivers in childhood, clinicians need to assist clients in: (a) understanding an association of childhood maltreatment with affect-behavior regulation problems; (b) being aware of an impact of abuse and neglect by attachment figures in childhood on negative mental representations of self, insecure attachment patterns in close relationship, and poor religious faith; and (c) most importantly, deepening an understanding of how their negative images of self, anxious and avoidant adult attachment patterns, and/or poor religious faith and practices, rather than parental abuse and neglect in childhood itself, directly predict their presenting symptoms of depression, disordered eating behaviors, and/or substance abuse problems. In doing so, it is crucial for clinicians to provide clients with secure and comforting therapeutic atmosphere, focus on building trusting working relationship with clients, and be aware of how clients' transference and clinicians' own counter-transference interact with each other and influence therapeutic process and effectiveness. Several important limitations of the present study and implications for future studies were discussed.
Adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Personality Characteristics and Comorbidity
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is surrounded by confusion and controversy regarding its definition, course, etiology and treatment. Among adults, ADHD is rarely considered a diagnostic reality of primary importance and is often overlooked. This study provides descriptive validity for adult ADHD in distinguishing it from controls, and identifying both a pure condition and one wrought with comorbidity.
Aerobic Conditioning: Effects on Locus of Control, Mood States, and General Well-Being
This study was conducted to examine the sequelae of cardiovascular conditioning on locus of control, short-term mood, and psychological well-being. A pre-post test design, with control group, was used to measure the effects of a one month program of aerobic conditioning on adult volunteers. This study also sought to examine ways in which fitness changes covaried with psychological changes, and to describe patterns of change taking place during aerobic conditioning.
Affective and cognitive components of job satisfaction: Scale development and initial validiation.
Job satisfaction is one of the most commonly studied variables in the organizational literature. It is related to a multitude of employee-relevant variables including but not limited to performance, organizational commitment, and intent to quit. This study examined two new instruments measuring the components of affect and cognition as they relate to job satisfaction. It further proposed including an evaluative (or true attitudinal) component to improve the prediction of job satisfaction. Results provide some evidence of both two and three factor structures of affect and cognition. This study found minimal support for the inclusion of evaluation in the measurement of job satisfaction. Affect was found to be the single best predictor of job satisfaction, regardless of the satisfaction measure used. Further development is needed to define the factor structures of affect and cognition as well as the role of these factors and evaluation in the prediction of job satisfaction.
Affective Forecasting: the Effects of Immune Neglect and Surrogation
Studies of affective forecasting examine people’s ability to predict (forecast) their emotional (affective) responses to future events. Affective forecasts underlie nearly all decisions people make and the actions they take. However, people engage in systematic cognitive errors when making affective forecasts and most often overestimate the intensity and duration of their emotional responses. Understanding the mechanisms that lead to affective forecasting errors (e.g., immune neglect) and examining the utility of methods for improving affective forecasting errors (e.g., surrogation) can provide highly valuable information for clinicians as they assist clients in determining their goals both for therapy and for life. The first purpose of the current study was to determine if affective forecasting errors due to immune neglect lead to misjudgments about the relative emotional impact of minor versus moderate negative experiences (i.e., trauma severity). The second purpose was to examine the utility of surrogation for improving affective forecasts. Potential interaction effects between these two variables were also examined. The current study utilized a 2 (Trauma Severity: minor, moderate) X 3 (Prediction Information: surrogation information only, simulation information only, both types of information) experimental design. Undergraduates were recruited via the SONA system and randomly assigned to one of the six experimental conditions. A preliminary study was conducted to obtain surrogation information for use in the main study. All participants in the main study predicted how they would feel 10 minutes after receiving negative personality feedback, using a 10-point scale ranging from (1) very unhappy to (10) very happy. These predictions constitute their affective forecasts. All participants then actually received the negative personality feedback (ostensibly from another participant, a peer, in a nearby room) and reported their actual affective states ten minutes later, using the same scale. These ratings constitute their affective reports. Affective forecasting error was calculated as the difference between affective forecasts and affective reports. Results showed the affective forecasts of participants in the moderate trauma severity condition were significantly less accurate than those of participants in the minor trauma severity condition, providing evidence of immune neglect. Surrogation information significantly improved the accuracy of affective forecasts when participants were deprived of simulation information. Limitations of the current study and implications of the findings are discussed.
