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Psi Chi Journal Spring 2011


Volume 16.1 | Spring 2011
Download This Issue - All articles are now free.

The Effects of Framing on Attitudes Toward Marijuana Use

Anna M. Allen, University of Wisconsin–Platteville

ABSTRACT: The experimenter evaluated attitudes about the acceptability of marijuana use on a college campus after participants read 1 of 4 framed informational pages regarding medical and recreational marijuana use. Students who had never used marijuana were more likely to find medical use more acceptable than recreational use. Students who had used marijuana found both medical and recreational use more acceptable than nonusers. Participants found it more acceptable for a typical college student to use marijuana than a close friend or themselves. The effect of framing the information positively or negatively was not statistically significant. The results have implications for future research.

Hair Color Stereotypes and Their Associated Perceptions in Relationships and the Workplace

Michelle Beddow, University of Michigan–Dearborn

ABSTRACT: Previous research has shown that people associate positive and negative personality traits with certain hair colors. Participants view blondes as attractive but dumb, brunettes as studious and competent, and redheads as smart but temperamental. The present study examined the effects of stereotypes with respect to hair color, setting, and gender. Participants rated a male or female model on several personal characteristics (e.g., attractiveness, intelligence) based on a description and photo of the model. The model was depicted in both a work setting and a dating setting and was shown in the photo with 1 of 3 hair colors: blonde, brown, or red. Results indicated that hair color stereotypes are not only linked to various personal traits, but are affected by the setting as well. When placed in a setting with certain stereotypes, the stereotypes associated with that hair color are augmented.

Personal Prejudice: Examining Relations Among Trait Characteristics, Parental Experiences, and Implicit Bias

Carolyn Brayko, Shavon Harris, Sarah Henriksen, and Anna Marie Medina Gonzaga University

ABSTRACT: This study focused on potential linkages between personality traits, past parental relationships, and implicit bias toward an outgroup. Introductory psychology students (N = 75, 56 women, 19 men) completed the Implicit Association Test (IAT; Greenwald, McGhee, & Schwartz, 1998), designed to identify preference for either Muslim or non-Muslim names, followed by the Adult Parental Acceptance-Rejection Questionnaire (short form; Rohner, 2004), and the State-Trait Personality Inventory (Speilberger, 1979). Findings showed perceived paternal warmth had a significant negative correlation with the IAT association effect, r(75) = -.27, p = .02. In other words, as reports of paternal warmth increased, positive association with Muslim names decreased. Results also indicated a moderate, yet nonsignificant, correlation between trait anger and the IAT association effect, r(75) = .21, p = .07. That is, as trait anger increased, reaction times for positive associations with Muslim names also increased. These findings supported the notion that intrapersonal factors play a role in implicit bias.

Social Anxiety and Rumination: Effect on Anticipatory Anxiety, Memory Bias, and Beliefs

Kurt Einsel and Cynthia L. Turk, Washburn University

ABSTRACT: Contemporary theoretical models suggest that, after a social situation, socially anxious individuals focus on negative details of their performance and evaluate it more negatively than it actually was (i.e., ruminate). Individuals high (n = 12) and low (n = 16) in social anxiety gave a speech about a controversial topic. Following randomization, they either distracted themselves from the speech or ruminated about it. One week later, participants completed assessments for rumination about the speech, memory bias for speech quality, anticipatory anxiety for a second speech, and beliefs about the self. More rumination was associated with less positive perceptions of the first speech. Additionally, socially anxious individuals maintained a negative memory bias for their speech performance from Week 1 to Week 2. In contrast, individuals low in social anxiety developed a less negative perception of their performance over time.

Factors Affecting Teens’ Attitudes Toward Their Pregnant Peers

Jennie M. Kuckertz and Kristen M. McCabe, University of San Diego

ABSTRACT: Research has shown that pregnant teens experience negative consequences resulting from stigmatization, but little research has explained why teenagers stigmatize pregnant peers to a greater degree than sexually active peers. We investigated factors affecting how teens view their pregnant peers. We hypothesized that belief in the effectiveness, availability, and ease of use of contraceptives; belief in a just world; feelings of invulnerability; and male gender would be associated with negative attitudes toward pregnant teens. Data from 101 high school students indicated that attitudes toward contraception and belief in a just world correlated in the expected direction with stigmatization and that male participants reported more negative attitudes. As a group, the study variables predicted negative attitudes, and in particular, attitudes toward contraception and gender uniquely contributed to negative beliefs about pregnant peers. This research may help educators and youth advocates understand and improve the outcomes of pregnant teens who face stigmatization.

Rapist Development: An Investigation of Rapists’ Attitudes Toward Women and Parental Style

Courtney A. Meyer and Tara L. Mitchell, Lock Haven University

ABSTRACT: More researchers are investigating factors that lead people to rape, including factors involving perceptions of women or childhood experiences (e.g., Scott & Tetreault, 1987). Despite the fact that childhood experiences influence perceptions of women, there is no research on their relation. We hypothesized that rapists would report more negative parental interactions than other types of criminals. In a between subjects, quasi-experiment, convicted rapists and robbers completed the Attitudes Toward Women Scale (Spence, Helmreich, & Stapp, 1973), Measurement of Parental Style (Parker et al., 1997), and the Balanced Inventory of Desirable Responding (Paulhus, 1991). Rapists reported higher levels of abuse, indifference, and overcontrol than robbers, but there was no difference in attitudes toward women. Our results also revealed rapists had fewer sisters than robbers. Future research should focus on rapists’ family constellation as a whole.

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