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Psi Chi Journal Spring 2019


Volume 24.1 | Spring 2019
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INVITED EDITORIAL: Professors’ Research Expectations for Admission to Psychology Graduate Programs

Jennifer L. Hughes, Mengyao Li, Erika R. McDonnell, and Elizabeth V. Engsberg, Agnes Scott College; Cheyenne S. Goss, Georgia State University

ABSTRACT: Students are not fully knowledgeable about what it takes to be strong applicants for psychology graduate programs and they often downplay the importance of research experience (Sanders & Landrum, 2012). However, graduate professors often expect applicants to have research skills because these skills have been found to be strong predictors of success for graduate students (Privitera, 2014). In this editorial, we first review the literature about expectations for research experience, and then we report the findings from a survey we used that asked graduate school professors about the research criteria they use to accept prospective students. Using one-way Analyses of Variance (ANOVAs), we found that faculty from PhD programs and higher ranked programs rated research experience as more important, and they expected a greater amount of research experience from applicants, a match between their research and applicants’ research experience, and more independent research experience from applicants. All of our hypotheses were significant at the p < .001 level. When evaluating the subfields of psychology, we also found all of our one-way ANOVAs to be significant (p < .001), but our hypotheses were only partially supported. We found that clinical psychology PhD faculty had higher research expectations for the four areas listed above, as compared to faculty in a few subdisciplines, which were mostly housed in education departments. We also found that clinical psychology faculty had higher expectations compared to faculty from industrial/organizational psychology programs for matching research interests. Our findings could help applicants make more informed choices when applying to graduate programs.

KEYWORDS: research experience, admission, psychology, graduate programs

INVITED EDITORIAL: Psi Chi Is Engaging Undergraduate Students in Publishable Research

John E. Edlund, Rochester Institute of Technology; Debi Brannan , Western Oregon University; Kelly Cuccolo , University of North Dakota; Jon E. Grahe , Pacific Lutheran University; Shannon McGillivray, Weber State University; Jordan R. Wagge, Avila University; Kaitlyn M. Werner, Carleton University; Martha S. Zlokovich , Psi Chi

ABSTRACT: Supporting undergraduate student research can be quite daunting for faculty at many universities. Faculty may feel like they lack the time, funds, or specific expertise to support student-initiated projects. Fortunately, Psi Chi can help faculty and students engage in cutting-edge psychological research.

KEYWORDS: student research, publishing guidance, open science

INVITED EDITORIAL: Psi Chi Journal Practices That Foster Publishable Student Research Articles

Debi Brannan , Western Oregon University; Bradley Cannon , Psi Chi Central Office; Erin E. Ayala , St. Mary’s University of Minnesota; Tammy Lowery Zacchilli, Saint Leo University; Jennifer L. Hughes, Agnes Scott College; Mary Beth Ahlum, Nebraska Wesleyan University; Steven V. Rouse , Pepperdine University

ABSTRACT: The Psi Chi Journal of Psychological Research is a journal that is peer-reviewed and published quarterly for student and faculty authors. The Journal is a channel for researchers to publish high-quality research in any field of psychology. For many, publishing scientific work can be overwhelming and we understand that. As the editorial team, we have spent significant time making resources available to authors so that the peer-review process is educational, supportive, and rigorous. Our goal is that our authors will gain the skills that are needed to publish in the field of psychology. In this article, we offer eight Journal practices that are intended to nourish quality, publishable research articles.

KEYWORDS: student research, publishing guidance, open science

Interpersonal Contact, Stereotype Acceptance, Gender Role Beliefs, Causal Attribution, and Religiosity as Predictors of Attitudes Toward Transgender Individuals

Jordan Greenburg and A. Celeste Gaia, Emory & Henry College

ABSTRACT: Previous research has shown that members of the transgender community are often the victims of prejudice and discrimination (e.g., Grant et al., 2011; James et al., 2016). However, because transgender identity is still an emerging topic, relatively few studies have exclusively examined predictors of attitudes toward transgender individuals. The present study of undergraduates (N = 110) built on previous research by exploring the role of interpersonal contact, acceptance of stereotyping, traditional gender roles, causal attribution, religiosity, and gender in attitudes toward transgender persons. As hypothesized, one-way ANOVA and multiple regression indicated that interpersonal contact with transgender individuals and attributing transgender orientation to biological factors predicted lower levels of genderism/transphobia; whereas greater acceptance of stereotyping, endorsement of traditional gender roles, and greater religiosity predicted higher levels of genderism/transphobia. Men reported higher genderism/transphobia scores than women. Findings provided insight into how attitudes toward transgender individuals may be conceptualized and shaped by social and cognitive processes. Understanding these mechanisms is an important step in reducing prejudice and minimizing its adverse effects.

