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Reducing the risk of disordered eating among female college students: A test of alternative interventions.

Description: The purpose of this study was to test the effectiveness of a cognitive-dissonance based intervention in reducing disordered eating attitudes and behaviors. The intervention program created dissonance through discussion, exercises, and homework aimed at addressing and countering internalized sociocultural pressures, beliefs and values about women's bodies, attractiveness, and worth in the U.S. Seventy-seven female undergraduates were randomly assigned to one of four conditions: cognitive-dissonance, combined cognitive-dissonance, healthy weight placebo control, and wait-list control To determine effectiveness of the intervention, MANCOVA procedures were used, with Time 1 scores serving as the covariate. Overall, the women who received the dissonance based interventions produced the strongest effects among measures assessing sociocultural pressures, internalization, and body dissatisfaction in comparison to the control group, and experienced significant reductions in dieting behaviors and bulimic symptoms over the course of the study, suggesting that the creation of dissonance via the intervention assisted the women in reducing eating disorder risk factors.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Smith Machin, Ariane Leigh

The Relationship between Executive and Psychosocial Functioning in Children Treated for a Brain Tumor

Description: This study examined the relationship between executive and psychosocial functioning in 45 children and adolescents age 6 to 17 years who had been treated for a brain tumor. Executive functioning deficits can profoundly impact an adult's ability to function successfully in life. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the potential impact of executive functioning deficits on the day-to-day functioning in a pediatric population. The domains of executive functioning assessed included cognitive flexibility, conceptual thinking, sustained attention, and response inhibition. Psychosocial functioning was assessed using both parent and child report. Several significant relationships were found for adolescents ages 15 and older, with effect sizes ranging from medium to large. In particular, cognitive flexibility and conceptual thinking were significantly related to parent report of depression and adaptive functioning. Fewer significant relationships with smaller effect sizes were found for younger children. The results may reflect the developmental emergence of executive functioning abilities and late effects of executive functioning deficits upon psychosocial functioning. The correlational design of this study precludes definitive statements regarding the temporal nature of the relationship. Additional research, including longitudinal research and replicatory studies, will be needed to further investigate the developmental consequences of executive functioning impairment.
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Date: August 2001
Creator: Falla, Karen M.

The relationship between interpersonal dependency and therapeutic alliance: Perspectives of clients and therapists.

Description: Both interpersonal dependency and the importance of the therapeutic alliance to successful psychotherapy outcomes have been widely studied. However, these two areas of study rarely have been viewed conjointly despite the reportedly large number of clients with dependency who present for treatment. This study elucidated the relationship between interpersonal dependency and the therapeutic alliance. Additional hypotheses explored client-therapist agreement on alliance strength in relation to client interpersonal dependency. Participants were graduate student therapists (N = 26) and their individual psychotherapy clients (N = 40) in a training clinic at a large, southwestern university. Within their first three sessions of psychotherapy, participating clients told nine Thematic Apperception Test stories and completed structured self-report measures of adult attachment, social desirability, and psychological symptoms. Interpersonal dependency was scored from the TAT stories, using the TAT Oral Dependency (TOD) scoring system developed by Masling, Rabie, and Blondheim (1967) and Huprich (2008). Three sessions following initial data collection, participating clients and their therapists completed structured self-report measures of the therapeutic alliance. Analyses revealed that interpersonal dependency was not significantly associated with client and therapist alliance ratings or the congruence between client and therapist alliance ratings. However, specific scoring categories of the TOD were associated with client alliance scores in opposing directions. In contrast to hypotheses, self-reported attachment-related dependency was significantly related to client alliance ratings and to the congruence between therapist and client alliance ratings. Clients with higher levels of self-reported attachment-related dependency rated the alliance less favorably, in agreement with their therapists, than did clients with lower levels of attachment-related dependency. Additional analyses were unsuccessful in replicating findings from previous research on interpersonal dependency. The clinical and research implications of these findings are discussed.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Mitchell, Jessica L.

