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Meaning As A Buffer Against Adolescent Psychopathology, Ellen Shaina Dulaney Nov 2015

Meaning As A Buffer Against Adolescent Psychopathology, Ellen Shaina Dulaney

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

This thesis investigates the function of meaning in life in adolescence to ascertain whether specific psychological resources may protect youths against threats to subjective well-being. Meaning in life and the search for the meaning in stressful occurrences were independently examined for their influence on stress impact and depression symptomatology. 201 American middle-school and high-school students between 12 and 19 years of age were recruited for this study. Participants reported on questionnaires targeting frequency of negative life events; depressive symptoms; sense of meaning; and tendency to reframe stressors in terms of their meaning, termed “stressor meaning seeking”. It was expected that ...


An Evaluation Of The Perfectionistic Social Disconnect Model Among Ethnic Minority Youth, Ana Belen Goya Arce Nov 2015

An Evaluation Of The Perfectionistic Social Disconnect Model Among Ethnic Minority Youth, Ana Belen Goya Arce

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Interpersonal aspects of perfectionism, particularly perfectionistic self-presentation, have been identified as specific vulnerability factors in the development of depressive disorders during the early adolescent years. The Perfectionistic Social Disconnect Model (PSDM) offers a theoretical framework explaining the relationship between perfectionistic self-presentation (PSP) and depressive disorders. The PSDM suggests that perfectionistic self-presentation leads to depressive symptoms indirectly through interpersonal problems and social disconnection. While previous studies have supported the hypothesized role of social disconnection as a mediator in the relation between perfectionistic self-presentation and suicidal ideation, no studies have explored the role that interpersonal problems play in the model. Furthermore, the ...


Prospective Predictors Of Adolescent Bmi: Parenting Style, Gender, And Weight Perception, Trey V. Dellucci Nov 2015

Prospective Predictors Of Adolescent Bmi: Parenting Style, Gender, And Weight Perception, Trey V. Dellucci

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Obesity affects both adolescents and adults worldwide (Popkin & Doak, 1998). Determining which factors contribute to risk factors to the high prevalence of obesity in America is important because excess weight can negatively affect both physical health and psychosocial functioning (Kolotkin, Meter, & Williams, 2001). Few longitudinal studies have assessed the association between parenting styles and adolescent’s body mass index (BMI; Rhee et al, 2006). Past research has shown that parents greatly influence adolescent’s body image (Al Sabbah et al., 2009). Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, the current study examined the influence of parenting styles on adolescent’s weight over time (Harris et al., 2009). Additionally, we tested a mediation model on the relationship between parenting style and adolescent’s BMI through weight perception. The final aim of this study was to determine whether weight perception differed by gender. The current study failed to find an association ...


Early Diagnosis Of Autism Spectrum Disorder Via A Transdisciplinary Clinic, Peter John Thaxter Nov 2015

Early Diagnosis Of Autism Spectrum Disorder Via A Transdisciplinary Clinic, Peter John Thaxter

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

The current study seeks to explore whether a transdisciplinary clinic is accurate in their diagnosis of ASD prior to the age of three. Participants in the current study consist of 34 children aged 13 to 36 months who were evaluated by a transdisciplinary clinic between 2007 and 2009. Participants were reassessed using the ADOS and ADI-R once the child is over the age of three. The diagnoses from the two time points was compared to determine the accuracy and reliability of the diagnosis assigned by the transdisciplinary clinic prior to the age of three.

Overall, diagnostic stability was high between ...


Reducing Economic Disparities For Female Offenders: The Oxford House Model, Sarah L. Callahan Aug 2015

Reducing Economic Disparities For Female Offenders: The Oxford House Model, Sarah L. Callahan

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Background: In the past 30 years the rate of increase in incarceration for females who abuse substances has outpaced that of men. Women have increased health and economic disparities, and face barriers to economic mobility, increasing their risk of returning to the criminal justice system. Past research suggests that there is a positive relationship between living in Oxford House and employment wages, yet the impact of having a criminal history on this relationship was unknown. Method: This study used a nationwide sample of 136 women living in Oxford Houses in a regression analysis with length of stay in Oxford House ...


