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Comparative Analysis of Chronic Versus Acute Stressors and Their Influence on Distress Consequences at Work

Description: Workplace stress has been found to be a causal agent of psychological distress consequences in employees. Chronic stressors have been well researched, in particular, role conflict, role ambiguity, and work overload have been extensively studied. A meta-analysis was conducted in order to aggregate past research to gain a better understanding of the impact these stressors have on the psychological distress consequences of depression, tension/anxiety, somatic complaints, and generalized feelings of stress. Only role ambiguity was found to be a significant contributor to psychological distress, in particular to feelings of depression and stress. In general, however, effect sizes for all three stressors were moderate to large. While chronic stressors have been well researched, acute stressors have been widely overlooked. Since research in this area is limited, the Daily Work Hassles Survey was developed and validated in order to analyze the role daily hassles play in the workplace. The survey yielded two factors, Interpersonal Hassles and Task Hassles. The former of which was found to be significantly related to the distress consequences of depression, tension/anxiety, somatic complaints, and general feelings of stress. The ultimate goal of this project was to compare chronic and acute stressors. Results from the daily hassles study were contrasted to the results of the aforementioned meta-analysis. It was found that the chronic stressors of role ambiguity, role conflict, and overload are significantly greater predictors of selected distress consequences than the acute factors of Interpersonal Hassles and Task Hassles. However, when somatic complaints was employed as the dependent variable, no significant differences were found between chronic and acute stressors.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Crawford, Julie Schwarz
Partner: UNT Libraries

Examining Career Transitions during Mid-Adulthood through the Lens of Bioecological and Microdevelopmental Research

Description: Using hierarchical multiple linear regression, this study examined the predictive relationship between micro-career transitions and career related outcomes and how those relationships were moderated by equilibration style. Participants (n = 177) answered an online survey which included a variety of measures for control, predictor, moderator, and outcome criterion (i.e., demographic descriptors, Instrumentality, Openness, Job Insecurity, Social Support Satisfaction, Microtransitions, Equilibration Style, Job Satisfaction, Job Burnout, Life Dissatisfaction, and Career Optimism). Research questions addressed the nature of micro-career transitions (e.g., frequencies, average stress ratings, category types), their predictive relationship with job and career outcomes, and the moderating role of Identity Styles on that relationship. Micro-career transitions were described according to responses for the research sample (n = 638). Significant effects were discovered between microtransitions and career outcomes (p < .05 and .01). Equilibration styles were also established as having a moderating effect on the predictive relationship between microtransitions and career outcomes (p < .05 and .01). Interaction terms were decomposed to examine the direction of significant moderating effects. In all cases where interaction terms were significant, moderators enhanced the negative predictive relationship between microtransitions and career outcomes.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Davis, Joe Edd
Partner: UNT Libraries

Investigation of Relational and Overt Aggression Among Boys and Girls

Description: Given the paucity of research that has been conducted on aggression in girls (see Keenan, Loeber, & Green, 1999, for a review), it is important to examine different behavioral manifestations of aggression that may be more prevalent among girls than boys, such as relational aggression (see Crick et al., 1999, for a review). Relational aggression consists of behaviors that harm others through damage to their peer relationships or the threat of such damage (e.g., spreading rumors about a peer so that others will reject him/her, social exclusion; Crick & Grotpeter, 1995). Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are a particular subset of youth who are at increased risk for exhibiting aggressive behavior (Henker & Whalen, 1999; Whalen & Henker, 1985). The purpose of the present study was to assess the prevalence of relational aggression among children with attention problems as compared to the general population. Gender differences in relational aggression were also examined. In the current study, participants included 91 3rd-5th grade public school students. Teacher ratings of aggressive behavior and attention problems were obtained. Parents also completed measures to assess attention problems and social-psychological adjustment. Contrary to prediction, results indicated children with attention problems were not more aggressive than children without attention problems, regardless of the type of aggressive behavior assessed (i.e., relational or overt aggression). With respect to gender differences in relational aggression, results indicate the well-known gender effect for relational aggression only applies to Caucasian students in this sample, as a gender effect for relational aggression was not obtained for Hispanic students. Thus, the gender effect for relational aggression should not be considered a robust finding generalizable to all ethnic groups. Finally, relationally aggressive children were reported to be as well-adjusted as their non-relationally aggressive peers, which is not consistent with previous research. Regardless of aggression status, Hispanic ...
Date: August 2003
Creator: Long, Melissa M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Measuring Change in University Counseling Center Students: Using Symptom Reduction and Satisfaction with Services to Propose a Model for Effective Outcome Research