The Relationship Between Neuropsychological Performance and Daily Functioning in Individuals with Alzheimer's Disease

Description: The results of neuropsychological tests are often used by clinicians to make important decisions regarding a demented patient's ability to competently and/or independently perform activities of daily living. However, the ecological validity of most neuropsychological instruments has yet to be adequately established. The current study examined the relationship between neuropsychological test performance and functional status in 42 individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease. A comprehensive battery of cognitive tests was employed in order to assess a wide range of neuropsychological abilities. Functional status was measured through the use of both a performance-based scale of activities of daily living (The Direct Assessment of Functional Status; Loewenstein et al., 1989) as well as by a caregiver/informant-based rating scale (Instrumental Activities of Daily Living; Lawton & Brody, 1969). Findings suggest that neuropsychological functioning is moderately predictive of functional status. Memory performance was the best predictor of functional status in most ADL domains, followed by executive functioning and visuospatial abilities.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Tomaszewski, Sarah

The Relationship Between Racial Identity, Ethnic Identity, and African-American Acculturation and their Contribution to Psychological Well-Being

Description: Since there are few studies which address the relationships between racial/ethnic identity and acculturation in the African-American community, the purpose of this study was threefold: 1) explore the relationship between racial identity and African-American acculturation; 2) examine racial and ethnic identity associations; and 3) observe the connections between these cultural constructs and psychological well-being. One hundred ninety-four African-American undergraduates from a predominantly White institution and two historically Black colleges completed measures of these constructs, self-esteem, and depression. The findings indicate a relationship between racial identity and acculturation for three of the four Cross (1971) stages (encounter, immersion-emersion, and internalization). Relinquishing the White frame of reference and achieving inner security with their Blackness coincides with immersion in the eight facets comprising African-American culture. Individuals who do not identify with their race (pre-encounter) less often affiliated with their ethnic group. Conversely, achieving racial identity (internalization) was associated with ethnic identity attachment. Finally, the study's findings suggest that identity development may affect how individuals perceive themselves and feel emotionally, which may depend on identity achievement. Pre-encounter stage scores were associated with reports of higher depression and lower self-esteem; whereas, higher internalization individuals reported higher self-esteem. As for ethnic identity, those who have explored options and made commitments to their ethnic group reported fewer symptoms of depression and higher self-esteem. The converse was also true. Community acceptance was predicted to mediate the relationship between acculturation and psychological well-being. Although this was unfounded, the data indicate that traditional individuals living in predominantly White neighborhoods reported more depressive symptoms than did dominant society acculturated individuals living there. Interesting demographic findings and future research directions are provided.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Wilcots, Kylynnedra D.

Self-inflicted and other-inflicted intentional burns versus unintentional burns: A comparison study.

Description: Burn injuries are associated with significant mortality and morbidity. Intentional burn injuries are not well understood, and warrant study to improve adjustment and outcomes. The present study examined group differences between intentional and unintentional burn injuries, comparing individuals with self-inflicted (SIB; n=109) and other-inflicted (OIB; n=109) burns to an unintentional burn (UB) group. Compared to UB, those with intentional (SIB, OIB) burn injuries were more likely to be young, female, unmarried, unemployed, abuse substances, and have positive alcohol/drug screens at hospital admission. Individuals with intentional burns report more psychological distress, lower quality of life in some areas, and lower life satisfaction. When SIB and OIB were examined individually, OIB were more likely to be African American compared to SIB and UB. OIB also had more anxiety and paranoia than UB. SIB was more likely than OIB and UB to have had medical problems or psychiatric disorders and treatment prior to the burn injury. Those with SIB were 3 times more likely than UB to die in the hospital even after controlling for age, severity of burn, and inhalation injuries. Moreover, the SIB group had high rates of suicidal ideation at discharge and follow-up. Treatment implications for burn treatment providers were discussed.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Ranucci, Melissa B.

Sexual orientation self-label, behavior, and preference: College students in Taiwan and the USA

Description: The relationships among self-labeled sexual orientation, sexual preferences, and sexual behaviors were examined in samples from Taiwan and the USA. Subsamples matched on gender, age, and marital status were created to reduce sexual orientation cell size discrepancies and demographic differences. Sexual orientation self-label, the Kinsey Scale of Sexual Orientation, and a modified version for preference were used to assess participants' sexual orientation, behavior, and preference, respectively. Additional measures included an adaptation of the Early Sexual Experiences Checklist, and the Hopkins Symptom Checklist for psychological distress. For both Taiwan and USA subsamples, heterosexual participants reported significantly greater congruence between sexual orientation identity and preference than did nonheterosexual participants. A high proportion of the Taiwan sample were celibate, precluding analyses of congruence between sexual orientation identity and sexual behavior. Congruence between sexual behavior and preference in the USA sample was negatively correlated with psychological distress. In a cross-cultural comparison between the Taiwan and USA women (n = 176), the two samples reported similar congruence between sexual orientation identity and preference. Exploratory analyses revealed that heterosexual participants' sexual orientation label was more “public, ” (more categories of people who knew the participants' sexual orientation), than was nonheterosexuals' in both Taiwan and the USA. In Taiwan, heterosexual and nonheterosexual participants reported similar proportions who were celibate. A gender difference within the USA subsample included that men reported significantly greater congruence than did women regarding sexual orientation identity and congruence between behavior and preference. Analyses comparing self-labeled sexual orientation groups on unwanted childhood sexual experiences and age of earliest voluntary sexual activity were not significant. This study's limitations included small numbers of bisexual (USA n = 27, Taiwan n = 17) or homosexual (USA n = 35, Taiwan n = 9) participants, prohibiting distinctions between them. Recommended future research includes examining the self-labeling process, Asian ...
Date: August 2002
Creator: Roberts, Mary Kathryn

