Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Abstract Count: 46035

Psychological and Behavioral Sciences

Memory and Narratives Rereading before and after One Week
As people read through event-based narratives, they construct an event model that captures information about the characters, goals, location, time, and causality. For many reasons, memory for such narratives is represented at different levels, namely, the surface form, textbase, and event model levels. Rereading has been shown to decrease surface form memory, while, at the same time, increasing textbase and event model memories. More generally, distributed practice has consistently shown memory benefits over massed practice for different types of materials, including texts. However, little research has investigated distributed practice of narratives at different inter-study intervals and these effects on these three levels of memory. Recent work in our lab has indicated that there may be dramatic changes in patterns of forgetting around one week, which may affect the three levels of memory. The present experiment aimed to determine the effects of rereading on the three levels of memory as a factor of whether the texts were reread before versus after one week. Participants (N = 42) read a set of stories, re-read them either before or after one week (with an inter-study interval of three days, seven days, or fourteen days), and then took a recognition test, from which the three levels of representation were derived. Signal detection results from this study reveal that differential patterns at the three levels as a factor of whether the narratives were re-read prior to one week or after one week. In particular, an ANOVA revealed that surface form memory was lower (p = .08) while textbase (p = .02) and event model memory (p = .04) were greater if narratives were re-read 14 days later compared to memory when narratives were re-read 3 days later. These results have implications for what type of memory benefits from distributed practice at various inter-study intervals.
Cultural Orientation as a Moderator between Social Support Needs and Psychological Well-Being among Canadian University Students
Universities across Canada have experienced unprecedented growth in international student enrollment from across the world. As cultural diversity in Canada and other countries increases, understanding the social support needs of all students is important for providing them with the assistance they need to thrive psychologically and academically. Those from individualistic cultural orientations tend to seek explicit social support, which involves expressly asking for assistance in times of stress. However, those from collectivistic cultural orientations are more likely to seek implicit social support, where encouragement is obtained from spending time among valued social groups without explicitly talking about problems. This study explored whether the relationship between the type of social support needs (implicit or explicit) and psychological and academic functioning might be moderated by cultural orientations (individualistic, collectivistic) among university students. Participants were 110 university students (70 women, 40 men; mean age = 24.8 years, SD = 6.6). They completed the Individualism and Collectivism Scale (ICS), Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Interpersonal Support Evaluation List (ISEL) which assesses implicit and explicit social support, Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS), Scale of Positive and Negative Experience (SPANE) which yields positive and negative experience scores, Flourishing Scale (FS), and reported their grade point average (GPA) as a measure of academic performance. Moderated regression analysis demonstrated that, for those scoring lower on individualism, reporting lower level of implicit support predicted higher levels of perceived stress. For those scoring higher on individualism, lower levels of explicit social support predicted higher levels of perceived stress and a greater number of negative experiences. Generally, higher levels of implicit support were associated with greater satisfaction with life for all students, with the association becoming stronger among students with higher collectivism scores. No other significant findings were found. The results point to the value of considering the cultural orientations of students when designing programs to maintain and improve their sense of well-being.
The Impact of Neonatal Methamphetamine on Spatial Learning and Memory of Females in Adulthood
The present study was aimed at evaluation of cognitive changes following scheduled neonatal methamphetamine exposure in combination with long-term exposure in adulthood of female Wistar rats. Pregnant mothers were divided into two groups: group with indirect exposure (methamphetamine in dose 5 mg/ml/kg, saline in dose 1 ml/kg) during early lactation period (postnatal day 1–11) - progeny of these mothers were exposed to the effects of methamphetamine or saline indirectly via the breast milk; and the second group with direct exposure – all mothers were left intact for the entire lactation period, while progeny was treated with methamphetamine (5 mg/ml/kg) by injection or the control group, which was received needle pick (shame, not saline) at the same time each day of period of application (postnatal day 1–11). Learning ability and memory consolidation were tested in the Morris Water Maze, which consisted of three types of tests: ‘Place Navigation Test ‘; ‘Probe Test ‘; and ‘Memory Recall Test ‘. Adult female progeny were injected daily, after completion last trial with saline or methamphetamine (1 mg/ml/kg). We compared the effects of indirect/direct neonatal methamphetamine exposure and adult methamphetamine treatment on cognitive function of female rats. Statistical analyses showed that neonatal methamphetamine exposure worsened spatial learning and ability to remember the position of the platform. The present study demonstrated that direct methamphetamine exposure has more significant impact on process of learning and memory than indirect exposure. Analyses of search strategies (thigmotaxis, scanning) used by females during the Place Navigation Test and Memory Recall Test confirm all these results.
Perceived and Performed E-Health Literacy: Survey and Simulated Performance Test
Background: Connecting end-users to newly developed ICT technologies and channeling patients to new products requires an assessment of compatibility. End user’s assessment is conveyed in the concept of eHealth literacy. The study examined the association between perceived and performed eHealth literacy (EHL) in a heterogeneous age sample in Israel. Methods: Participants included 100 Israeli adults (mean age 43,SD 13.9) who were first phone interviewed and then tested on a computer simulation of health-related Internet tasks. Performed, perceived and evaluated EHL were assessed. Levels of successful completion of tasks represented EHL performance and evaluated EHL included observed motivation, confidence, and amount of help provided. Results: The skills of accessing, understanding, appraising, applying, and generating new information had a decreasing successful completion rate with increase in complexity of the task. Generating new information, though highly correlated with all other skills, was least correlated with the other skills. Perceived and performed EHL were correlated (r=.40, P=.001), while facets of performance (i.e, digital literacy and EHL) were highly correlated (r=.89, P
The Causes and Effects of Delinquent Behaviour among Students in Juvenile Home: A Case Study of Osun State
Juvenile delinquency is fast becoming one of the largest problems facing many societies due to many different factors ranging from parental factors to bullying at schools all which had led to different theoretical notions by different scholars. Delinquency is an illegal or immoral behaviour, especially by the young person who behaves in a way that is illegal or that society does not approve of. The purpose of the study was to investigate causes and effects of delinquent behaviours among adolescent in juvenile home in Osun State. A descriptive survey research type was employed. The random sampling technique was used to select 100 adolescents in Juvenile home in Osun State. Questionnaires were developed and given to them. The data collected from this study were analyzed using frequency counts and percentage for the demographic data in section A, while the two research hypotheses postulated for this study were tested using t-test statistics at the significance level of 0.05. Findings revealed that the greatest school effects of delinquent behaviours among adolescent in juvenile home in Osun by respondents were their aggressive behaviours. Findings revealed that there was a significant difference in the causes and effects of delinquent behaviours among adolescent in juvenile home in Osun State. It was also revealed that there was no significant difference in the causes and effects of delinquent behaviours among secondary school students in Osun based on gender. These recommendations were made in order to address the findings of this study: More number of teachers should be appointed in the observation home so that it will be possible to provide teaching to the different age group of delinquents. Developing the infrastructure facilities of short stay homes and observation home is a top priority. Proper counseling session’s interval is highly essential for these juveniles.
