2000-2008 Newman Award Abstracts
2008 Newman Award Abstract | "Inhibitory Control and Symptom Severity in Late-Life Generalized Anxiety Disorder"
Rebecca B. Price, Rutgers University New Brunswick (NJ)
Faculty Sponsor: Jan Mohlman, PhD
Contemporary models of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) posit that during worry, threat-related images are inhibited in order to minimize somatic anxiety. This conceptualization of worry suggests a role for the executive system in exerting top-down inhibitory control over threat processing. Forty-three older adults (age 60- 77) with GAD and 14 age-matched controls completed a battery of selfreport symptom measures and the Stroop color-word task to assess inhibitory control. In GAD patients, Stroop performance was positively correlated with measures of worry and trait anxiety. No relationships between Stroop scores and clinical measures were observed in non-anxious controls. In the context of a disorder-specific tendency to make maladaptive use of executive functions, better inhibitory control may be associated with more severe symptomatology.
2007 Newman Award Abstract | "Marital Satisfaction, Recovery From Work, and Diurnal Cortisol Among Men and Women"
Darby Saxbe, University of California, Los Angeles
Faculty Sponsor: Rena Rapetti, PhD
Multilevel modeling was used to explore associations between salivary cortisol, workload, and marital quality scores among 60 adults. Among women, marital satisfaction was associated with a stronger basal cortisol cycle and also appeared to moderate the within-subjects association between afternoon and evening cortisol level. For both men and women, evening cortisol was lower than usual on higher-workload days, and marital satisfaction augmented this association among women. The results suggest that martial quality may play a role in everyday stress responding, particularly for women. This study suggests a pathway by which marital satisfaction influences allostatic load and physical health.
2006 Newman Award Abstract | "The Demise of the Increasingly Protracted Journal Article? Publication Trends in APA Journals, 1986-2004"
Gregory D. Webster, University of Colorado at Boulder
Faculty Sponsor: Angela Bryan, PhD
A key problem for readers, authors, and journal editors/reviewers has been adapting to increasingly longer journal articles in psychology. Previous analyses of publication trends in social/personality psychology have shown robust linear increases in measures of article length (Reis & Stiller, 1992) and referencing (Adair & Vohra, 2003) over time. The present study analyzed the annual summary reports of 24 APA primary journals from 1986 to 2004. Results indicated that articles in the average APA journal actually became shorter in length since the turn of the century. Moreover, journals with higher impact factors had greater linear increases in article length over time than journals with lower impact factors. Findings on changes over time in rejection rates, subscriptions, publication lags, and citation statistics are also presented. The extent to which these trends may be attributed to reviewer bias, editorial decree, reader/writer exhaustion, or a natural progression of accumulated scientific knowledge is discussed.
2005 Newman Award Abstract | "Physiological Correlates of Severe Life Stress in Clinical Depression"
George M. Slavich, University of Oregon
Faculty Sponsor: Scott M. Monroe, PhD
Severe life stress has been repeatedly associated with the subsequent onset of depression (Kessler, 1997). However, the mechanisms by which stress initiates depression remain unclear. To examine the role that physiology plays in this process, 29 individuals diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD) were administered the Life Events and Difficulties Schedule (LEDS; Brown & Harris, 1978). Participants later viewed standardized neutral, fear, sad, and amusing films while physiological responses to each film were assessed. Compared to depressed individuals who experienced little or no stress prior to depression onset, depressed participants who experienced severe stress exhibited greater heart rate and blood pressure, and lower finger temperature, while viewing the emotional films. Implications for regarding severe life stress and physiology as key variables in depression onset are discussed.
2004 Newman Award Abstract | "Thin-Ideal Awareness and Internalization: Culture as a Moderating Variable"
Cortney S. Warren, Texas A & M University
Faculty Sponsor: David H. Gleaves, PhD
We examined the potential for ethnicity to moderate the relationships between awareness and internalization of sociocultural ideals of appearance and between internalization and body dissatisfaction. Spanish (n = 100), Mexican American (n = 100), and Euro-American (n = 100) female participants completed measures of sociocultural attitudes and body dissatisfaction. Path analysis using maximum likelihood with robust standard errors tested the relationships across and within ethnic groups. There was evidence for the mediational effect of internalization on the relationship between awareness and body dissatisfaction. Furthermore, both relationships were significantly stronger for Euro-American women than for Mexican American or Spanish women (the predicted moderator effect). Results demonstrate how ethnicity may protect against the development of eating disorder symptoms and suggest that eating disorder prevention should involve denouncing the thin ideal, minimizing appearance as an indicator of value, and emphasizing traits other than appearance as determinants of worth.