Description: Abstract This study proposes a model for meeting increasingly mandated outcome research objectives in a university counseling center setting. It is proposed that counseling centers utilize their existing intake forms, along with an annual satisfaction survey to determine the effectiveness of counseling services. Effectiveness is defined as improvement and measured by the reduction of the symptoms or presenting concerns with which the client initially presented. It also introduces the Relative-Change Index (R-Chi) as an objective way to quantify intra-individual change occurring as a result of therapy. This new mathematical procedure allows for a more meaningful assessment of the client's degree of improvement, relative to their potential for improvement. By re-administering the problem checklist, routinely included as part of the initial paperwork for each client at intake, again post-therapy, it is possible to quantify improvement by measuring the difference in distressing concerns. Additionally, including a subjective, retrospective survey question asking the client to indicate their perceived rate if improvement at follow-up provides construct validity and allows for correlational comparisons with R-Chi. Results suggest that student/client ratings of the degree to which the services they received satisfactorily addressed their presenting concerns were significantly rated to their R-Chi score. This model suggests that the framework guiding client outcome research should include measures of the client's level of distress, improvement in reducing the distress, and satisfaction with services.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Quick, Cynthia L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Psychological and Sociodemographic Predictors of Psychological Distress in BRCA1 and BRCA2 Genetic Testing Participants within a Community Based Genetic Screening Program

Description: Mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2, the first two breast cancer susceptibility genes identified, carry as much as an 85% lifetime risk of developing breast, ovarian or other cancers. Genetic testing for mutations in these two genes has recently become commercially available. There have been varying amounts of psychological distress noted among women with a family history of breast cancer. Distress has been observed to impact psychological functioning, activities of daily living, and the practice of breast cancer surveillance behaviors. Within the genetic screening process, psychological distress has been shown to impact the decision to undergo genetic screening, the comprehension and retention of risk assessment information, as well as affecting the subject following the receipt of the genetic test results. Little work has been done to examine predictors of distress within at risk subjects. This study examines psychological distress among 52 community women presenting for BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutation testing. Predictors of distress included family cancer history, education, age, Ashkenazi ethnicity, and Internality and Powerful Others Health Locus of Control. Vulnerable sub-groups of patients include younger women, women with higher levels of education and women of Ashkenazi ethnicity.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Lesniak, Karen
Partner: UNT Libraries

Simulating Statistical Power Curves with the Bootstrap and Robust Estimation

Description: Power and effect size analysis are important methods in the psychological sciences. It is well known that classical statistical tests are not robust with respect to power and type II error. However, relatively little attention has been paid in the psychological literature to the effect that non-normality and outliers have on the power of a given statistical test (Wilcox, 1998). Robust measures of location exist that provide much more powerful tests of statistical hypotheses, but their usefulness in power estimation for sample size selection, with real data, is largely unknown. Furthermore, practical approaches to power planning (Cohen, 1988) usually focus on normal theory settings and in general do not make available nonparametric approaches to power and effect size estimation. Beran (1986) proved that it is possible to nonparametrically estimate power for a given statistical test using bootstrap methods (Efron, 1993). However, this method is not widely known or utilized in data analysis settings. This research study examined the practical importance of combining robust measures of location with nonparametric power analysis. Simulation and analysis of real world data sets are used. The present study found that: 1) bootstrap confidence intervals using Mestimators gave shorter confidence intervals than the normal theory counterpart whenever the data had heavy tailed distributions; 2) bootstrap empirical power is higher for Mestimators than the normal theory counterpart when the data had heavy tailed distributions; 3) the smoothed bootstrap controls type I error rate (less than 6%) under the null hypothesis for small sample sizes; and 4) Robust effect sizes can be used in conjuction with Cohen's (1988) power tables to get more realistic sample sizes given that the data distribution has heavy tails.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Herrington, Richard S.
Partner: UNT Libraries