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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

Acceptance and use of corporal punishment among parents of biologic and non-biologic children.

Description: Objective: Differences between biologic and non-biologic parents' acceptance and use of ordinary corporal punishment and use of explaining/reasoning as a disciplinary tool are examined from a sociobiological theoretical perspective. Method: Cross tabulations are used on data from a national survey conducted by the Gallup Organization in 1995. Results: Contrary to predictions, differences between biologic and non-biologic parents' acceptance of ordinary corporal punishment and the use of explaining/reasoning are not statistically significant. In addition, biologic parents are found to use ordinary corporal punishment significantly more often than non-biologic parents. Conclusions: The sociobiological theoretical perspective likely underestimates the influence of culture and social structure on parent-child interactions.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Hall, Ellie Tiedeman

Adolescent Pregnancy: Voices Heard in the Everyday Lives of Pregnant Teenagers

Description: The purpose of this study is to examine the problems that pregnant teenagers encounter at school and at home while they are trying to complete their high school education. Data were collected by in-depth interviews. Twenty pregnant adolescents, who were between the ages of 15 through 18, and were participants in a special teen pregnancy program were interviewed. The major findings in this study included the respondents': 1) unstable family life histories, 2) denial that they were pregnant, 3) need for self-identity as an adult, 4) conflict with parents and 5) motivation to complete their high school education. This study points to the need for more research on the problems that pregnant adolescents encounter in their everyday lives.
Date: December 1995
Creator: Oviedo, Sonia

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

Alcohol Use among the Elderly in Edmonton, Alberta: a Multivariate Analysis

Description: A model of social stressor variables, social integration variables and demographic control variables was tested to assess their impact on alcohol use among the elderly. A secondary analysis of a survey on alcohol use among the elderly in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, was conducted to test the major hypotheses of the study. Contingency table analysis, using gamma and partial gamma as correlation coefficients, was utilized in the data analysis. The first hypothesis, in regard to the positive relationship of social stressors with alcohol use, was confirmed. The best predictors of alcohol use among the social stressor variables were usual occupation, length of retirement, annual income, and subjective health status. The second hypothesis, that the social integration variables would be negatively related to alcohol use, received only moderate support. The results of the analysis indicated that six of the ten social integration variables were negatively related to alcohol use. Only three of these variables, retirement status, religious participation, and marital status, were statistically significant. Hypothesis three also was not confirmed. The introduction of the social integration variables did not substantially decrease the strength of the relationship between social stressors and alcohol use. Gender and age were also introduced as control variables for the relationship between social stressors and alcohol use. Age had only a limited impact on the zero-order relationships. Gender demonstrated a strong relationship with alcohol use. Statistical analyses indicated that gender was the strongest predictor of alcohol use of all the variables in the analysis. The nature of the zero-order relationships of four of the six stressor variables changed when gender was controlled, and the partial relationships decreased in strength. It was suggested that future research on alcohol use among the elderly should focus on gender differences.
Date: May 1989
Creator: Watson, Jack Borden

American Indian Worldviews, Risk Perceptions and Disaster Planning: an Exploratory Study

Description: It is commonly assumed that when confronted with an imminent hazard that people will react rationally, and prepare for, or at least attempt to avoid, danger from pending disasters. However, this conventional wisdom is not as evident as it appears. People prepare for, react to, or take social action to avoid hazards when they perceive the risk of danger to be threatening enough to warrant action, providing one has the will, insight and resources to do so. However, not all people perceive risks similarly. Risk is perceived differently by different people which affects risk perception and responses to hazards. This dissertation explores the relationships between American Indian worldviews, risk perceptions and disaster planning. To carry out this research 28 American Indians were interviewed. The sample consists of 14 American Indians residing in a rural are on the northern plains and 14 urban American Indians. The results only partially support that worldview is linked to risk perception and subsequent disaster planning. Other factors found to relate to risk perception and disaster planning for this non-representative sample of American Indians include various forms of social vulnerability.
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Date: December 2013
Creator: Bales, Rodney A.

