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Age and Responses to the Events of September 11, 2001

Description: Following the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, many turned to the field of psychology for greater understanding of the impact of such events and guidance in supporting our citizens. This study sought to gain greater understanding of the differential impact of the September 11th attack on individuals by investigating the influence of age, psychological hardiness, and repression versus sensitization as forms of coping behavior on psychological health. Both an initial cross-sectional sample (172 young adults & 231older adults) and a short-term longitudinal follow-up (39 young adults & 58 older adults) were included in the study. Older age, psychological hardiness and the use of a repressing coping style were found to each individually relate to greater resilience/less dysfunction at both time one and two. For young adults, high hardy repressors faired best, followed by high hardy sensitizers. Low hardy young adults demonstrated similar levels of dysfunction regardless of coping style (repressions/sensitization). For older adults, coping style impacted both high and low hardy individuals equally, with high hardy repressors demonstrating greater functioning. This study attempted to gain greater insight into explanations for these and previous findings of greater resilience among older adults. In explaining the greater resilience of older adults, it seems that coping style is highly important, while hardiness and the impact of history-graded events does not explain the resilience of older adults.
Date: December 2004
Creator: Holmes, D. Nicole

Examining parenting outcomes of childhood sexual abuse survivors utilizing observation and self-report methods.

Description: Childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is associated with negative outcomes in adulthood, including difficulty in relationships. Research has posited CSA may lead to insecure attachment in survivors, which may be the vehicle by which dysfunctional parent-child relationships develop. The purpose of the proposed study was to examine differences in parenting outcomes between CSA and non-CSA mothers utilizing both observational and self-report methods and to examine the unique impact of CSA on parenting attitudes. Abuse status was determined by scores on the Sexual Abuse subscale of the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ), with the CSA group comprised of mothers scoring in the moderate to severe range. Mothers self-reported parenting attitudes on the Parent-Parental Acceptance Rejection Questionnaire/Control (P-PARQ/Control) and the Adult Adolescent Parenting Inventory-2 (AAPI-2), while parental depression was assessed with the revised Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-2). Parenting behaviors were observed by coding the Parent-Child Interaction Assessment (PCIA). Hypotheses were not supported until child gender was considered as a third variable. Results of MANCOVA analyses indicated CSA mothers, but not comparison mothers, exhibited significantly poorer limit-setting skills (h² = .21) with male children compared to female children, but did not self-report these differences. Although not statistically significant, small but potentially meaningful effect sizes were found when the self-reports of CSA mothers were compared to their observed behaviors. Specifically, CSA mothers displayed increased levels of physical nurturance (h² = .11) and role reversal (h² = .08) with male children compared to female children, but again, did not self-report these differences. Finally, CSA mothers, but not comparison mothers tended to self-report greater beliefs in corporal punishment with male children compared to females (h² = .08). Secondary findings revealed parental depression was the only unique predictor of parental nurturance, attitude toward corporal punishment, and role reversal. Findings confirm the importance of third variables, including child gender and ...
Date: August 2004
Creator: Kallstrom-Fuqua, Amanda C.

Gender Differences in Child, Parent, and Teacher Perception of Social Functioning Among Children With ADHD

Description: Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) tend to experience social functioning problems, with girls more likely to encounter peer rejection than boys. The present study investigated gender differences in child, parent, and teacher perceptions of social functioning among ADHD and control children. Participants included 119 children (ages 6-11) and their parents. Sixty-one children were previously diagnosed with ADHD. Parents, teachers, and children completed measures assessing the child's social functioning. The results indicate that the relationship between ADHD status and social functioning differs as a function of rater. Teachers and parents reported that ADHD children had lower social functioning than controls, while ADHD and control children reported similar levels of social functioning. Gender differences were found on the child self-report, with girls reporting lower social functioning than boys. In ADHD children the relationship between social functioning and comorbid depression differed as a function of rater. Specifically, among ADHD children with depression, parents rated children as having lower social functioning than did children or teachers. In ADHD children without comorbid depression, however, there were no rater differences. Additionally, no rater differences in social functioning were found between ADHD children with and without a comorbid psychiatric condition. Overall, the results of the current study lend support to the idea that parents, teachers, and children have different perceptions of social functioning. Clinically, these results suggest that interventions could focus on identifying those ADHD children most at-risk for social functioning problems and developing interventions that fit with their perceptions. The limitations of the current study and directions for future research are presented.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Tureau, Corinne C. S.