Affective Reactions and Psychosocial Functioning in the Course of Psycho-Educational Assessment
Every day, children throughout the United States are given psychological evaluations for many different clinical and psycho-educational purposes. Very little research has attempted to investigate children's responses to the experience of having intellectual and achievement tests administered. The goal of the current research was to explore the effect a psycho-educational evaluation has on children in areas of self-concept and anxiety. Dependent variables consisted of pre- and post-test measures of anxiety and self-concept. A total of 75 children in the 4th 5th and 6th grades were recruited after referral for evaluation and possible placement in the Talented and Gifted Program or Special Education. This study employed Analysis of Variance (ANOVA), t-tests, multiple regression analysis, and correlational analysis. Findings included initial evidence that children endorsed decreased anxiety after psycho-educational assessments rather than increased anxiety, suggesting that fear of unknown situations may be more anxiety provoking than the actual situation itself, potentially beneficial findings for psychology and psychometric professionals who evaluate children daily. Students endorsement of academic self-concept significantly predicted anxiety after a psycho-educational evaluation, indicating that students who feel capable in academic areas may endorse less anxiety after an evaluation than students who do not feel academically capable. Finally, negative verbal interaction with parents significantly predicted lower general self-concept scores, providing evidence that the manner in which parents verbally relate to their children may have significant impact for the mental health of children.
African American Father Influences on the Career Development of Emerging Adults
The current study examined the paternal influences on the career development of African American emerging adults. While statistics have shown that many African Americans remain in the lower socioeconomic status bracket and have worse academic and career outcomes, still many African Americans are successful. The literature seems to attribute lack of success to low socioeconomic status, but attributes success to close family relationships. However, most of these studies have focused on maternal relationships and have neglected to include the influence of paternal relationships. Studies that have examined African American fathers have emphasized their negative attributes. Previous studies have also failed to consider the influence of other factors on the career development process such as ethnic identity and psychological adjustment. This study explored the influence of contextual, family, and developmental factors on the career process of African American emerging adults. One hundred sixty-seven African American undergraduate students ages 18 to 25 were recruited for participation in this study. Regression analyses indicated that the quality of the father-child relationship influenced career development, though not in the manner expected. High levels of father support enhanced well-being for individuals with high ethnic identity, but did not produce the same results for individuals with low ethnic identity. Well-being was a significant predictor of career maturity. Explanations, implications, and future directions are discussed.
Age and Responses to the Events of September 11, 2001
Following the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, many turned to the field of psychology for greater understanding of the impact of such events and guidance in supporting our citizens. This study sought to gain greater understanding of the differential impact of the September 11th attack on individuals by investigating the influence of age, psychological hardiness, and repression versus sensitization as forms of coping behavior on psychological health. Both an initial cross-sectional sample (172 young adults & 231older adults) and a short-term longitudinal follow-up (39 young adults & 58 older adults) were included in the study. Older age, psychological hardiness and the use of a repressing coping style were found to each individually relate to greater resilience/less dysfunction at both time one and two. For young adults, high hardy repressors faired best, followed by high hardy sensitizers. Low hardy young adults demonstrated similar levels of dysfunction regardless of coping style (repressions/sensitization). For older adults, coping style impacted both high and low hardy individuals equally, with high hardy repressors demonstrating greater functioning. This study attempted to gain greater insight into explanations for these and previous findings of greater resilience among older adults. In explaining the greater resilience of older adults, it seems that coping style is highly important, while hardiness and the impact of history-graded events does not explain the resilience of older adults.
Age/Cohort Differences in Aspects of the Self-System
Age/cohort differences in several aspects of the self-system were investigated utilizing a sentence completion paradigm. Eighty-eight adults over age sixty and one hundred eight adults under age forty served as subjects. Subjects were asked to complete 30 self-referent sentence stems which were pre-structured to elicit information from the self-system. Responses were subjected to a content analysis utilizing a coding system which contained concepts used by subjects in their self-representations. Contents were coded for dimensions conceptually related to Physical Health, Autonomy, Self-Evaluation, Depression, Spirituality, and Altruism. Frequencies of codings were counted and subjected to statistical analysis for performing age group comparisons.
Agreement Between Self and Other Ratings in Multi-Rater Tools: Performance, Alternative Measures, and Importance.
