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Perceptions and attributions of child, spousal, and elder abuse.

Description: Although researchers have studied perceptions regarding sexually abused children, little was known about how other types of abusive events were perceived. This study examined 480 college students' abuse history and perceptions of child, spousal, and elder abuse by varying the respondent, victim, and perpetrator genders. Physical abuse, psychological abuse, and neglect were investigated. Perceptions of abusiveness, seriousness, harm, and responsibility were examined, along with the extent of identification with the victims/perpetrators. Participants viewed spousal abuse as less serious and harmful than other abuse types, especially when perpetrated against a male or by a female. Although able to recognize psychological abuse, students did not fully understand what other abuse types entailed. Individuals also showed a considerable amount of blame toward victims. Results further demonstrated important findings about how ethnic identity/orientation, religious affiliation, and history of abuse related to perceptions of abusive events.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Altman, Adrianne

Feigning Cognitive Deficits on Neuropsychological Evaluations: Multiple Detection Strategies

Description: Individuals undergoing forensic neuropsychological evaluation frequently stand to gain in some manner if neurocognitive dysfunction is diagnosed. As a result, neuropsychologists are customarily asked to test for neurocognitive feigning during the assessment. The current study employed an analogue design with a clinical comparison group to examine the utility of the TOCA (Rogers, 1996) as a measure of feigned neurocognitive impairment. Two groups of simulators (one cautioned about the presence of detection strategies and one not cautioned) were compared to clinical and normal control groups. Fourteen scales were developed based on five detection strategies: symptom validity testing, performance curve, magnitude of error, response time, and floor effect. Each was employed during both verbal and nonverbal tasks. Significant differences were revealed among groups when subjected to ANOVA. Classification rates from subsequent utility estimates and discriminant function analyses on the scales ranged from 58.8% to 100%. Combining strategies yielded a classification rate of 95.7%. The effect of cautioning simulators was modest; however, a trend was noted on some scales for cautioned simulators to appear less obviously impaired than noncautioned. Although the results require crossvalidation, preliminary data suggest that the TOCA is a sensitive and specific measure of feigned neurocognitive performance. Strengths and weaknesses of the study are discussed and directions for future research are proposed.
Date: December 2000
Creator: Bender, Scott D.

Needs of familial caregivers of cancer patients across the advanced cancer disease trajectory.

Description: Familial caregivers are providing increasing amounts of care to advanced cancer patients. Increased understanding of caregivers' needs is vital in providing necessary support to lessen caregiver burden and comorbidity. This study examines particular information needs across a variety of specific events in the advanced cancer disease trajectory. A cross-sectional sample of 107 familial caregivers (24 current and 83 bereaved) of people with advanced cancer completed a needs assessment survey along with a measure of health information-seeking behavior. Analyses extend current research by including more specific disease-related events along the advanced cancer trajectory through bereavement. In all information categories, endorsement of wanted information differed across broad stages of Cancer Progression, Treatment, End of Life, and Post-Patient Death. For all information categories, except Dying and Spirituality, greatest information was wanted at the Cancer Progression stage. Information need also differed across specific events within broad stages. The categories of Disease/Medical and Relating to the Patient were the most endorsed at events involving patient care. Spirituality was least endorsed. At patient death, Caregiver Well-being has the highest endorsement. For events thereafter, information on Caregiver Well-being, Spirituality, Future Outlook, and Family and Close Others was most endorsed. Information needs did not differ based on age or education. Whether or not a caregiver had experienced a given event on the cancer trajectory impacted some categories of information desired at the events of leaving the hospital for home, going into hospice, patient death, immediately after death, and bereavement. In all cases, those who had experienced the event wanted more information. In comparing current to bereaved caregivers, no differences in information endorsement occurred for events of the Cancer progression or Treatment stages. This study also involved the validation and factor analysis the Health Information-Seeking Behavior Survey. Two factors, Health Information-Seeking and Health Information-Avoiding, emerged. Health Information-Seeking correlates positively ...
Date: August 2004
Creator: Bernard, Lori Lynn

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.

