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  • Browsing in Disequilibrium: How Media Behaviors are Influenced by Excess and Deficit

    Jacobs, Kenneth; Klapak, Brian (2023-05)
    The widespread use of smartphones has made it easier to browse the internet and consume various forms of media, including videos and advertisements. This study aimed to investigate the effects of restricting video access while increasing exposure to advertisements. Specifically, we examined whether participants would watch fewer videos when exposed to more advertisements and whether they would tolerate more ads to gain additional video-watching time. We recruited four students from Salem State University to participate in an experiment designed to manipulate their video and advertisement viewing behavior. Baseline levels of advertisement and video viewing behaviors were measured to create two conditions of disequilibrium: Deficit and Excess. Deficit conditions restricted access to videos while Excess conditions bombarded participants with more advertisements than they viewed during baseline. The results demonstrated that disequilibrium could alter participants' media consumption habits by increasing or decreasing time spent watching advertisements and videos. The current study also examined the nature of “browsing” during disequilibrium. Noncontingent browsing was available to determine whether or not participants would engage in this alternative behavior during disequilibrium conditions. Lastly, the current study highlights the ethical implications of disequilibrium, as companies could potentially exploit it for profit.
  • Practical Application of Behavior Analysis with Wild Animals in a Sanctuary Setting

    Jacobs, Kenneth; Anckner, Christine (2023-05)
    While applied behavior analysis (ABA) is associated with human services, there is a historical basis for applying behavior analytic principles and procedures to the behaviors of domestic and wild animals. Recent research indicates that there are already procedural similarities between the work of applied behavior analysts and animal behavior professionals. A pronounced difference, however, is the absence of behavioral data collected in zoological settings. Caretakers report that they understand the importance of data collection but cite a lack of time and financial resources as barriers. This study explored alternative data collection methods at an educational wolf sanctuary using visitor collected data. Visitors were asked to collect data on either one or two animal behaviors during a 50-minute presentation. Interobserver agreement was calculated to determine whether visitors could collect data in agreement with an independent observer. Results indicated that visitor collected data was within the acceptable range of agreement. Additionally, Q methodology was used to measure visitor beliefs about captive wildlife before and after attending an educational presentation with captive gray wolves present. Results indicated that while visitor beliefs varied from pre- to post-sort, these changes were not statistically significant.
  • A Families' Guide to Emotional Intelligence in Early Childhood

    Evett, Sophia; Mendonca, Chantel (2023-05-01)
    This literature review looks over multiple research articles from researchers who investigated emotional intelligence, the different aspects of it, as well as its importance and how it can positively affect a person. Intelligence has long been considered the number one way to determine how successful someone is going to become, but plenty of research ahs been done to prove that it is far from the truth. but a different type of intelligence called emotional intelligence has been found to support success in both a person's career and social life.Emotional intelligence itself can be broken down into multiple aspects: emotions identification (identifying your emotions), emotions utilization (expressing your emotions in the right way), emotional understanding (understand your emotions as well as the emotions of others), emotions regulation (a person’s ability to respond and regulate their emotions), and empathy (understanding and being able to sense and understand the feelings of others, whether or not you yourself are feeling those same emotions or have ever felt those emotions before). The development of these skills helps support lower stress levels and better relationships with others, both in an individual’s personal life and their work life. These aspects can be taught at any point during a person’s lifetime, but the younger the individual is, the longer period of time this individual will have to develop and incorporate these skills in their lifetime. Also, although this may seem like something new to many, these skills are already being taught through practices that families utilize today such as building relationships, having open and clear communication with one another, and modeling how families themselves regulate their emotions. My work is dedicated to educating and supporting families interested in teaching their young children emotional intelligence to further build their children to success.
  • The Relationship Between Abusive Relationships and Substance Abuse

