You limited your search to:

  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Psychology
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149566/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2210/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700069/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4700/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc279210/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9102/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc279331/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131628/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc283819/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278288/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131484/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc130548/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278700/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc130742/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131592/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12150/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5157/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84183/
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). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc164038/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31533/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131619/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699962/
The Application of a Health Service Utilization Model to a Low Income, Ethnically Diverse Sample of Women
Access: Use of this item is restricted to the UNT Community.
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2570/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131568/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277678/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5332/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278176/
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2501/
Assessing Maternal Functioning in Families of Children with Autism
Mothers and siblings of children with autism incur stressors that impact their well-being more adversely than mothers of children with ADHD or normally developing children. In Study 1, twenty-six mothers of children with autism (Group 1) were compared to 24 mothers of children with ADHD (Group 2) and 24 mothers with normally developing children (Group 3). All families included a normally developing child (ages 4 to 12). Measures to delineate levels of maternal functioning were administered. Results for Study 1 indicated that mothers of children with autism had higher levels of psychological symptomatology, higher parenting stress, poorer perceptions of their family environment and their ability to parent the siblings, and higher perceptions of internalized problems of the siblings than mothers with normally developing children. These findings support the literature stating that mothers of children with autism may experience increased levels of maternal stress. The reciprocal nature of the parent-child relationship suggests that parents should be involved in meeting the needs of siblings in these families. A subgroup of Group 1 mothers participated in a parent group that occurred simultaneously with a sibling group. Mothers were randomly assigned to participate in a parent/sibling group, a sibling only group, or a wait-list group. Intervention efficacy was assessed using Study 1 measures plus measures designed specifically for the intervention. Overall results of study 2 indicated that mothers in the deluxe intervention perceived their parenting of the siblings to have improved after the intervention when compared to the standard and wait-list groups. This suggested that concurrent mother/sibling intervention provided the mothers with beneficial information and contributed to their enhanced sense of competence about parenting the siblings. In addition, mothers in the deluxe intervention perceived their family environment and the behaviors of the sibling to get worse at post-intervention, but return to baseline over time. This suggests that the intervention may have initially brought some difficulties to the surface that were resolved over time. Results will be discussed with their implications for further research and clinical intervention. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277724/
Assessing Measurement Equivalence of the English and Spanish Versions on an Employee Attitude Survey Using Multigroup Analysis in Structural Equation Modeling.
The study utilized the covariance structure comparison methodology - Multigroup Analysis in Structural Equation Modeling - evaluating measurement equivalence of English and Spanish versions of an employee opinion survey. The concept of measurement equivalence was defined as consisting of four components: sample equivalence, semantic equivalence, conceptual equivalence and scalar equivalence. The results revealed that the two language versions of the survey exhibited acceptable measurement equivalence across five survey dimensions Communications, Supervision, Leadership, Job Content & Satisfaction and Company Image & Commitment. Contrary to the study second hypothesis, there was no meaningful difference in opinion scores between English-speaking and Spanish-speaking respondents on the latent construct of Job Content & Satisfaction. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4315/
Assessing the Psychological Impact of Fertility Treatment
This controlled descriptive study was designed to investigate the psychological status of couples who are engaged in advanced fertility treatments. A battery of psychological test instruments, including the Millon Behavioral Health Inventory (MBHI), the Health Attribution Test (HAT), the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), and the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale (MCSDS), was used to measure psychological variables that have been shown in the infertility research literature to be associated with the psychological experiences of infertility patients. The scores from the four assessment instruments were compared with those of pregnant couples in childbirth education classes to differentiate the impact of stress associated with fertility treatment from the stress experienced by third trimester pregnant couples. Eighty-five subjects (42 male and 43 female) volunteered for the study and completed packets of questionnaires. The groups were designated Treatment (infertile couples) and Control (pregnant couples). The resulting data were collected and analyzed on the basis of group mean scores on the test instruments. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc277704/
