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Social Support as an Intervention for Parents of Children with ADHD

Description: Social support needs have neither been formally addressed nor assessed in prior research with parents of children of special needs. Typically, behavioral management skills, specific knowledge about the disorder/illness/handicap, parents' self-perception, and participants' evaluation of program effectiveness have been measured. Research information collected to date supports the exploration of social support as a treatment intervention. Therefore, the purpose of the present study was to examine perceived social support for parents of children with ADHD who completed a parent training program. The program, entitled "ADHD Parent Training," included information about ADHD, behavior management strategies, child advocacy, and a social support component. Upon completing the ADHD Parent Training program, parents were expected to perceive a significantly greater amount of social support than they did prior to treatment. In addition, the relationship between change in perceived social support and the more traditionally assessed outcomes of parent training was examined (parent's satisfaction with treatment, parent's perception of child's progress, and teacher's perception of child's progress).
Date: December 1994
Creator: Robert, Rhonda S. (Rhonda Simone)

Coping with Severe, Acute Psychological Trauma: the Killeen Shooting Incident

Description: The present study examined the relationship between coping and psychological and psychosomatic distress of 25 individuals who experienced the same severe, acute traumatic event: the violent shooting that killed 23 people and severely injured 20 more in Luby's Cafeteria in Killeen, Texas, on October 16, 1991. Distress was assessed by one-month pre-event and post-event scores on the SCL-90R, Psychosomatic Questionnaire, and by a Life Event Questionnaire score for the year before the incident. Coping was measured by a modified version of the Ways of Coping Scale (Folkman et al., 1986) and Response Style Questionnaire (Nolen-Hoeksema & Morrow, 1991). All post-event distress scores, except the Psychosomatic score, significantly increased over their corresponding pre-event scores regardless of gender. Although female distress scores were consistently higher than male scores, gender was predictive of post-event distress only for the SCL-90R Anxiety, Somatization, and Global Severity Index scales. The only pre-event score found to be predictive of post-event distress was the Psychosomatic scale. Regression analysis, with demographic and pre-event variables controlled, found a significant positive relationship between Escape/Avoidance coping and one-month post-event levels of Anxiety and Psychosomatic distress. Findings were discussed in the context of the process-oriented stress-illness model and were compared to current disaster and crime victimization literature. Implications for helping professionals, methodological issues, and implications for future research were explored.
Date: August 1994
Creator: Forté, Beverly K.

Psychosocial and Spiritual Factors Affecting Persons Living with HIV and AIDS

Description: The purposes of this study were (a) to examine whether social support decreases as the person with HIV disease progresses from asymptomatic HIV to symptomatic AIDS and (b) to examine the extent to which general well-being might be mediated through a religious and/or spiritual support system.
Date: August 1993
Creator: Elkins, Tamara L. (Tamara Lynn)

Memory Patterns: Differentiated between Environmental Sensitive Patients and Psychiatric Patients

Description: The purpose of the present study was to ascertain if environmentally sensitive patients would demonstrate different memory deficit patterns than psychiatric patients on objectively measurable memory tasks. One-hundred sixteen patients were surveyed; 56 environmentally sensitive patients were compared to 60 psychiatric patients. All subjects were administered a Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised screen, the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised and the Harrell-Butler Comprehensive Neurocognitive Screen after history of head injury was ruled out. Results indicate a significantly different pattern of memory dysfunction between the environmental patients and the psychiatric patients, indicating two different etiologies. A screening device derived from the coefficients from a Canonical Analysis is proposed to distinguish between the two populations in the absence of blood serum levels of environmental toxins or poisons. The detrimental effects of misdiagnosis and the beneficial effects of accurate diagnosis of environmental illness are discussed.
Date: August 1993
Creator: Lockart, Esther

Detecting Cognitive Impairment in Older Adults: a Validation Study of Selected Screening Instruments