Social Attitudes toward Men and Women with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Description: Although men are more likely to experience traumatic events, the risk of developing Posttraumatic Stress Disorder is at least twice as high in women than in men after exposure to comparable traumas. These findings are more consistent in response to some types of trauma (e.g., assaultive violence) than others (e.g., natural disaster). There has been very little systematic study of the sources of these gender differences. This study began to explore the contribution of gender-related beliefs about appropriate responses to trauma by investigating the impact of victim sex and trauma type as well as participant sex, sex-role orientation, and personal trauma history on attitudes towards victims. Ninety-three male and 179 female students were administered the Bem Sex Role Inventory, the Trauma History Questionnaire, and a vignette measure of attitudes towards victims. Participants evaluated male victims significantly less favorably than female victims, and females had more positive attitudes towards victims than males. Feminine sex-typed and androgynous women rated victims more favorably than masculine sex-typed men and women. The interaction between sex of victim and trauma type was not significant. A positive relation was observed between personal trauma exposure and attitudes towards male victims among male participants only. These findings contribute towards a theoretical understanding of gender and PTSD, and also have important clinical applications.
Date: August 2002
Creator: Mendelsohn, Michaela

Spirituality, health locus of control, and wellness in organizational health promotion and wellness programs

Description: The relationship between an individual's level of spirituality, health locus of control, and participating in wellness activity was investigated. The relationship between spirituality, health locus of control on physical health was also investigated. The research question was based on prior studies that reported people who are more spiritual are healthier. Does their spirituality lead to increased levels of health, or are individual's who are more spiritual more likely to proactively take control of their health and engage in health promoting behaviors? One hundred and fifteen male and female employees completed The Spiritual Involvement and Beliefs Scale (SIBS), a spirituality measure, The Multidimensional Health Locus of Control Scale, a measure of locus of control related to health and healthcare, and The Center for Disease Control's (CDC) Health Risk Appraisal, a self-report measure of participation in health behaviors. Physical measures of health were obtained by obtaining Body Mass Index, blood pressure readings, and a cholesterol screening. The current study looked at level of spirituality (internal, external), level of health locus of control (internal, powerful other, chance) and participation in wellness/health promoting behaviors and health. Correlational analyses were performed on the relationship between spirituality and health locus of control. Hierarchical multiple regressions were performed on the internal spirituality and internal health locus of control to examine the relationship between spirituality, health locus of control and positive health behaviors and level of physical health. Stepwise discriminant function analysis using spirituality and health locus of control as predictor variables for the health-behavior criterion variables were performed. Discussion of the results, limitations of the current study and recommendations for future research were presented.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Gauthier, Janine E.

Stressors, Social Support, and Stress Reactions: A Meta-Analysis

Description: This study examined, via a meta-analysis, the relations among stressors, social support, and stress reactions. Unexpectedly, small to medium negative, but robust effect sizes were found for the stressors-social support relation. As expected the stressor-stress reaction relation was positive, and the social support-stress reaction relation was negative. Both relations had small to medium effect sizes that ranged from weak to very robust. The direct effect of social support on the stressor-stress reaction was generally supported, whereas the suppressor and mediating models were not supported. Furthermore, the findings were inconclusive for the moderator effect of social support. Non-interpersonal traumas appear different in the stressor-social support and social support-stress reaction relations compared to other trauma types. These findings have important clinical implications.
Date: August 2006
Creator: Piper, Lynn J.

Structural Equation Model of Variables Associated with Family Functioning among a Nationally Representative Sample of Families with a Child with Autism

Description: Previous research indicates that stressors experienced by a family, the perceived level of burden assigned by the family to the stressor, and the utilization of resources predict family functioning. The current study utilized a nationally representative sample of families of children with autistic disorder to determine if previously proposed models of family functioning accurately conceptualized family functioning within a representative sample. Structural equation modeling was utilized to test the double ABCX and the linear ACBX models of family functioning. With slight modifications, the double ABCX model was supported, thus indicating that pileup of stressors, perception of burden, and utilization of resources each have unique predictive ability for family functioning, with perception of burden demonstrating the highest amount of predictive ability. Results, implications, and limitations of the study are discussed.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Bezner, Stephanie K.