Testing the Pacemaker Explanation of the Human Timing System: A Multipronged Behavioural Investigation
Scalar timing theory proposes that the timing of intervals is controlled by a pacemaker-accumulator type internal clock. The pacemaker is said to emit a certain number of ticks per second, which flow into an accumulator. The accumulator is connected to working memory, and the total number ticks is compared to representations of known durations (e.g. a second), stored in reference memory. However, despite the accuracy of the internal clock, several non-temporal characteristics of duration affect the perception of time. These include (but are not limited to) stimulus modality, stimulus intensity, and whether the stimulus was filled or empty. In each of these cases, judgments of duration differ significantly between conditions, an effect which persists across different timing tasks. For example, sounds are judged longer than lights of the same physical duration. Scalar timing theory has been employed to explain each of these illusions, and it is suggested that the pacemaker runs at different speeds for the different conditions. For example, the pacemaker is said to run faster for sounds than lights, leading to a higher number of ticks accumulated during the same period of time. Each of the three illusions above were utilised to conduct a multi-pronged investigation into the validity of this pacemaker explanation. To cover part of the stimulus modality prong; it was first investigated whether performance on two timing tasks would correlate, since performance on both tasks is said to be determined by pacemaker speed. The same pattern of modalities was found across tasks: highest performance for auditory, intermediate for tactile, and lowest for visual stimuli. Despite this, no significant correlations between tasks were found within each modality (e.g. between auditory estimates and auditory thresholds). To corroborate, Bayes factors demonstrated anecdotal to strong evidence in favour of the null hypothesis. This suggests that, although the same pattern emerges on each task at mean level, sensitivity to duration does not necessarily predict accuracy in estimates at participant level. In other words, though the difference between modalities on each task has been explained by differences in pacemaker speed, this account does not hold up when the two tasks are compared. A similar theme of results was found across prongs, and alternative explanations for these illusions were considered.
Identification and Origins of Multiple Personality: A Criterion from Wiggins
One familiar theory of the origin of multiple personalities focuses on how symptoms of trauma or abuse are central causes, as seen in paradigmatic examples of the condition. The theory states that multiple personalities constitute a congenital condition, as babies all exhibit multiplicity, and that generally alters only remain separated due to trauma. In more typical cases, the alters converge and become a single identity; only in cases of trauma, according to this account, do the alters remain separated. This theory is misleading in many aspects, the most prominent being that not all multiple personality patients are victims of child abuse or trauma, nor are all cases of multiple personality observed in early childhood. The use of this criterion also causes clinical problems, including an inability to identify multiple personalities through the variety of symptoms and traits seen across observed cases. These issues present a need for revision in the currently applied criterion in order to separate the notion of child abuse and to be able to better understand the origins of multiple personalities itself. Identifying multiplicity through the application of identity theories will improve the current criterion, offering a bridge between identifying existing cases and understanding their origins. We begin by applying arguments from Wiggins, who held that each personality within a multiple was not a whole individual, but rather characters who switch off. Wiggins’ theory is supported by observational evidence of how such characters are differentiated. Alters of older ages are seen to require different prescription lens, in addition to having different handwriting. The alters may also display drastically varying styles of clothing, preferences in food, their gender, sexuality, religious beliefs and more. The definitions of terms such as 'personality' or 'persons' also become more distinguished, leading to greater understanding of who is exactly able to be classified as a patient of multiple personalities. While a more common meaning of personality is a designation of specific characteristics which account for the entirety of a person, this paper argues from Wiggins’ theory that each 'personality' is in fact only partial. Clarification of the concept in question will allow for more successful future clinical applications.
Leaving to Make a Living: Differences on the Subjective Well-Being of Children in Transnational Families and in Families Living Together
This research explored the relationships of a child’s family condition, sex and subjective well-being (SWB) to gain some understanding of the experiences of both transnational and non-transnational families. A descriptive-correlational design was used to study the variables. Participants included 52 male and female children from Iloilo and Kabankalan cities, representing the family conditions in this study. Data were gathered using a semi-structured interview guide. Responses were analyzed using Mann-Whitney U Test. The results showed that the SWB of non-transnational children was significantly higher compared to their transnational counterparts (U = 134, p = .00). Also, analysis between females and males indicated a significant difference only on some aspects (U = 318, p = .71). Some recommendations were suggested to better understand the plight of the left-behind children.
Delusive versus Genuine Needs: Examining Human Needs within the Islamic Framework of Orbit of Needs
This study looks at the issue of human needs from Islamic perspectives. The key objective of the study is to contribute in regulating the persuasion of needs. It argues that all needs are not necessarily genuine, rather a significant part of them are delusive. To distinguish genuine needs from delusive ones, the study suggests looking at the purpose of the persuasion of that particular need as a key criterion. In doing so, the paper comes with a model namely Orbit of Needs. The orbit has four circles. The central one is a necessity, followed by comfort, beautification, and exhibition. According to the model, all those needs that fall into one of the first three circles in terms of purpose are genuine, while any need which falls into the fourth circle is delusive.