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

Pregnancy Loss: Disenfranchised Grief and Other Psychological Reactions

Description: It is widely acknowledged in the literature that grief is most intense when it is experienced by parents whose children have died. However, as recently as 20 years ago, mothers whose children died at birth or before the pregnancy had reached full term were often dismissed as merely medical patients, and their psychological reactions were not considered or acknowledged by professionals, their friends, or their families. More recently fields such as psychology have recognized that women who have experienced pregnancy loss have complex psychological reactions to their loss. The present study examined the patterns of grief of women who have had a pregnancy end in spontaneous abortion or stillbirth and the ways in which these women gave meaning to their experiences. Participants were asked to complete several measures including the Perinatal Grief Scale (PGS), the Hogan Grief reaction Checklist (HGRC), the Perceived Social Support Scale (PSS), and the Inventory of Social Support (ISS). The participants also wrote a narrative account of their loss experience. These narratives were content analyzed to delineate common themes. The findings indicated several important factors which may be useful in understanding and assisting in post-loss adjustment.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Clower, Christen E.

Narcissistic traits and parenting style: A closer look at maladaptive parenting through parent-child observations, parent self-report, and child self-report.

Description: The thrust of this paper was two-fold, 1) to confirm a 2-factor model of narcissism in women, and 2) to examine the relationship between narcissistic traits in mothers and several variables associated with parenting efficacy. Participants included 193 mother-child dyads. A 2-factor model of narcissism was confirmed in the present sample of mothers, suggesting that narcissistic traits in women may be manifested in distinct Overt and Covert forms. Contrary to expectations, Covert Narcissistic traits in mothers did not significantly correlate with observed parenting behaviors on the PCIA, including Positive Personal Comments (PPC) towards children, Negative Personal Comments (NPC), and Parental Nurturance. However, children's self-reported maternal rejection on the C-PARQ correlated positively with Covert Narcissistic traits in mothers, as did mother's self-reported dysfunctional parenting attitudes on the AAPI-2. Narcissistic traits in mothers correlated most strongly with risk of child physical abuse on the CAPI (r = .70). Results are also presented for the Overt Narcissism factor, which proved to be less stable as a factor. Overall, results emphasize the need for a more comprehensive understanding of narcissism for women, given its potential Implications for children's healthy development and parenting interventions.
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Date: August 2004
Creator: Collins, Michelle

Postcombat Military Job Satisfaction Among Vietnam Helicopter Aviators

Description: This project investigated the relations between recalled job-satisfaction, ability, and task demands in Vietnam era helicopter aviators. It attempted to detect and describe factors present in a dangerous combat environment which may influence some individuals to enjoy and take satisfaction at being exposed to, creating, and participating in the dangerous and life threatening violence involved in helicopter combat. Participants were 30 pilots and crew members retired from the 335th Assault Helicopter Company who were all actively involved in combat in Vietnam from 1968 to 1970. This study found that developing a love of war is correlated with anger during combat. The love of war is not correlated with PTSD processes nor is it correlated with specific personality dimensions. The love of war research is a new area. The questions were used to operationalize the love of war represent a significant limitation. This method of operationalizing the love of war concept does not make fine discriminations has questionable content validity. To facilitate accuracy in discriminating between participants when conducting future research in the area, researchers could benefit from constructing a measure with greater content validity.
Date: December 2005
Creator: Crisp, William A.

Mediational Roles of Personality Factors and Vengeful Rumination in the Development of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Description: Considerable research has demonstrated a link between thoughts of revenge, or vengeful rumination, and the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, particularly in situations involving interpersonal trauma. Personality factors have been related to both vengefulness and PTSD. No study to date has simultaneously examined the unique contributions of vengefulness and personality factors in the development of PTSD symptoms. Therefore, the present study addressed these questions in an inpatient sample by comparing contributions of the Big Five personality factors and vengeful rumination to the development of PTSD symptoms through correlation, hierarchical regression, and omnibus regression analyses. Results showed that Neuroticism predicted PTSD symptoms better than other personality factors, that Neuroticism and Agreeableness predicted vengeful rumination in opposite directions, and that personality factors and vengeful rumination each added unique variance in the prediction of PTSD symptoms. Future directions and implications are discussed.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Crostley, Jeremy T.

Negative affect and positive symptoms of psychosis.