Early Patterns Of Change In Parent-Child Interaction Therapy, Lauren J. Legato Aug 2015

Early Patterns Of Change In Parent-Child Interaction Therapy, Lauren J. Legato

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Early intervention for young children with behavior problems is important for promoting healthy social/emotional development and reducing the risk of persistent and worsening conduct problems (DuPaul, McGoey, Eckert, & VanBrakle, 2001; Lahey et al., 1995; Shaw, 2013). Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) is an evidence-based treatment for young children exhibiting behavior problems (Eyberg, Nelson, & Boggs, 2008). PCIT aims to promote parents’ use of positive attention and effective discipline skills with their children (Zisser & Eyberg, 2010). Although substantial research has demonstrated the efficacy of PCIT in research settings, far fewer studies have tested its effectiveness with clinically referred samples in community settings.

Pilot and case studies have shown promise that PCIT can be implemented effectively in community settings and produce clinically meaningful results (Budd, Hella, Bae, Meyerson, & Watkin, 2011; Lyon & Budd, 2010; McCabe & Yeh, 2009; Phillips, Morgan, Cawthorn, & Barnett, 2008). However, attrition tends to be higher and treatment often takes longer in community settings (Budd, Danko, & Legato, 2012; Lanier, et al., 2011). The early stage of treatment in PCIT is particularly important, as most attrition occurs in the first stage as compared to the later stage of treatment (Lanier et al., 2011). Learning more about parents’ trajectories across the early phase of ...


Childhood Obesity And The Social Detrminants Of Health: A Socioecological Exploration Of Mothers And Children, Alescia M. Hollowell Aug 2015

Childhood Obesity And The Social Detrminants Of Health: A Socioecological Exploration Of Mothers And Children, Alescia M. Hollowell

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

This thesis examines the relationship between sociocultural appearance norms, environment, and health efficacy in shaping health behaviors and outcomes in mothers and their children. Childhood obesity is a serious health condition affecting US children. Factors related to the cause of obesity include poor nutrition, lack of physical activity and parent's perceptions and roles. However, given that children have little autonomy, it is of great importance to understand how parental perceptions and behaviors influence the health outcomes of their children. This thesis was conducted using quantitative methods. Participants were 120 mothers who completed survey measures of sociocultural appearance norms, health ...


Pediatric Medical Traumatic Stress In Youth With Type 1 Diabetes And Their Caregivers: A Longitudinal Assessment Of Metabolic Control And Psychosocial Mediators, Sabrina Anne Karczewski Aug 2015

Pediatric Medical Traumatic Stress In Youth With Type 1 Diabetes And Their Caregivers: A Longitudinal Assessment Of Metabolic Control And Psychosocial Mediators, Sabrina Anne Karczewski

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation examines the role of pediatric medical traumatic stress (PMTS) in response to a type 1 diabetes (T1D) diagnosis for both parents and children and its influence on a child’s future metabolic control. PMTS is a term that represents a continuum of posttraumatic stress symptoms (i.e., intrusion, hyper-vigilance, and avoidance) that occur in response to a medical event that may or may not meet full clinical criteria for a Diagnostic Statistical Manual, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) diagnosis. This study examines a theoretical model (see Figure 1) and the interrelationships between a child and/or parent’s level of ...


Morality Provides Meaning, Geoffrey Alexander Wetherell Aug 2015

Morality Provides Meaning, Geoffrey Alexander Wetherell

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Previous separate models of meaning in life have suggested that meaning is composed of several components operating across levels of construal. For example, sometimes people might look to a component of meaning in a state of concrete construal to gain a sense of consistency or predictability, and at other times they may look to a component of meaning to create feelings of higher purpose in life. These models of meaning have the potential to shed light not only on the various facets of life that make people feel life is meaningful, but to discover the ways in which these components ...