The Effects of Advisor Status and Time Pressure on Decision-Making in a Luggage Screening Task
In a busy airport, the decision whether to take passengers aside and search their luggage for dangerous items can have important consequences. If an officer fails to search and stop a bag containing a dangerous object, a life-threatening incident might occur. But stopping a bag unnecessarily means that the officer might lose time searching the bag and face an angry passenger. Passengers’ bags, however, are often cluttered with personal belongings of varying shapes and sizes. It can be difficult to determine what is dangerous or not, especially if the decisions must be made quickly in cases of busy flight schedules. Additionally, the decision to search bags is often made with input from the surrounding officers on duty. This scenario raises several questions: 1) Past findings suggest that humans are more reliant on an automated aid when under time pressure in a visual search task, but does this translate to human-human reliance? 2) Are humans more likely to agree with another person if the person is assumed to be an expert or a novice in these ambiguous situations? In the present study, forty-one participants performed a simulated luggage-screening task. They were partnered with an advisor of two different statuses (expert vs. novice), but of equal accuracy (90% correct). Participants made two choices each trial: their first choice with no advisor input, and their second choice after advisor input. The second choice was made within either 2 seconds or 8 seconds; failure to do so resulted in a long time-out period. Under the 2-second time pressure, participants were more likely to disagree with their own first choice and agree with the expert advisor, regardless of whether the expert was right or wrong, but especially when the expert suggested that the bag was safe. The findings indicate a tendency for people to assume less responsibility for their decisions and defer to their partner, especially when a quick decision is required. This over-reliance on others’ opinions might have negative consequences in real life, particularly when relying on fallible human judgments. More awareness is needed regarding how a stressful environment may influence reliance on other’s opinions, and how better techniques are needed to make the best decisions under high stress and time pressure.
Home Environment and Self-Efficacy Beliefs among Native American, African American and Latino Adolescents
Many minority adolescents in the United States live in adverse circumstances that pose long-term threats to their well-being. A strong sense of personal control and self-efficacy can help youth mitigate some of those risks and may help protect youth from influences connected with deviant peer groups. Accordingly, it is important to identify conditions that help foster feelings of efficacy in areas that seem critical for the accomplishment of developmental tasks during adolescence. The purpose of this study is to examine two aspects of the home environment (modeling and encouragement of maturity, family companionship and investment) and their relation to three components of self efficacy (self efficacy in enlisting social resources, self efficacy for engaging in independent learning, and self-efficacy for self-regulatory behavior) in three groups of minority adolescents (Native American, African American, Latino). The sample for this study included 54 Native American, 131 African American, and 159 Latino families, each with a child between 16 and 20 years old. The families were recruited from four states: Arizona, Arkansas, California, and Oklahoma. Each family was administered the Late Adolescence version of the Home Observation for Measurement of the Environment (HOME) Inventory and each adolescent completed a 30-item measure of perceived self-efficacy. Three areas of self-efficacy beliefs were examined for this study: enlisting social resources, independent learning, and self-regulation. Each of the three areas of self-efficacy was regressed on the two aspects of the home environment plus overall household risk. For Native Americans, modeling and encouragement were significant for self-efficacy pertaining to enlisting social resources and independent learning. For African Americans, companionship and investment was significant in all three models. For Latinos, modeling and encouragement was significant for self-efficacy pertaining to enlisting social resources and companionship and investment were significant for the other two areas of self-efficacy. The findings show that even as minority adolescents are becoming more individuated from their parents, the quality of experiences at home continues to be associated with their feelings of self-efficacy in areas important for adaptive functioning in adult life. Specifically, individuals can develop a sense that they are efficacious in performing key tasks relevant to work, social relationships, and management of their own behavior if they are guided in how to deal with key challenges and they have been exposed and supported by others who are competent in dealing with such challenges. The findings presented in this study would seem useful given that there is so little current research on home environmental factors connected to self-efficacy beliefs among adolescents in the three groups examined. It would seem worthwhile that personnel from health, human service and juvenile justice agencies give attention to supporting parents in communicating with adolescents, offering expectations to adolescents in mutually supportive ways, and in engaging with adolescents in productive activities. In comparison to programs for parents of young children, there are few specifically designed for parents of children in middle childhood and adolescence.
Family Income and Parental Behavior: Maternal Personality as a Moderator
There is abundant research showing that socio-economic status is implicated in parenting. However, additional factors such as family context, parent personality, parenting history and child behavior also help determine how parents enact the role of caregiver. Each of these factors not only helps determine how a parent will act in a given situation, but each can serve to moderate the influence of the other factors. Personality has long been studied as a factor that influences parental behavior, but it has almost never been considered as a moderator of family contextual factors. For this study, relations between three maternal personality characteristics (agreeableness, extraversion, neuroticism) and four aspects of parenting (harshness, sensitivity, stimulation, learning materials) were examined when children were 6 months, 36 months, and 54 months old and again at 5th grade. Relations between these three aspects of personality and the overall home environment were also examined. A key concern was whether maternal personality characteristics moderated relations between household income and the four aspects of parenting and between household income and the overall home environment. The data for this study were taken from the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (NICHD SECCYD). The total sample consisted of 1364 families living in ten different sites in the United States. However, the samples analyzed included only those with complete data on all four parenting outcomes (i.e., sensitivity, harshness, stimulation, and provision of learning materials), income, maternal education and all three measures of personality (i.e., agreeableness, neuroticism, extraversion) at each age examined. Results from hierarchical regression analysis showed that mothers high in agreeableness were more likely to demonstrate sensitivity and stimulation as well as provide more learning materials to their children but were less likely to manifest harshness. Maternal agreeableness also consistently moderated the effects of low income on parental behavior. Mothers high in extraversion were more likely to provide stimulation and learning materials, with extraversion serving as a moderator of low income on both. By contrast, mothers high in neuroticism were less likely to demonstrate positive aspects of parenting and more likely to manifest negative aspects (e.g., harshness). Neuroticism also served to moderate the influence of low income on parenting, especially for stimulation and learning materials. The most consistent effects of parent personality were on the overall home environment, with significant main and interaction effects observed in 11 of the 12 models tested. These findings suggest that it may behoove professional who work with parents living in adverse circumstances to consider parental personality in helping to better target prevention or intervention efforts aimed at supporting parental efforts to act in ways that benefit children.
