UNT Theses and Dissertations - Browse

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Accuracy of Partner Perception and Relationship Satisfaction: Investigating Masturbatory Habits

Description: An individual's perceptions of various aspects of one's romantic relationship (irrespective of whether or not the perceptions align with reality) often play a critical role in romantic relationship satisfaction. Research has demonstrated that the accuracy of an individual's perception of his or her partner is generally positively related to the individual's romantic relationship satisfaction. However, when perceiving negative or conflictual messages from a partner, an individual's accuracy of perception is negatively associated with his or her romantic relationship satisfaction. Researchers have suggested that poor accuracy in perceiving negative messages might diffuse the negative intention in a way that is less impactful to the relationship. The present study was designed to investigate accuracy in the perception of sexual topics, specifically masturbatory habits. A sample of 93 married couples (186 individuals) responded to questions about (a) their own masturbatory behaviors and (b) their perception of their partners' masturbatory behaviors to determine the accuracy of each partner's perception of his or her partner. The association between accuracy and romantic and sexual relationship satisfaction was explored, along with one potential moderating variable: attitudes toward masturbation. Perceived reason for masturbating, perceived target of arousal during masturbation, and partner's actual reason for masturbating all positively predicted an individual's relationship satisfaction. Partner's actual openness about masturbatory behaviors moderated the association between accuracy of partner perception of openness about masturbation and both relationship and sexual satisfaction. When partners were more open about masturbation, accuracy was a stronger positive predictor of relationship and sexual satisfaction than when partners were less open about masturbation. Results, limitations, areas for future research, and clinical implications are discussed.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Ramos, Marciana Julia
Partner: UNT Libraries

Associations Between Witnessing the Abuse of a Sibling in Childhood and Experiencing Trauma Related Symptoms in Adulthood

Description: Currently sibling research is burgeoning, yet there is virtually no literature regarding outcomes associated with witnessing the abuse of a sibling. The present study aimed to address this gap in the literature. A sample of 284 university students were surveyed regarding traumatic experiences in childhood and adulthood, the quality of childhood sibling relationships, and the experience of trauma symptoms in adulthood. Regression and moderation analyses were conducted to examine the relationship between witnessing the abuse of a sibling in childhood and trauma symptoms in adulthood and to assess whether sibling relationship quality moderates the association between sibling abuse and trauma symptomology. Results showed that witnessing the abuse of a sibling was associated with depression symptoms in the overall sample and for females reporting about a brother. Also, sibling conflict moderated the relationship between witnessed sibling abuse and externalization in sister-sister dyads. These associations should be considered in terms of the systemic abuse to which participants were exposed. Implications for clinical practice working with sibling-related victimization are discussed.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Williams, Jennifer S
Partner: UNT Libraries

"Man Up!": Exploring Intersections of Sport Participation, Masculinity, Psychological Distress and Help-Seeking Attitudes

Description: Contemporary masculinity research has focused on the ways in which socialized masculine ideologies influence, especially negatively, the lives of men. Adherence to traditional masculine norms has been inversely associated with psychological help-seeking yet positively related to psychological distress and substance use. Though sport has been conceptualized as an environment in which masculine ideologies (e.g., emphasis on competition) are learned and reinforced, few studies have quantitatively explored how, or if, masculinity differs in athletes and nonathletes. Using a sample of male collegiate athletes (n = 220) and nonathletes (n =205), this study explored: (a) differences in masculinity between athletes and nonathletes; (b) relations between masculinity and psychological/behavioral outcomes (e.g., depression, substance abuse) in athletes and nonathletes; and (c) the mediational role of self-stigma in the relation between masculinity and help-seeking in athletes and nonathletes. Athletes endorsed greater conformity to masculine norms (CMN) and experienced greater gender role conflict (GRC) than nonathlete peers. Masculinity variables also predicted depressive symptomology and alcohol use in both groups, though accounted for greater variance in nonathletes. Furthermore, self-stigma mediated the relationship between CMN and help-seeking intentions for both athlete and nonathlete men. Clinical implications of these findings and potential directions for future research are discussed. Using a sample of male collegiate athletes (n = 220) and nonathletes (n = 205), this study explored: (a) differences in masculinity between athletes and nonathletes; (b) relations between masculinity and psychological/behavioral outcomes (e.g., depression, substance abuse) in athletes and nonathletes; and (c) the mediational role of self-stigma in the relation between masculinity and help-seeking in athletes and nonathletes. Athletes endorsed greater conformity to masculine norms (CMN) and experienced greater gender role conflict (GRC) than nonathlete peers. Masculinity variables also predicted depressive symptomology and alcohol use in both groups, though accounted for greater variance in nonathletes. Furthermore, self-stigma mediated the relationship ...
Date: August 2016
Creator: Ramaeker, Joseph
Partner: UNT Libraries