An Analysis of Established Terrorist Identity in Political and Military Wings of Turkish Hizbullah

Description: The influence of the role identity expectations of Turkish Hizbullah's leadership on actual members' terrorist identities was documented in this dissertation. This study explored the leadership's identity expectations from members through content analyses of four books written by major figures of Hizbullah. Those books were selected following comments of the literature and expert suggestions. Eleven identity features stood out. These content analyses also revealed that leadership had different expectations from political wing members and military wing members. The following six identity features were listed as expected more from military wing members: belief in jihad and resistance, desire for martyrdom, embracing the hierarchical structure, depersonalization, hatred against enemies of God, and aloneness. Whilst cemaat (religious congregation), being religiously educated, patience (gradualism), dedication to a Muslim brotherhood, and being politically active were listed as expected identity attributes of political wing members. Qualitative analyses investigated these identity features using the available literature and 144 handwritten reports of actual Hizbullah members. To confirm the findings of content and qualitative analyses, quantitative analyses were conducted on the relatively representative sample (144 reports). The results of cross-tabulation and logistic regression demonstrated that two (out of 6) military wing and two (out of 5) political wing identity expectations were not manifested on actual members' Hizbullah identities.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Cinoglu, Huseyin

An Analysis of Marital, Sex and Occupational Status of Dramatic Characters on Commercial Television

Description: The purpose of this pilot study was to examine the characters portrayed on "prime-time" television drama in an attempt to determine how they compared, with the distribution represented in U. S. Census Bureau data for sex, marital status and occupational status. In pursuing this objective, it was also concerned with the development of a method of content analysis that would not require use of a videotape recorder.
Date: August 1973
Creator: Holloway, Fred S.

An Analysis of the Development, Function and Implication of Selected Myths Toward the Aged in American Society

Description: The development, content, societal and individual effects of selected myths toward the aged in American society were reviewed and analyzed. Emphasis was placed on factors associated with the development of the myths . The myths were compared with facts or reality relative to the major dimensions of the lives of the aged. The functions and dysfunctions of the myths for the aged as a group, for the individual, and for society were analyzed. Secondary sources of data were utilized in the preliminary identification of the selected myths. The sources were also used to justify the selection and analyze the development of myths within their socio-cultural milieus. Myths were utilized in the analysis of the attitudes toward the aged, and the effects.
Date: December 1983
Creator: Coomer, Alma Jean

An Analysis of the Opinions of University Students about the Current Situation of the Headscarf Dispute in Turkey

Description: This study examined the opinions of university students about the current situation of the headscarf dispute on the wearing of headscarves in Turkey. The influence of gender, the level of secularism, socioeconomic status and encounter with women wearing headscarves on opinions about the wearing of headscarves were analyzed in this study. The sample of this study was composed of 400 university students among whom there were 240 female and 160 male students. Moreover, the sample comprised university students from 50 universities from Turkey. The results indicated that the level of secularism and encounter with women wearing headscarves were distinguished as two determining factors of the diverse opinions of the university students on the topic. No association was found between the perceptions of university students about the issue and the independent variables of gender and socioeconomic status.
Date: December 2008
Creator: Aydemir, Dilek

Analyzing Delinquency Among Kurdish Adolescents: a Test of Hirschi’s Social Bonding Theory