Description: The current study utilized structural equation modeling (SEM) to examine the factor-to-factor relations and temporal associations between disturbances in negative affect (NA) and positive symptoms of psychosis (PP). Data were drawn from a large, public-domain data set (MacArthur Violence Risk Assessment Study). A dimensional approach was used to conceptualize and identify latent variables of NA (depression, anxiety, and guilt) and PP (hallucinations, delusions, and thought disorder) among individuals with a diagnosis of primary psychotic disorder. Results showed that anxiety, guilt, and depressed mood modeled an NA latent variable, and that hallucinations and unusual thought content modeled a PP latent variable. As predicted, results revealed strong, significant cross-sectional (synchronous) associations between NA and PP at each measured time-frame, suggesting that NA and PP occurred concurrently within the sample. Contrary to predictions, no significant cross-lagged effect between NA and PP was identified (10 weeks and 20 weeks respectively).
Date: December 2009
Creator: Crutchfield, Audra

Patterns of Change in Semantic Clustering in Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders: What Can it Tell Us about the Nature of Clustering Deficits

Description: Semantic clustering has been used as a measure of learning strategies in a number of clinical populations and has been found to be deficient in individuals with Schizophrenia, but less attention has been paid to the dynamic use of this strategy over the course of fixed-order learning trials. In the current study, we examined this pattern of clustering use over trials in a sample of individuals with Schizophrenia, and explored whether the addition of this dynamic information would help us to better predict specific executive deficits. Results suggested that a decrease in semantic clustering across trials was associated with some executive deficits in the predicted manner. Nonetheless, the overall semantic clustering index generally proved more effective for the purposes, suggesting that in this population, the addition of dynamic information in strategy use is not likely to add considerably to clinical prediction and understanding.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Edwards, Kimberly

Family Rituals and Resilience: Relationship Among Measures of Religiosity, Openness to Experience, and Trait Anxiety

Description: Rituals are an integral part of society. The focus of research on rituals has been shifting to highlight the effect rituals may produce on individual resilience and ability to function. This study examined the relationships between participation in family rituals and several conceptually related facets of the human experience, including religiosity, openness to experience, and anxiety. Participants responded to questions on an assessment instrument (Family Ritual Questionnaire) designed to measure participation in a broad variety of identified family rituals; they were grouped according to responses on that questionnaire, and the resulting groups were compared on their responses to questionnaires addressing religiosity (Religious Background and Behavior Questionnaire), openness to experience (Revised NEO Personality Inventory Openness to Experiences scale), and anxiety (State-Trait Anxiety Inventory). The four-group classification system did not produce significant differences on measures of religiosity, openness to experience, or trait anxiety. Nor were there any significant differences noted when the groups were examined on the basis of the demographic characteristics of age, gender, separation time from family of origin, or academic status. The demographic descriptive which was associated with specific group differences related to adult composition of family of origin: participants described the adults present in their families of origin, and the family types were grouped into traditional, mixed, and nontraditional families. A difference was identified between the traditional and nontraditional families on level of ritualization. This finding may be indicative of a useful direction for subsequent research inquiry.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Emmett, Gloria J.

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.

Comparative Models of the Impact of Social Support on Psychological Distress in Cancer Patients

Description: This study tested the relationship between Social Support, Psychological Distress, and Illness Stress in individuals who report cancer as a health condition. This study was based on archival data obtained from the Wave 1 of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS). The HRS provides a nationally representative sample of individuals aged 51 to 61 in 1992 and their spouses. The study sample was limited to cancer patients with a spouse or partner (n = 503). A structural equation modeling analysis procedure was used to test the theoretical models. Measures of social support were limited to variables assessing the participant's satisfaction with social support. Evidence was found for the Stress Prevention and the Support Deterioration models. This is congruent with previous research using measures of social support perception. Both the Stress Prevention and the Support Deterioration models predict a negative relationship between Illness Stress and Social Support. In addition, a univariate analysis of variance was used to test the stress buffering model. Similarly to other studies measuring the individual's degree of integration, or its perception, in the social network, the present research supported the only the Main Effect model and not the Stress Buffering model.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Forjaz, Maria João Bettencourt Pereira

Acculturation and Sociocultural Influences as Predictors of Family Relationships and Body Image Dissatisfaction in African American, Hispanic American, and European American Women

Description: Ethnic differences in etiological factors linked to body image dissatisfaction and eating disorders were examined. In addition, the interaction of acculturation and body image dissatisfaction in influencing minority women's relationships with their parents was investigated. Participants consisted of 302 undergraduates from three ethnic groups: Caucasian, Hispanic American, and African American women who were administered self-report measures. Differences were not found between the groups in body image dissatisfaction. Low self-esteem, internalization of the thin ideal, and family emphasis on weight and appearance were all related to more body image dissatisfaction for each of these groups; however, differences in degree of endorsement were also noted between the ethnic groups on these factors. Based on the interaction findings (body image x acculturation) separation from one's mother was found in the area of attitudes and emotions for the Hispanic sample but not for the African American sample on any of the parent scales. Areas for future research and implications for diagnosis and treatment of minority populations are also discussed.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Garcia-Rea, Elizabeth Ann

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.