Observed Parenting Aspects of Child Compliance in Custodial Grandfamilies

Description: Custodial grandmothers and grandchild (aged 4 to 12) dyads (N = 170) completed self-report, other-report, and an observational task that captured child HI, expressive social support, and custodial grandmother-grandchild compliance variables. A multivariate analysis of covariance tested differences between high and low hyperactivity-inattention on observed parenting variables while controlling for child age. While overall results were not significant, there were significant differences between child age and observed parenting variables. A hierarchical regression model revealed that, when controlling for age, child hyperactivity-inattention does not moderate the relationship between commands given by a custodial grandmother and child compliance, but revealed that direct commands from the grandmother predicted compliance. A second hierarchical regression model suggested that encouragement and praise (versus criticism and discouragement) from a grandmother moderated the relationship between grandmother commands and child compliance, when controlling for child age. It appeared that when grandmothers gave indirect commands more frequently, encouragement and praise instead of criticism was associated with greater compliance. In dyads with frequent direct commands given, compliance was high, however dyads who scored high in direct commands with criticism and discouragement were most likely to comply. This study adds to the literature by providing insight into the challenges and strengths for this unique, growing population.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Portner, Laura Collier
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Effects of Self-Forgiveness, Self-Acceptance, and Self-Compassion on Subclinical Disordered Eating: The Role of Shame

Description: Disordered eating is a general term that describes a wide range of behaviors from diagnosable eating disorders to subclinical patterns of behavior that do not meet criteria for diagnosis (e.g., problematic weight loss behaviors, excessive dieting, bingeing, purging). Disordered eating is prevalent and has a wide range of physical and psychological consequences. Negative self-conscious emotions such as shame and guilt have been implicated in the development and maintenance of disordered eating. Positive attitudes toward the self (i.e., self-forgiveness, self-compassion, self-acceptance) may be helpful in reducing shame, guilt, and disordered eating symptoms. In this dissertation, I explored the associations between positive attitudes toward the self, negative self-conscious emotions, and disordered eating in a sample of college students and adults (N = 477). Positive attitudes toward the self were associated with lower levels of disordered eating symptoms, and this relationship was partially mediated by lower levels of negative self-conscious emotions. I concluded by discussing areas for future research and implications for clinical practice.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Womack, Stephanie Dianne
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Relationship Between Shame and Attachment Styles

Description: Despite research documenting the association between shame and aspects of poor psychological functioning, shame's adverse effects have remained largely invisible in modern societies. Shame has been described as the "attachment emotion" (Lewis, 1980), yet, there is little research that examines the relationship between attachment style and shame, and conclusions from this research are tempered by methodological limitations. The current study aimed to address methodological limitations with a quasi-experimental design and employed measures of state and trait shame, shame coping styles, an Emotional Stroop task for assessing implicit shame, and a shame mood induction procedure (MIP). This methodology provided a basis to examine differences by attachment style for 271 university students in state, trait, and implicit shame, as well as the use of maladaptive shame coping styles at baseline and following a shame MIP. Additionally, a qualitative analysis of the shame MIP written responses was conducted to provide a more nuanced understanding of the task used to elicit feelings of shame and individual differences in events identified as shame-triggering. Results revealed that students evidencing an insecure attachment style (i.e., preoccupied, fearful, or dismissive). reported significantly more state and trait shame compared to students evidencing a secure attachment style after the shame MIP. Individuals with an insecure attachment also demonstrated significant increases in state shame from baseline to post-MIP. Additionally, students with a preoccupied or fearful attachment style were also significantly more likely to endorse utilizing maladaptive shame coping strategies compared to students with a secure attachment style. Clinical implications, limitations, and future research directions are discussed.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Atkins, Sarah Ann
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Pursuit of Optimal Performance: The Effect of Mastery- and Ego-Oriented Feedback on Sport Performance, Task Difficulty Selection, Confidence, and Anxiety