    Aparicio, Carlos; Lamarche, Fabianiz (2023-05-01)
    Victims of abusive relationships attempt to leave seven times before officially ending the relationship (Respond, 2023). This behavior pattern characterized by leaving and returning to their abusive partner may also be seen in substance abusers, as a user terminates drug use but relapses to it three or more times. Both cases share patterns of incidence behavior representing a vicious cycle. The aim of this literature review is to study this vicious cycle of victims of abuse relationships and substance abusers to increase our knowledge on the inconsistent leaving process. The second objective is to find similarities between abusive relationships and substance abuse in neuropsychological, behavior analytical, and social aspects. Lastly, the third objective is to suggest a more effective treatment plan to eliminate the negative stigma characterizing victims of abusive relationships. It is possible to dismantle this stigma of "character flaw" by educating individuals about the vicious cycle characterizing abusive relationships and substance abuse. This study contributed to improve our understanding of abusive relationships by showing that there is a connection between abusive relationships and substance abuse proposed in the neuropsychological, behavior analytical, and social perspectives. Each view provided a rationale to understand the behaviors of victims of abusive relationships and substance abuse, showing that both cases share neurological dopamine pathways, behavior patterns, and mental health disorders. Together, the present findings demonstrated that abusive relationships and substance abuse are related to one another, and they should be treated in comparable ways. It is concluded that the productive treatment plan for victims of abusive relationships could be like that elaborated to substance abuse. This conclusion is important because it will guide future researchers to develop successful treatment plans for victims.
  • The Role of Attachment and Well-Being on Adult Relationships

    Evett, Sophia; Fondulis, Sophia (2023-05-01)
    This study looked at the relationship between the attachment theory, familial systems, gender, culture, conflict resolution skills and well-being. All participants recruited in the study were 18 years or older from the social media platforms Instagram and Snapchat, along with SONA, Salem State University’s Psychology Department Research Participation System. Data were collected from 63 participants who completed a survey including self-reported information about well-being, conflict resolution skills, and relationship satisfaction. Consistent with some of the hypotheses in the study, participants who identified as Hispanic were higher in collaborating conflict resolution style than participants from other racial/ethnic groups, and secure attachment was positively correlated with self-acceptance. Contrary to our hypotheses, there were no significant differences in conflict resolution styles between men and women, gender was also not related to anxious or avoidant attachment. Individuals who come from married households scored higher on avoidant attachment than those from unmarried households. There was no significant relationship between collaborating, accommodating, and compromising conflict resolution styles and secure attachment. Other findings indicated that the competing conflict resolution style was negatively related to well-being, and fearful attachment was strongly negatively correlated with personal growth, relationship well-being, and self-acceptance.
  • Black Honors Students in Honors Spaces

    Evett, Sophia; Hoard, Emilyann (2023-05-01)
    There are not many studies addressing Black Honors students and their sense of belonging to the Honors program. This study addresses Black honors students in honors spaces. This study examines students’ interactions with the honors programs, their racial identity development, and their sense of belonging. To measure racial identity development the Multidimensional inventory of Black identity (MIBI) was used. To measure sense of belonging the Community subscale of the Relational Health Indices (RHI-C) was used. Black honors students (N=26) were surveyed from thirteen different 4- year and 2-year colleges in the United States. Overall, there was a high sense of belonging among participants, though there was little time spent interacting with the program. There was a positive correlation between Humanist and Nationalist ideologies with sense of belonging. Assimilationist ideology had a positive correlation with how often students attend events. There was a positive correlation between Oppressed Minority ideology and time spent interacting with others in the program. These findings can help determine whether honors programs need extra support for Black students.
  • Examining The Link Between Attachment Styles, Individual Resiliency, And COVID-19 Effects On Salem State Students

    Gonsalves, Joanna; Chaput, Gabriella (2023-05-01)
    This study investigates the link between attachment style, resiliency through challenges, and COVID-19 pandemic outcomes in a sample of 53 Salem State University students. Past research has identified the importance of attachment style as how humans securely or insecurely tether to each other. The study hypothesized that students' attachment style would be related to COVID-19 experiences and coping strategies during the pandemic. Salem State students currently enrolled in psychology courses and the honors program were recruited via email. Those willing to participate were asked to rate themselves first on attachment style (their perceived relationships with others and self-worth) using a Likert scale (Iwanaga et al, 2020). The second section contained statements pulled from the Coronavirus Anxiety Scale (Sherman, 2020) concerning worries about the COVID-19 virus infection, spread, and aftermath. An open-response question was included concerning students' strategies that helped them manage their mental health and how these strategies may have changed throughout the pandemic. The results from correlation analyses revealed that items on the COVID-19 response scale were not significantly correlated with their overall attachment score. Nonetheless, the descriptive findings are beneficial to faculty and staff to comprehend students' individual struggles and strategies.
  • The Effects of Police Killings on Mental Health of African American Individuals: A Review Paper