Development and Preliminary Validation of a Self-Report Measure of Executive Functions for the General Population
Executive functions refer to the processes responsible for the regulation and control of cognitions, emotions, and behaviors that underlie adaptation responses. They include attention, working memory, planning, initiation, response selection, inhibition, cognitive flexibility, etc. However, according to the author's knowledge, no instrument is available to evaluate them in a self-reported and ecological way among general population. The aim of this study is to present the different steps leading to the development and preliminary validation of the Self-Report Measure of Executive Functions (SMEF). This questionnaire consists of 12 items divided equally into 4 dimensions: 1) attention (ability to remain focused and attentive in a task), 2) cognitive flexibility (ability to modify problem-solving strategy), 3) planning (ability to anticipate events, set goals, predict the steps to be taken, and strategies for performing complex tasks) and 4) emotional control (ability to inhibit emotional responses). Each item is evaluated through a frequency scale (from 1 = never to 5 = very often). An online version of the questionnaire was used to collect data from a sample of 521 French-Canadian self-employed workers (F= 414; M= 107). A principal component analysis, followed by a varimax rotation, revealed 4 factors explaining 73.4% of the variance: planning (20.9%), emotional control (19.9%), attention (16.8%), and cognitive flexibility (15.8%). Alpha coefficients for the 4 dimensions are respectively of .85, .86, .73, and .75. Correlations between the dimensions vary from .44 to .55. Initial results of fidelity and validity are positive and satisfactory, but further validation of the SMEF is required. Since one item strongly saturated on two factors, this latter need to be review. Moreover, particular attention should be paid to correlation between the SMEF and standardized tests of executive functions.
Mental Health Stigma: Barriers to Treatment and Participation in Mental Health Care among University Students in Kenya
Stigma is commonly associated with mental health patients and may act as a barrier to individuals who may seek or engage in treatment services. Stigmatization among university students is common whether they know someone with a mental health problem, or have a good knowledge and experience of mental health issues. The objective of this study was to establish the various barriers that prevent university students who have mental health challenges from seeking treatment and care. The study was a descriptive in nature where 320 respondents helped to establish the barriers to treatment or participation in mental health care among university students. A questionnaire was used to help establish the barriers and attitude towards mental illness among the respondents. Results from this study revealed that mental illnesses are common among university students and they are manifested in different forms like; anxiety and panic attacks, mood and eating disorders, Impulse control leading to gambling, alcohol and drug addictions, anger and depression leading to loneliness. Mental stigma (both social and self) was the major barrier with 62% of the respondents stating that social stigma was worse than self-stigma. This is because of the social discrimination towards the victim of mental challenges. On issues of attitude, 71% of the respondents said that they can never admit that they have a mental issue and would rather secretly seek clinical or psychological help for fear of being discriminated or excluded by peers. This view is informed by the societal belief that people with mental health challenges were dangerous (associating them with criminal behavior) and hard to socialize with or help. From the findings of this study, it is concluded that mental health problems are real among university students in Kenya and it is important for the university environment to minimize or eradicate stigma within the social circles. Stigma can be minimized or eradicated by creating awareness among university students and fostering social inclusion so that the students who have mental health challenges can experience a sense of belonging and acceptance hence build their self-esteem.
Analyzing Social Media Discourses of Domestic Violence in Promoting Awareness and Support Seeking: An Exploratory Study
Domestic Violence (DV) against women is now recognized to be a serious and widespread problem worldwide. There is a growing concern that violence against women has a global public health impact, as well as a violation of human rights. From the existing statistical surveys, it is revealed that there exists a strong relationship between DV and health issues of women like bruising, lacerations, depression, anxiety, flashbacks, sleep disturbances, hyper-arousal, emotional distress, sexually transmitted diseases and so on. This social problem is still considered as behind the closed doors issue and stigmatized topic. Women conceal their sufferings from family and friends, as they experience a lack of trust in others, feelings of shame and embarrassment among the society. Hence, women survivors of DV experience some barriers in seeking the support of specialized services such as health care access, crisis support, and legal guidance. Fortunately, with the popularity of social media like Facebook and Twitter, people share their opinions and emotional feelings to seek the social and emotional support, for sympathetic encouragement, to show compassion and empathy among the public. Considering the DV, social media plays a predominant role in creating the awareness and promoting the support services to the public, as we live in the golden era of social media. The various professional people like the public health researchers, clinicians, psychologists, social workers, national family health organizations, lawyers, and victims or their family and friends share the unprecedentedly valuable information (personal opinions and experiences) in a single platform to improve the social welfare of the community. Though each tweet or post contains a less informational value, the consolidation of millions of messages can generate actionable knowledge and provide valuable insights about the public opinion in general. Hence, this paper reports on an exploratory analysis of the effectiveness of social media for unobtrusive assessment of attitudes and awareness towards DV. In this paper, mixed methods such as qualitative analysis and text mining approaches are used to understand the social media disclosures of DV through the lenses of opinion sharing, anonymity, and support seeking. The results of this study could be helpful to avoid the cost of wide scale surveys, while still maintaining appropriate research conditions is to leverage the abundance of data publicly available on the web. Also, this analysis with data enrichment and consolidation would be useful in assisting advocacy and national family health organizations to provide information about resources and support, raise awareness and counter common stigmatizing attitudes about DV.
The Impact of Instant Reward on Physical Activity Behaviour Change: A Mixed Method Analysis
Our modern society is plagued by physical inactivity, a self-inflicted form of pandemic, causing over 5.3 million deaths per year. Now the fourth leading cause of death, physical inactivity is a primary element of non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, which are major concerns of the 21st century. A sustainable way of improving such health states is by creating healthy habits via behaviour change. Yet, there is a lack of motivation to exercise, which can be explained by the systematic biases towards immediate reward in human behaviour, known as ‘present bias’. Despite its value in terms of quality of life, the rewards of exercise are long-term and hence, from a behavioural aspect, are heavily discounted. There is evidence that a combination of user interface elements, financial and non-financial incentives for exercise provides the immediate reward, encouraging longer-term motivation and engagement. Sweatcoin has taken the idea of incentivised exercise and developed an innovative digital platform that makes physical movement valuable and thus solves the problem of a lack of motivation to exercise more. Sweatcoin tracks and verifies physical movement and converts it into virtual currency. The currency can subsequently be exchanged for goods and services. Since launch in December 2016, Sweatcoin has had over one million downloads with a 61% 30-day retention rate. The purpose of this study is to investigate the motivations, reward, and habit patterns of Sweatcoin users. Preliminary results indicate an average uplift of 14% in number of daily steps recorded by users, even 6 months after they had downloaded the app. Further analyses are investigating what variables are predictors of an individual increasing physical activity behaviour after engaging with the Sweatcoin platform. It is hypothesised that the drivers of change will include both how the user interacts with the app (e.g. frequency and temporal grouping of app interaction; purchases from the market-place) and also the consistency of their physical activity behaviour (i.e. those showing more consistent behaviour in their daily step count will be more likely to maintain any increase in walking, following installation of the app). A mixed method approach is being used to test these hypotheses. First, a quantitative analysis of the Sweatcoin’s database of 1+ million users will enable clustering of users into groups depending on how their physical activity behaviour changed following engagement with the app. Following this large-scale analysis, a more specific qualitative analysis will involve inviting users identified in each of the behavioural clusters to focus group discussions. This provides a narrative around the behaviours we have identified through the quantitative analyses. The subsequent results from the quantitative and qualitative analyses will be presented. It is expected the results will provide a novel insight into how instant reward for physical activity can influence longer-term behaviour change.