Description: Within an achievement motivation theoretical framework, there are factors thought to most heavily influence performance and task difficulty selection. More specifically, motivational climates, feedback, confidence, and anxiety have all been identified as important factors influencing outcomes within performance settings. Much of the literature in the area of achievement motivation has focused on on the effects of mastery- and ego-oriented feedback on performance within academic settings and has received limited attention in the sport psychology literature within an athletic setting. Given the demonstrated effects of mastery- and ego-oriented feedback on performance, the importance of performance within the athletic context, and the scant literature examining the effects of feedback on athletic performance, the influence of feedback on sport performance needed to be empirically examined. The primary aim of this study was to provide a clearer understanding of the relationship of factors influencing athletic performance, with the ultimate goal of moving research toward a greater understanding of how optimal performance is achieved. As a result, this research may prove applicable to researchers, coaches, and athletes working toward optimal performance. In this study, I examined how mastery- and ego-oriented feedback influenced youth athletes' soccer performance, task difficulty selection, confidence, and anxiety. Youth soccer athletes (n = 71) participated in a soccer kicking task consisting of two trials. Between subjects ANCOVA analyses revealed athletes receiving mastery-oriented feedback performed significantly better on the soccer kicking task than athletes receiving ego-oriented feedback. No differences were discovered on task difficulty selection, confidence, or anxiety. Providing athletes mastery-oriented feedback before or after skill execution could be helpful in the development of athletic skill development and performance. Limitations of the present study and questions to examine in future research are also discussed.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Moles, Troy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Back on the Home Front: Demand/Withdraw Communication and Relationship Adjustment Among Student Veterans

Description: Today’s military encompasses a wide variety of families who are affected by deployments in multiple and complex ways. Following deployments, families must reconnect in their relationships and reestablish their way of life. Appropriate and effective communication during this time is critical, yet many military couples struggle with this process. Moreover, student service members/veterans and their families are in a unique position. In addition to coping with changes in their marital relationship, student veterans may feel isolated or unsupported on college campuses, often experiencing anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress, or suicidality. The current study seeks to bridge the gap between the military family literature and the student service member/veteran literature by examining how deployment experiences, mental health issues, and communication patterns influence post-deployment relationship adjustment among student veterans. Analyses tested whether communication style and/or current mental health concerns mediate associations between combat experiences and couples’ relationship adjustment, as well as between experiences in the aftermath of battle and relationship adjustment. Results suggest that although posttraumatic stress is significantly related to deployment experiences among student veterans, participants report no significant negative effects of deployment on relationship adjustment. Communication style, however, was significantly associated with relationship adjustment, and a lack of positive communication was found to correlate with PTSD diagnosis. Research and clinical implications are discussed.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Carver, Kellye Diane Schiffner
Partner: UNT Libraries

Social Cognitive Career Theory, Academic Choice Behavior, and Academic Performance in African American College Students

Description: The current study examined the impact that components of Social Cognitive Career Theory (SCCT) have on choice behavior and academic performance in African American or Black, undergraduate students. SCCT is a highly valued and researched theory, but few studies examine the impact that SCCT components have on choice behavior and academic performance in Black college students. This study focused on evaluating SCCT components’ relevance to variables that have been shown to predict later objective career success. This is important because African Americans tend to have significantly lower paying and less prestigious jobs, as well as attain lower levels of education than most other racial populations in the United States. However, there is a paucity of current career development and attainment literature specific to the African American undergraduate population. In an effort to promote understanding of within group differences in SCCT variables that can contribute to educational and career success, 247 African American undergraduates were recruited to participate in this study. The participants completed online questionnaires regarding demographic information, self-efficacy, contextual barriers, contextual supports, choice goals, and choice behavior. Participants also gave permission for researchers to access grades. Findings indicate that academic coping self-efficacy, contextual barriers, and contextual supports may be particularly important to academic choice behavior in African American college students. Further, choice behavior appears to be important to grade point average. Implications, limitations, and recommendations for future research associated with this study’s findings are discussed.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Garrett, Krista L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Intuitive Eating in Adolescents: Testing a Psychosocial Model