Multi-rater tools also referred to as 360-degree feedback tools, are frequently used in addition to traditional supervisory appraisals due to sources (i.e., supervisor, peer, direct report) unique perspectives and opportunities to view different aspects of job performance. Research has found that the differences among sources are most prevalent between self and other ratings, and the direction of agreement is related to overall job performance. Research has typically focused on one form of agreement, the direction of an individual's self-ratings compared to others' ratings. The current study expanded on past research on rater agreement using a data set (n = 215) consisting of multi-rater data for professionals participating in a leadership development process. The study examined the ability to predict job performance with three different measures of self-other agreement (i.e., difference between overall mean scores (difference), mean absolute difference across items (difference), and mean correlation across items (similarity)). The study also examined how the relationships may differ across performance dimensions. The final purpose was to explore how the importance of the performance dimensions, as rated by the participant, may moderate the relationship between self-other agreement and job performance. Partial support for study's hypotheses was found. The direction and difference measures of agreement on the overall multi-rater tool and performance dimensions accounted for a significant amount of the variance in job performance. The relationship between the similarity measure of agreement and job performance, and the moderating effect of importance were not supported in the current study.
Alcohol Use, Violence, and Psychological Abuse in Intimate Relationships
Women in distressed relationships who had sustained severe psychological abuse and either no, moderate, or severe violence from their partner were included (N = 93). Men's and women's alcohol use did not differ with level of violence. Different patterns were found in the moderate violence group regarding women's beliefs about their partner's substance problem, men's psychological abuse, and the relationship of men's and women's quantity of alcohol use and times intoxicated. Uncertainty resulting from moderate violence may strengthen the emotional impact of psychological abuse. Even when psychological abuse is exacerbated by violence, women may use active coping techniques rather than drinking to cope with abusive relationships. The findings suggest that an inordinate focus on alcohol abuse may be ineffective in combating the problem of domestic violence.
Allergen Research and Its Implications for Psychology: History, Current Status, and Prospectus
The purpose of this manuscript was to present a brief history, the current status, and a prospectus of allergen and allergic reactions. Research on allergic reactions, particularly as viewed from the psychogenic position, was presented. The review strongly suggests that the psychogenic orientation has been frought with contradictions, unnecessarily complex interpretations, and an over-abundance of subjective, dynamic, and analytic redundancies which have done little more than perpetuate the stagnation of a rather important subdomain of the "mental" health professions.
Altruism and Depression: Exploring This Relationship and the Mechanisms Behind It
The impact of environmental influences on depression has been well established by research. In particular, it is known that receiving/perceiving adequate social support has a protective influence on depression. Less is known about the protective benefits of providing support to others, namely in the form of altruistic, empathetic, or prosocial behavior. While research has shown that having altruistic attitudes and engaging in altruistic behaviors has a positive impact on physical health and mental well-being, studies on the association between altruistic attitudes and/or behavior and depression are limited. The present study examined the relationship between altruism and depression, and hypotheses were tested that allow for explanation of why altruism may protect against depression. A sample of 303 participants was recruited from the University of North Texas and the surrounding community. Participants completed an online survey that examined their altruistic activities, details regarding these activities, their prosocial attitudes, and their current level of depression. Results did not support that level of involvement in altruistic activities is directly related to depression severity. However, outcomes from involvement in altruistic activities, including sense of overburden from participating in altruistic activities, level of social interaction with other helpers and those helped during altruistic activities, and sense of life satisfaction and purpose gained from participating in altruistic activities, were significantly related to depression severity. These results suggest that participating in altruistic activities that are not perceived as overburdening may lead to outcomes that could positively impact depression. Limitations and directions for future research are discussed.
Ambiguity of Loss, Anticipatory Grief, and Boundary Ambiguity in Caregiver Spouses and Parents
The purpose of the present cross-sectional study was to examine the effects of ambiguity of loss and type of caregiver-to-patient relationship on anticipatory grief, negative physical and psychological outcomes associated with grief, and boundary ambiguity in family caregivers of chronically ill patients. Questionnaires were completed by 23 parents of ill children and 30 spouses of ill mates. Using an original and a revised concept for level of ambiguity, partial support was found for the prediction that parents and spouses in high ambiguity of loss circumstances would report more anticipatory grief than those in low ambiguity ones. Contrary to prediction, a slight but nonsignificant trend occurred for parents and spouses in low ambiguity situations to report more negative physical and psychological effects associated with grief as well. Level of ambiguity was not found to impact boundary ambiguity as had been hypothesized. Spouses reported more boundary ambiguity than parents, regardless of level of ambiguity of the loss. Contrary to prediction that parents would report less anticipatory grief and more negative physical and psychological outcomes than spouses, generally, no significant differences were found between the two groups. However, using the original concept of ambiguity, parents did tend to recall more past grief than spouses. The study highlighted several methodological concerns which impact research on loss and grief, particularly the difficulty involved in recruiting participants with subsequent occurrence of sampling bias, rudimentary status of available measurement tools, and a host of potentially confounding personal and sociodemographic variables. The present study supports a view of the loss which occurs in families dealing with chronic illness as a complex process whose impact on grief, distress, and family upheaval is influenced by multiple factors. Such factors include both the ambiguity of the loss and the type of family relationship involved. Complex research of a longitudinal nature using psychosocial models of illness is needed to better delineate the impact of factors such as these.