A Person-Centered Examination Of Latino Youth Depressive Symptom Trajectories: The Role Of Youth, Parent, And Dyadic Familism, Jessica Annabel Arizaga Aug 2015

A Person-Centered Examination Of Latino Youth Depressive Symptom Trajectories: The Role Of Youth, Parent, And Dyadic Familism, Jessica Annabel Arizaga

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

A growing body of literature indicates Latino youth are at greater risk for depression relative to other racial/ethnic groups (CDC, 2014). Research examining predictors of Latino youth depression suggests higher familial values might buffer against youth depressive symptoms (Polo & Lopez, 2009; Zeiders et al., 2013b). However, longitudinal relationships between these variables remain largely unexamined. Furthermore, the literature on longitudinal youth depressive symptoms is mixed, with both increases and decreases being observed over time using group-centered analyses. The present study has three major aims: 1) map the trajectories of depressive symptomology among middle-school age Latino youth over the course of two years ...


Onset Patterns Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome And Myalgic Encephalomyelitis: A Mixed Method Approach, Meredyth Evans Aug 2015

Onset Patterns Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome And Myalgic Encephalomyelitis: A Mixed Method Approach, Meredyth Evans

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) refer to a debilitating illness without a universally accepted or well-understood etiology. Some experts have suggested that there are multiple pathways to the development of ME and CFS, which may also indicate multiple onset patterns. Due to unanswered questions regarding etiology, the onset of ME and CFS is considered a key area of inquiry.

Case criteria for ME and CFS and much of the academic literature suggest that patients typically experience one of two possible onset patterns: sudden or gradual. Many experts consider the mode ...


The Impact Of Ethnicity On Executive Functioning In Youth, Silvia M. Henriquez Gerken Aug 2015

The Impact Of Ethnicity On Executive Functioning In Youth, Silvia M. Henriquez Gerken

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Executive function can be defined as a group of processes that guide and direct cognitive functions (Isquith, Roth & Gioia, 2013). Relatively little is known about executive function in ethnic minority children. This dissertation examined whether ethnicity predicts performance and parent rating scores on three executive function processes. To date, no study has teased apart the effects of ethnic minority status and its confounding variables in executive function. A total of 134 Caucasian and African American youth between the ages of 11-17 were included in the study. Of those 134 youth, 116 had complete data (both performance-based scores and rating scales ...


The Role Of Gender Identityand Stereotype Awareness On Sexual Negotiations Strategies For Women, Or'shaundra Tre'nay Benson Aug 2015

The Role Of Gender Identityand Stereotype Awareness On Sexual Negotiations Strategies For Women, Or'shaundra Tre'nay Benson

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

The consequences of unsafe heterosexual sexual behaviors including unplanned pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections continue to create significant public health problems in the United States. Although research has demonstrated that young adults in general have higher rates of sexually transmitted infections compared to other age groups, young women are especially vulnerable to the ill-effects of unsafe sexual practices, as they must contend with the physicality of an unplanned pregnancy and larger incidences of asymptotic infection transmissions. However, missing from the research and discourse regarding what specific factors may be contributing to high rates of risky behaviors in heterosexual women is ...


The Effect Of Neighborhood Disadvantage And Parental Involvement On African American Adolescent’S Externalizing Behavior And Academic Outcome, Roberto G. Lopez Tamayo Aug 2015

The Effect Of Neighborhood Disadvantage And Parental Involvement On African American Adolescent’S Externalizing Behavior And Academic Outcome, Roberto G. Lopez Tamayo

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

African American adolescents are more likely to live in disadvantaged neighborhoods than their European American counterparts. The impact that neighborhood disadvantage such as poverty, unemployment, population turnover, and community violence exerts on youth’s behavior becomes more prevalent as they grow older, increasing the risk for engaging in externalized behavior and hindering academic outcomes. Consistent with the developmental theory, an examination of parental involvement (PI) as moderator between neighborhood disadvantage and externalizing behavior is warranted. There is a dearth of longitudinal research that examines how neighborhood disadvantage operates and, to what extent influences, directly or indirectly, behaviors and academic outcomes ...