The Assessment of Cognitive Functioning among Patients with Unilateral Visual Neglect: Effects of Field of Presentation and Cueing
Prior evidence has shown a reduction of neglect on line bisection tasks as a function of altered hemispace presentation and left cueing. The present study was conducted to examine the effect of these factors in reducing symptoms of neglect on measures of general cognitive functioning. To examine proposed changes, revised versions of the Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices and the Memory-for-Designs (MFD) Test were constructed by placing the target stimuli in the right hemifield. Two experimental presentations, a right hemispace condition and a right hemispace plus left cue prompt condition, were compared to the standard presentation format. The primary hypotheses predicted that RBD neglect patients would reveal enhanced performance on the criterion measures as a result of these manipulations. Significant correlations were predicted between the neglect measures and between the two scoring systems for the MFD. The sample was comprised of 54 hospitalized patients, assigned to either a RBD neglect group (N = 18), a RBD nonneglect group (N = 18) , or an orthopedic control group (N = 18) . Both RBD groups were administered the Mini Inventory of Right Brain Injury, to document the presence and severity of right brain injury. Presence of neglect was assessed via the Schenkenberg Line Bisection Task and the Bells Test for Visual Neglect. Subjects were examined under all three conditions by administering one third of the items for each condition. Neglect subjects demonstrated significantly poorer performance on both criterion measures than the two comparison groups. However, no significant improvement in performance was revealed with right hemispace presentation of stimuli or left cue prompts combined with the right hemispace version. Ancillary predictions concerning correlations for the neglect measures and MFD scoring systems were confirmed. Results are interpreted in terms of increased attentional demands and task complexity. These results suggest that, despite the frequent clinical use of these manipulations in the cognitive assessment of this population, support for the efficacy of these procedures is lacking. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278752/
The Assessment of Cognitive Functioning of Persons with Schizophrenia: Identification of Neuropsychological Markers
The present study was conducted to clarify and expand knowledge of cognitive functioning in chronic schizophrenia patients (N=21) as compared to a bipolar group (N=20) and a normal group (N=20). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278218/
Assessment of Cognitive Performance in Mixed Martial Arts Athletes
Incidents and awareness of sports-related concussion have grown in recent years, attracting attention in both the academic and popular press. These concussions can lead to the rapid onset of neurological dysfunctions, as well as a variety of subjective symptoms. Although concussive sequelae are typically considered transient, debate remains about the persistent effects of repeated traumatic contact during sport participation. Although research has examined the complications of head trauma found in traditionally popular sports (e.g., football, soccer, boxing), little research has focused on the growing sport of mixed-martial-arts (MMA). Research specifically pertaining to MMA is in nascent stages, but to-date studies suggest that concussive injuries for this sport are prevalent and the training regimens of these athletes may place them at a high risk for concussive or subconcussive head traumas—as well as the accompanying neurological difficulties. The current study is the first to assess cognitive profiles of MMA athletes using an objective neuropsychological assessment instrument. Among 56 athletes (28 MMA athletes and 28 athletes not exposed to head traumas), no neuropsychological differences were found between groups of athletes. Additionally, no aspects of MMA training regimen shared a reliable relationship with neuropsychological performance or subjective concussive symptoms. This suggests non-professional participation in MMA may not typically pose a significant risk for cumulative concussions and associated adverse neuropsychological consequences. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699950/
Assessment of Feigning with the Trauma Symptom Inventory: Development and Validation of new Validity Scales with Severely Traumatized Patients
Currently, only the TSI assesses complex traumatic reactions and patient response styles. However, its feigning scale, ATR, uses a flawed detection strategy and is potentially confounded by experiences of complex PTSD. As a consequence, clinicians using the TSI to evaluate severely traumatized patients have no useful method for discriminating genuine and feigned responding. Several detection strategies have demonstrated utility within evaluations of feigned trauma including the assessment of rare symptoms, symptom combinations, symptom selectivity, and symptom severity. The current study created scales on the TSI according to these strategies using a development sample of 107 severely traumatized patients. Validation of all TSI feigning scales was then performed with a second independent sample of 71 severely traumatized patients using a mixed simulation design. Results found support for each scale's convergent validity with SIRS primary scales (M rs = .52) and discriminant validity with measures of defensiveness on the SIRS (M rs = -.07) and TSI (M rs = -.19). Each scale also produced expectedly mild to moderate relationships with SADS-C clinical scales (M rs = .32) and the SCID-IV PTSD module (M rs = -.02). Support for their criterion validity was only moderate (M ds = .69) when comparing the scores of genuine patients to those simulating disability. Potential explanations for this trend were reviewed, including (a) the impact of comorbidity, (b) the restrictions associated with creating embedded feigning scales, and (c) the influence of simulator knowledge in analogue designs. Limitations of the study and future avenues of research were discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68030/
