Faculty Advisor Research Grant 2002-2003 Winners
Psi Chi congratulates the faculty advisors who won this year’s competition for the Faculty Advisor Research Grants. Listed alphabetically, the 2002-2003 winning faculty advisors are:
- Catherine L. Bagwell, PhD, University of Richmond (VA), Midwestern Region
"Teachers' Characteristics and Their Perceptions About Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)"
- Kerrie Baker, PhD, Cedar Crest College (PA), Eastern Region
"The Effects of Age and Friendship on a Woman’s Attributions for Success or Failure"
- Steven L. Berman, PhD, University of Central Florida-Daytona Beach Campus, Midwestern Region
Research proposal: "Ethnic Identity and Acculturative Stress in Children of Mexican Migrant Farmworkers"
- Dragana I. Claflin, PhD, Wright State University (OH), Midwestern Region
"Stress and Learning: Do Increased Levels of Coricosterone Impair Basic Associative Learning Processes During Early Development"
- Susan E. Dutch, PhD, Westfield State College (MA), Eastern Region
"Decision Making: Conjoint Probability and Conditional Logic"
- Kristine M. Kelly, PhD, Western Illinois University, Midwestern Region
"Belongingness and the Detection of Lies"
- Eric Reittinger, PhD, Texas A & M University-Kingsville, Southwestern Region
Research proposal: "The Roll of a Father’s ‘Machismo’ on the Social Relationships of His Adolescent Children"
- Karen L. Yanowitz, PhD, Arkansas State University, Southwestern Region
"College and Adolescents Schemas About Stalking"
Teachers' Characteristics and Their Perceptions About Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Catherine L. Bagwell, PhD
University of Richmond (VA)
Although the impairments related to ADHD are often most apparent in the school setting, and teachers are often intricately involved in interventions for ADHD, little is known about teachers' perceptions of the disorder and its treatment. The current study examined the hypotheses that teachers' perceptions about ADHD and its treatment vary and that these variations can be predicted by teacher characteristics. Across 14 schools, 286 teachers completed a brief questionnaire assessing their perceptions about ADHD. Although 41% of teachers attributed ADHD equally to biological and social factors, 43% perceived the cause to be primarily biological, and 16% perceived the cause to be primarily environmental. Teachers who believed that ADHD is due to environmental factors perceived psychostimulant medication to be less effective than teachers who attributed ADHD to biological factors or equally to both. However, teachers' views about the cause of ADHD were not associated with their perceptions of the importance of psychosocial treatments. In addition, being female, having children of their own, and having more years of experience at their current school predicted teachers' positive views of the effectiveness of psychostimulant medication for treating ADHD. These and other findings suggest that teachers' characteristics are associated with their perceptions of ADHD and the effectiveness of various treatments.
Catherine L. Bagwell, PhD, is an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Richmond. She received her BS in psychology from the University of Richmond and her MA and PhD in clinical psychology from Duke University. After completing her clinical internship at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in 1999, she returned to her alma mater where she teaches courses in Child Development, Developmental Psychopathology, and Research Methods. Dr. Bagwell's research interests are in the area of children's peer and friendship relations and the development of externalizing behavior problems, such as aggression and ADHD. She has served as the faculty advisor for Richmond's chapter of Psi Chi since 2000.
The Effects of Age and Friendship on a Woman's Attributions for Success or Failure
Kerrie Q. Baker, Ph.D
Cedar Crest College (PA)
Often, both traditional (ages 18 to 22) and non-traditional (ages 23 and over) students can be found in college classrooms. Previous research (e.g., Harju & Eppler, 1997) suggests that students in these age groups might interpret college classroom situations very differently, and make attributions for their success or failure accordingly. In this study, traditional aged students were expected to make internal attributions when receiving positive feedback and external attributions when receiving negative feedback. In contrast, non-traditional aged students were expected to make more internal attributions in both conditions.
In addition, several investigators have found that women are typically more modest than men, taking less credit for success and often blaming themselves more often for failure (e.g., Rosenfield & Stephan, 1978). When a female college student fails a test, will the same pattern of modesty emerge when her friend knows that she failed the test? It is anticipated that students will make more internal attributions when receiving positive feedback and more external attributions when receiving negative feedback. In order to maintain high self-esteem and her image of being a good student, friends were expected to make more internal attributions when receiving positive feedback, and more external attributions when given negative feedback, than would strangers in the same situation.