Comparisons of Depressive Symptoms and Cognitive Appraisals in Different Age Groups under Abusive Leadership
Background: By following to the maturity theory about age, the manifestation of depression in different age groups under occupational stressors still remains unclear. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the depression within four main symptoms clusters: cognition, affect, physical complaints and interpersonal difficulty among the different age groups. Additionally, this study also used the stress appraisal theory, through the examination of challenge and hindrance appraisals, the effects of cognitive factors were expected to give therapeutic indication for the future treatment of depression under abusive leadership. Methods (Participants and Procedure): The data were collected in two waves from employees of local companies in Taiwan. The participants (58 males and 167 females) were native Chinese speakers, ranging in age from 20 to 59 years (M= 36.51). Up to 80% educational level of participants were above senior high. The married population was approximately at 43%. Measures; 1. Abusive Leadership: To measure abusive leadership, we used 15-item scale of abusive supervision which anchored on a 7-point Likert-type scale. (α= .96) 2. Depression: We used Taiwanese Depression Scale to measure the 4 clusters (cognition, affect, physical complaints and interpersonal difficulty) of symptoms. Participants responded for depression anchored on a 7-point Likert-type scale (α= .96). 3. Stress Appraisal Scale: To measure challenge and hindrance types of appraisal, participants responded to 33-item measure anchored on a 7-point Likert-type scale. (Challenge appraisal; α= .90; hindrance appraisal α= .87). Results: The results of correlation showed that there was a significant and negative correlation between abusive leadership and age (r = - .21, p < .01). Abusive leadership was positive correlated significantly with hindrance appraisal (r = .52, p < .01) and depression (r = .20, p < .01). The results also showed that hindrance appraisal was correlated to depression positively (r = .36, p < .01). A one-way ANOVA was conducted to compare the effect of lower/middle/order age groups on each cluster of depressive symptoms. The results showed that the effect of age groups on cognition was significant F (2, 157) =3.66, P < .05. Older age group (M=13.43 SD=6.84) reported less cognitive symptoms of depression than the middle (M=16.77 SD=7.49) and lower age (M=16.91 SD=6.97) groups. Besides, the effect of age groups on affect was also significant F (2,157)= 4.09 P < .05. Older age group (M=18.68 SD=8.98) reported less affective symptoms of depression than the middle (M=22.01 SD=7.96) and lower age (M=23.56 SD=7.67) groups. Moreover, the main effect of hindrance appraisal was found F (2, 157) =3.81, P < .05. Older age group (M=9.44 SD=2.89) reported fewer score on hindrance appraisals than the middle (M=11.06 SD=4.02) and lower age (M=9.62 SD=3.17) groups. To conclude, the severity of depression symptoms varies across different age groups. Maturity seems to be the protective factor to depression, accompanying with lower hindrance appraisals.
Ultrasound Enhanced Release of Active Targeting Liposomes Used for Cancer Treatment
Liposomes are popular lipid bilayer nanoparticles that are highly efficient in encapsulating both hydrophilic and hydrophobic therapeutic drugs. Liposomes promote a low risk controlled release of the drug avoiding the side effects of the conventional chemotherapy. One of the great potentials of liposomes is the ability to attach a wide range of ligands to their surface producing ligand-mediated active targeting of cancer tumour with limited adverse off-target effects. Ultrasound can also aid in the controlled and specified release of the drug from the liposomes by breaking it apart and releasing the drug in the specific location where the ultrasound is applied. Our research focuses on the synthesis of PEGylated liposomes (contain poly-ethylene glycol) encapsulated with the model drug calcein and studying the effect of low frequency ultrasound applied at different power densities on calcein release. In addition, moieties are attached to the surface of the liposomes for specific targeting of the cancerous cells which over-express the receptors of these moieties, ultrasound is then applied and the release results are compared with the moiety free liposomes. The results showed that attaching these moieties to the surface of the PEGylated liposomes not only enhance their active targeting but also stimulate calcein release from these liposomes.
Cognitive Behavioral Modification in the Treatment of Aggressive Behavior in Children
Cognitive-behavioral modification (CBM) is a combination of cognitive and behavioral learning principles to shape and encourage the desired behaviors. A crucial element of cognitive-behavioral modification is that a change the behavior precedes awareness of how it affects others. CBM is oriented toward changing inner speech and learning to control behaviors through self-regulation techniques. It aims to teach individuals how to develop the ability to recognize, monitor and modify their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. The review of literature emphasizes the efficiency the CBM approach in the treatment of children's hyperactivity and negative emotions such as anger. The results of earlier research show how impulsive and hyperactive behavior, agitation, and aggression may slow down and block the child from being able to actively monitor and participate in regular classes, resulting in the disruption of the classroom and the teaching process, and the children may feel rejected, isolated and develop long-term poor image of themselves and others. In this article, we will provide how the use of CBM, adapted to child's age, can incorporate measures of cognitive and emotional functioning which can help us to better understand the children’s cognitive processes, their cognitive strengths, and weaknesses, and to identify factors that may influence their behavioral and emotional regulation. Such a comprehensive evaluation can also help identify cognitive and emotional risk factors associated with aggressive behavior, specifically the processes involved in modulating and regulating cognition and emotions.