Assessment of Malingering in a Jail Referral Population : Screening and Comprehensive Evaluation
Psychological assessment of mentally disordered offenders requires a systematic consideration of response styles, including malingering and defensiveness. Important components of these evaluations are standardized diagnostic interviews. However, the ability of offenders to feign mental disorders on such measures to achieve such external incentives as treatment, placement on safer units, or possible release from jail remains uninvestigated. With a known-groups comparison with the data from the Structured Interview of Reported Symptoms as a criterion, 24 suspected malingerers were compared to 64 genuine patients on the Schedule of Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia (SADS), the abbreviated SADS-C, the Suicide Probability Scale, and the Referral Decision Scale. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278712/
Assessment of Psychopathy in Incarcerated Females
Psychopaths constitute only an estimated 1% of the population, yet they are responsible for a disproportionately large number of violent and nonviolent crimes. The literature addressing this syndrome among male offenders is quite extensive. In contrast, psychopathy and its underlying factor structure remains understudied among female offenders. Research has suggested marked gender differences in the prevalence, clinical characteristics, and underlying dimensions of psychopathy. This study examined the dimensions of psychopathy in a female offender sample. The Psychopathy Checklist-Revised and the Self Report Psychopathy-II (SRP-II) were administered to 119 female inmates at Tarrant County Jail in Fort Worth, TX. Confirmatory factor analyses of the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R) did not support the use of the traditional two factor male model or a recently proposed two- factor female model. This thesis also addressed females' self-appraisal of PCL-R Factor 1 characteristics as well as the usefulness of the self-administered Self-Report Psychopathy-II as a screen for psychopathy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2890/
Assessment of the Effects of Interpersonal Openness and Coping Resources on the Psychological Sequelae of Traumatic Victimization
The present study tested a model addressing whether interpersonal Openness and interpersonal and intrapersonal Coping Resources mediated the relationship between interpersonal Victimization and the Psychological Symptoms women experience as a result of these traumas. Victimization indicators (physical violence, sexual assault, psychological abuse, and revictimization), Coping indicators (optimism, self-esteem, private self-consciousness, social network and therapy), Openness indicators (self-silencing, communal orientation, trust, self-monitoring, and network orientation), and Psychological Symptoms indicators (global distress, dissociation, and suicidal ideation) were examined separately for African American (n = 245), Euro-American (n = 185), and Mexican American (n = 202) women. Structural Equation Modeling revealed that for African American and Euro-American women, Openness partially mediated the victimization-distress relationship. The model for Mexican Americans was the most complex with Openness and intrapersonal Coping fully mediating the psychological effects of victimization. Approximately 50% of the variance in psychological symptoms resulting from victimization was predicted by this model for African American and Euro-American women; over 80% of the variance was predicted for Mexican Americans. Thus, the importance of Openness to relationships in alleviating the psychological sequelae following interpersonal victimization was underscored by the results. Similarities and differences between these models are discussed. Implications of the results for future research and intervention are addressed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2698/
Association Between Cognition and Depression: A Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Study of Individuals with Learning Disabilities.
Over the past twenty years the number of children identified with learning disabilities has risen drastically. In addition, 26 - 40% of these children also experience depression. While cognitive functioning has been demonstrated to be associated with depression, it is unclear whether the mood, vegetative, or cognitive symptoms of depression predict particular cognitive processes and vice versa. The purpose of this study was to determine which particular cognitive processes were associated with specific depressive symptoms and depression as a whole. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was conducted to test a model which examined how three cognitive processing factors (verbal & visual reasoning, and attention/working memory) were associated with three depressive symptom factors (disturbances in mood, vegetative, and cognitive functioning). The data for SEM came from a large data set of children with learning disabilities (n=227). Model fit results supported the proposed model, and a significant association was found between the attention/working memory factor and the depression symptom factor reflecting disturbances in cognitive functioning. Less robust relationships were observed between verbal reasoning and cognitive depressive symptoms and an approach toward the conventional level of significance was noted between visual reasoning and cognitive depressive symptoms. Using a sub-sample of original participants who were re-evaluated 20-25 years later (n=40), longitudinal analyses were conducted to determine the predictive power of cognitive functioning and depression over time. There was some indication for the predictive power of visual reasoning performance in childhood on mood symptoms of depression in adulthood. The most robust association at both time 1 and time 2 was between attention/working memory performance and cognitive symptoms of depression. However, the association appeared to be time specific and not predictive. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4294/
Association Between Folate, Vitamin B12 and Cognitive Performance in Demented Elderly.