The structure of insight in patients with psychosis.

Description: Failure to acknowledge their mental illness occurs in approximately half of all psychotic patients. Interest has been recently been refocused on insight (i.e., awareness of mental illness), and its associations with treatment compliance and better prognosis. Researchers have called into question the traditional factor structure of insight, instead viewing and defining it as a multidimensional and continuous construct. While factor analytic research has suggested that insight is an independent feature of psychotic disorders rather than a secondary manifestation of psychotic symptoms, several factor analytic studies have identified only one higher-order factor. Furthermore, a significant amount of the research literature has assessed insight or analyzed its relationships using only a single insight score. The current study evaluated the structural model of insight and assessed the associations between the different proposed dimensions of insight and psychotic symptoms. One hundred and six participants recruited from both inpatient and outpatient settings with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, psychotic disorder NOS, or bipolar disorder with psychotic features were rated on David's Schedule for Assessing Insight-Expanded Version (SAI-E), Birchwood's Insight Scale (IS), and the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS) or the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). Structural equation modeling (SEM) was utilized to provide stringent, confirmatory statistical tests of the hypothetical factor models while accounting for measurement error. Principal findings from the current study were that the three factor model of insight was supported and that the insight factors were meaningfully correlated to the two symptom factors. Moreover, the three factor insight model provided significantly better fit than a single factor model of insight.
Date: December 2004
Creator: Gonterman, Andrea R.

Targeting dimensions of psychopathy in at-risk youth: Assessment and utility of a focused cognitive behavioral therapy program.

Description: Individuals presenting with high levels of psychopathy demonstrate chronic and severe antisocial behavior and poor treatment outcomes in response to generalized rehabilitative programs. Recent research has examined the relationship between delinquency in child/adolescent populations and subsequent psychopathy. Focusing on community based/referred population of at-risk youth, this study developed and examined the effectiveness of an 18-session, psychopathy-focused, group CBT treatment program. The study incorporated treatment (n = 34) and usual-care comparison (n = 30) groups and a brief follow up period. Treatment outcomes examined measures of psychopathy, anger, impulsivity, motivation for treatment, self-reported problems, and indices of behavior. The treatment program demonstrated reductions in psychopathy on the Interpersonal (d = .55) and Affective facets (d = .24) of the PCL:YV. It also reduced overall impulsivity and improved anger suppression and treatment motivation, particularly among youth presenting with higher levels (relative to this study) of psychopathy. As a result of treatment, decreased incidents with the juvenile justice system were also observed, both during the treatment period and at six weeks follow-up. This study provides an initial empirical foundation for the ongoing development of targeted interventions for youth demonstrating psychopathic traits.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Norlander, Bradley J.

Totality of the circumstances: Factors affecting competence to waive Miranda rights.

Description: Within the discipline of sociology human olfaction is rich with social significance yet remains a poorly charted frontier. Therefore, the following discourse is aimed toward the development of a foundation for the sociological study of olfaction. It is formed by the dual goals of unearthing the social history of olfaction and of providing a viable sociological account of the manner in which smells affect human ontology. From these goals arise the following research questions: (1) Have the meaning and social relevance of odors and the olfactory sensorium changed throughout different periods of history?; (2) How have those in the lineage of eminent sociological thinkers addressed the phenomenon of human olfaction during these periods?; and (3) What is the process by which aromatic stimuli are transformed from simple chemical compounds, drifting in the atmosphere, into sensations in a sensory field and then on to perceived objects, to subjects of judgment and interpretation, and finally to bases of knowledge which form and continually reform individuals in the world? The weaving of the sociohistorical tapestry of smell is undertaken to provide examples from thousands of years lived experiences as to the fluid and sociologically complex nature of individuals' olfactory senses. This historical information is presented in a narrative format and is synthesized from data gleaned from books, advertisements, articles in popular non-scientific magazines, as well as from the findings of studies published in medical/neurological, psychological, anthropological, and sociological scholarly journals. Regarding theoretical aim of this discourse, insights are drawn from Maurice Merleau-Ponty's phenomenological theory of human perception for the generation of a framework for the sociological study of olfaction. Merleau-Ponty's theoretical notions are modified, modernized, and refitted to more specifically fit the subject of human olfaction and to include all that has been discovered about the biological specifics of olfactory perception since the ...
Date: December 2007
Creator: Harrison, Kimberly S.