Towards Establishing a Rationale for Unbundling Employee Psychological Ownership Perception: An Empirical Examination
Purpose: The need to attract employees’ emotional attachment to organisations has increased the attention of organisational psychology scholars to the theory of psychological ownership. Existing studies have either explained psychological ownership as a stressor or as a mediating variable in influencing a desired behavioural outcome. There is limited literature that explains how psychological ownership is formed. This study unbundles the concept of psychological ownership and highlights the antecedents that best influence its composite components. Approach: A quantitative approach is used to collect data from 1525 employees from public and private sector organisations in Nigeria. Findings: Findings show that on the overall, psychological ownership is influenced by both collective and individual identity antecedents. However, when examined at the individual component levels of psychological ownership, the impact is different with each component of psychological ownership. Originality: Investigating psychological ownership as a single construct may be misleading. Unbundling psychological ownership enables the investigation of antecedents that best suits the components of psychological ownership and its emergence. Implication: Managers understanding of psychological ownership is enhanced with knowledge of the type of factors that influence employees’ psychological ownership. This may enable them to concentrate on the factors that best suits their circumstances.
Measuring the Effectiveness of Response Inhibition regarding to Motor Complexity: Evidence from the Stroop Effect
We studied the effectiveness of response inhibition in movements with different degrees of motor complexity when they were executed in isolation and alternately. Sixteen participants performed the Stroop task which was used as a measure of response inhibition. Participants responded by lifting the index finger and reaching the screen with the same finger. Both actions were performed separately and alternately in different experimental blocks. Repeated measures ANOVAs were used to compare reaction time, movement time, kinematic errors and Movement errors across conditions (experimental block, movement, and congruency). Delta plots were constructed to perform distributional analyses of response inhibition and accuracy rate. The effectiveness of response inhibition did not show difference when the movements were performed in separated blocks. Nevertheless, it showed differences when they were performed alternately in the same experimental block, being more effective for the lifting action. This could be due to a competition of the available resources during a more complex scenario which also demands to adopt some strategy to avoid errors.
The Impact of a Model's Skin Tone and Ethnic Identification on Consumer Decision Making
Sri Lanka housed the lingerie product development and manufacturing subsidiary to renowned brands such as La Senza, Marks & Spencer, H&M, Etam, Lane Bryant, and George. Over the last few years, they have produced local brands such as Amante to cater to the local and regional customers. Past research has identified factors such as quality, price, and design to be vital when marketing lingerie to consumers. However, there has been minimum research that looks into the ethnically targeted market and skin colour within the Asian population. Therefore, the main aim of the research was to identify whether consumer preference for lingerie is influenced by the skin tone of the model wearing it. Moreover, the secondary aim was to investigate if the consumer preference for lingerie is influenced by the consumer’s ethnic identification with the skin tone of the model. An experimental design was used to explore the above aims. The participants constituted of 66 females residing in the western province of Sri Lanka and were gathered via convenience sampling. Six computerized images of a real model were used in the study, and her skin tone was digitally manipulated to express three different skin tones (light, tan and dark). Consumer preferences were measured through a ranking order scale that was constructed via a focus group discussion and ethnic identity was measured by the Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure-Revised. Wilcoxon signed-rank test, Friedman test, and chi square test of independence were carried out using SPSS version 20. The results indicated that majority of the consumers ethnically identified and preferred the tan skin over the light and dark skin tones. The findings support the existing literature that states there is a preference among consumers when models have a medium skin tone over a lighter skin tone. The preference for a tan skin tone in a model is consistent with the ethnic identification of the Sri Lankan sample. The study implies that lingerie brands should consider the model's skin tones when marketing the brand to different ethnic backgrounds.
Light, Restorativeness and Performance in the Workplace: A Pilot Study
Background: the present study explores the role of light and restorativeness on work. According with the Attention Restoration Theory (ART) and a Model of Work Environment, the main idea is that some features of environment, i.e., lighting, influences the direct attention, and so, the performance. Restorativeness refers to the presence/absence level of all the characteristics of physical environment that help to regenerate direct attention. Specifically, lighting can affect level of fascination and attention in one hand; and in other hand promotes several biological functions via pineal gland. Different reviews on this topic show controversial results. In order to bring light on this topic, the hypotheses of this study are that lighting can affect the construct of restorativeness and, in the second time, the restorativeness can affect the performance. Method: the participants are 30 workers of a mechatronic company in the North Italy. Every subject answered to a questionnaire valuing their subjective perceptions of environment in a different way: some objective features of environment, like lighting, temperature and air quality; some subjective perceptions of this environment; finally, the participants answered about their perceived performance. The main attention is on the features of light and his components: visual comfort, general preferences and pleasantness; and the dimensions of the construct of restorativeness; fascination, coherence and being away. The construct of performance per se is conceptualized in three level: individual, team membership and organizational membership; and in three different components: proficiency, adaptability, and proactivity, for a total of 9 subcomponents. Findings: path analysis showed that some characteristics of lighting respectively affected the dimension of fascination; and, as expected, the dimension of fascination affected work performance. Conclusions: The present study is a first pilot step of a wide research. These first results can be summarized with the statement that lighting and restorativeness contribute to explain work performance variability: in details perceptions of visual comfort, satisfaction and pleasantness, and fascination respectively. Results related to fascination are particularly interesting because fascination is conceptualized as the opposite of the construct of direct attention. The main idea is, in order to regenerate attentional capacity, it’s necessary to provide a lacking of attention (fascination). The sample size did not permit to test simultaneously the role of the perceived characteristics of light to see how they differently contribute to predict fascination of the work environment. However, the results highlighted the important role that light could have in predicting restorativeness dimensions and probably with a larger sample we could find larger effects also on work performance. Furthermore, longitudinal data will contribute to better analyze the causal model along time. Applicative implications: the present pilot study highlights the relevant role of lighting and perceived restorativeness in the work environment and the importance to focus attention on light features and the restorative characteristics in the design of work environments.