The Impact of Downsizing on Survivors' Career Development: A Test of Super's Theory

Description: The present study compared the career development concerns and other vocationally relevant variables of employees of organizations who have and have not engaged in downsizing within a one year timeframe. The sample consisted of 162 participants, 72 layoff survivors (those who remained in an organization after its downsizing) and 92 non-survivors (employees in organizations who have not downsized within 12 months). Significant results were found that differentiated the career related experiences of participants in the survivors group, survivors from non-survivors, and participants in general regardless of survivorship status. In general, results indicated that non-survivors reported greater job satisfaction and job security than layoff survivors, that being married with children may increase job satisfaction, and social support may buffer the grief reactions that survivors have to the loss of their co-worker friends. Furthermore, Super's age-associated stages within the Life-Span, Life-Space Theory were moderately upheld in the sample, especially for the Exploration stage. However, younger workers demonstrated more Maintenance concerns that would be predicted by the theory. A discussion of the relevant literature is included as well as possible explanations of the results, small sample size, and implications for future research.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Lahner, Jessica M.

Internet Use Among African American College Students: Psychosocial Correlates of the Digital Divide

Description: An exploratory study was conducted examining Internet usage among African-American college students. The study examined both psychosocial correlates, including technological anxiety and racial identity as well as socioeconomic measures, as they impacted Internet usage. Additionally, three distinct measures of Internet usage, thin access, thick access and the Internet Connectedness Index (ICI), were used as criterion variables in three separate multiple regression analysis (MRA) models. The results of the study found differences in predictive validity based on the criterion variable used, with the ICI accounting for the greatest amount of variance (54%). Racial identity, in terms of internal beliefs and feelings about being African American and internalization of Afrocentric values in a political context were found to be predictive of Internet usage as measured by the ICI.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Harvey, Pejcharat Jane

Social Support, Depression, and Cardiovascular Disease in Married, Middle-Aged/Older Adults

Description: This study examined the relationship between physical health, social support, and depression in a married, middle-aged/older adult sample in which at least one partner has heart disease. The data was obtained from a national longitudinal study the Health and Retirement Survey (HRS) and is composed of selected respondents and their spouses. The HRS Wave 1 data that was used for these analyses was collected in 1992 and 1993. This study tested a stress buffer model predicting the relationship between physical health, social support, and depression. For study inclusion, participants must have been diagnosed with cardiovascular disease and received treatment in the last year. A heart disease construct was developed by calculating the level of disease by the number of conditions and medical treatments received within the last year. A second health category for other chronic health conditions included diabetes, arthritis, cancer, and chronic pain. These constructs were combined into a total disease construct, which provided a broad measure of health problems typical of an older adult population. Social support was determined by respondents' satisfaction with friends, neighbors, family, their marriage, and enjoyable time spent with their spouse. Social support was subdivided into two constructs separating spousal support from social support sources outside the marriage. The Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression short-form (CES-D) calculated depression scores. Findings support a stress-buffering model among older married adults with chronic diseases. Hierarchical multiple regressions found the following main effects predicted Depression: Total Disease (Beta=. 03, p<. 000), Exercise (Beta=-.11, p<. 000), Smoking (Beta=. 04, p<. 001), General Support (Beta=-.21, p<. 000), Spousal Support (Beta=-.19, p<. 000). The Total Diseases by Spousal Support interaction was a significant predictor of Depression for men and women (Beta= -.04, p<. 000) and Total Disease by Spousal Support was also a significant predictor for men and women (Beta=-.03, plt;. ...
Date: August 2004
Creator: Hargett Thompson, Candace L.