Description: The present study investigated the criterion-based validity of the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), the Cognitive Capacity Screening Examination (CCSE), and the Neurobehavioral Cognitive Status Examination (NCSE) in a sample of older adults with suspected cognitive impairment. As cognitive screening tests, the MMSE, CCSE, and NCSE should predict performance relative to a more thorough testing procedure. In the present study, performance on the Halstead-Reitan Neuropsychological Test Battery (HRNTB) was employed as the criterion measure. Scores on the General Neuropsychological Deficit Scale (G-NDS), a global performance measure computed from the HRNTB, served as the standard by which to judge the presence of cognitive impairment. The sensitivity, specificity, and predictive value of each screening test, as well as how well each screening test correlated with the G-NDS, were investigated. Results of this investigation found that, although the MMSE, CCSE, and NCSE were all significantly correlated with the G-NDS, only the NCSE demonstrated an appropriate balance between high sensitivity and specificity. When a rigorous neuropsychological evaluation was employed as the criterion standard, the NCSE accurately detected the presence of cognitive impairment: in 82% of the cases. The MMSE and CCSE, however, failed to detect cognitive deficits in approximately 80% of the cases. These findings strongly suggest that the MMSE and CCSE may have limited utility in the identification of cognitive impairment in older adults. The heightened sensitivity of the NCSE appears to be the result of several unigue features of the instrument, including a multidimensional scoring system and a graded series of increasingly difficult items within each ability area. Future studies need to examine the utility of the NCSE in other geriatric settings, as well as with more diverse populations suffering from a variety of organic mental syndromes.
Date: May 1993
Creator: McBride-Houtz, Patricia (Patricia Ann)

Control, Commitment, and Challenge: Relationships to Stress, Illness, and Gender

Description: Male and female college students were administered scales assessing their daily hassles, negative life events, control, commitment, challenge, psychological symptomatology, psychological distress, and physical symptomatology. Stepwise multiple regression analyses showed that control, commitment, and challenge act in an additive (rather than multiplicative) manner in relation to psychological and physical outcome measures.
Date: May 1992
Creator: Embry, Judy K.

The Process of Ritual: a Twenty-Year Survey of Literature

Description: Use of the term "ritual" in PsycLit from 1975-1995 was examined through an archival study. Abstracts identified as including any form of the term were coded for valence, target population, study type, and differential area of interest. Valence was predominantly positive, consistent across time, with a growing negative trend. Interest in ritual has increased. Key elements of adaptive ritual were identified as recurrence across time, shared symbolism and volitional participation. A Dynamic Process of Ritual is proposed which includes the individual, society, and chaos in a fluctuating relationship, all operating within an additional dimension of a continuum of ritualization in which the individual's position is determined by personal and societal complexity and individual response to crisis.
Date: August 1998
Creator: Emmett, Gloria J.

Alcohol Use, Violence, and Psychological Abuse in Intimate Relationships

Description: Women in distressed relationships who had sustained severe psychological abuse and either no, moderate, or severe violence from their partner were included (N = 93). Men's and women's alcohol use did not differ with level of violence. Different patterns were found in the moderate violence group regarding women's beliefs about their partner's substance problem, men's psychological abuse, and the relationship of men's and women's quantity of alcohol use and times intoxicated. Uncertainty resulting from moderate violence may strengthen the emotional impact of psychological abuse. Even when psychological abuse is exacerbated by violence, women may use active coping techniques rather than drinking to cope with abusive relationships. The findings suggest that an inordinate focus on alcohol abuse may be ineffective in combating the problem of domestic violence.
Date: August 1998
Creator: Falla, Karen M.

