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Psi Chi Journal Fall 2001

PSI CHI Journal of Psychological Research
Volume 6.3 | Fall 2001

RESEARCH ARTICLES

Sex Differences in the Contributions of Appearance-Related Messages
to Body Esteem and Perceptions of Thinness

Carrie L. Giant, Rhonda M. Passino, and Lesa Rae Vartanian,
Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis


ABSTRACT: Past research has indicated that satisfaction with one’s body shape is negatively correlated with mass media influence and appearance-related feedback from family and peers. The present research investigated sex differences in the contributions of those sociocultural factors to body esteem and perceptions of thinness. One hundred sixty-six women and 113 men completed questionnaires measuring body esteem, perceptions of current body shape compared to perceptions of desired and perceived ideal body shapes, extent of susceptibility to mass media model influence, frequency of teasing from family and peers, and frequency of body-related discussions with peers. Correlations among these variables indicated sex differences, and reinforced the importance of sociocultural influences on perceptions of the body for both men and women.

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Effects of High and Low Saturation of Red Hue on Long-Term Memory Performance
Ani G. Nikolova and Jill L. Quilici, California State University, Northridge

ABSTRACT: Little is known about the mechanism of our physiological reactions to color and its impact on cognition. Despite that knowledge deficit, many researchers have used different colors as an environmental setting in studies on study and recall context variations and memory. The goal of this study was to examine whether manipulation of color properties, manipulation of color context, or both factors have an effect on memory recall. Each of the 2 independent variables—color presented at study and color presented at test—had 3 levels: high saturation of red hue, low saturation of red hue, and neutral (gray) hue. A total of 180 students were assigned to 1 of the 9 conditions in a 3 x 3 randomized-groups design. Analysis of variance revealed a significant effect of color saturation on memory recall indicating that high saturation, both at time of study and time of test, resulted in better recall than a neutral hue or low saturation. The results relating color context and recall were nonsignificant, demonstrating that a change in color context from study to test did not result in greater forgetting. This finding clearly indicates that the manipulation of color saturation is the primary cause for the outcome in memory recall in this study. Implications for use of color to improve memory in a variety of learning situations are discussed.

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Effects of DNA and Eyewitness Evidence on Juror Decisions
Naomi J. Freeman and Diana L. D. Punzo, Earlham College

ABSTRACT: The present experiment investigated whether DNA evidence, eyewitness evidence, or a combination of both was more persuasive to mock jurors. The study also explored whether varying the credibility of the testimony affected persuasiveness. The researchers hypothesized that the combination of eyewitness and DNA evidence would be the most persuasive to jurors. Eyewitness evidence would be more persuasive than DNA evidence, and credible testimony would be more persuasive than discredited testimony. One hundred-fifty college students read an excerpt from a court transcript describing a first-degree murder trial. Participants rendered a verdict and answered questions concerning confidence, understanding, reliability, and persuasiveness of testimony. The analyses partly supported the hypotheses. DNA evidence was more persuasive, reliable, influential, and less likely to be viewed as wrong than eyewitness evidence, regardless of whether it was discredited. DNA evidence elicited more guilty verdicts, and jurors were more confident in their verdict. We discuss these results in light of the 2-routes-to-persuasion theory.

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Part-Set Cuing is Due to Strong, Not Weak, List Cues
Monica L. Boice and Gary J. Gargano, Saint Joseph's University

ABSTRACT: Research in memory on the part-set cuing paradigm has shown that the presentation of study list items as cues at retrieval impairs recall for the remaining items of the study list (e.g., Rundus, 1973). Subsequent research by Peynircioglu (1987) has indicated that the part-set cuing effect may also occur in nonmemory tasks. In Peynircioglu’s experiment, participants generated words from a larger source word. At retrieval, participants were provided with 0 or 8 exemplars as cues to help generate other words. The results indicated that fewer words were generated in the cued condition than in the noncued condition, suggesting that the mechanism producing the effect was similar to that found in traditional memory tasks (e.g., blocking, strategy disruption). The procedure in the present study was similar to Peynircioglu’s except participants generated exemplars from common conceptual categories (e.g., fruits). The number and popularity of cue words was manipulated. The results indicated that a part-set cuing effect occurred only when popular cues were provided. This finding suggests that the part-set cuing effect is due to the strength of the cue words and thus supports predictions made by blocking theory, which suggests that study list items with higher retrieval strength block access to study list items with weaker retrieval strength.

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Human Sex Differences in Aggression Within an Evolutionary Model
Barbara J. Hagenah, Christopher Heaps, Eugene Gilden, and Michael Roberts, Linfield College

ABSTRACT: This investigation used evolutionary theory and social learning theory to predict sex differences in human aggression. One hundred fifteen students estimated their frequency of aggression in the following contexts: (a) compete to attract members of the opposite sex, (b) co-opt resources from others, and (c) negotiate status hierarchies. We assessed aggression type in 3 categories: direct physical, direct verbal, and indirect. We determined sex role by using the Bem Sex-Role Inventory (Bem, 1978). The social model predicts that men will engage more frequently than women in all types of aggression. The evolutionary model predicts that men and women will engage in similar frequencies of total aggression but differ in the type they use; our data supported this prediction. These endings were more consistent with the evolutionary model, indicating that this theory provides a sound basis for predicting and understanding sex differences in aggression.

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The Psi Chi Journal of Psychological Research educates, supports, and promotes professional development, and disseminates psychological science. Only original, empirical manuscripts that make a contribution to psychological knowledge are published. Authors are Psi Chi members at the undergraduate, graduate, and faculty level.

 

 

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