Description: This study examines the mediating effect of social bonding on delinquent behavior among Kurdish teens. Major influences to the study of self concept and delinquency based on Hirschi’s social bonding theory are reviewed. The data was collected from a sample of 100 Kurdish teens attending a Gülen affiliated school (Private Çaglayan Murat Anatolian Science High School in Şanlıurfa, Turkey) and 100 Kurdish teens attending a public (non- Gülen) school (The Public High School in Diyarbakır, Turkey). There are two dependent variables for this research project: Involvement in major delinquency and involvement in minor delinquency. The components of social bonding attachment, involvement, commitment, and belief were used as independent variables. Participants’ age ranged between 16 to 18 years. I hypothesize that the relation between the social bonding elements and delinquency should be stronger in the case of Kurdish adolescents who are more attached to conventional Turkish society. Results from binary logistic regression analyses indicate that in the absence of bonding, Kurdish teenagers tend to engage in major and minor delinquent activities. For further exploration and results, the Gülen Movement was examined as an independent variable. Findings suggest a strong relationship between the Gülen Movement and Kurdish adolescents’ probability of involvement in either major or minor delinquent activities. Finally, several directions for future research on Hirschi’s social bonding theory are recommended and some implications are drawn for deterring Kurdish adolescents from becoming involved in delinquent actions.
Date: December 2013
Creator: Ziyanak, Sebahattin

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.

Are Alzheimer's Special Care Units Really Special? Effects of Residential Status on Family Members' Perspectives on High Quality Care for their Loved-Ones in Long-Term Care

Description: This analysis of secondary data collected from family members of nursing home residents in North Texas (n = 422) used a mixed methods approach to determine if there is a difference in perspectives on quality care among family members of Alzheimer’s/Dementia Special Care Unit (ADSCU) residents compared to those of non-ADSCU residents. Descriptive content analysis was used identify and condense responses to an open-ended question into four meaningful categories of qualities of care. An independent t-test was employed to determine if there was a difference between family members of ADSCU residents and family members of non-ADSCU residents regarding their rating of their loved-ones’ nursing home on the important qualities of care they identified from the open-ended question. Closed-ended questions were organized into indices of these qualities of care, and ordinary least square regression was employed to determine if there were significant differences between perceptions of family members of ADSCU residents and those of non-ADSCU residents regarding care their loved-ones are receiving on these qualities of care, controlling for frequency of visit.
Date: August 2011
Creator: Fawcett, Elizabeth Jean

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

Behavioral Aspects of Latino Familialism: a Three Study Analysis

Description: The existing research on Latino familialism draws a distinction between the attitudes associated with familialism and familialism-based action. Because attitudes tend to be more stable when considering variables such as immigration generation status, etc., social science researchers tend to employ measures based on attitudinal aspects of familialism, rather than action or behavior. Because of this preference, there is a lack of studies that examine familialism-based action and behaviors. This dissertation consists of three unique studies that examine actions and behaviors associated with familialism, while taking into account the methodological concerns expressed by previous researchers. The first study uses nationally representative U.S. data to compare the differences in the frequency of contact with various family members, among black non-Hispanics, Hispanics, and white non-Hispanics. The central finding of this study is that Hispanics maintain more frequent contact with family than white non-Hispanics, but there is no difference between Hispanics and black non-Hispanics, with the exception of contact with fathers. The second study, which employs qualitative data collected from a metropolitan area in the Southwest U.S., examines the locus of educational aspirations and expectations among a sample of Hispanics and white non-Hispanics. Among other things, this study finds that Hispanic females were more likely than other participants to make statements that suggest the aspirations or expectations of significant others were a strong influence in the decision to attend college. This study further argues that this tendency is related to the acquiescent nature of traditional Hispanic gender norms associated with the familial concept of marianismo. Using nationally representative U.S. data, the final study finds that, other things being equal, Hispanic college students are more likely than non-Hispanic students to attend a college or university that is within fifty miles of their permanent residence. The study further finds that this tendency mediates the gap between ...
Date: December 2012
Creator: Comeau, Joseph Adrien

Breast implants for graduation? Parent and adolescent narratives.