Perceived Restorativeness Scale– 6: A Short Version of the Perceived Restorativeness Scale for Mixed (or Mobile) Devices
Most of the studies on the ability of environments to recover people’s cognitive resources have been conducted in laboratory using simulated environments (e.g., photographs, videos, or virtual reality), based on the implicit assumption that exposure to simulated environments has the same effects of exposure to real environments. However, the technical characteristics of simulated environments, such as the dynamic or static characteristics of the stimulus, critically affect their perception. Measuring perceived restorativeness in situ rather than in laboratory could increase the validity of the obtained measurements. Personal mobile devices could be useful because they allow accessing immediately online surveys when people are directly exposed to an environment. At the same time, it becomes important to develop short and reliable measuring instruments that allow a quick assessment of the restorative qualities of the environments. One of the frequently used self-report measures to assess perceived restorativeness is the “Perceived Restorativeness Scale” (PRS) based on Attention Restoration Theory. A lot of different versions have been proposed and used according to different research purposes and needs, without studying their validity. This longitudinal study reported some preliminary validation analyses on a short version of original scale, the PRS-6, developed to be quick and mobile-friendly. It is composed of 6 items assessing fascination and being-away. 102 Italian university students participated to the study, 84% female with age ranging from 18 to 47 (M = 20.7; SD = 2.9). Data were obtained through a survey online that asked them to report their perceived restorativeness of the environment they were in (and the kind of environment) and their positive emotion (Positive and Negative Affective Schedule, PANAS) once a day for seven days. Cronbach alpha and item-total correlations were used to assess reliability and internal consistency. Confirmatory Factor Analyses (CFA) models were run to study the factorial structure (construct validity). Correlation analyses between PRS and PANAS scores were used to check discriminant validity. In the end, multigroup CFA models were used to study measurement invariance (configural, metric, scalar, strict) between different mobile devices and between day of assessment. On the whole, the PRS-6 showed good psychometric proprieties, similar to those of the original scale, and invariance across devices and days. These results suggested that the PRS-6 could be a valid alternative to assess perceived restorativeness when researchers need a brief and immediate evaluation of the recovery quality of an environment.
Relationship Demise After Having Children: An Analysis of Abandonment and Nuclear Family Structure vs. Supportive Community Cultures
There is an epidemic of couples separating after a child is born into a family, generally with the father leaving emotionally or physically in the first few years after birth. This separation creates high levels of stress for both parents, especially the primary parent, leaving her (or him) less available to the infant for healthy attachment and nurturing. The deterioration of the couple’s bond leaves parents increasingly under-resourced, and the dependent child in a compromised environment, with an increased likelihood of developing an attachment disorder. Objectives: To understand the dynamics of a couple, once the additional and extensive demands of a newborn are added to a nuclear family structure, and to identify effective ways to support all members of the family to thrive. Qualitative studies interviewed men, women, and couples after pregnancy and the early years as a family, regarding key destructive factors, as well as effective tools for the couple to retain a strong bond. In-depth analysis of a few cases, including the author’s own experience, reveal deeper insights about subtle factors, replicated in wider studies. Using a self-assessment survey, many fathers report feeling abandoned, due to the close bond of the mother-baby unit, and in turn, withdrawing themselves, leaving the mother without support and closeness to resource her for the baby. Fathers report various types of abandonment, from his partner to his mother, with whom he did not experience adequate connection as a child. The study identified a key destructive factor to be unrecognized wounding from childhood that was carried into the relationship. The study culminated in the naming of Male Postpartum Abandonment Syndrome (MPAS), describing the epidemic in industrialized cultures with the nuclear family as the primary configuration. A growing family system often collapses without a minimum number of adult caregivers per infant, approximately four per infant (3.87), which allows for proper healing and caretaking. In cases with no additional family or community beyond one or two parents, the layers of abandonment and trauma result in the deterioration of a couple’s relationship and ultimately the family structure. The solution includes engaging community in support of new families. The study identified (and recommends) specific resources to assist couples in recognizing and healing trauma and disconnection at multiple levels. Recommendations include wider awareness and availability of resources for healing childhood wounds and greater community-building efforts to support couples for the whole family to thrive.
Effect of WAY 100,635 on the Behavioral Indicators of Anxiety and Anhedonia after Exposure to Chronic Stress
The serotonergic system is particularly involved in the regulation of the stress response, in fact, one of the main treatments for stress-related disorders is the use of serotonergic antidepressants. However, the specific mechanism by which they exert their therapeutic effect in such disorders remains unknown. 5-HT1A receptors play an important role in the mechanism of regulation of the stress response. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of a 5-HT1A receptor-specific antagonist drug (WAY 100,635) on behavioral indicators of stress. We used 40 male Wistar rats of 250-350 grams housed in standard laboratory conditions and treated in accordance with the ethical standards of use and care of laboratory animals. Rats were subjected to an unpredictable chronic stress protocol for ten days; then they were divided into four groups to be administered with WAY 100,635 at doses 0.0, 0.05, 0.1 and 0.2 mg/kg respectively. The administration was intraperitoneal with saline as a vehicle for seven days. Finally, they were measured in tests of anxiety, anhedonia, and cognition. Statistically significant differences were found in all tests between groups, showing an anxiolytic effect of WAY 100,635 on the stress model, these results are related to the effect of the drug on the 5-HT1A autoreceptors, and it suggests that these particular receptors are importantly involved in the mechanisms of regulation of stress response.
Construction and Psychometric Characteristics of a Gender Group Identification Scale
Personal identity is the basis of a person's thoughts and actions and reflects the unique attributes of the person, while social identity is the basis for thoughts and actions among the members of a group and reflects the attributes and norms of the group that are internalized by the individual. Membership in social groups is fundamental for the survival of individuals. Throughout life, people belong to various groups depending on their gender, age, social class, nationality, occupation, etc., which have different levels of importance in their self-concept. The combinations of identities can interact with each other to form a unique social identity. One of the most important elements in the formation of social identity is the identification of gender, which refers to the degree in which belonging to a gender is important for the self-concept of individuals. The level of identification with a group as well as the valuation of their membership has an effect on several psychological variables such as the perception of personal competence, security, adaptation to the environment, behaviors to help others and the self-esteem, so it is important to have a valid and reliable scale to measure this construct. Historically, it has been measured with four items that only measure the degree of identification with the group, but not the evaluation of the group. Therefore, the present research develops and psychometrically analyzes the instrument of group identification of gender in a sample of 350 Mexican people between 18 and 27 years. Evidence of the construct validity of the instrument was obtained through a factorial analysis of principal components with Kaiser normalization and orthogonal rotation. The results indicate that the construct is composed with two factors and that the scale has appropriate psychometric characteristics, so it is a reliable scale for measuring the construct in both men and women.