Description: Intuitive eating is defined as an adaptive eating process that involves focusing on internal hunger and satiety to guide eating behavior, using those physiological cues rather than emotions to determine when to eat, and choosing what to eat based upon preference and not external rules and expectations. The purpose of this study was to examine intuitive eating within the context of contemporary sociocultural models of eating in 701 early adolescent boys and 769 early adolescent girls. Support was found for the model and suggested that pressures to lose weight or gain muscle, restrictive messages about food from caregivers, and internalization of the thin ideal were related to the early adolescents’ intuitive eating behaviors, suggesting that many of the sociocultural variables that have been found to impact disordered eating are salient for understanding healthy eating behaviors. However, the relations among many of the variables, as well as the model’s ability to explain intuitive eating overall, were stronger in girls than in boys. These findings can be used to help parents and schools begin to teach early adolescents about intuitive eating and how they can resist external pressures that may negatively influence their eating behaviors.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Dockendorff, Sally A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Predictors of the Relationship Between Childhood Maltreatment and Career Decision Self-efficacy Among Undergraduate Students

Description: Vocational disruption for survivors of interpersonal trauma has been noted by both practitioners and researchers. While limited empirical support exists, a firm theoretical framework and a full range of outcomes have not been explored. Guided by the framework of social cognitive career theory (SCCT), a promising framework recommended in the previous literature, the aim of the current study was to explore the function of contextual barriers and supports as predictors of career decision self-efficacy (CDSE). Due to the lack of consistency in previous research and absent theoretical specification of the particular mode of intervening variables, both mediation and moderation were explored using multiple regression. The results indicate the relationship between background factors (i.e., childhood maltreatment) and CDSE was fully mediated by an indirect pathway via personal factors (i.e., trauma-related symptoms) and learning experiences (i.e., anxious and avoidant attachment with a career-related mentor) in the prediction of CDSE. The results also indicate that personal factors (i.e., trauma-related symptoms) function as a moderator between background factors (i.e., childhood maltreatment) and learning experiences as anxious attachment with a career-related mentor. Finally, learning experiences as anxious attachment with a career-related mentor moderated the relationship between personal factors (i.e., trauma-related symptoms) and CDSE. Overall, within the SCCT model, the proposed predictors help explain differences in CDSE as related to childhood maltreatment through mediation and moderation. Theoretical and practical implications of the results are discussed.
Date: August 2015
Creator: MacIntire, Mae M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Contributing Factors in the Development of Complex Post-traumatic Stress Disorder Among Survivors of Interpersonal Violence

Description: An understanding of factors that contribute to Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD) is of considerable importance to inform the prevention and treatment of the disorder. Moreover, gaining a better understanding of the factors that contribute to the etiology of CPTSD is of interest since most research to date focuses on the etiology of PTSD. Therefore, the purpose of the current study is to test the hypothesized prediction between childhood exposure to violence, childhood attachment, current interpersonal factors, and CPTSD symptoms. Using data from a community clinic and shelter serving victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, a partial least squares path analysis approach was employed to test the model’s strength in predicting contributing factors of CPTSD. Results support the proposed model, however, an alternative and more parsimonious model was found to be superior and revealed relationships between interpersonal variables and CPTSD. Specifically, women who reported child abuse and poor attachment with either parent, a perceived lack of current emotional and tangible support, and recent intimate partner violence (IPV) also reported symptoms of CPTSD. However, other variables, such as adult attachment avoidance and anxiety did not influence IPV or CPTSD as expected. Ultimately, the current findings lend support for Herman’s (1992) original conceptualization of CPTSD symptoms observed in survivors of prolonged and repeated trauma. Implications of these findings are discussed and results highlight the importance of assessing the contextual factors (e.g., social support, family environment) when a victim of prolonged trauma comes for treatment. Lastly, treatment implications and specific points of intervention are presented.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Marchesani, Estee Simpkins
Partner: UNT Libraries