Description: The purpose of this research is to examine through sociological and psychological theories how women make sense of the desire and attainment of breast implants for graduation. The study used a qualitative approach and focused on women ages 18-35 in the state of Texas who have received breast implants for graduation. The sample size in this study included 10 high-school graduates receiving implants as a gift and their 10 mothers. Seven theoretical paradigms provided a better understanding for why the daughters asked for breast implants and why the parent(s) paid for them. Symbolic interaction theory explained why the daughters wished to replace their "fake" cotton padded self with their augmented self, to become the most authentic woman possible. Social construction of reality theory explained why both mothers and daughters wanted to conform to the social construction of gender, and to accomplish their gender well. Conspicuous consumption theory demonstrated how cosmetic surgery practices allow women to appear wealthy, gain status, and "flash" their assets. Feminist theory explained why some women were motivated to capture the attention of men and others altered the body out of empowerment. Reference group and social comparison theories explained how the women in this study were influenced to undergo cosmetic surgery by ranking themselves in attractiveness against real friends and media icons. Lastly, self-discrepancy theory showed how the daughters in this study felt they needed surgery to fix a discrepancy between their real and ideal self. The majority of respondents expressed complete comfort with their gifting and receiving of breast implants for graduation, claiming it was a great decision. They also agreed surgery was worth any risk to increase their daughter's confidence. Most of the mothers expressed that they were comfortable with their decision to gift surgery to their daughters, despite knowing that their gift of augmentation ...
Date: May 2008
Creator: Fowler, Lori Ann

Bundle of Joy: Pregnancy, Coping, and Depressive Symptoms in Adolescent Girls

Description: Using the stress process model, the relationship between pregnancy and depressive symptoms among adolescent girls was investigated. This model posits that stress resulting from social location and related disruptive life events may indirectly affect health by eroding coping, mastery, or social support mechanisms. The effect of low income, minority status and pregnancy on coping processes in adolescent girls was hypothesized and tested. Communication with parents, involvement in activities, and success in school were examined as positive coping strategies. Smoking tobacco, heavy alcohol use, and drug use were examined as negative coping. Data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health were analyzed. After combining the available cases from the 2006, 2007, and 2008 datasets, selecting girls aged from 12 to 17 years, and removing missing cases; the sample consisted of a total of 22,854 adolescents. A series of binary logistic regression models were estimated. Findings included that coping strategies partially mediate the relationship between pregnancy and depressive symptoms. In particular, success in school, smoking tobacco, and drug abuse played a mediating role. When coping was accounted for, the relationship between pregnancy and depressive symptoms was reduced and became only marginally significant. Implications of the study include a focus on policy that promotes early intervention assisting at-risk adolescents with the development of coping strategies that may help them adjust to unexpected life events, such as pregnancy.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Kaiser, Karen Claiborne

Bureaucracy and the Mexican American Elderly: Utilization of Formal and Informal Social Services

Description: Using the National Survey of Hispanic Elderly People, 1988, this study examines the support system of the Mexican American elderly and their utilization of formal social services. Two major research questions were addressed: 1) How does the Mexican American family provide assistance to their elderly family members? and 2) How does the bureaucratic structure affect the Mexican American elderly's access and utilization of formal social services?
Date: December 1995
Creator: Dietz, Tracy L. (Tracy Lynn)

Can Akers’ Social Structure and Social Learning Theory Explain Delinquent Behaviors Among Turkish Adolescents?

Description: The aim of this study was to examine to what extent Social Structure and Social Learning Theory (SSSL) explains delinquent behaviors among Turkish adolescents. While Social Structure and Social Learning (SSSL) Theory have been examined quite frequently in the criminology and sociology literature, the present study is unique as it tests the theory in Turkey, a context with a mixed Islamic and Secular cultural structure. The data originates from a survey conducted in Istanbul in 2008 by the Icelandic Centre for Social Research and Analysis (ICSRA) under the auspices of their Youth in Europe project. The sample includes 2,445 Turkish high school students. The dependent variable includes a 13-item delinquency scale, and the independent variables consist of differential association, costs and rewards of differential reinforcement, definitions, imitation, differential location in the social structure, and differential social location of groups. The statistical analyses were conducted using a negative binomial regression approach. Results demonstrated that differential association (peer delinquency) is positively associated with delinquent behaviors among Turkish adolescents. In addition, there is a significant and positive relationship between norms/beliefs that favor delinquency and delinquent behaviors. Moreover, parental reaction, a measure of differential reinforcement, has a negative impact on delinquency. Imitation variables, which include witnessing an argument and witnessing violence in the family, also appear as significant predictors for delinquency. Gender is the only social structure variable significantly related to delinquent behaviors. Furthermore, results indicated that social learning variables mediated the relationship between social structure and delinquent behaviors. Policy implications and suggestions for further studies are also provided at the end of the dissertation.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Solakoglu, Ozgur

Can Social Disorganization and Social Capital Factors Help Explain the Incidences of Property Crimes in Turkey?