    Miller, Patrice; Jean, Gridania Christy (2022-12-01)
    The purpose of this review is to develop a better understanding of how current racial issues influence the mental health of minority groups. It covers the death of two individuals, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, who were victims and killed by police violence in 2020. Within one week of George Floyd’s video being released, it was found that anxiety and depression among African Americans shot to higher rates than experienced by any other racial or ethnic group. Their deaths sparked a wave of civic upheaval aimed within African Americans communities across the country. Research shows that police violence negatively impacts the health of many minority groups. Information for this review was acquired through government publications and peer reviewed articles. Qualitative data was gathered by investigating comments made on these events on various social media platforms. The aim of this paper is to educate people on the impact of racism, police violence and injustice on African Americans lives.
  • A Literature Review Of Alternative Approaches To Escape Extinction In Feeding Protocols

    Gonsalves, Joanna; Setzer, Olivia (2022-05-01)
    This literature review investigated different treatment packages for feeding protocols in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). A literature review was conducted on case studies that were conducted on children under the age of eighteen with at least one problem behavior related to feeding. The case studies included were peer-reviewed and published in a journal article in the past twelve years. The review considered a set of variables for each study that included: the number of children who were treated, the effectiveness of the treatment, consistency of results between participants, consistency of results across studies, and follow up treatment effectiveness. Based on the literature reviewed, the results indicated there was no single treatment package that consistently demonstrates a decrease in inappropriate mealtime behavior and an increase in acceptable mealtime behavior. High probability sequences, noncontingent reinforcement, behavioral skills training, least-to-most prompting, and lag schedules of reinforcement were at least moderately effective at decreasing inappropriate mealtime behavior and increasing appropriate mealtime behavior without using escape extinction.
  • Social Isolation And Loneliness In The COVID-19 Pandemic

    Krugman, Martin; Lee, Emma (2022-05-01)
    The COVID-19 pandemic is a problem that the world has been facing for just about two and a half years. During this time, governments around the world implemented a variety of mandates – most prevalently lockdowns, quarantines, and other social isolation guidelines – in an attempt to curtail the spread of COVID-19. It makes intuitive sense to expect social isolation to have impacted loneliness levels in the general adult population during the first year of the pandemic, when social isolation related guidelines were widespread. Thus, the present study sought to conduct a search and review of the psychological literature related to the impact of social isolation and other related variables on loneliness in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Psychological databases and studies’ reference sections were searched until a pool of 11 studies was formed. Aside from loneliness, variables that were examined as predictors of loneliness in at least five of the 11 studies were chosen for discussion in the present literature review. Ultimately, it was found that loneliness was high and widespread during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, and that a number of sociodemographic variables were risk factors for loneliness during this time. However, there were some contradictory findings in the studies regarding whether or not loneliness increased in the general population during this time. Thus, further longitudinal research investigating this phenomenon is warranted.
  • The First School Shooter: Examining Multiple Causation In A Case Of Mass Murder

    Gow, David; Lowe, Madison (2022-05-01)
    Violence in schools and in public settings is an unfortunately growing problem in modern society, and understanding why and how these crimes happen is an integral part to preventing future occurrences. This thesis is a case study of Charles Whitman, the person recognized as perpetrating the first mass shooting on a college campus. This case study examines multiple causation theory using Charles Whitman’s case as an examine and guide for discussion. Areas of discussion include childhood abuse, drug use, self esteem, brain chemistry, social learning, locus of control, limbic system dysfunction, and cancer. It is argued through the case study that multiple causation theory provides the strongest, most encompassing explanation for why a person may end up committing a violent crime. Connections between sections, relation to the Whitman case, and discussion about how multiple causation theory is applicable to preventing similar cases are discussed.
  • How Our Relationships With Ourselves Impact Our Relationships With Others