Dementia is prevalent among elderly people. As the world population ages, it is projected that the number of people affected by dementia may triple in the next 50 years. Over the last two decades, research has focused on identifying potentially modifiable risk factors in development and progression of dementia, such as vitamin B12 and folate. Results concerning the effects of low folate and vitamin B12 on cognitive performance are mixed. The main objective of the present study was to investigate the effects of vitamin deficiency on cognitive functioning in a clinical sample of elderly individuals with cognitive problems using a comprehensive neuropsychological assessment. A retrospective chart-review was performed on the 102 records of patients from the Geriatrics Clinic at the University of North Texas Health Science Center who presented with cognitive deficits. Charts were reviewed to obtain data on vitamin supplementation, vitamin status, history of chronic conditions and other biochemical data. The available database was used to obtain data on neuropsychological assessment. The study demonstrated mild association between vitamin B12 and folate status and cognitive deficits. There appeared to be a higher cut-off level that is above the traditionally used levels for vitamin B12 and folate deficiency concentrations at which cognitive deficits became more pronounced. Clinical applications, limitations and suggestions for future research were discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9034/
Associations Between Neuromotor and Neurocognitive Functioning in Adults with Schizotypal Personality Disorder
Individuals diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) exhibit patterns of cognitive deficits in (1) attention (Lees-Roitman, Cornblatt, Bergman, Obuchowski, Mitropoulou, Keefe, Silverman, & Siever, 1997), (2) memory (Bergman, Harvey, Lees-Roitman, Mohs, Margerm, Silverman, & Siever, 1998), (3) executive functioning (Cadenhead, Perry, Shafer, & Braff, 1999), and recently (4) neuromotor functioning (Neumann & Walker, 1999), similar to individuals with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Furthermore, recent research suggests a link between neuromotor and cognitive functioning in schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSDs) (Neumann & Walker, 2003). The current study is an extension of research on non-drug-induced neuromotor disturbances in individuals with SPD and examines how such disturbances covary with neurocognitive measures. Approximately thirty-three adults (18-65) were rated for SPD symptoms. Motor assessments included a computerized motor task and finger tapping test. Cognitive assessments included measures of attention, verbal and visual memory, and executive functioning. Consistent with previous research, the SPD group displayed significant right hand (left hemisphere) motor disturbances (i.e., increased force and force variability) compared to healthy controls after excluding all cases reporting a history of head injury. In addition, results indicate significant associations between motor, cognitive, and symptom variables. Consistent with previous research, neuromotor functioning and the relationships between motor and cognitive functioning varied as a function of Time of Day (TOD) of testing. Understanding the relationship between neuromotor and neurocognitive functioning may help elucidate the neural systems that contribute the symptoms characteristic of SSDs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4492/
Associations Between Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement: A Meditational Analysis
Research has illustrated the interrelatedness of childhood physical fitness and psychological wellbeing, psychological wellbeing and academic achievement, as well as physical fitness and academic achievement. In this study, we proposed that psychological wellbeing (self-esteem and depression) serves as a mediator between physical fitness and academic achievement during adolescence. In a sample of middle school children (N = 1,530), significant correlations were found between all three variables (p.0001). A hierarchical regression analysis was performed to assess the associations between physical fitness, psychological wellbeing, and academic achievement. The regression analysis reported a significant partial mediation effect. The results of this study supported the proposed hypotheses, including a mechanism of psychological wellbeing partially mediating the relationship between physical fitness and academic achievement. The findings of this study support the importance of encouraging activities to promote both physical fitness and psychological wellbeing in schools. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799486/
The Athlete Leader Role: Interaction of Gender, Sport Type, and Coaching Style.