A 2 X 2 X 2 between-subjects design was used to examine the effects of an individual's familiarity with another person (friend vs. stranger), age (traditional ages 18-22 vs. non-traditional ages 23 and over), and type of feedback (pass vs. fail) on performance attributions. One hundred fifty-six undergraduate females from a small liberal arts college individually completed a set of three, timed perceptual ability exercises. Participants sat in a room in pairs to complete their exercises, and were aware of their partner's performance. Positive or negative feedback was randomly given to each participant in the presence of her partner. Each participant then estimated the influence of her ability, effort, luck, task difficulty, and distraction on her performance, using a 5-point Likert scale, and her responses were shared with her partner. The results indicated that one's level of familiarity with her partner or her age had no effect on her attributions for performance. Participants, in general, made significantly more internal attributions (ability or effort) for success, F(1,148)=34.99, p < .001; and more external attributions (luck, difficulty of task, distraction) for failure, F(1,147)=18.90, p < .001. In addition, friends tended to make more external attributions for their failures, F(1,147)=3.12, p < .07. The implications of these findings and future research ideas are presented.
Kerrie Q. Baker, PhD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pennsylvania. She received her BS in psychology from Pennsylvania State University, and an MS and PhD in industrial/organizational psychology from Old Dominion University. Dr. Baker practiced psychology for over ten years in private and public organizations, including being a Personnel Research Psychologist for the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Since coming to Cedar Crest College in 2001, Dr. Baker has taught courses in Experimental and Statistical Methods, Social Psychology, and Industrial/Organizational Psychology.
She has been the faculty advisor for the CCC chapter of Psi Chi since 2001, and has worked closely with many students on their senior capstone research experiences. Although this project was inspired by two of her students, her general research interests include the measurement of generational effects in academic and work environments; the functioning of teams under stressful conditions and the acceptance of non-traditional team members; and critical issues faced by women in the workplace.
Stress and Learning: Do Increased Levels of Corticosterone Impair Basic Associative Learning Processes During Early Development?
Dragana I. Claflin, PhD
Wright State University (OH)
Stress and stress hormones, such as corticosterone, can affect cognitive brain functions such as learning and memory. Animals were trained on either delay or trace classical eyeblink conditioning to see whether elevated stress hormones would impair hippocampal-dependent learning (trace conditioning). In eyeblink conditioning, a tone and shock are delivered such that they either overlap (delay) or have a short time-gap between them (trace). When conditioned, animals give an eyeblink response that follows the tone but precedes the shock. A corticosterone or placebo pellet was implanted under the skin of 15-day old rats and eyeblink conditioning occurred at 28 days of age. Preliminary analyses suggest that corticosterone had little effect on delay conditioning, but differently affected trace conditioning in males and females. In the corticosterone trace group, males performed worse than females. Further analysis and research will determine whether corticosterone impaired hippocampal function in males or facilitated learning in females.
Dragana I. Claflin, PhD is an assistant professor of psychology at Wright State University in Dayton, OH. She received her BA in biopsychology from Vassar College and her doctorate in psychology, with an emphasis in behavioral neuroscience, from the University of Southern California. She received postdoctoral training in developmental psychobiology at Duke University and the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency in Research Triangle Park, NC. As a NIMH postdoctoral fellow, she began the research program that is still her focus today--developmental comparisons of associative learning in rodents and humans using classical eyeblink conditioning. She is especially interested in using eyeblink conditioning to understand functional changes throughout development in brain regions necessary for associative learning. Dr. Claflin has involved undergraduates in her research for over 10 years and prepared them for presentations at national meetings. She has been advisor to Psi Chi at Wright State since 2000 and served as a reviewer of student submissions for the Midwestern regional research awards. She teaches undergraduate courses in Drugs and Behavior, Behavioral Neuroscience, and Clinical Neuroscience. She received a teaching award from the college in 2002.
Decision Making: Conjoint Probability and Conditional Logic
Susan E. Dutch, PhD
Westfield State College (MA)
Coauthor: Laura L. Bill, EdD (candidate), American International College (MA)
Cognitive processes underlying decision-making tasks were investigated. Participants rank-ordered likelihoods of three outcomes or determined the veracity of four sentences. All participants gave written descriptions of their thinking processes. Results confirmed seven of nine hypotheses: neither a logical nor a probability judgment guaranteed a correct response; a representative judgment did not guarantee an incorrect response; the "Linda problem" led to the highest error rates of all eight conditions and the expected pattern of results was obtained over conditions; within-protagonist conditions yielded higher error rates in both conjoint probability and conditional logic problems; unnatural conditions yielded slightly higher error rates than natural conditions; no sequence effects were found for either logic or probability problems; lastly, fewer errors and representative judgments were found in conditional logic compared to conjoint probability problems. Unexpectedly, more representative than statistical judgments were made in between- compared to within-protagonist conditions, and abstract conditions did not yield higher error rates than concrete ones. Implications include the importance of presentation style, suggesting that problems presented in "if-then" formats may lead to both more rational and more accurate responses than comparable problems presented in terms of probability.
Susan E. Dutch, PhD, is a full professor of psychology at Westfield State College in Westfield, Massachusetts. She completed her PhD in experimental psychology at the University of Connecticut, specializing in cognition. Dr. Dutch was the recipient of the Westfield State College Outstanding Educator Award in May of 2000.