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.

Investigating patterns among demographics, identification practices, interventions, and educational outcomes for students with serious emotional disturbance.

Description: This study explored potential patterns of association among the demographic characteristics, identification practices, educational interventions, and educational outcomes for students with serious emotional disturbance (SED) as well as specifically investigated the impact of age at identification with SED and the presence of co-occurring disabilities. Data was gathered from the educational records of students with SED in seven rural to semi-rural districts in Texas. Demographic information included gender, ethnicity, age at identification with SED, and identification with co-occurring disabilities. Identification variables that were investigated include the five federal qualifying criteria for SED, IQ score, and BASC and/or CBCL scores. Intervention variables that were explored included placement setting, restrictiveness of placement setting, type of related services provided, parental attendance at multidisciplinary team meetings, number of multidisciplinary team meetings, and total time spent in special education as a student with SED. Outcome variables that were examined included achievement levels in reading and math, attendance, special education status, and grade retention. Results suggested that earlier identification with SED is related to placement in less restrictive settings, achievement within two years of grade level in reading, and lower average number of absences. The presence of co-occurring disabilities in addition to SED is associated with placement in more restrictive settings and with achievement that is two or more years below grade level in reading and math. Additional findings and implications for future research as well as for current practice are discussed.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Gonzalez, Christine

Optimism, Health Locus of Control, and Quality of Life of Women with Initial versus Recurrent Breast Cancer

Description: Health Locus of Control (HLOC) and other predictors of Quality of Life (QL) were examined for women with an initial versus recurrent breast cancer diagnosis. Twenty-eight women with an initial breast cancer (IBC) diagnoses and twenty-eight women with recurrent breast cancer (RBC) diagnoses were recruited from doctors' offices and cancer support groups. Correlational analyses were used to assess the relationships between variables. No significant differences were found between women with IBC and RBC on Psychological QL. Doctor HLOC and Psychological QL were related for women with RBC (r = .481, p = .01) and marginally so for women with IBC (r = .329, p = .09). A positive correlation was also found between Doctor HLOC and Functional QL for both women with IBC (r = .464, p = .01) and women with RBC (r = .390, p = .04). After controlling for stage of cancer, women with RBC reported higher Functional QL than did women with IBC. Advanced (stages III or IV) versus early (stages I or II) cancer stage related to lower Functional QL, controlling for initial versus recurrent diagnosis (r = -.283, p = .01). A marginally significant relationship was also found for cancer stage, regardless of initial versus recurrent diagnosis, with higher Overall QL for women with early stages of breast cancer (r = -.157, p = .09). No significant differences in Optimism or Overall QL were found between women with IBC versus RBC. No differences were found between married and single women. This research begins to explore differences in Quality of Life for women with a new versus a recurrent breast cancer diagnosis.
Date: May 2001
Creator: Graci, Gina

Neuromotor and Neurocognitive Functioning in the Prediction of Cognition, Behavior Problems, and Symptoms at Two-year Follow-up in Youth with Schizotypal Personality Disorder

Description: Individuals diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) exhibit patterns of cognitive deficits, neuromotor disturbances, and behavior problems similar to individuals with schizophrenia, and thus SPD is thought to represent one point on the continuum of schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSDs). Deficits in behavior, cognition, and motor functioning have been implicated as childhood precursors of SSDs and appear to also vary as a function of gender and family history of psychopathology. As such, studies of youth may help in further identification of individuals at risk for SSDs. The current study examined the prospective associations between problem behaviors, neuromotor and neurocognitive functioning, as well as SSD symptoms, at baseline and 2-year follow-up in youth meeting criteria for SPD, other personality disorders, or healthy controls. The neuromotor and neurocognitive measures were able to significantly predict SSD symptoms and behavior problems above and beyond baseline predictors. Overall, the findings provide further support for the role of subcortical motor centers operating together with prefrontal cortical areas in the regulation of higher-order cognitive functioning and in producing the psychiatric features of SSDs. Significant correlations between gender, family history of schizophrenia, and history of head injury with symptoms, behavior, cognition, and motor functioning were also found and highlight the importance of examining the effects of these variables in future investigations. In sum, the current study helped in identifying factors that predict the clinical course of schizotypy and may shed light on the disturbed neural circuitry underlying SSDs.
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Date: December 2006
Creator: Greher, Felicia Reynolds