Effective leadership is a concept shown to be important for successful team performance in the fields of business, education, and sport. In sport, the role of the athlete leader has been under-examined and specifically, how coaching behaviors can affect athlete leader behaviors and how various leadership models (e.g., trait, behavioral, situational) relate to the athlete leader role has never been studied. The present study examined how autocratic, democratic, and collaborative coaching styles affect the athlete leader behavior preferences of athletes of different genders and sport types. Three coach scenarios reflecting the three aforementioned coaching styles were created so that athletes could imagine that they were coached by the individual presented in the scenario and then rate what type of athlete leader behaviors that they would prefer given the style of the coach that they read about. Results showed that the coach scenarios failed to have a significant impact; however, significant differences were discovered between men and women and between individual and team sport athletes on variables measuring preferred performance/task, relationship, motivation, and representation behaviors. Data were gathered on the style of athletes' current coach and this variable also produced significant differences for such behaviors as resolving conflict, providing positive reinforcement, and acting respectfully towards others. In addition, exploratory analyses showed that athletes who hold different leadership positions prefer different athlete leader behaviors. The current study seemed to offer concrete evidence on how coaching style can affect athlete leader preferences and how the athlete leader role can be explained by trait, behavioral, and situational leadership theories; however, future studies will have to further explore the impact that a coach's style can have on the behavior of athlete leaders as well as analyzing the relationship between athlete leaders and teammates utilizing the transformational leadership approach. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5486/
Athletes' Attitudes Toward Seeking Sport Psychology Consultation: Development and Validation of the Sport Psychology Attitudes Questionnaire
The purpose of the study was to create a questionnaire to identify underlying dimensions of athletes' attitudes toward seeking sport psychology consultation. A total of 1138 athletes (625 males, 513 females) representing 36 sports from four levels of participation were used to develop the Sport Psychology Attitudes Questionnaire (SPAQ). In Study I, exploratory factor analysis produced a two-factor solution that accounted for 37.1% of the overall variance: (a) belief in the credibility of sport psychology (14 items) and (b) preference for similarity with a sport psychology consultant (SPC) (7 items). Three items were omitted following item analysis, and nine items were eliminated after failing to load higher than the cut-off value of .40 on either of the factors. In Study II, confirmatory factor analysis supported the two-factor model, and multigroup comparison in Study III demonstrated that the model fit well for both male and female samples. As for validity, the SPAQ factors predictably (a) distinguished between athletes with and without previous experience with a SPC, (b) related to ratings of helpfulness/satisfaction related to a previous experience with a SPC, and (c) correlated with willingness to see a SPC for help in the future. Also, the SPAQ factors were related, as predicted, to (a) belief that practicing sport psychology skills will lead to desirable outcomes, (b) interpersonal openness, and (c) affective prejudice toward identified outgroups but were not related to level of self-concept as hypothesized. Contrary to predictions, Gender X Race X SPC experience MANOVAs revealed no gender or racial differences in attitudes toward sport psychology consultation. It was concluded that the SPAQ is a valid and reliable instrument for assessing a set of important attitudinal dimensions with regard to seeking sport psychology consultation and a useful instrument for research and practice. Theoretical and empirical support for the interpretation of the SPAQ factor structure, directions for future research, and practical implications are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2641/
Athletic Trainers and Psychological Disorders Among Athletes: An Examination of Their Abilities to Recognize, Diagnose and Intervene.