KEYWORDS: transgender, gender identity, prejudice, discrimination, stereotypes

Associations Among Social Connections, Body Dissatisfaction, and Disordered Eating in African American and European American College Women

Lindsay M. Howard , The Virginia Consortium Program in Clinical Psychology; Brianna N. Haislip, Old Dominion University; Kristin E. Heron, The Virginia Consortium Program in Clinical Psychology and Old Dominion University; XiaoXiao Hu, Old Dominion University

ABSTRACT: Past research has indicated that social support may play an important role in the development of disordered eating and body dissatisfaction, but little is known about these associations among different races. The present study examined associations between social connections and disordered eating and body dissatisfaction in African American and European American college women. Participants included 477 European Americans and 445 African Americans from 3 Southeastern universities who reported group membership, sociability, religious involvement, relationship status, body dissatisfaction, and disordered eating. Hierarchical regression analyses revealed that there was a significant main effect for group membership and sociability, but not relationship status or religious involvement, such that group membership and sociability were negatively associated with body dissatisfaction (ΔR2 = .06, ps < .03). None of the variables were associated with disordered eating nor were any of the associations moderated by race (ps > .11), suggesting that low levels of certain aspects of social connection may negatively impact body image regardless of race.

KEYWORDS: body dissatisfaction, disordered eating, social connections, African American, European American, race, college women

Relationship Between Art Activities and Older Adult Depression

Susan Sigrid Johannsen , Northwest University

ABSTRACT: Erik Erikson’s psychosocial development model proposes that older adults need to maintain intergenerational relationships to limit feelings of depression, and research has suggested that art activities improve the well-being of older adults. Thus, the aim of the current study was to evaluate the correlations between depressive symptomology among older adults who engage and do not engage in activities that involve interactions with peers and children. Using a survey method of 52 adults over the age of 65, the study included an Analysis of Variance to assess whether there was a difference in scores on the short form of the Geriatric Depression Scale and the duration and type of art class participation. The results indicated that there was a significant effect of art engagement on depressive symptomology at the p = .003 level for 3 types of art engagement. The mean score for the no art group (M = 3.84, SD = 2.59) was significantly higher than the adult art group (M = 1.50, SD = 1.51) and marginally different than the intergenerational art group (M = 2.09, SD = 1.64). The results of the between-subjects effect analysis demonstrated a significant main effect of condition on the affective states of older adults at the .05 level, F(2, 49) = 4.54 p = .003. Furthermore, a Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient was computed and suggested that the longer a participant engages in art classes the fewer depressive symptoms the participant reports, r(52) = -.359, p = .009. Thus, the study suggested that, among older adults, there is correlation between lower reported depressive symptomology and participation in art activities.

KEYWORDS: art, geriatric depression, intergenerational relationships

/ / Trumping Racism: The Interactions of Stereotype Incongruent Clothing, Political Racial Rhetoric, and Prejudice Toward African Americans

Nicholas J. Livingston and Regan A. R. Gurung , University of Wisconsin–Green Bay

ABSTRACT: Clothing type and exposure to racial rhetoric may influence prejudice toward African Americans. We used a between-group design with clothing type (stereotype congruent or incongruent) and exposure to racial rhetoric (strong/weak/none) as independent variables. We found a main effect for clothing type (p < .001, ηp2 = .71) and racial rhetoric exposure (p < .001, ηp2 = .65), but no interaction. Participants' Symbolic Racism scores were significant covariates, positively related to prejudice. Participants rated African American models in stereotype incongruent clothing more positively. Viewing President Trump speak negatively about African Americans significantly decreased participants' prejudice of African American models. The findings of this study show how the clothing one wears, the racial oratory one views, and symbolic racism can drastically impact one’s perceptions. Research should seek to reduce automatic judgments and continue to pursue how other clothing styles affect perceptions, as well as how major political figures can play a role in those judgments.

KEYWORDS: stereotypes, clothing, symbolic racism, President Trump, perception

/ Evaluating a Student-Led Mental Health Awareness Campaign

Dominique Giroux and Elisa Geiss, Olivet College

ABSTRACT: The present study evaluated if a week-long mental health awareness campaign on a college campus would decrease self-stigma toward seeking help. Participants were 204 full-time undergraduate students attending a small private liberal arts college in the Midwest (October, 2017). The mental health awareness campaign offered activities where students were exposed to interactive events and education about campus crisis resources. Researchers measured self-stigma and attitudes toward seeking help through the Self-Stigma of Seeking Help Scale (SSOSH) and Mental Help Seeking Attitude Scale (MHSAS) pre- and postawareness week. Results showed that student self-stigma toward seeking help decreased after a week-long mental health awareness campaign. Specifically, we found a decrease in SSOSH scores, t(52) = 2.66, p = .01, d = 0.25, and an increase in MHSAS scores from pretest to posttest, t(56) = -2.72, p = .009, d = -0.29, indicating a reduction of self-stigma. We discuss results in the context of reducing stigma from a student-led mental health campaign and further provide suggestions on how to conduct an awareness campaign and test results at small colleges.

KEYWORDS: mental health awareness campaign, college students, stigma

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