An Analysis of a Procedure Employing the Mowrer Imitation Paradigm in Relationship to the Generalized Imitation Procedure for Establishing Vocal Imitation
The purpose of this study was to examine the efficacy of an ancillary procedure, the Mowrer imitation paradigm, in conjunction with an ongoing generalized imitation program. It was hypothesized that the ancillary program would accelerate the acquisition of vocal imitation relative to a situation In which the generalized imitation procedure was employed alone.
An Analysis of Retention of Factual Material Presented in Song and Story Form
The purpose of the present study is to determine if music is effective in increasing the learning and retention of meaningful, verbal material with emotionally disturbed children of normal intelligence.
An Analysis of the Performance of a Clinical Sample of African American, Caucasian, and Hispanic Children on the WISC-III
The goals of revision for the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-Third Edition included enhancement of the factor structure, improvement of subtests, and revision of norms. The researchers reported that the very few items that were found to be biased were replaced. The WISC-III performance of a clinical sample of African American, Caucasian, and Hispanic children was analyzed to determine if the test bias was eliminated as claimed in the goals of the revision.
An Analysis of the Relationship between Performance on the Revised Bender Visual-motor Gestalt Test and Scores on the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children
The primary problem of this study was to determine the relationship between BGT performance, as indexed by the Developmental Scoring System of Koppitz, and performance on the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children.
An Analysis of the Relationships of the Perceptions of College Environment by Existing Groups and Subgroups on the Campus of a Small Church-affiliated College
The CUES II was used to investigate and analyze the campus environment of a small church-affiliated college in California.
Antecedents of Commitment to and Support of a Proposed Change Initiative in a Southern Baptist Congregation.
This study extends research findings directed at a micro-focus of change by assessing individual organizational members' perspectives and psychological constructs influencing change efforts by an organization. The change initiative in question regards the construction of a new facility and subsequent relocation to said facility. Moral commitment to the organization (negative), change initiative's fit with organizational vision, and social influence significantly contributed to variance in members' affective commitment to change. Trust in leadership and normative commitment to the organization (NCO) significantly contributed to variance in members' normative commitment to change. Continuance commitment to the organization and participation (negative) significantly contributed to variance in members' continuance commitment to change. NCO, change initiative's fit with organizational vision, and participation significantly contributed to variance in support of the proposed change initiative. Affective commitment to the organization (negative), NCO (negative), trust in leadership (negative), and disruption of influence significantly contributed to variance in members' intent to leave the organization.
Antecedents of the Psychological Adjustment of Children and Grandparent Caregivers in Grandparent-Headed Families
Grandparent-headed families are diverse in nature and represent a rapidly growing family type. While challenges facing grandparent caregivers are well documented, less is known about the well-being of their grandchildren, with many early studies relying on small samples of convenience. This study used an existing large national database, the National Survey of America's Families (NSAF), to compare differences in well-being of both children and grandparent caregivers across the independent variables of family type, ethnicity, gender, and age. Findings suggested better mental health and less parental aggravation for caregivers in traditional two parent intact families as compared to grandparents co-parenting in a multi-generation home, skipped generation grandparents (raising their grandchild with no parent present) or single parents. Skipped generation grandparents in particular reported most caregiver aggravation. Child physical health was reported to be worse by skipped generation grandparent caregivers. Behavior problems were reported to be worse for children in grandparent headed households than those in traditional families, particularly for teenagers raised in skipped generation households by their grandmothers. Specific results, limitations and future directions for research on grandparent-headed households were discussed.