Utilizing an analogue research design conducted via the Internet, this study assessed athletic trainers' abilities to recognize, diagnose, and intervene with a hypothetical athlete experiencing depression, and examined the impact of their gender, athlete gender, and athlete's presenting problem on their decisions. Athletic trainers' perceived competency in using psychosocial interventions with athletes, history of referring athletes to psychology professionals, and training backgrounds in psychology also were examined. Participants (270 male and 370 female certified athletic trainers) were randomly assigned to one of six conditions (Athlete Gender X Presenting Problem). After reading the appropriate vignette, they completed questions related to the athlete's psychological symptoms and diagnosis, referral recommendations, and use of psychosocial interventions if working with the athlete. The vignettes were identical except for the athlete's gender and problem. Overall, athletic trainers accurately identified the athlete's depressive symptoms/diagnosis and need for psychological referral. They rated the athlete significantly higher in Depressive Symptoms than in Anger/Agitation Symptoms and Compulsive Behavioral Symptoms, and as more likely to be experiencing a depressive disorder compared to an adjustment disorder, anxiety disorder, sleep disorder, or substance abuse disorder. Female athletic trainers provided significantly higher ratings of Depressive Symptoms than males and the injured athlete was rated significantly higher in Anger/Agitation than the performance problem athlete. Diagnosis ratings were not influenced by athlete gender, athletic trainer gender, or type of problem. Athletic trainers were most likely to refer the athlete to a psychology professional compared to an allied health professional, treating the athlete themselves, or doing nothing. Presenting problem significantly impacted referral recommendations. If treating the athlete themselves, athletic trainers were significantly more likely to use supportive interventions than cognitive-behavioral techniques; they felt significantly more competent in providing supportive interventions. Competency in both interventions was significantly enhanced if athletic trainers completed psychology coursework. Findings suggest that athletic trainers are able to accurately identify and intervene with athletes experiencing psychological problems. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5483/
Attachment Processes, Stress Processes, and Sociocultural Standards in the Development of Eating Disturbances in College Women
Minimal empirical research using longitudinal data to explore integrative models of eating disorder development exists. The purpose of this study was to further explore multidimensional models incorporating parental attachment, history of stress, appraisal/coping processes, internalization of the thin-ideal, negative affect, body image, and eating disordered behavior using prospective, longitudinal data. The models were evaluated using 238 participants who completed an initial series of self-report questionnaires during their first semester in college and completed follow-up questionnaires 6 months and 18 months later. Structural equation modeling was used to examine the relationships among the factors. Analyses confirmed that college freshman with insecure parental attachment relationships and those with a history of previous stressful experiences appraised the adjustment to college as more stressful and reported feeling less able to cope with the transition; these conditions predicted increased negative affect and increased eating disturbances. Women who reported experiencing negative affect and those that endorsed internalization of the thin-ideal also reported higher levels of body dissatisfaction; these women engaged in more disordered eating attitudes and behaviors. A second model investigating negative affect as mediating the relationship between the appraisal/coping process and eating disturbances also revealed that experiencing difficulties with the transition to college predicted later negative mood states. Further, women who reported increased negative affect also reported increased eating disturbances. Finally, cross-lagged and simultaneous effects between selected factors were evaluated. Results from these analyses are mixed, but they provide additional information about the predictive relationships among factors that play a role in the development of eating disorders. The results of this study provide valuable information about the development of eating disorders that can be used to aid prevention and treatment. Examination of these models in a large independent sample might provide confirmation of these relationships, and investigation of the models during different developmental periods might also provide important information about the development of eating disturbances and those individuals who are most at risk. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5477/
Attention and Information Processing Variables in Hypothetically Psychosis-Prone College Students
Considering the explanations of schizophrenia that presume schizophrenia spectrum disorders (e.g., schizotypal personality disorder, schizoaffective disorder, etc.) to be genetically related to schizophrenia, the purpose of this study was to investigate the attention and information processing abilities of individuals who have been identified as schizotypal or psychosis-prone (i.e., schizophrenia spectrum functioning in individuals who do not have schizophrenia). Research indicates that persons identified as psychosis-prone may show attention and information processing deficits similar to individuals with schizophrenia. The identification and description of individuals who later decompensate into schizophrenia would advance the understanding of schizophrenia and its causes. The Chapman's PER-MAG scale (Perceptual Aberration-Magical Ideation) was used to identify 35 hypothetically psychosis-prone college students (schizotypy group) and 42 normal college students (nonschizotypy group) out of the 806 volunteer subjects. Their attention and information processing abilities were measured by COGLAB (a multiparadigmatic cognitive test battery that represents a continuum of cognitive functions, from preattentional to attentional, to conceptual). Their social adjustment was measured by the Premorbid Adjustment Scale (PAS). The hypotheses of the study were that the hypothetically psychosis-prone subjects would perform poorer than controls on COGLAB measures and that COGLAB measures of a more molar nature would better predict social adjustment than would the more molecular tasks. The results of the study did not support the hypotheses as there were no significant differences between the schizotypy group and the nonschizotypy group and the measures of a more molar nature did not better predict social adjustment. Further research might consider increasing the sample size, applying more stringent cut-off criteria for the schizotypy group, and verifying the validity of using PER-MAG, COGLAB, and PAS with this population. Further research also needs to clarify the ways in which those identified as psychosis-prone process information like (or unlike) nonschizotypes and how their current social functioning might be related to their deficiencies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278965/
