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Psi Chi Journal Winter 2008


Volume 13.4 | Winter 2008
Download This Issue - All articles are now free.

The "Skinny” on Coffee Drinkers: Gender Differences in Healthy Beverage Choices

Rachel L. Osborne, Braden D. Ackley, and Traci A. Giuliano, Southwestern University

ABSTRACT: The goal of the present study was to explore the relationship between gender and health-conscious beverage decisions. Based on the notion that females are generally more preoccupied with their health, it was hypothesized that females would be more likely than would males to order a healthy beverage than an unhealthy beverage. To explore this relationship, a naturalistic observational study was conducted in a popular coffee shop in Texas, and the drink orders of 96 patrons (34 males, 62 females) were classified as either healthy or unhealthy. As predicted, the results revealed a relationship between participants’ orders and their gender, such that females (relative to males) were significantly likely to order the healthy version of a beverage. These findings suggest that health-food advertising may be reaching a primarily female population.

The Effect of Thinness Promoting Reality TV Shows on Being At-Risk for an Eating Disorder

Allison Jorissen, F. Richard Ferraro, and Nikki Sandau, University of North Dakota

ABSTRACT: This study examines whether or not college women determined to be at risk for an eating disorder are more prone to watch reality television shows that are thinness-promoting than those women not determined to be at risk for an eating disorder. The participants were 53 college women recruited from undergraduate psychology classes. They were assigned to one of two groups: at risk for an eating disorder or not at risk for an eating disorder. All participants completed a survey designed to determine their reality show viewing preferences and frequencies. While we expected that the at-risk group would prefer watching reality shows that are thinness-promoting and will watch them more frequently than the group containing participants who are not at risk for an eating disorder, these effects did not materialize. Possible explanations for this result are discussed.

The Effects of Yoga on Self-Objectification

Desiré Shepler and Gwen Lupfer-Johnson, University of Alaska Anchorage; Inna Rivkin, University of Alaska Fairbanks

ABSTRACT: Objectification theory postulates that women exist in a cultural milieu of sexual messages that serves to socialize women and girls to view themselves as objects to be examined by others (Fredrickson & Roberts, 1997). As a result girls and women internalize an observer’s perspective of themselves, concentrating on how they look at the expense of being aware of how they feel, an effect termed self-objectification. The present study investigated whether yoga can reduce self-objectification. Yoga is a mind-body exercise which emphasizes awareness of internal states at the expense of awareness of outward appearance. A certified Kundalini instructor taught yoga classes to adolescent participants. Participants completed self-objectification measures before and after their yoga classes. Overall, results were promising and provided limited support for the hypothesis that yoga instruction can reduce self-objectification. Implications for future research on yoga interventions for self-objectification are discussed.

Stereotyping and Nonconformity: The Effects of Punk Music on Social Behavior

Emily J. Paull and Wendy L. Morris, McDaniel College

ABSTRACT: Previous research has demonstrated that nonconformist behavior can be primed via visual activation of nonconformist stereotypes. The present experiments were conducted to determine if nonconformity can be primed via aural activation of the punk stereotype. In Study 1, 46 male and 104 female students from McDaniel College were primed with punk, popular, or no music and exposed to social pressure. Not only did participants exposed to punk music fail to exhibit nonconformity, they conformed more than participants who heard popular music and almost as much as those without a prime. As Study 2 determined that members of the population in question did associate the stereotype of nonconformity with punk music, possible alternative explanations and areas for further research are discussed.

Contextual Variations of Mindfulness Across Interpersonal and Task-Oriented Contexts: The Roles of Gender and Ethnicity

Jeremy Luk, Gareth Holman, and Robert Kohlenberg, University of Washington

ABSTRACT: Mindfulness, defined as nonjudgmental awareness of the present moment, is often measured as a trait that remains stable across contexts. This study used self-report questionnaires to evaluate potential variations of mindfulness across unspecified, interpersonal and task-oriented contexts among 204 undergraduate students. A within-subject ANOVA showed significant context by gender interaction (p = .01). Differences in mindfulness across contexts were significant among females only (p < .001). Across all contexts, Caucasians reported higher mindfulness scores than Asians (p <. 05). Multiple regression analyses showed that relationships between mindfulness and other psychological constructs such as attachment style and mood vary across contexts. Preliminary results suggest the existence of distinct context-specific mindfulness constructs. Findings are discussed in terms of gender role theory and potential cultural biases in mindfulness measures.

Effects of Perceived Religiosity on Judgments of Social Competence Toward Individuals With Mental Illness

Ke Fang, Meredith Henry, Holli Sconyers, and Jackie Goldstein, Samford University

ABSTRACT: This study examined mental illness stigma and its relationships to 1) type of mental disorder and 2) the social involvement of those with mental illness. Fifty college subjects were asked to read vignettes describing a character who had either schizophrenia or depression, and who was depicted as either active in their church, active in the community, or whose activities were not mentioned. Perceptions of the characters’ social competence were measured using a Judgment of Social Competence Questionnaire. Results demonstrated a significant effect for type of social involvement on judgment of social competence, but no such effect for type of mental disorder. Due to the occurrence of the Virginia Tech Massacre in the middle of the study, the effect of this event on stigmatizing attitudes was also examined.

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