Academic, Social and Emotional Functioning of College Students with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Description: Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is frequently associated with negative occupational, social and psychological outcomes among community samples of adults; as such, it is expected that college students with ADHD face similar struggles. The research targeting this group of individuals, however, is sparse and tempered by significant limitations. The current study aimed to address methodological limitations in the current literature by including instruments to formally diagnosis ADHD and comorbid disorders, utilizing psychometrically sound instruments and comparing functioning of college students with ADHD across gender and subtype. It was hypothesized that participants with ADHD would report lower GPAs, higher levels of emotional distress and negative relationship characteristics than participants without ADHD. It was also hypothesized that participants with ADHD-combined type (ADHD-C) would report higher levels of substance and alcohol use than participants with ADHD-predominately inattentive type (ADHD-I), and that participants with ADHD-I would report higher levels of anxiety and depression than participants with ADHD-C. Women diagnosed with ADHD were expected to report higher levels of anxiety and depression than men diagnosed with ADHD; whereas, men diagnosed with ADHD were expected to report higher levels of substance and alcohol use than women. MANOVA, ANOVA and Mann-Whitney U tests were conducted to test hypotheses. Results revealed no significant differences between the ADHD and comparison group on GPA and relationship characteristics. Participants diagnosed with ADHD did report significantly higher emotional distress than participants in the comparison group. No differences in GPA or relationship characteristics were found across ADHD subtype or gender. Overall, these findings provide evidence to suggest that college students with ADHD are functioning relatively well compared to their non-ADHD peers.
Date: August 2015
Creator: McKelvy, Tara N.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Factorial Validity and Measurement Invariance of the Test of Performance Strategies, Sport Anxiety Scale, and the Golf Performance Survey Across Age Groups

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine the factorial validity and measurement equivalence of the Test of Performance Strategies (TOPS; Thomas, Murphy, & Hardy, 1999); the Sport Anxiety Scale (SAS; Smith, Smoll, & Schultz, 1990); and the Golf Performance Survey (GPS; Thomas & Over, 1994) across age groups in a representative sample of amateur golfers. Based on archival data, participants comprising this study were 649 younger adult (n = 237) and older adult (n = 412) amateur golfers who played in the Dupont World Amateur Golf Championship in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The participants completed a set of questionnaires including psychological skills and strategies (e.g., self-talk, goal setting, imagery, etc.) used during competition, sport-specific competitive trait anxiety, and psychomotor skills and involvement in golf. Results demonstrated that the original factor structure of the TOPS competition subscale, the SAS, and the GPS, did not adequately fit the data among this sample of younger and older adult amateur golfers. Further exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses established evidence of factorial validity with the TOPS competition subscale, SAS, and the GPS with both younger and older adult amateur golfers. Configural, metric, scalar, and strict measurement invariance were identified in relation to the TOPS competition subscale, SAS, and the GPS across age cross-group comparisons. In general, the analyses demonstrated support that the TOPS competition subscale, SAS, and the GPS can be utilized with confidence with older adult amateur golfers, as well as conducting group comparisons with younger adult amateur golfers. The findings from this study have several future research directions and practical implications for structuring effective interventions with older adult amateur athletes.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Deiters, Jay A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Influence of Family and Cultural Values on the Career Development of Asian Americans

Description: Factors influencing the career development of Asian Americans have included family influences, including parental expectations and parent-young adult relationship, and adherence to Asian cultural values. Variables such as interests and values have been shown to be important factors in the career-related decisions of western, European American culture individuals, although interests have been found to be less important for Asian Americans. Research suggests that parental expectations and adherence to traditional Asian values have more influence on career development among this population. Sandhu found in 2011 that parental expectations are highly linked with career choice of a specific Asian subgroup. The current study examined the relationship between parental expectations, acculturation, career values, adherence to Asian cultural values, the parent-young adult relationship, and career choice in the Asian American population. The values gap between the parents’ and young adults’ cultural values as well as the gap’s effects on the parent-child relationship were assessed. A sample of 173 self-identified Asian Americans aged 18 to 25 were recruited from across the US to complete an Internet survey consisting of demographic questions, career choice questions, a measure of acculturation, an assessment of career-related values, an assessment of adherence to Asian cultural values, and an assessment of the parent-young adult relationship. Results from hierarchical multiple regression analyses showed that the prestige of parents’ career expectations was a significant predictor of the prestige of young adults’ expected career choices. Although other family and process variables were not found to be significant predictors of young adults’ career choices, interesting correlations were noted among many of these variables.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Sandhu, Gurminder
Partner: UNT Libraries