Description: Organized crime and terrorism taking place in the Turkish provinces get more attention in the public agenda than other type of crimes. Although property crimes receive less attention, they pose a serious threat to public order and the social welfare of Turkish society. Academic researchers have also paid little attention to the analysis of property crimes at the macro level in Turkey. For these reasons, this study focused on the analysis of property crimes for three years period, 2005, 2006 and 2007 in Turkey, using a conceptual model of social disorganization. Provincial level data from Turkish governmental agencies were used. The findings of multivariate analyses showed that social disorganization approach, as measured in this study, provided a partial explanation of property crime rates in Turkey. Family disruption and urbanization had significant effects on property crime rate, while remaining exogenous elements of social disorganization (i.e., SES, population heterogeneity and residential mobility) did not have any expected effects. In mediation analysis, using faith-based engagement and political participation rates as mediators between the structural factors of social disorganization and property crime rate provided marginal support for the theory. Political participation rate partially mediated the relationship between property crime rate and urbanization rate, while faith-based engagement rate did not mediate the effects of social disorganization variables on property crime rate. These findings were consistent with the findings of research that has been completed in other nations, and made a unique contribution to the Turkish research on crime.
Date: December 2011
Creator: Irmak, Fatih

Career and Occupational Implementation Among Women College Graduates

Description: This follow-up study involved college women seven years after graduation. The purpose was to investigate the predictability of women's career behavior from career aspirations at senior year of college. Some data were derived from The Role Outlook Study senior year questionnaire. In addition, a second questionnaire, The Role Outlook Follow-Up, was utilized which focused upon various events occurring in women's lives following college graduation, namely marriage, graduate school attendance, receipt of advanced degrees, and work experience. No significant association was found between women's career aspirations senior year and actual career behavior. Instead, marriage and the absence or presence of children differentiated working and non-working women. However, a significant association was found between women' s occupational preferences at senior year and their current occupations.
Date: August 1976
Creator: Shinn, Linda S.

Caregiving in Later Life: A Contextual Approach to the Provision of Care

Description: Guided by the life course perspective, this study examined the frequency of caregiving provided by older adults to kin and non-kin. A telephone survey produced a random sample of adults 60 years of age and older, which was predominantly White, with higher income and education levels (n = 278). Bivariate and multivariate analyses tested the impact of demographic characteristics and other variables, conceptualized as physical, human, and social capital, on the frequency of caregiving. Gender, age, health, limitations, education, income, household composition, social contact, and reciprocity were analyzed in multinomial logistic regressions. Caregiving was defined as care provided to sick or disabled persons, with frequency of providing care classified as often, sometimes, and never. The majority of older adults provided at least some care to others over a one-year period, with almost one-third doing so often and only one-quarter never doing so. Most provided care to more than one person, with over one-quarter providing care to multiple friends only. Age failed to predict caregiving involvement when physical and social capital variables were considered. The odds of often providing care are higher for women, although gender did not predict those who never provided care. Having at least some college only significantly predicted women who often provided care. Living with a disabled person increased the frequency of caregiving, although that care was not always for the disabled person. Similarly, living with a spouse, as compared to living alone, increased caregiving involvement but often the spouse was not the care recipient. These findings highlight a need for policy changes that will support and recognize the contributions of older caregivers of both family and friends. The definition of caregiving is another policy issue that should be addressed. These findings also challenge policymakers and community leaders to promote informal caregiving by providing educational programs to ...
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Date: August 2003
Creator: Worthen, Laura T.