The Effects of Assessment Context on State Anxiety and a Neuropsychological Model of Attention

Description: This study investigated the effects of assessment context on state anxiety and attention according to the Mirsky (1996) model of attention. Context varied in the physical testing environment, demeanor of the assessor, and explanation of the purpose of testing. A relaxed condition (RC) and structured medical condition (SMC) distinction was made prior to data collection and the two contexts were designed to reflect contrasting practices of neuropsychologists. Elements of attention evaluated included Encoding (Digit Span), Focusing/Executing (Visual Search and Attention Test), Shifting (Wisconsin Card Sorting Test: Computerized Version 2), Sustaining, and Stabilizing (Continuous Performance Test-Identical Pairs). Eighty healthy adult females participated in the study. The findings suggest that the SMC caused higher levels of anxiety and lower valence than the RC, which in turn caused poorer sustained attention and superior shifting attention for this condition. Such interpretations are consistent with several theories on the effects of anxiety on attention. It should be noted, however, that differences observed in attention were limited to select measures. Factor analysis also indicates that the encode, shift, and sustain elements of attention were largely consistent with the factor solution proposed by Mirsky, while findings on the focus/execute and stabilize elements bring into question the construct validity of these aspects of the model. Findings from the study are considered relevant to those interested in attention theory and particularly researchers and clinicians involved in the administration of neuropsychological testing.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Greher, Michael R.

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.

Deficits in Miranda Comprehension and Reasoning: The Effects of Substance Use and Attention Deficits.

Description: Each year, an estimated 318,000 defendants who do not comprehend the Miranda warnings waive their rights and provide incriminating evidence without the protection of counsel (Rogers, 2008), which make Miranda-related competencies one of the most pervasive pretrial issues. A wide range of issues could potentially affect an individual's capacity to provide a knowing and intelligent waiver. Previous Miranda research has focused narrowly on the effects of cognitive and developmental factors. The current study added to the Miranda literature by examining the impact of two highly prevalent conditions found in correctional populations, attention deficits and substance abuse. Adult defendants in custody (N = 118) were evaluated within 36 hours of arrest in order to assess both chronic psychological disorders and situational variables. Results indicate that attention deficits have a significant impact on defendants' ability to provide a knowing Miranda waiver, whereas substance use profoundly affected their reasoning about Miranda waiver decisions. This study represents the first systematic investigation of the effect of transient mental states on Miranda-related abilities with criminal defendants. Important implications for forensic practice are addressed.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Hazelwood, Lisa L.

Adolescent Self-Mutilating Behaviors: Experiential Avoidance Coupled with Imitation?

Description: Repetitive self-mutilation (RSM) has become increasingly prevalent among adolescents. Empirical research has pinpointed several correlates of this behavior, but the initiation and maintenance of RSM among adolescents are not well understood. The experiential avoidance model (EAM) proposes that self-mutilation is a behavior that allows for the avoidance or alteration of unwanted internal experiences, and that it is negatively reinforced with repetition. The current study explored the usefulness of the EAM as an explanatory theory for adolescent RSM, with the additional incorporation of issues of social context. Adolescents (N = 211) from three school-based samples completed self-report questionnaires. One-third of students reported at least one incident of purposeful, non-suicidal self-mutilation and 16% had engaged in self-mutilation repeatedly within the past 6 months. Both regression and group analyses indicated that adolescents who engage in RSM report greater psychological distress, a greater incidence of functionally equivalent behaviors, and greater exposure to self-mutilation among peers and/or in the media, when compared to their counterparts who have not engaged in RSM. Suicidal ideation/behaviors were consistently the strongest predictors of current self-mutilation behaviors. Clinical implications, limitations, and suggestions for future research are discussed.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Howe-Martin, Laura S.