The Influence Of Attentional Control On Hemispheric Processing Of Predictive Inferences, Michael Christopher Shutzenhofer Aug 2015

The Influence Of Attentional Control On Hemispheric Processing Of Predictive Inferences, Michael Christopher Shutzenhofer

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

This study investigates the effects of attentional control on the hemispheric processing of predictive inferences during reading. Participants read texts that were either strongly or weakly constrained towards a predictive inference and performed a lexical decision task to inference-related target words presented to the right or left visual field— hemisphere. Facilitation for strongly constrained predictive inferences was greater than facilitation for weakly constrained predictive inferences in both hemispheres. Readers with high attentional control showed significant facilitation for strongly constrained inferences in the both hemispheres, but only showed significant facilitation for weakly constrained inferences in the left hemisphere. Readers with low ...


Incidental Affect, Facial Expressions, And Risk, Michael M. Shuster Aug 2015

Incidental Affect, Facial Expressions, And Risk, Michael M. Shuster

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Emotional facial expressions are potent social signals that can change people’s feeling states and shape judgments of targets that are unrelated to the expressions. Whether they originate from other individuals or advertisements in the environment, facial expressions are undoubtedly one of the most prominent emotional stimuli. Thus, there is a great need to examine how facial expressions can influence potentially consequential judgments and decisions that involve uncertain or risky prospects, as such decisions are greatly impacted by emotion.

The domains of finance and health could particularly benefit from such an examination. In the financial domain, expressions of other individuals ...


Trait Contempt And The Five Moral Foundations, Russell Steiger Aug 2015

Trait Contempt And The Five Moral Foundations, Russell Steiger

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Rozin and colleagues’ CAD model (1999) proposed that violations of three different moral domains (community, autonomy, and divinity) each elicit a specific emotional response (contempt, anger, and disgust). Moral Foundations Theory (MFT; Haidt & Joseph, 2007) is a five-factor moral taxonomy derived from the three moral domains used in the CAD study. This thesis investigates whether the CAD model fully applies to MFT, regarding both state and trait emotions. In keeping with the CAD model, previous research found that state anger relates to harm and fairness violations (autonomy), and that both state and trait disgust relate to purity violations (divinity; Horberg, Oveis, Keltner, & Cohen, 2009). However, no study has empirically tested whether the loyalty and authority foundations (community) relate to state or trait contempt. This gap in the literature was investigated across two studies. Study 1 used a correlational design that primarily focused on the development of a new comprehensive trait contempt instrument and construct; exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses indicated that the instrument’s items formed factors that matched their predicted structure, and that each of these factors contributed strongly to a latent trait contempt construct. To test the convergent and discriminant validity of the new instrument, participants completed previously developed instruments that assess trait anger, trait disgust, and trait contempt (Crowley, 2013; Izard et al., 1993). However ...


The Effects Of Turkish Vowel Harmony In Word Recognition, Ece Kilic Aug 2015

The Effects Of Turkish Vowel Harmony In Word Recognition, Ece Kilic

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

This thesis examines the effects of Turkish vowel harmony in visual word recognition. Turkish is among a few languages with vowel harmony, which is a process in which words contain vowels only from one specific vowel category. These categories are defined by the vowel’s phonological qualities (i.e., similar mouth and lip movement in pronunciation). In Turkish, categories depend on the vowel’s roundness/flatness, backness/frontness and whether the vowel’s pitch. Vowel harmony occurs naturally in language and is not taught formally. Instead, it is believed to occur due to decreased effort of words with vowel harmony ...


Perceived Choices: Perceptions Of Mothers’ Devotion To “Family Or Work” Or "Family And Work", Stefanie Mockler Jun 2015

Perceived Choices: Perceptions Of Mothers’ Devotion To “Family Or Work” Or "Family And Work", Stefanie Mockler

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

The role of motherhood is culturally associated with reduced performance expectations and lower performance evaluations. This is referred to as the motherhood penalty. Social role theory (Eagly, 1984), the stereotype content model (Fiske, Cuddy, Glick, & Xu, 2002) and the lack of fit model (Heilman, 1984, 2001) suggest that stereotypes regarding how women are and how they should be drive these perceptions. When mothers express strong devotion to work over family (i.e., devotion orientation) the motherhood penalty appears to be minimized. However, having to claim that work is central to their lives (i.e., work-­‐devotion) to avoid being penalized ...