Family Interaction Patterns, Child Attachment, and Child Emotional Adjustment

Description: The present study examined the links between whole family interaction patterns, parent-child attachment, and child emotional adjustment in a sample of 86 community families with children between the ages of 8 and 11. Family interactions were observed and coded with the System for Coding Interactions and Family Functioning (SCIFF; Lindahl, 2001). Target children completed the Children’s Coping Strategies Questionnaire (CCSQ; Yunger, Corby, & Perry, 2005), and the Behavior Assessment System for Children- 2nd Edition, Self Report of Personality (BASC-2 SRP; Reynolds &Kamphaus, 2004). Results of hierarchical regressions indicated that Secure and Avoidant attachment each independently predicted children’s emotional symptoms in some models. Family Cohesion and Positive Affect moderated the relationship between father-child attachment and children’s emotional symptoms. Results of the current study support the utility of considering dyadic attachment and family interaction patterns conjointly when conceptualizing and treating children’s emotional outcomes.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Demby, Kimberly P.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Ethnic Differences in Caregiving Style

Description: This study explored the caregiving styles of 306 grandparents raising grandchild across three ethnic groups (164 European Americans, 65 Latinos, and 77 African Americans). Significant differences were found in caregiving styles between European Americans and African Americans. Caregiver appraisal (burden, satisfaction, and Mastery) was found to be predictive of caregiving style across the entire sample, and differentially by ethnic group. Caregiver style was predictive of grandchild functioning across the entire sample, and differentially by ethnic group. Lastly, caregiver style was found to be predictive of grandparent well-being across the entire sample, and differentially by ethnic group. Implications are discussed in terms of the complex, multidimensional and culturally embedded nature of the caregiving experience and the importance of considering culture for optimal outcomes.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Rodriguez, R. Mishelle
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Biopsychosocial Model of Dietary Restraint in Early Adolescent Boys

Description: The current study replicated and extended previous research by examining empirically the direct and indirect influence of social pressure (to lose weight and diet), social body comparisons, internalization of the thin ideal, body dissatisfaction, self-esteem, and cardiorespiratory fitness on self-reported dietary restraint in a diverse sample of middle school boys (n = 663); Mage was 12.49 years (SD = .99). With IRB approval, parental consent, and child assent, during annual FITNESSGRAM testing, participants completed questionnaires that measured the study’s constructs. Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) was determined by the boys’ performance on the PACER running test. The proposed model was examined using structural equation modeling (SEM). Because measures demonstrated univariate and multivariate normality, the maximum likelihood procedure within EQS to examine the measurement and structural models was used. Fit was determined using a two-index procedure. Participants were randomly split into exploratory (Sample A - 331) and confirmatory (Sample B - 332) samples. For Sample A, the measurement and structural models fit the data well. The structural model was confirmed in Sample B, with the same paths being significant and nonsignficant. For both Sample A and Sample B, 35% of the Dietary Restraint variance was explained. These findings support a multifactorial approach to understanding boys’ self-reported dietary restraint, and illuminate the negative influence of sociocultural weight pressures and salutary effects of CRF on early adolescents’ psychosocial well-being and dietary behaviors.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Mitchell, Sara H.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Role Importance, Affectional Solidarity, and Depression Among Familial Caregivers for Older Adults

Description: In the United States, familial caregivers provide approximately 80% of the long term elderly care and are at risk for mental health problems. As family members provide care, relationships shift from mutual support to increasing dependency on the caregivers, who in turn often experience a shift in self-concept from their prior relational role to include identification as caregiver for the care recipient. Affectional solidarity, or emotional relationship quality, can influence how caregivers experience their shifting role in relationship to a loved one. The study examined whether role importance is associated with caregiver depression over time, and tested the moderating role of affectional solidarity in this association. A subset of caregivers (N = 57) from the Longitudinal Study of Generations constituted the sample from which role importance, affectional solidarity, and Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression reports were analyzed using longitudinal hierarchical regression. Findings did not support hypotheses. Results suggested that affectional solidarity may be important to consider among familial caregivers as a potential protective factor for depression. Implications for future research and practitioners are discussed.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Benson, Karen M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Relations Between Perceived Parent, Coach, and Peer Created Motivational Climates, Goal Orientations, and Mental Toughness in High School Varsity Athletes