Trauma Responses, Abuse History, and Exposure to Violence as Risk Factors in Adolescent Sex and Non-Sex Offenders

Description: Several risk factors have been identified for adolescent sex offenders and non-sex offenders. Such risk factors include physical and/or sexual abuse, and exposure to community and/or domestic violence. Additionally, the presence of disinhibitive factors, such as substance use and exposure to violent or pornographic media are also commonly reported in the backgrounds of both sex and non-sex offenders. Similarly, adolescent offenders have reported traumatic reactions to environmental factors such as abuse and violence. Similarities in exposure to the risk and disinhibitive factors described above between adolescent sex and non-sex offenders do not provide an explanation for why some adolescents commit sex offenses, whereas other adolescent offenders do not. This study investigated the discriminative ability of traumatic reactions as a risk factor between male adolescent sex and non-sex offenders. The inclusion of traumatic reactions increased the accuracy of risk factors distinguishing between sex and non-sex offenders. Thus, not only the presence of risk factors, but also the adolescent's reaction to the risk factors, are important predictors of whether he will commit a sexual offense.
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Date: December 2003
Creator: Briley, Joshua Paul

Traumatic Brain Injury in Children and Adolescents: An Evaluation of the WISC-III Four Factor Model and Individual Cluster Profiles

Description: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is the leading cause of death and disability among children and adolescents in the US. Children and adolescents who sustain moderate and severe head injuries are much more likely to evidence significant deficits in neuropsychological functioning when compared with children with mild head injuries. Information about the recovery process and functional sequelae associated with moderate and severe head injuries remains limited, despite clear indications that children who experience such injuries typically exhibit notable deficits in intellectual functioning, particularly during the acute phase of recovery. Thus, the present study was conducted to augment research on intellectual functioning in children with moderate or severe head injuries. To accomplish this, the study first examined the proposed factor model of the WISC-III in children with moderate and severe TBI. Given high prevalence rates and similar trends in cognitive impairment, particularly within the frontal lobe structures (e.g., disrupted cognitive flexibility and divided attention), the study also examined this same factor model for a group of children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and compared it with the model fit from the TBI group. In the second phase of the study, both the TBI and AHDH groups were evaluated to determine if distinct WISC-III index score cluster profiles could be identified. Lastly, the cluster groups for both the TBI and ADHD samples were validated using important demographic and clinical variables, as well as scores from independent neuropsychological measures of attention, executive functioning, and working memory. Parent reports of psychological and behavioral functioning were also used in an attempt to further distinguish the cluster groups. Study limitations and future research implications were also discussed.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Shafer, Micheal E.

Violence and depression among ethnically diverse, low income women: Mediating and moderating factors

Description: This longitudinal study examined factors influencing the relationship between sustained partner violence and depression/suicidality among ethnically diverse, low income, community women. The sample at Wave 1 consisted of 303 African American, 273 Euro-American, and 260 Mexican American women in long term relationships with a household income less that twice the poverty threshold. There were no ethnic differences on frequency of partner violence, depression, or suicidality. The moderate relationship between partner violence and women's depression, confirmed previous findings. Frequency, but not recency, of violence predicted depression and suicidal ideation for African Americans and Mexican Americans, even after controlling for earlier depression or ideation. Recent violence did not predict Euro-American's depression or suicidality after controlling for initial scores. Causal and responsibility attributions for partners' violence did not mediate the relationship between violence and depression or suicidality in any ethnic group. However, African American women's attributions of global effects for violence mediated the relationship of violence on depression and suicidal ideation. Poverty level and marital status moderated the relationship between violence and the number of times women seriously considered and actually attempted suicide. Frequent violence was most lethal among the poorest women and marriage provided the least protection for women in the most violent relationships. Specifically, poverty status moderated violence on consideration of suicide for African Americans and Euro-Americans and suicide attempts among Mexican Americans. Marital status moderated partners' violence on suicidal ideation and attempts for Mexican Americans and consideration of suicide for Euro-Americans, but was not a moderator for African Americans' depression or suicidality. Women with different ethnic backgrounds appear to differ in the ways partner violence contributes to their depression and suicidality. Policy implications include the need to offer suicide intervention, particularly for low income women seeking services for violence. Mental health professionals should routinely inquire about partner violence when women ...
Date: August 2000
Creator: VanHorn, Barbara