Anticipating Work and Family: Experience, Conflict, and Planning in the Transition to Adulthood
The purpose of this study was to examine the development of work and family plans in young adults, and to clarify the long-term stability, prevalence, and consequences of anticipated work-family conflict. The study utilizes Super’s model of career development and social cognitive career theory, as well as research on current work-family interface, as a framework for understanding the period of anticipating and planning for multiple role integration that occurs between adolescence and adulthood. A sample of 48 male and 52 female college students assessed two years prior completed self-report questionnaires measuring work, marriage, and parenting experience; anticipated work-family conflict; and multiple-role planning. Results of this study suggest that students desire both a career and a family, and recognize potential challenges of a multiple-role lifestyle. Such recognition of anticipated work-family conflict varies by conflict domains and measurement methods, but remains stable over two years. Results also suggest that anticipated work-family conflict does not mediate the relationship between experience and planning; instead, marriage experience predicts planning directly. Implications for the findings are discussed as are suggestions for directions of new research concerning anticipated work-family conflict and planning for multiple roles.
Anxiety and its Correlates: Introversion-Extroversion, Locus of Control, and Reinforcement Expectations
The problem with which this study is concerned is that of considering the relationship between neurotic anxiety and several personality variables. Even though anxiety has been the subject of many studies, it is still poorly defined. The basic model to be considered is Eysenck's three-dimensional model between neuroticism and introversion-extroversion. This model is expanded to include Rotter's locus of control and reinforcement expectancy (optimism and pessimism).
Anxiety, Depression, and Sleep Disorders: Their Relationship and Reduction with Neurotherapy
This study investigated the relationship among anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbances and the treatment of these three disorders through neurotherapy. Research suggests that these conditions commonly co-occur in the general population and that central nervous system (CNS) arousal may play a primary role in the development and maintenance of these disorders. Several recent studies suggested that neurotherapy, a biofeedback-based treatment for CNS dysregulation, might be an effective treatment for comorbid conditions, particularly the ones of interest here, depression, anxiety, and sleep disturbances. This investigation used a clinical case-series design to assess pre/post neurotherapy changes on objective measures of anxiety, depression, and sleep and to determine whether changes in anxiety and depression then predict improvements in sleep quality. Data for 23 participants (10 males) were obtained from files of adults (Mage = 40.22 years, SD = 16.20) who received at least 15 neurotherapy sessions (M = 47.83 sessions, SD = 22.23) the University of North Texas Neurotherapy Lab. Matched pair t-tests revealed that symptoms of sleep disturbance, depression, and anxiety showed significant improvements following neurotherapy. Neurotherapy treatment effect sizes generally ranged from moderate to large (d = .414 - .849). Multiple regression analysis found that changes in self-reported anxiety symptoms, but not depressive symptoms, predicted observed improvements in sleep quality (adjusted R2 = .26). Last, the implications and limitations were discussed in relation to neurotherapy practice and the associated research.
Anxiety Relief Conditioning: a Critical Review and Supportive Experiment
An experiment was conducted to separate the effects of anxiety relief conditioning from other variables which may be operative within that paradigm. A review of the literature revealed that no definitive investigations had been conducted, and critiques of these investigations were offered. Also, the distinction between aversion relief and anxiety relief conditioning procedures was detailed.
Apology and Forgiveness in Couples
Following a transgression, interpersonal forgiveness is one strategy used to restore harmony between the victim and offender. Research also suggests that forgiveness can promote psychological and physical health. Research has shown that an apology from the offender may facilitate the forgiveness process. The majority of studies suggest that when a victim receives an apology, they experience higher levels of forgiveness toward their offender. The purpose of this thesis was to explore the association between apology and forgiveness in a sample of adults and undergraduate students (N = 803). The results are organized in three sections. First, I found a positive relationship between apology and forgiveness, replicating prior research. Second, I created a new measure of transgression severity, and provided evidence of internal consistency, construct validity, and criterion-related validity for this measure. Third, I tested two variables hypothesized to moderate the association between apology and forgiveness. First, there was some evidence that perceived offender humility moderated the association between simple apology and forgiveness. Offenders who were perceived as being more humble when providing a simple apology were granted more forgiveness than their less humble counterparts. Second, there was some evidence that transgression severity moderated the association between a complete apology and forgiveness, but the effect was in the opposite direction as hypothesized. For individuals who reported a transgression of high severity, there was a stronger association between the completeness of an apology and forgiveness than for individuals who reported a transgression of low severity. I conclude by discussing limitations, areas for future research, and implications for counseling.
The Application of a Health Service Utilization Model to a Low Income, Ethnically Diverse Sample of Women
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A model for health care utilization was applied to a sample of low income women. Demographic Predisposing, Psychosocial Predisposing, Illness Level, and Enabling indicators were examined separately for African American (n = 266), Anglo American (n = 200), and Mexican American (n = 210) women. Structural Equation Modeling revealed that for African American and Anglo American women, Illness Level, the only significant path to Utilization, had a mediating effect on Psychosocial Predisposing indicators. The model for Mexican Americans was the most complex with Enabling indicators affecting Illness Level and Utilization. Psychosocial Predisposing indicators were mediated by Illness Level and Enabling indicators which both directly affected Utilization. Implications of the results for future research are addressed.
