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Psi Chi Journal Summer 2003


Volume 8.2 | Summer 2003
Download This Issue - All articles are now free.

Vietnamese Refugees and Their U.S.-Born Vietnamese Counterparts: Biculturalism, Self-Determination, and Perceived Discrimination

Angela-Minhtu Nguyen and Que-Lam Huynh, University of San Diego

ABSTRACT: Much research has been done on biculturalism, self-determination, and perceived discrimination, but researchers have not examined all 3 constructs in relation to each other. Moreover, researchers have rarely compared Vietnamese refugees and U.S.-born Vietnamese people. We compared Vietnamese refugees to their U.S.-born counterparts, ages 18-25, on biculturalism, self-determination, and perceived discrimination. Two hundred twenty-four Vietnamese Americans residing in Southern California completed the Young Adults of Vietnamese Ancestry Questionnaire. Independent samples t tests showed that the 2 groups of Vietnamese Americans differed significantly on level of biculturalism, but not on self-determination or perceived discrimination. There were no sex or age differences on any of the variables, and biculturalism, self-determination, and perceived discrimination were not significantly correlated. Some results from this study were consistent with past findings, and some were conflicting. Investigators should conduct further research to improve the questionnaire and to expand our knowledge and understanding of Vietnamese Americans.

Phonological and Semantic Ambiguity Resolution During Text Integration

Ranada T. Harrison and Jocelyn R. Folk, Kent State University

ABSTRACT: Text integration errors can occur when a reader initially selects the contextually inappropriate meaning of an ambiguous word. When the reader attempts to integrate that meaning into the context, the sentence will not make sense. We investigated how readers recover from text integration errors in an oral reading study involving 2 types of ambiguous words: heterophones and homophones. Heterophones have 2 possible pronunciations and 2 meanings (e.g., sewer), whereas homophones have 1 pronunciation and 2 meanings (e.g., calf). We hypothesized that the multiple phonological codes of heterophones will cause additional difficulty initially and in recovery from text integration errors compared to homophones. Presumably, the working-memory code involved in reading is sound based (Daneman & Carpenter, 1983), so readers may reread to recover the alternative meaning and pronunciation of a heterophone but not of a homophone with a single pronunciation. We found that skilled readers made more errors initially on heterophones than homophones and used different strategies to recover from text integration errors caused by heterophone and homophone ambiguity.

False Memory for Pictures of Common Household Chores: Evidence of a Gender Stereotype

Rebecca M. de Mayo and Kristen A. Diliberto, Berry College

ABSTRACT: The current study examined false memory for gender stereotype information using a novel picture paradigm based on the original word paradigm used by Deese (1959) and Roediger and McDermott (1995). We showed participants pictures of either a man or woman portraying stereotypically male-related and female-related household chores. We found a reliable false memory effect for pictures stereotypically related, but not presented in the study list. In addition, a greater proportion of errors occurred with pictures that were consistent with the female stereotype (M = .177) as compared to the male stereotype (M = .081), t(59) = 3.069, p = .003. The latter effect occurred independent of the sex of the participant and the sex of the individual pictured. We discuss the significance of these findings in terms of understanding the nature of memory errors and gender stereotypes.

Wonder Women: The Portrayal of Women in Television Soap Operas

Kara J. Wiergacz and Jennifer L. Lucas, Agnes Scott College

ABSTRACT: This study used content analysis to explore the depiction of women in soap operas aired during the fall of 2000. The marital status, employment, and age of female characters were compared to male characters, as well as to the general population. The portrayal of single motherhood was also examined for work-life conflict, family support, and socioeconomic status. Findings supported the hypotheses that women in soap operas would be young, single, upper-class professionals. Very few characters were single mothers, and those characters who were experienced little work-life conflict. Although the depiction of women did not differ significantly from that of men, it did vary from the general population. This skewed portrayal could lead women to feel misrepresented or to become dissatisfied with their lives.

The Relationship Between Math Exposure and Math Anxiety

Marianne Cipolletti, Georgian Court College

ABSTRACT: Math anxiety has largely been associated with girls and women and seems to result in their avoidance of mathematics. Therapeutic treatments to reduce math anxiety often include desensitization to math in addition to cognitive therapy. In this study, differences in math anxiety in relation to sex, level of math exposure, math ability, and career goal were examined in 135 college students. Significance was observed in the relationship between level of math exposure and math anxiety (p = .009). However, the direction of this relationship was surprising; greater exposure to math was associated with greater math anxiety. Limitations of the study are discussed with suggestions for future research.

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