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Academic Achievement: Examining the Impact of Community Type at a Small Liberal Arts College in Texas

Description: Hierarchical regression was used to determine if high school community type is an effective predictor of academic success when controlling for demographics, prior academic achievement, socioeconomic status, and current commitment or work habits for students entering Austin College in 1992,1993, and 1994 . Findings revealed that there is a relationship between attending high school in community types of rural and independent town controlling for the effects of SAT scores, high school rank, sex, and late application deposit on first semester grade point average.
Date: August 1995
Creator: Rutherford, Janis Pruitt

The Affects of Religiosity on Anomie

Description: This study explores the relationship between religion and anomie. The theoretical framework of Durkheim and Merton was used to suggest the hypothetical relationship between the two variables: as religiosity increases, anomie decreases. A secondary analysis was conducted using the 1991 General Social Survey (GSS). The GSS is one of the largest annual surveys conducted by the National Opinion Research Center. There were 1517 adult respondents composing the 1991 cross-national sample. Questions measuring both the belief and action dimensions of religion were used to measure respondents' level of religiosity. Questions from the Srole Scale of Anomia were used to measure respondents' level of anomia. Durkheim's theory that religion functions to integrate individuals into the larger society and therefore diminish levels of anomie was not supported with this data. While the lack of significant findings did not support the theory, neither did it disprove it. The hypothetical inverse relationship between class and anomie was supported with this data. Another hypothetical relationship, that of the most religious, women experience less anomie than men, was also not supported due to the lack of a significant relationship among the primary variables. Continued use of comprehensive and large scale surveys such as the General Social Survey is crucial. This research suggests the need for further testing of these hypotheses using more elaborate measures.
Date: August 1996
Creator: Wilson, Dwain R.

AIDS Preventative Behavior Among Taiwanese University Students

Description: This study used the Health Belief Model to examine the predictors of AIDS preventive behavior. The independent variables were the variables of individual perception, modifying factors (psychological variables), and likelihood variables. The respondents, the Taiwanese students of the University of North Texas, were influenced both by Chinese sexuality and Western values in their AIDS-risk behavior. The results revealed that 90% of the respondents were misinformed on the availability of AIDS vaccine. In addition, a majority of the students were either abstaining from sex or practicing monogamy. Using Pearson's correlation coefficient and multiple regression analysis, this study found that the psychological variables rather than cognitive variables significantly influenced the respondents' AIDS preventive behavior. Finally, suggestions were made for future research on AIDS, and for AIDS preventive behavior campaigns.
Date: May 1997
Creator: Wang, Ya-Chien

An Application of Marxian and Weberian Theories of Capitalism: the Emergence of Big Businesses in the United States, 1861 to 1890

Description: This study was an examination of businesses that became big businesses in the United States during the time period between the years of 1861 and 1890, a period of time frequently referred to as the “big business era.” The purpose of the study was to identify actions taken by businesses that enabled them to become and remain big businesses. A secondary purpose of the study was to show that these actions were explained by theories of Karl Marx and Max Weber. The results of the study showed that businesses which took specific actions were able to become and remain big businesses and these actions were explained by the theories of Marx and Weber. The results of the study demonstrate the ability of classical sociological theory to explain macro-level social change.
Date: May 2015
Creator: Magness, Penny J.

Assessing Social Determinants of Severe Mental Illness in High-Risk Groups

Description: The primary objective of this research was to explore the impact of possible social factors on non-institutionalized adults 18 years of age or older residing in the United States who exhibited severe mental illness (SMI). A holistic sociological model was developed to explain SMI by incorporating elements of social learning theory, social disorganization theory, and gender socialization theory with social demographic factors. Based on the holistic sociological model, the following factors were investigated: demographic aspects of age, education, income and gender; gender socialization; influence of neighborhood area; social network influence based on communication and interaction among peers and family members; and socially deviant behaviors such as frequently smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol and using drugs specifically marijuana. The impact of these factors on SMI was examined. A sample of 206 respondents drawn from National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2003 was assessed. These respondents had answered all the questions related to SMI; social deviant behaviors; neighborhood environment; and communications among peers, family members and friends; and the other studied factors. Ordinary linear regression with interaction terms was employed as a statistical tool to assess the impact of social determinants on SMI. Being female, living a disorganized neighborhood, and frequent and high levels of smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol had a significant influence on SMI. This reevaluation and reexamination of the role of gender socialization path, socially deviant behaviors like smoking and drinking, and community construction on SMI provided additional insights. This research is one of the first to develop a more holistic sociological model on SMI and explored the previously untested interactive relationships. The limitations of this study suggest the need to test a potential recursive research model and explore additional bi-directional associations.
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Date: May 2014
Creator: Sun, Qi