Application of a Non-Speech Response Mode in Teaching Simple Language Functions to Three Autistic Children
A non-speech response mode similar to the one used by Prepack (1971) to teach language to a chimpanzee was utilized to teach two simple language functions to three autistic children. The response mode consisted of picking up a geometric symbol and placing it on a response tray. The geometric symbol was the basic unit in this language system. The symbols were used to represent objects in the environment and relationships between the objects.
Applied Sport Psychology Consultation: Effects of Academic Training, Past Athletic Experience, and Interpersonal Skill on Female Athletes' Ratings
Applied sport psychology consultation is a relatively new phenomenon with limited empirical underpinnings. The purpose of the study was to evaluate three applied sport psychology consultant personal and professional characteristics within Strong's social influence model that have been suggested to impact consultants' effectiveness in working directly with athletes and their performance problems. The three consultant characteristics were academic training, past athletic experience, and interpersonal skill. Division I female athletes (N = 187) read written preconsultation information and watched a 10- minute vignette between a consultant and an athlete. Participants completed the Counselor Rating Form-Short (CRFS), the Sport Psychology Consultant Evaluation Form (CEF), and questions concerning willingness to work with the consultant. The data from the dependent measures were analyzed by a 2 (level of consultant academic training) X 2 (level of consultant past athletic experience) X 2 (level of consultant interpersonal skill) MANOVA. Results indicated that applied sport psychology consultants' academic training and past athletic experience had only limited influence on the participants' perceptions about the consultants. The Division I female athletes unambiguously rated consultants with positive interpersonal skills more favorably on all dependent measures regardless of the consultants' level of academic training or past athletic experience. Directions for future research and implication of the findings on training and certification in applied sport psychology are discussed.
Are Deficits in Mindfulness Core Features of Borderline Personality Disorder?
Mindfulness is a core component of dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), a widely utilized treatment for borderline personality disorder (BPD); however, the import of mindfulness in treating BPD has yet to be demonstrated, and the relationship of mindfulness to BPD constructs is unclear. The current study utilized structural equation modeling to examine the relations of mindfulness with BPD features and the underlying constructs of interpersonal problem-solving effectiveness, impulsivity, emotion regulation strategies, and neuroticism in 342 young adults. Mindfulness was significantly related to effectiveness in interpersonal problem-solving, impulsivity and passivity in emotion regulation, and borderline features. Furthermore, mindfulness continued to predict borderline features when controlling for interpersonal problem-solving and impulsive/passive emotion-regulation strategies, as well as when controlling for neuroticism. It is concluded that difficulties with mindfulness may represent a core feature of BPD and that improvement in mindfulness may be a key component of treatment efficacy with BPD. It is recommended that the unique contribution of mindfulness be investigated in future treatment-outcome research.
Assessing Adolescent Personality and Interactional Style with the Rorschach and the Personality Inventory for Youth
An investigation was undertaken to examine two measures of personality and their utility with adolescent patient populations. The Rorschach, scored using Exner's (1991) Comprehensive System (2nd Ed.), and the Personality Inventory for Youth (PIY; Lachar & Gruber, in press) were explored as to their ability to distinguish inpatients from outpatients, males from females, and diagnostic groups from one another. COP, AG, CDI, DEPI, SCZI, and HVI scores on the Rorschach were utilized, as were the DIS, SOM, FAM, RLTY, WDL, and SSK scores from the PIY.
Assessing Learning Disabilities: Effectiveness of the Symbol Language and Communication Battery (SLCB)
This study examined whether the Symbol Language and Communication Battery (SLCB), a measure of learning disabilities (Lds), could identify children with Lds. In addition, possible behavioral differences were examined between unidentified and identified children. Eighty-five students (26 with school identified Lds; 59 unidentified) in the 4th and 5th grade participated in the study. Results indicated that the SLCB has good potential as a supplemental/screening measure of Lds. The SLCB was most effective in identifying children when SLCB diagnoses were restricted to the areas of reading, math, and writing. This study also found that teachers reported more behavioral problems in children with an SLCB diagnosis than children without a diagnosis, whereas unidentified children with SCLB diagnoses reported more behavioral problems than identified children.