Dr. Dutch's research comparing the decision-making processes of younger and older adults is currently being funded by a Psi Chi Faculty Advisor Grant. She routinely involves undergraduate students in her research work and has often presented her findings with students as coauthors. Dr. Dutch incorporates service learning in many of her courses and has been quite active in the community. For her work, she was chosen as one of the "Westfield 150" - the 150 most influential people on campus during the 150 years of the college's existence.
Professor Dutch has been faculty advisor of the Westfield State College chapter of Psi Chi since 1984. Just one student was inducted that first year. Except for sabbatical leaves, she has been the advisor ever since. Today, the chapter is quite active and inducts about 40 members per year. The chapter provides service in the community through its annual food drive and by sending holiday greeting cards to hospitalized children and adults in nursing homes. The National Past-President of Psi Chi and a former Eastern Regional vice-president, Dr. Dutch has received the Chapter Advisor Award numerous times and was awarded the Denmark National Faculty Advisor Award in 2003-04.
In addition to her involvement in Psi Chi, Dr. Dutch is an active member of many psychological associations, including the New England Psychological Association (past-president), the Council of Teachers of Undergraduate Psychology (past Eastern Regional coordinator), the Society for the Teaching of Psychology, Division 2 of APA (past Eastern Regional liaison) and the Psychology Partnerships Project (Service Learning Focus Group). She is a Fellow of APA in Division 52 (International) where she has served as Program Chair, and in Division 2 (The Society for the Teaching of Psychology), where she serves on the Fellows Committee. Currently, she is serving a three-year term on the Board of Directors of the Eastern Psychological Association and is the program chair of the annual convention.
Laura L. Bill, EdD (candidate) currently attends American International College in Springfield, MA. She is a doctoral candidate majoring in Educational Psychology. She graduated from Westfield State College with a Bachelors Degree in Psychology. Since 2001, she has gained valuable experience as a research assistant to Dr. Susan E. Dutch and Dr. Stanley Jackson. Her interests focus on cognitive psychology, social statistics, special education, web design and multimedia development. She hopes to find a career that embraces all of her talents, preferably in a public school or university setting.
Belongingness and the Detection of Lies
Kristine M. Kelly, PhD
Western Illinois University
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between threatened belongingness needs and the ability to identify deception. A sample of 45 undergraduate students first completed a 10-item measure of the need to belong. Next, participants were randomly assigned to experience either social inclusion or rejection in a chat room interaction with two confederates. Finally, participants watched brief video clips of students who had been videotaped telling lies or the truth about various topics and rated each person in the video clips (higher scores indicated more perceived deception). Results indicated that high need to belong participants who experienced rejection tended to perceive all social interactions as equally deceptive, but those who were included accurately differentiated between lies and truths. These findings suggest that overactivated social vigilance may erode an individual's sense of trust, creating more difficulty for those who are most in need of social contacts.
Kristine M. Kelly, PhD, is currently an associate professor of psychology at Western Illinois University. She received her undergraduate degree from California State University, Sacramento, and her PhD from the University of Tennessee in experimental psychology with an emphasis in social psychology. She served as Psi Chi faculty advisor for the past five years. Her major areas of interest include interpersonal relationships, regulation of belongingness needs, social rejection, and mate selection. She teaches courses in Social Psychology, Research Methods, and Evolutionary Psychology.
College and Adolescents Schemas About Stalking
Karen L. Yanowitz, PhD
Arkansas State University
Adolescents were asked to write a narrative of what constitutes stalking and about their own experiences with it. Thirty-eight percent of the women and 8% of the men reported they had personally been stalked. No gender differences were seen in terms of the relationship between the target and the stalker; 42% were stalked by a person wanting a relationship, 8% were stalked by an "ex," and 50% were stalked by a stranger. Responses to the narrative were summed so that participants received a total score for mild stalking behaviors, such as engaging in unwanted communication. Women were significantly more likely to generate mild stalking behaviors than men. College students were also more likely to generate mild stalking behaviors than adolescents. A significant interaction revealed that male students, no matter what grade, generated approximately the same number of mild stalking behaviors. However, the number of mild stalking behaviors generated by female students increased significantly between junior high/high school and college. In contrast, no significant difference as a function of gender or grade was obtained for more traditional stalking behaviors.
Karen L. Yanowitz, PhD, received her BS in biology at Brandeis University, and her MA and PhD in developmental psychology at the University of Massachusetts/Amherst. She is an associate professor at Arkansas State University, where she teaches Introductory Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Cognitive Psychology and Human Research. Dr. Yanowitz was awarded the College of Education's Excellence in Teaching Award. Recently, her research interests have expanded to include social cognition, and this research on students' schemas of stalking is an outgrowth of that interest. She has involved undergraduate students in all aspects of this research, and they have presented results at the American Psychological Society's annual conferences. Under her mentorship, her students have also been recipients of state-wide undergraduate research grant awards. Dr. Yanowitz is a faculty advisor to Psi Chi, and started the Psychology Club at Arkansas State University in 2002.