Description: Determining the factors that contribute to mental toughness development in athletes has become a focus for researchers as coaches, athletes, and others extol its influence on performance success. In this study we examined a model of mental toughness development based on achievement goal theory, assessing the relations between motivational climates, goal orientations, and mental toughness. Five hundred ninety-nine varsity athletes, representing 13 different sports from six different high schools in a southwestern United States school district, participated in the study. Athletes completed self-report measures assessing parent, peer, and coach motivational climates, goal orientations, and their mental toughness. Initially, I examined the measurement model and found it fit the data well both in the exploratory (SRMR = .06; CFI = .94) and confirmatory (SRMR = .06; CFI = .95) samples. Second, the structural model was examined and found to fit the data well in both the exploratory (SRMR = .08; CFI = .93) and confirmatory samples (SRMR = .07, CFI = .95). Parent task-involving climate, (β = .55; p < .05) and coach task-involving climate (β = .32; p < .05), but not peer task-involving climate (β = .05), were associated with task goal orientation (R2 = .57). Ego goal orientation (R2 = .32) was explained by peer ego-involving climate (β = .15; p < .05), parent ego-involving climate (β = .39; p < .05), and coach ego-involving climate (β = .16; p < .05). Finally, only task goal orientation (β = .75; p < .05) was related to the athletes’ mental toughness (R2 = .56); the ego goal orientation pathway was not significant (β = .04). These results speak to the potential positive influence of parents and coaches on athletes’ mental toughness through their endorsement of task-involving messages and pursuits leading to the development of a task goal orientation.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Beck, Nicholas M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Finding Out on Facebook: a Qualitative Analysis of Adolescents’ Experiences Following a Suicide Cluster

Description: Suicide clusters have been identified in many populations; however, research exploring the role of online communication in the aftermath of a suicide cluster is extremely limited. This study used the Consensual Qualitative Research method to analyze interviews of ten high school students following a suicide cluster in a small suburban school district. Interviewee’s responses were organized into 4 domains: the suicide, impact, perceptions of school environment, and recovery. The role of social networking emerged as a common theme across domains, suggesting broad relevance to adolescents’ experience following the suicide of a peer. Implications for clinical intervention and research are discussed.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Heffel, Carly J.
Partner: UNT Libraries

African American Father Influences on the Career Development of Emerging Adults

Description: 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.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Perry, QuaVaundra A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Pathways From ADHD Symptoms to Obesity in a College Population

Description: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is more recently being recognized as a lifetime disorder that continues to affect individuals into their adult lives. Recent research studies have found connections between ADHD and overweight/obesity. The current study was designed to further explore these relationships and better understand the connections between these two constructs among 340 college students. It was hypothesized that the ADHD symptoms (i.e., inattention and impulsivity) would positively predict depressive symptoms, which in turn would predict emotional/binge eating and lead to overweight/obesity. Additionally, it was hypothesized that impulsivity would predict substance use, which would predict emotional/binge eating and also predict overweight/obesity. The model was tested and exhibited excellent fit. ADHD positively predicted depressive symptoms, which in turn positively predicted emotional/binge eating and led to overweight/obesity. Further, ADHD symptoms also positively predicted substance use, which in turn predicted emotional/binge eating and led to overweight/obesity. All paths were statistically significant and findings suggest there are at least two paths that connect ADHD symptoms and overweight/obesity in adults. The current results are of importance to practicing clinicians because they provide increased clarity and depth regarding the connections and relationship between symptoms of ADHD and overweight/obesity.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Marcom, Leslee Johnson
Partner: UNT Libraries

Supervisors, Trainees, and Client Outcomes in the Training Clinic: Toward an Understanding of Relational Factors

Description: Estimates of healthy years of life lost due to mental illness are increasing, calling greater attention to the provision of effective psychotherapy services. Hypothesized to be the key mechanism through which competencies are developed in trainee clinicians and subsequent client outcomes, clinical supervision is deserving of greater attention. Drawing on a sample of supervisors, trainees, and clients from a training clinic, the present study sought to clarify the relational factors that could facilitate the asserted supervisor-client outcome link and to better understand if, and how, clinical supervisors influence client outcomes. With the exception of supervisor openness to experience, supervisor factors did not predict meaningful variance in client outcomes. Trainee extraversion and openness to experience predicted significant variance in leader-member exchange and supervisory working alliance. Dispositional trainee factors (e.g., personality) appear to impact trainee perceptions of the supervisory relationship. Implications for training and development are discussed, in addition to directions for future research.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Rieck, Troy P.
Partner: UNT Libraries