The Association between Reported Denominational Affiliation and Psychiatric Diagnosis: a Study of First Admissions to a Private Psychiatric Hospital, 1960-1963

Description: The present study examines the relationship of diagnosis and denominational affiliation in light of the work of Charles Glock and Rodney Stark. The major hypothesis of the study was that diagnoses of first admissions to Timberlawn sanitarium would vary by denominational affiliation.
Date: January 1967
Creator: Cochran, Carole Makeig

The Change of Individual Opinions Through Gender-Related Group Influence: An Empirical Study of College Students

Description: The opinions of individuals may be influenced by groups of different gender configurations. This influence was studied by asking college students to respond to a series of statements in pretest and post-test settings. Post-test settings included the use of manipulatively constructed confederate groups to influence the subjects' responses. A pretest was administered in an anonymous nonthreatening environment. Within a week, the subjects were post-tested in a setting with four "confederates" who had previously been instructed to unanimously voice opposite answers to the subjects' initial responses to pretest questions. The objective of this experiment was to determine the number of opinions that were changed when confronted with opposing views. Change of opinions between pretest and post-test were considered to be operational definitions of "conformity."
Date: December 1986
Creator: Blodgett, Billy P. (Billy Paul)

Comparative Study of American and Israeli Teenagers' Attitudes Toward Death

Description: One hundred American teenagers and 84 Israeli teenagers were interviewed by open-ended questionnaires in order to study their attitudes toward death, holding variables like religion, socio-economic status, and education constant. All the respondents are Jewish, members of a youth movement, high school students, and are fifteen to sixteen years old. The results show a strong tendency to avoid discussions and thoughts about death, more so by the Israelis. Death is strongly feared and associated with war and car accidents, more so by the Israelis. Americans associate army service with death. Death is generally viewed as physical and spiritual cessation of life. The avoidance approach and fear of death that were found suggest the need to offer special courses on man and death in high schools.
Date: August 1975
Creator: Dweck, Tzafra

A Content Analysis of Superbowl XVI

Description: The purpose of this research was to describe the content of information surrounding a significant sporting event presented by sportswriters through the printed medium. The event chosen for analysis was Superbowl XVI. Three metropolitan newspapers were selected as the sample representatives of the urban style of sports reporting. Two of these newspapers were chosen because of their geographical representation of a participating team. The third selection was taken because of its large circulation and relative unbiased reporting. From a pilot study conducted on Superbowl XV, content categories were found to fit in either one of two basic domains: cognitive or affective. The sample population for Superbowl XVI yielded 5,759 individual category entries based on 215 articles. The cognitive category comprised 94 percent of all items categorized, thus clearly demonstrating the dominant theme used by sportswriters for this event.
Date: August 1982
Creator: Kuykendall, Francis Marion

Contraceptive Choice among American Teenage Women: a Test of Two Models Based on the Dryfoos Strategy

Description: Teenage pregnancy rates in the U.S. are among the highest in the world for industrialized countries. The generally accepted reason is not that American teenagers are more sexually active but that they contracept less than do teenagers in other industrialized countries. This dissertation reports on a study that was undertaken for two purposes. One purpose was to develop and test two models of contraceptive choice among American teenagers: a "likelihood-of-use" model to predict the likelihood of sexually active teenagers' using contraception, and a "medical-or-nonmedical" model to predict whether teenagers who use contraception are likely to use medical or nonmedical methods. The second purpose was to explore the level of support for the two models among black and white teenagers separately. The theoretical underpinning of the models is value-expectancy theory. The models' exogenous variables are based on the prevailing strategy for preventing teenage pregnancy among American teenagers, a strategy initially advocated by Joy G. Dryfoos. The strategy involves the use of access-to-contraception programs, educational programs, and life options programs. The data used in the study were on 449 subjects drawn from the 1979 National Survey of Young Women, a probability-sample survey of women in the U.S. aged 15-19. The subjects were those survey respondents who were black or white, sexually active, never married, and never pregnant. The statistical technique used in the study was logistic regression. Test results supported three of four hypotheses constituting the medical-or-nonmedical model and two of seven hypotheses constituting the likelihood-of-use model. The results for each model offered support for using two of the three programs constituting the prevailing pregnancy-prevention strategy: access-to-contraception programs and educational programs. Exploration of the level of support for each of the two models among black and white teenagers indicated that support for each model differed between the two groups of teenagers.
Date: May 1997
Creator: Crow, Thomas Allen