Exploratory Factor Analysis of the Geriatric Depression Scale Among Cardiac Patients

Description: The Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) was originally designed as a measure for screening depression among elderly medical patients. Although this instrument is well validated among a general medical population, it has never been evaluated with specific regard to cardiac patients, the largest single group of medical patients over 40 years of age. A general cardiac sample of 655 patients completed the GDS within 10 weeks of the cardiac event. Exploratory factor analyses were conducted on the main sample, then on several subgroups of participants with regard to diagnostic category, gender, and age. The GDS generally produces factor structures with several symptom domains with a high rate of total variance. The myocardial infarction group endorsed general symptoms of depression whereas the coronary artery bypass graft group reported greater levels of despair regarding their condition. Overall, males primarily reported agitation and hopelessness while females reported symptoms of depressed mood.
Date: May 1998
Creator: Hupp, Gregory S.

A Continuation in the Defining of the Construct of Optimism

Description: One hundred twenty-two undergraduate students at the University of North Texas were administered several different optimism scales and also measures of similar constructs such as hope. Results indicated that most measures of optimism show only low to moderate intercorrelations with other measures of the same construct. Additionally, factor analysis confirmed that the measures of optimism actually appear to be assessing multiple factors and not necessarily optimism alone. Implications of the present study include the necessity of individual researchers to be familiar with the specific measure of optimism used in a given study as scores on differing measures of optimism may actually be providing very different information.
Date: August 1997
Creator: Hinze, Travis Wayne

Relationship of Leadership Importance Ratings and Leadership Competency Ratings Across Adjacent Management Levels

Description: Effective leadership can and does influence organizational performance. The Executive Success Profile, a multi-rater feedback instrument, was used to gather perception data on 51 executives and 310 senior managers of a large Fortune 500 electronics manufacturing company in regards to three critical leadership dimensions: visionary thinking, empowering others, and global perspective. Paired t-tests were run to compare the means of the two samples. Significant differences were found between executives and senior managers on the perceived importance of and ability to perform on the empowering others dimension. Additionally, correlational measures indicate a statistically significant relationship between importance and competence ratings on the empowering others and global perspective dimensions for executives, and on the empowering others dimension for senior managers.
Date: May 1998
Creator: Goldman, Joshua L. (Joshua Lee)

Investigating the Relationship Between Integrity and Job Turnover

Description: Integrity tests have become a widely used tool in modern-day selection systems. These instruments are generally designed to predict dishonest and counterproductive attitudes/behavior. A group of participants who had quit a job without notice was found to have higher scores on an Integrity/Pessimism scale (indicating low integrity and highly pessimistic attitudes) than an involuntary turnover group of those who had been fired or laid off. Post hoc analyses also found supporting evidence in that the quit without notice group also had higher expressed exit intentions scores (indicating negative attitudes toward current occupation/industry) and shorter average tenure than the involuntary (fired and laid off) group. The potential benefits of developing a predictive Integrity/Pessimism scale are discussed.
Date: August 1998
Creator: Simonini, Scott L.

Contributing Risk Factors in the Association Between Sexual Abuse Experiences and Disturbed Eating Patterns in College Females

Description: This study examined two theoretical factors proposed to explain the relationship between sexual abuse experiences and disturbed eating patterns. Over 300 women completed questionnaires designed to assess sexual abuse histories, bodily shame, body disparagement, and disordered eating behaviors. Multivariate analyses indicated that bodily shame, body image dysphoria, and bodily dissatisfaction were significantly higher in participants with previous sexual violations. In addition, disordered eating symptoms and behaviors were related to reported severity of sexual abuse experiences. However, the relationship between the severity of disturbed eating patterns and sexual abuse histories appears to be more meaningful in relation to the presence of bodily shame and body dissatisfaction, as proposed in previous research. Future research implications are discussed.
Date: August 1999
Creator: Tripp, Margaret Murphy

The Relationship of Gender Discrepant Attitudes, Behaviors and Characteristics to Disordered Eating

Description: This study extended earlier research supporting discrepancy theory by including a multidimensional conceptualization of gender including attitudes, behaviors, and characteristics. Analyses revealed that gender discrepancy when assessed multidimensionally or unidimensionally (as in past research) was not significantly related to eating disordered symptomatology.
Date: August 1997
Creator: Johnson, Courtney Ellen, 1969-