Does Our Fear Of Death Stem From Threatened Belongingness?, Stan Treger Jun 2015

Does Our Fear Of Death Stem From Threatened Belongingness?, Stan Treger

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

In this dissertation, I examine the relative contribution to worldview defense (i.e., upholding one’s cultural worldviews) provided by the thoughts of one’s death and perceptions of curbed close relationships.

The need to belong, to form meaningful and strong ties with others, is what many social psychologists believe to be one of the most fundamental and strongest motivations that humans possess (Baumeister, 2012; Baumeister & Leary, 1995; Kenrick, Griskevicius, Neuberg, & Schaller, 2010; Tomasello, 2014). The human brain is “hard-wired” to be around others (Beckes & Coan, 2011). In fact, large social group sizes of humans’ evolutionary past may have contributed to the large brain that modern humans possess today—a large brain with high cognitive ability is required to solve complex social problems such as attributing others’ mental states (Dunbar, 1998, 2003, 2009). Terror Management Theory (Greenberg & Arndt, 2012; Greenberg, Pyszczynski, & Solomon, 1986), however, suggests that humans’ high cognitive ability also allows for knowledge that death will inevitably arrive one day. This knowledge creates a state of “paralyzing” anxiety and drives what Terror Management Theorists believe to be the most fundamental of human motives: avoiding death. To overcome this anxiety, persons turn to their cultural worldviews to boost their self-esteem and assuage the existential crisis evoked by the thought of death.

Although Terror Management Theory has received an impressive array of empirical support since its introduction, it has left one particular and important question unaddressed: why is it that humans fear death? Rather, Terror Management Theory simply assumes that humans do so. One possible reason behind this fear reflects the human need to belong. Being ostracized or excluded by others may be one of the most painful experiences humans may face, physically and cognitively. For example, being ostracized can decrease one’s of meaning (Stillman, Baumeister, Lambert, Crescioni, DeWall, & Fincham, 2009). Distress following social exclusion may even equate to experiencing physical pain (e.g., DeWall & Baumeister, 2006; MacDonald & Leary, 2005). The negative effects of ostracism may extend to simply observing others being excluded (Wesselman, Bagg, & Williams, 2009). Collectively, the physical, emotional, and cognitive distress following ostracism is strong enough for some to call ostracism “social death” (Case & Williams, 2004; Williams, 2007a).

In this dissertation, I propose that “social” and “actual” death may not be too ...


The Role Of Guilt, Shame, And Self-Compassion In Promoting Racial Justice Engagement For White Students, Elizabeth A. Mcconnell Jun 2015

The Role Of Guilt, Shame, And Self-Compassion In Promoting Racial Justice Engagement For White Students, Elizabeth A. Mcconnell

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Diversity courses and activities are a part of the multicultural mission of many institutions of higher education. However, universities, colleges, and diversity educators continue to grapple with how to increase participation and student engagement in these courses. The lens of privilege studies provides an important perspective for thinking about how to achieve this goal for White students learning about systems of racial inequity. In the current study, we conducted four studies to better understand how to decrease resistance to reflecting on White privilege (e.g., defensive affect or withdrawal) and to promote racial justice engagement (e.g., willingness to take ...