Implicit Bias as One Obstacle to Gender Equity
Today, there is increased attention to the role of social perceptions in the selection, hiring, and management of employees and the evaluation and promotion of students. In some contexts, where women or members of certain social groups have been historically underrepresented there is evidence that these perceptions reflect the implicit biases people harbor. Research in the social and psychological sciences reveals that implicit biases against women unfairly disadvantage them in academic and work settings. This presentation will provide an overview of the current state of knowledge on an implicit bias as well as the problems associated with it. How employers, educators and other evaluators can inoculate themselves from the pernicious effects of these biases will be considered.
Comparing Perceived Restorativeness in Natural and Urban Environment: A Meta-Analysis
A growing body of empirical research from different areas of inquiry suggest that brief contact with natural environment restore mental resources. The Attention Restoration Theory (ART) is the widely used and empirical founded theory developed to explain why exposure to nature helps people to recovery cognitive resources. It assumes that contact with nature allows people to free (and then recovery) voluntary attention resources and thus allows them to recover from a cognitive fatigue situation. However, it was suggested that some people could have more cognitive benefit after exposure to urban environment.The objective of this study is to report the results of a meta-analysis of studies (peer-reviewed articles) comparing the restorativeness (the quality to be restorative) perceived in natural environments than those perceived in urban environments. This meta-analysis intended to estimate how much nature environments (forests, parks, boulevards) are perceived to be more restorativeness than urban ones (i.e., the magnitude of the perceived restorativeness’ difference). Moreover, given the methodological difference betweenstudy, it studied the potential role of moderator variables as participants (student or other), instrument used (Perceived Restorativeness Scale or other), and procedure (in laboratory or in situ).PsycINFO, PsycARTICLES, Scopus, SpringerLINK, Web Of Science online database were used to identify all peer-review articles on restorativeness published to date (k = 167). Reference sections of obtained papers were examined for additional studies. Only 22 independent studies (with a total of 1677 participants) met inclusion criteria (direct exposure to environment, comparison between one outdoor environment with natural element and one without natural element, and restorativeness measured by self-report scale) and were included in meta-analysis. To estimate the average effect size, a random effect model (Restricted Maximum-likelihood estimator) was used because the studies included in the meta-analysis were conducted independently and using different methods in different populations, so no common effect-size was expected. The presence of publication bias was checked using trim and fill approach. Univariate moderator analysis (mixed effect model) were run to determine whether the variable coded moderated the perceived restorativeness difference. Results show that natural environments are perceived to be more restorativeness than urban environments, confirming from an empirical point of view what is now considered a knowledge gained in environmental psychology. The relevant information emerging from this study is the magnitude of the estimated average effect size, which is particularly high (d = 2.06) compared to those that are commonly observed in psychology. Significant heterogeneity between study was found (Q(20) = 502.31, p < .001;) and studies’ variability was very high (I2[C.I.]= 97.21% [95.18 – 98.75]). Subsequent univariate moderator analysis were not significant. Methodological difference (participants, instrument, and procedure) did not explain variability between study. Other methodological difference (e.g., research design, environment’s characteristics, light’s condition) could explain this variability between study. In the mine while, studies’ variability could be not due to methodological difference but to individual difference (age, gender, education level) and characteristics (connection to nature, environmental attitude). Furthers moderator analysis are working in progress.
The Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor and Stem Cell Factor Levels in Serum of Adolescent and Young Adults with Mood Disorders: A Two Year Follow-Up Study
Introduction: Inflammation and cytokines have emerged as a promising target in mood disorders research; however there are still very limited numbers of study regarding inflammatory alterations among adolescents and young adults with mood disorders. The Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor (MIF) and Stem Cell Factor (SCF) are the pleiotropic cytokines which may play an important role in mood disorders pathophysiology. The aim of this study was to investigate levels of these factors in serum of adolescent and young adults with mood disorders compared to healthy controls. Subjects: We involved 79 patients aged 12-24 years in 2-year follow-up study with a primary diagnosis of mood disorders: bipolar disorder (BP) and unipolar disorder with BP spectrum. Study group includes 23 males (mean age 19.08, SD 3.3) and 56 females (18.39, SD 3.28). Control group consisted 35 persons: 7 males (20.43, SD 4.23) and 28 females (21.25, SD 2.11). Clinical diagnoses according to DSM-IV-TR criteria were assessed using Kiddie-Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia-Present and Lifetime Version (K-SADS-PL) and Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (SCID) in young adults respectively. Clinical assessment includes evaluation of clinical factors and symptoms severity (rated using the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale and Young Mania Rating Scale). Clinical and biological evaluations were made at control visits respectively at baseline (week 0), euthymia (at month 3 or 6) and after 12 and 24 months. Methods: Serum protein concentration was determined by Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assays (ELISA) method. Human MIF and SCF DuoSet ELISA kits were used. In the analyses non-parametric tests were used: Mann-Whitney U test, Kruskal-Wallis ANOVA, Friedman’s ANOVA, Wilcoxon signed rank test, Spearman correlation. We defined statistical significance as p < 0.05. Results: Comparing MIF and SCF levels between acute episode of depression/hypo/mania at baseline and euthymia (at month 3 or 6) we did not find any statistical differences. At baseline patients with age above 18 years old had decreased MIF level compared to patients younger than 18 years. MIF level at baseline positively correlated with age (p=0.004). Positive correlations of SCF level at month 3 and 6 with depression or mania occurrence at month 24 (p=0.03 and p=0.04, respectively) was detected. Strong correlations between MIF and SCF levels at baseline (p=0.0005) and month 3 (p=0.03) were observed. Discussion: Our results did not show any differences in MIF and SCF levels between acute episode of depression/hypo/mania and euthymia in young patients. Further studies on larger groups are recommended. Grant was founded by National Science Center in Poland no 2011/03/D/NZ5/06146.