2003 Newman Award Abstract | "Mathematically Facile Adolescents with Math/Science Aspirations: New Perspectives on Their Educational and Vocational Development"
Rose Mary Webb, Vanderbilt University
Faculty Sponsor: David Lubinski
This longitudinal study tracked 1,110 adolescents identified as mathematically precocious at age 13 (top 1%) with plans for a math-science undergraduate major. Participants’ high school educational experiences, abilities, and interests predicated whether their attained undergraduate degrees were within math-science or non-math-science areas. More women then men eventually completed undergraduate majors outside math-science, but many individuals who completed non-math-science degrees ultimately chose math-science occupations (and vice versa). At age 33, the two degree groups reported commensurate and uniformly high levels of career satisfaction, success, and life satisfaction. Assessing individual differences is critical for modeling talent development and life satisfaction; it reveals that equal male-female representation across disciplines may not be as simple to accomplish as many policy discussions imply.
2002 Newman Award Abstract | "Self-Concept Among Mexican American Boys and Girls: Validating the Self-Description Questionnaire-I
Micheal E. Shafer, University of North Texas"
Faculty Sponsors: Craig S. Neumann, PhD, and Patricia L. Kaminski
Over the las decade, a number of multifaceted measures have been developed to assess levels of self-concept among children. The Self-Descripton Questionnaire-I (SDQ-I) is among the most notable of the multidimensional measures; howeve, a majority of the research conducted with the SDQ-I has utilized children from Canadian and Australian schools, and has not included students from the United States. This study was conducted to validate the psychometric properties of the SDQ-I and examine gender differneces in self-concept among a large group (N = 34) of Mexican American male and female elementary students. Results from this study are among the first to demonstrate that the SDQ-I is a valid self-concept measure to use with Mexican American boys and girls. Individual scale differences between male and female students, project limitations, and future research goals are also discussed.
2001 Newman Award Abstract | "Parenting Practices and Adolescent Depressive Symptoms in Chinese American Families
Su Yeong Kim, University of California, Davis"
Faculty Sponsor: Xiaojia Ge, PhD
The current study examines the relationship between parenting practices and adolescent depressive symptoms among Chinese Americans. First, results generated from confirmatory factor analyses suggest that self-reported parenting practices by mothers and fathers, and adolescent perception of parenting practices loaded adequately on 3 subscales: inductive reasoning, monitoring, and harsh discipline. Second, as hypothesized, the results suggest that parents' depressive symptoms are related to disrupted parenting practices, which in turn, are significantly related to the negative evaluation of these behaviors by the adolescents. The perceptions of such parenting practices by adolescents are significantly associated with their depressive symptoms. Third, the relationships are robust even after parental income, education, and generation status are statistically controlled. Overall, the results indicate that the relationships between parenting practices and adolescent depressive symptoms among Chinese American adolescents seem to echo those found among European American adolescents.
2000 Newman Award Abstract | "The Cognitive Development of Children in Poverty with Adequate and Deficient Growth
Laura Mackner, University of Maryland Baltimore County"
Faculty Sponsor: Raymond H. Starr, Jr.
This study longitudinally examined the cognitive development of children in poverty with normal growth and those with a history of failure to thrive (FTT). Participants were 218 low-income children ages 3 to 25 months with normal birth weight and no problems that could interfere with growth or development. Anthropometric and developmental assessments, structured interviews, and home evaluations were conducted through age 6. Cognitive development declined in both groups despite average baseline scores. Children with FTT had significantly lower cognitive scores than children with adequate growth through age 4, but not at ages 5 and 6, when their scores increased. Home environment and family size were significant risk factors, and were more influential for children with adequate growth, highlighting the impact of early growth failure.