Curricula Responses to the Demands of Industrialization and High Technology in the Marketplace

Description: This study addresses itself to several issues in relation to public education in the United States. First, it examines the basic social philosophies underlying the development of mass education in the United States. Secondly, it asks the question: what is the purpose of public education? Thirdly, it relates the development of public education to a dominant source of social change--industrialization, and examines the relationship between the structure and function of education in the 1800's and early 1900's, and the needs of the marketplace. Fourthly, it examines the relationship between the curricula of education in the 1980's and the needs of high technology in the marketplace.
Date: August 1985
Creator: Chambliss, Virginia Ricci

Delinquent Behavior in White and Negro Student Populations

Description: The purpose of this study is to add to the knowledge of juvenile delinquency in our society as it may be discerned through reports by those who have committed delinquent, but in most cases unadjudicated, acts. This study further seeks to add a dimension to the body of knowledge already gained through self-report techniques by discovering whether there are any important differences to be observed in comparing surveys of limited Negro and white populations.
Date: June 1970
Creator: Hunter, Charles Alvin

Differential Perception of Poverty and Upper Income Areas Within the City Limits of Dallas, Texas, by Students in Areas Identified as Poverty and Upper Income

Description: "The purpose of this study is to describe the differential perception of poverty and upper income areas in Dallas. Groups of students with contrasting socioeconomic backgrounds were included in the study. Their perceptions were analyzed as a function of their socieconomic backgrounds...A map of the city using postal zone divisions and some census tract divisions was constructed. Definitions of poverty and upper income areas were established on the basis of U.S. Census data and statistics from the State Welfare Department in Dallas. Students from a North Dallas prepatory school and a poverty area high school were asked to mark maps to show locations of areas of poverty and wealth...The study concludes that prep school students show both local and cosmopolitan orientations to the city of Dallas, while poverty area students are most aware of their own neighborhood."-- leaf [1].
Date: December 1971
Creator: Milam, Mary Justina

Dispute Resolution Studies in the Institutions of Higher Learning: an Initial Investigative Study of Professors' Attitudes

Description: Conflict is present in all human relationships and societies. Throughout history, fighting has been more notable than peacemaking. Only recently have conflict resolution studies entered the mainstream of academia. Since peace is no longer an option, but a necessity, educators must become actively engaged in promoting the importance of peacemaking skills among their students. In 1986, the National Institute for Dispute Resolution funded a study of conflict resolution in higher education. Results disclosed a proliferation of courses but little about their quality. The present study evaluates the status of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in the curricula of three major universities in North Texas and compares it with results from four other universities which were reported to have the heaviest concentration of ADR courses. A questionnaire was constructed to collect data in the following areas: place, significance of ADR in contemporary curricula, important factors determining attitudes toward ADR, and expectations/aspirations of faculty concerning teaching of ADR. Using a Likert scale, attitudes toward ADR were measured through regression analysis. Four of seven independent variables (age, sex, political orientation, and ADR training) were significant at jd = .05. Forty ADR-related courses were identified in seven universities. The concentration of ADR courses was management (35%), law (28%), sociology (23%), business (8%), and political science (8%). No courses were identified by anthropology departments. Results also reveal that the older, liberal, female, and ADR-ski lied individuals exhibit more favorable attitudes towards ADR. The study concludes that (a) concentrated efforts should be increased to teach and train educators in ADR, (b) mediation centers should be created on university campuses, and (c) an ADR communications network and data bank should be established among universities in order to allow faculty, students, practitioners, and administrators to share information. A partial list of organizations involved in peace issues and resources for ...
Date: December 1987
Creator: Ghadrshenass, Delavar