Attention and Metacognition in the Elaborated Intrusion Theory of Desire
The elaborated intrusion (EI) theory of desire is a cognitive model that describes the processes involved in craving as intrusive thoughts that are elaborated upon leading to dissonance when desires are not met. While the theory is based on a wide body of research, certain theoretical predictions have not been fully examined. Specifically, EI theory argues that mental imagery has a central role in craving, and predicts that attempts to suppress substance-related intrusive thoughts and mental imagery is related to increased craving. Further, EI theory suggests that elaboration of craving imagery is related to attention and working memory processes, however, there are questions about whether differential performance in these domains is related to craving. The current study examined the relationship between attention/working memory performance and alcohol craving in a sample of 119 young adult males. Additionally, metacognition was examined to clarify the phenomenological aspects of craving within EI theory. Attention and working memory performance did not significantly predict intrusive thought and mental imagery elaboration. Individuals with high craving reported significantly higher levels of anxiety, thought suppression, and greater strength and frequency of craving-related mental imagery. They were also more likely to try to control their own thoughts and make negative judgments on their ability to do so. The strength of craving-related intrusive thoughts, not mental imagery, was the most significant predictor of craving. Implications for the understanding of craving and treatment recommendations based on the findings are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500213/
Attention Biases Associated with Vulnerability to Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is associated with significant social and occupational impairments, as well as increased risk for substance abuse and suicide. More research is needed to identify potential mechanisms associated with vulnerability to the disorder. Previous research has identified altered processing of emotional information in bipolar and bipolar-prone individuals, including attentional biases which appear to differ based on the current affective state of the individual. The current study applied a sensitive measure of attention (i.e., eye-tracking) to assess whether vulnerability to bipolar disorder, as indexed by hypomanic personality traits, would be correlated with biases in attention to emotional facial stimuli, independent of mood state. Hypomanic personality traits were hypothesized to be associated with greater attention to happy and angry faces, as indexed by faster initial orientation, more frequent gazes, and longer gaze duration for these stimuli. Participants completed self-report measures assessing current mood symptoms, positive and negative affect, and hypomanic personality traits. They then completed two tasks assessing attention for emotional faces. The first was an eye-tracking task, which measured latency to first fixation, total gaze duration and total number of gazes for each emotional face category. The second was a spatial cueing task which assessed both attentional engagement with emotional faces, and ability to disengage attention from this material. Hypomanic personality traits were significantly negatively correlated with latency to orient attention to happy faces. A trend toward decreased latency to orient to angry faces with higher hypomanic personality traits was also demonstrated. Hypomanic traits were not correlated with attention to sad faces. Furthermore, hypomanic traits were associated only with differences in initial orientation of attention, not with continued engagement or disengagement. The results of this study suggest that individuals with higher levels of hypomanic personality traits, who are hypothesized to be at greater risk of developing bipolar disorder, are characterized by differences in their initial orientation of attention to positive emotional stimuli, independent of their current mood state. This finding is indicative of biased information processing in individuals with vulnerability to bipolar disorder. Such a bias may have important clinical implications for individuals with a vulnerability to bipolar disorder, as it may represent a mechanism by which vulnerability leads to increased, and at times problematic, engagement with rewarding stimuli. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271775/
Attribution to Deviant and Nondeviant Social Roles.
A questionnaire was used to study causal attribution to social roles as influenced by perceived deviance of the role, instructions to identify with the role, and participant gender. The perceived deviance or nondeviance of the roles was determined by a pilot study. The roles were varied randomly through 12 hypothetical events, and identification or nonidentification instructions randomly assigned. The participants were 194 male and female university students. Participants gave the cause of each event and rated the cause on five dimensions: internality, externality, stability, globality, and controllability. Causal attribution to deviant social roles was found to result in a significantly higher across-scales score and to be more internal, less external, and more global than attribution to nondeviant roles. Participant gender showed an interaction with deviance overall and on the dimensions of stability and globality due to significantly higher ratings by women participants than those by men. Identification instructions did not produce a significant effect. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2178/