Child Appraisals Of Interparental Conflict: The Effects Of Intimate Partner Violence And The Quality Of Parent-Child Relationships, Caleb J. Figge Jun 2015

Child Appraisals Of Interparental Conflict: The Effects Of Intimate Partner Violence And The Quality Of Parent-Child Relationships, Caleb J. Figge

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Children’s appraisals of parental conflict, particularly perceived levels of threat, self-blame, and coping efficacy, have consistently been shown to mediate the association between conflict exposure and maladaptive outcomes. However, few studies have examined factors that may contribute to children’s use of these maladaptive appraisals, particularly among children exposed to more severe forms of interparental conflict. The current study will examine the influence of intimate partner violence (IPV) exposure and parent-child relationship quality on children’s appraisals of conflict, evaluating if these factors have independent effects, if they interact (i.e., parent-child relationship quality buffers the effect of IPV ...


Providers' Socioecological Perspectives On The Supports For And Challenges To Engagement In Care For Latino Youth Living With Hiv: A Qualitative Study, Diana Lemos Jun 2015

Providers' Socioecological Perspectives On The Supports For And Challenges To Engagement In Care For Latino Youth Living With Hiv: A Qualitative Study, Diana Lemos

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

INTRODUCTION: Among youth, marginalized groups, such as Latino YLWH (LYLWH), may face multiple social stigmas, including such concerns as limited English-language proficiency, sexual-minority status, and immigration status that impact engagement across the continuum of HIV care (van Servellen, Chang, & Lombardi, 2002). One necessary step toward increasing understanding of the facilitators and barriers to this group’s engagement in HIV care is to examine engagement in care through a socioecological framework to better understand each of the multiple factors impacting Latino youth’s engagement in HIV care (Bronfenbrenner, 1986; Hosek, Harper, Lemos et al., 2005; Mugavero, Norton & Saag, 2011). Through the use of key informants such as such as healthcare providers’ experiences and perceptions of barriers and facilitators we can yield important and insightful information on how to better address the needs of these youth.

APPROACH: This study used a psychological phenomenological approach, through inductive and deductive analysis, to explore ...


Disparity Of Assets In Addiction Recovery: Moderators Of Perceived Control In Treatment And Recovery Settings In Kenya, Elias Kinoti Kithuri Jun 2015

Disparity Of Assets In Addiction Recovery: Moderators Of Perceived Control In Treatment And Recovery Settings In Kenya, Elias Kinoti Kithuri

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Assets/resources are core for positive community health outcomes and wellbeing. Assets availability, accessibility and perception by members that these resources are actually available and accessible determines community members' behavior around health choices. People with substance abuse require many types of resources that expected to cumulatively help recovery from the treatment start, through recovery into sober lifestyle. This study investigated the presence of assets at individual, social network and community level that Substance abuse problems can and able to easily access for their treatment and recovery, depending on present setting; professional Usual Care and Self-help settings. The findings indicate that ...


Web-Based Recruitment: Strategies For Attracting Lgbt Employees, Daniel R. Abben Jun 2015

Web-Based Recruitment: Strategies For Attracting Lgbt Employees, Daniel R. Abben

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Organizations are interested in workforce diversity for a variety of reasons. One way to foster employee diversity is through the use of targeted recruitment practices. While this topic has received attention in the literature, most of the work has examined the effectiveness of recruiting people whose minority status is apparent. Thus, the goal of this research is to explore the effectiveness of recruitment strategies targeted toward individuals whose minority status is not immediately obvious, namely lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender adults. Two specific recruitment strategies were used: providing information about domestic partner benefits and providing information about community partnerships. The ...


The Importance Of Family Meals And Sedentary Behavior In Understanding Childhood Depression And Obesity, Draycen D. Decator Jun 2015

The Importance Of Family Meals And Sedentary Behavior In Understanding Childhood Depression And Obesity, Draycen D. Decator

College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

The ongoing obesity epidemic within the United States is a problem that has received a lot of attention, but is still inadequately understood. Understanding the epidemic requires examining BMI from a larger perspective, with an ecological mindset (Rosenkranz & Dzewaltowski, 2008). A bidirectional relationship between depression and obesity, which has been found in the past, might be due to family meals. Sedentary behaviors has been linked to both outcomes, and is predicted by family meal frequency, suggesting that it may play a mediational role. In order to help clarify the relationship between depressive symptoms and obesity, a sample of 120 youth ...