The Distribution of Environmental Contaminants: a Socio-Historical Study of Selected Neighborhoods in Dallas County, Texas

Description: This research expands on recent sociological studies which maintain that environmental contaminants in America are disproportionately placed in neighborhoods inhabited by minorities and the poor. Prior studies have focused on the predictor variables which identify areas of contamination near residential neighborhoods, yet fail to explore the socio-political and historical factors which contribute to these phenomena. The Environmental Protection Agency's Toxic Release Inventory 1990 database, the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission's Annual Report of the Hazardous and Solid Waste Program for 1992, and the U.S. Census Bureau's 1990 Census Data for Dallas County were utilized in pinpointing industries violating toxic release standards. Socio-historical data was obtained from government and historical records and reports, books, and newspaper clippings on Dallas County. Maps and data were obtained from the North Central Texas Council of Governments, and the cities of Dallas and Garland. Chapter I discusses the synergetic forces of capitalism, urban growth, uneven development, and settlement patterns resulting in the distribution of environmental contaminants. Chapter II reviews the literature and presents evidence that race and class are strong predictors of where environmental contaminants are located. Chapter III outlines the data and methods employed. Chapter IV traces the historical development of Dallas County. Chapter V details those political, economic, and social factors contributing to the convergence of people and contaminants within three selected neighborhoods. The forces which historically relegate minorities, particularly Blacks and Hispanics, and the poor to less desirable jobs, cheaper housing, and land costs are also explored. Cheap land and labor attract industry which, in turn, attracts more laborers. Chapter VI, the summary and conclusions, utilizes the socio-spatial approach in examining urban infrastructure development (i.e. roads and railways) which also reduces adjacent land costs making housing more affordable for minorities and the poor. This study concludes that because of historical development and ...
Date: December 1997
Creator: Cutrer, Jennifer G.

Domestic Violence in Same-Sex Relationships

Description: The purpose of this study is to examine domestic violence as it occurs in same-sex male relationships. Data were collected by in-depth interviews with twenty-five gay males, who were between the ages of 23 and 43, and who had previous experience being in a homosexual relationship where domestic violence was present. The major findings of this study include the respondents': 1) definitions of domestic violence and abuse; 2) the type of domestic violence or abuse personally experienced; and 3) reasons they believe domestic violence or abuse occurs in these types of relationships. This study illustrates the need for further research in this area of domestic violence and for programs or services targeted for this specific population.
Date: August 1996
Creator: Cruz, Joe Michael

Drug Knowledge Levels and Drug Abuse Attitudes Among Fifth and Sixth Grade Students: a Replication

Description: This study is concerned with drug knowledge and drug abuse attitudes of a sample of pre-adolescent schoolchildren, 90 from an urban community and 204 from two rural communities. The seven hypotheses tested compared drug knowledge levels and drug abuse attitudes with the variables of community of residence, sources of information, racial identity, acquaintance with drug users, and church affiliation. High levels of drug knowledge were found to be related to rural residence, perceived parental disapproval of drug use, frequency of church attendance, and, to a minor degree, to acquaintance with peer group drug users. The sample held negative views of drug abuse and intolerant drug attitudes correlated significantly with rural residence, parental interest in talking about drugs, church affiliation, and frequency of church attendance. High drug knowledge levels and intolerant drug abuse attitudes were related to only the .20 level of significance.
Date: May 1975
Creator: Mickey, Callie Parker

The Effects of Cognitive Style and Socialization Background on Patterns of Behavior: Integrating Individual Differences (Using the MBTI) with Meadian Socialization Theory