Effects of Psychoeducation on Opinions about Mental Illness, Attitudes toward Help Seeking, and Expectations about Psychotherapy

Description: The effect of psychoeducation on opinions about mental illness, attitudes toward help seeking, and expectations about psychotherapy were investigated. One group served as a control, one group read a written lecture on information about mental illness, and one group read a written lecture on information about psychotherapy. The control group, and experimental groups immediately after reading the lecture, completed demographic information, Attitudes Toward Help Seeking-Short Form, Expectations About Counseling-Brief Form, Nunnally Conceptions of Mental Illness Questionnaire, and three College Adjustment Scales (Depression, Anxiety, Self Esteem). Participants were asked to complete the same measures four weeks after the initial assessment. Results: No significant improvement in attitudes toward help seeking was demonstrated in either experimental group, at either time of testing. Expectations about psychotherapy were significantly improved in both experimental groups, which remained significant at Time 2. Opinions about mental illness demonstrated an immediate significant improvement in attitudes with the mental illness lecture group, however this effect did not remain at Time 2. The psychotherapy lecture group did not have significantly improved opinions about mental illness at either time of testing. The control group did not produce any significant changes between Time 1 and Time 2 testing. Experimental group scores demonstrated similarity with those who had previous experience with psychotherapy. No relationship was found between level of adjustment and attitudes toward help seeking, expectations about psychotherapy, or opinions about mental illness at either time of testing.
Date: August 1999
Creator: Gonzalez, Jodi Marie

Construct Use and Self-Aspect Change in Recovery From Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery: a Personal Construct Analysis

Description: Cognitive ratings that use bipolar constructs based upon similarity and contrast have been shown to be biased towards the similarity pole in approximately a 62/38 ratio. This bias has also been known to shift in the contrastive direction for individuals who have psychiatric problems. This quantitative measure of cognitive change has a potential for characterizing cognitive changes that occur during the disease process, including recovery from disease. The present study investigated changes in self-aspect ratings and bipolar construct use in adult male veterans who had undergone coronary artery bypass graft surgery. Results indicated that treatment subjects' self-aspect and construct ratings were more negative than controls'. Results also indicated that all subjects rated core interpersonal self-aspects closest to the expected bias, while self-aspects related to cardiac recovery problems were rated in the most contrastive direction. The results finally suggested that the greatest degree of change for the treatment subjects were in emotionally generated constructs. The results suggested a preliminary validation for characterizing cognitive changes in the disease process by measuring shifts in bipolar construct ratings.
Date: May 1992
Creator: Zolten, Avram J. (Avram Jeffery)

Patterns of Relationship Violence among Low Income Women and Severely Psychologically Abused Women

Description: Little research has addressed the degree to which domestic violence is mutual and whether patterns are stable across women's relationships. Studies that exist have conflicting results. This study addressed these issues and the effects of sustaining past violence on women's expressions of violence in their current relationship. Archival data from a sample of severely psychologically abused community women (N = 92) and a sample of low-income community women (N = 836) were analyzed. Results showed the presence of mutual violence in women's current relationships which was not related to past partners' violence. Results regarding the stability of violence are weak, but indicate that the frequency and severity of violence across relationships sustained by women does not decrease across relationships. Overall, results supported the hypothesis that violence is mutual in the relationships of community women, although specific patterns may differ by ethnicity.
Date: August 1998
Creator: Weston, Rebecca

Family and Self-concept Factors Contributing to the Adjustment and Achievement of Early Entrants

Description: The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of students' self-concept and their perceptions of family environment in the psychosocial adjustment and academic achievement of accelerated college students in a residential program. A secondary purpose was to investigate the differential role of those factors for students of diverse ethnic backgrounds.
Date: December 1996
Creator: Caplan, Sheryl Mink