Description: The general purpose of this study is to examine the effects of socialization background and cognitive style on individuals' patterns of behavior. The more specific purpose is to integrate the individual differences factor using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator with Meadian Theory of Socialization in order to explore the ways in which a group of incarcerated individuals with prior felony and misdemeanor convictions and a group of college students are different regarding their different socialization background and cognitive styles. Data for this study were collected from a university and a county jail in Texas. During the process of data collection, two questionnaires consisting of 117 items were used to measure individual characteristics and elements of socialization background. This study is organized into four different chapters. Chapter I involves a detailed review of related literature, the purpose of the study, stated hypotheses, significance of the study, and limitations. Chapter II discusses methodological procedures and Chapter III presents the findings of the study. The last chapter includes a detailed conclusion and practical implications of the study. The findings in this study indicated that the group of incarcerated individuals and the group of college students are significantly different in terms of their different individual characteristics and socialization backgrounds. However, it was found that socialization background has the most significant effects on patterns of behavior among the two groups under study. It was concluded that while accepting the crucial importance of socialization factors, specific psychological characteristics of people also need to be integrated into sociological studies concerning human behavior for the better understanding of different groups and individuals in society.
Date: May 1988
Creator: Nazempooran, Ali

The Effects of Neighboring, Social Networks, and Collective Efficacy on Crime Victimization: an Alternative to the Systemic Model

Description: The systemic model posits that informal social control directly reduces crime victimization and social networks indirectly reduce crime victimization through informal social control. While empirical testing of the systemic model advanced the theory, important analytical issues remain. First, social networks are inconsistently conceptualized and measured. Second, the conceptual relationship between social networks and informal social control remains unclear. This study addresses these issues by testing an alternative to the systemic model, including new constructs and hypotheses. The goal is to develop better indicators for the model and refine the theory, rethinking and deepening the existing theory about neighborhood effects on crime victimization. The data come from the 2002-2003 Seattle Neighborhoods and Crime Survey (N=2,200). Structural equation modeling (SEM), a multivariate statistical technique, was used to analyze these data. The SEM included five latent constructs (neighboring, neighborhood and non-neighborhood social networks, collective efficacy, and crime victimization) and six social structural variables (racially homogeneous neighborhood, resident tenure, household income, family disruption, male, and non-white ethnicity). One of my 9 hypotheses was supported; the remaining hypotheses were partly supported. The results support my argument that the systemic model is too simplistic, but the relationships among the variables are not exactly as I hypothesized. The results provide insight into the complexities of the systemic model and areas for future research.
Date: May 2015
Creator: Soto, Anthony Jaime

The Effects of Socio-Structural, Economic, and Race Considerations on Rates of Property Crime in the United States, 1958-1993

Description: This study investigates changes in rates of property crime in the United States from 1958 to 1993. Predictor variables include changes in rates of economic factors (inflation, technological/cyclical/frictional unemployment), arrest rates for property crimes disaggregated by race (ARPCDR), interaction of ARPCDR and technological unemployment, alcohol offenses, interaction of alcohol offenses and poverty, drug abuse violations, and interaction of drug abuse violations and poverty. Changes in poverty, population growth, and police presence are employed as control variables. The Beach-McKinnon Full Maximum- Likelihood EGLS AR1 Method (accompanied by residual analysis) is used to test seven hypotheses. Significant positive effects upon changes in aggregate property crime rates are found for five predictors: (a) inflation, (b) cyclical unemployment, (c) frictional unemployment, (d) the interaction of white arrest rates and technological unemployment, and (e) the interaction of rates of alcohol offenses and poverty. To explain changes in property crime rates, further research should decompose aggregate rates particularly those pertaining to the economy. Also, the relationship between the interaction of poverty and drug abuse violations, at the aggregate level, and changes in property crime rates should be clarified. This research has important policy implications related to the impact of social, economic, and educational issues on mainstream society and its criminal elements. Law makers should consider this type of research in all macro and micro-oriented policies.
Date: May 1996
Creator: Ralston, Roy W.

Ethnic Identity : An Examination of Hispanic International Students

Description: I interviewed twenty-four International students from the following countries: Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Peru, Colombia, Brazil, Puerto Rico and Spain. Hereafter I shall refer to the respondents as Hispanic International students. My primary interest was to learn the way in which Hispanic International students defined themselves in view of ethnic definitions imposed on them by the administrative system in the U.S. First, Hispanic International students defined themselves primarily by their nationality. The second finding dealt with the usage of language. The Hispanic International students spoke Spanish with relatives and friends. They spoke English when a non-Spanish speaker joined the conversation. The third finding was related to the problems and adaptations encountered by Hispanic International students.
Date: May 1996
Creator: Correa, Minerva