    Mark, Christopher; Kollman-Veit, Chloe (2022-05-01)
    Out of the many theories as to why and how humans choose their long-term mates, two different models are explored in the present study. Evolutionary models examine the mating strategies used by the two sexes, focusing on the resources each sex can provide to their mate and any subsequent offspring. Alternatively, cognitive models explore the reasons behind a human’s thought processes and potential emotions that contribute to mate choice. Evolutionary models cannot explain all human mating, especially those who cannot reproduce heterosexually. Specifically, the LGBTQ+ community have been historically overlooked regarding these theories. The present study investigated whether human mate preference is most accurately described using a cognitive versus an evolutionary model. It was hypothesized that the mating preference for those who identify as being part of the LGBTQ+ community will be best explained by a cognitive model, while the mating preference of heterosexual participants will be best explained by an evolutionary model. Participants (N=97) were asked to rate certain traits, first for themselves and then for a potential future partner. Results showed that a cognitive model could explain mate preference for both LGBTQ+ and heterosexual individuals [linear regression: df = 1, F = 983.528, p < .0001, R2 = .912] Someone who rated a characteristic in themselves highly would rate that characteristic important in a partner highly as well. Those who recreate this study should try a random sampling method, and further, explore how people’s expression of their sexuality impacts their long-term mate preference.
  • Perspectivas De Acceso Y Tratamiento Para La Salud Mental En La Comunidad Latinx De Los E.E.U.U.

    Dávila Gonçalves, Michele; Hames, Ash (2022-05-01)
    Addressing the mental health crisis in the United States for members of Latinx communities is a matter of sociocultural limitations. Through a qualitative essay written in Spanish, this study investigates the attitudes of Latinx people in the U.S. regarding mental health care and their identity through qualitative face-to-face interviews or via Zoom. I had a group of eight subjects who were between 20 and 35 years old, identified as Latinx while living in the U.S., and were students or employees of a Massachusetts public university. First, the subjects completed a written survey where behavior was evaluated on the search for treatment, knowledge of treatment and its value, stigma, discomfort with the emotions generated, access and cultural barriers. After subjects completed the survey, I used a script of questions to facilitate our discussion of reactions to the survey, personal and relevant anecdotes, and one's own experience when seeking treatment for mental health (example: "Have you gone to therapy?"). I performed a thematic analysis of the information recorded during interviews to look for the significance in regard to the area of psychology. In the second stage of analysis, I collected evidence from the interviews and written sources, and organized them into four themes with three sub-themes for each category. I investigate the four themes of access to resources, discrimination and intersectionality, relationships with family and society, and psychological observations, specifically regarding how public health and psychology workers can improve the effectiveness of mental health care for the Latinx community.
  • Exploring The Line Between Representation And Exploitation Of Disabilities In Entertainment Media

    Gonsalves, Joanna; Crowley, Sophia (2022-05-01)
    Consistent with the sociocultural model, consumption of popular media influences a community's thoughts, opinions, feelings, and actions towards groups of people represented. Because of this it is important that historically marginalized groups of people are accurately represented in the entertainment media. However, this is often not the case, especially in regard to the disabled community. To showcase the lack of representation a content analysis of 100 popular media sources with disabled characters was conducted. These sources were then analyzed to see the types of representation in much of the popular media of today, i.e., if characters were played by an actor with a disability or if the disability was a main plot point of the story. Along with the content analysis, ten qualitative interviews with people within the disabled community were conducted to learn about their views of disability representation, exploitation, and existing examples in the media. These interviews asked questions about their view of representation, exploitation, and opinions on the existing examples in the media. This research found that not only is there a lack of representation in the media, but a lack of accurate representation, and this is viewed as problematic by participants in the current study. This research provides guidance on how the entertainment industry can improve the representation of the disabled community.
  • An Investigation Into Which Techniques Of Play Therapy Are Most Effective Across A Spectrum Of Behaviors In Children

    Gonsalves, Joanna; Boghosian, Jamie (2022-05-01)
    Play Therapy, a type of therapy in which play is used to help a client share their emotions and work through their issues, is a globally used practice (Cassado-Frankel, 2016). It is used to help many children combat their trauma, anxiety, depression, and several other disorders and conditions. This thesis reports on a meta-analysis of 11 previous research studies in the psychological literature research conducted on this subject and an analysis of data collected via an original survey completed by seventeen child therapists in the New England area who use play therapy on a regular basis with their clients. Consistent with previous studies in the literature, survey respondents reported that play therapy is very effective in helping children clients with their struggles. The survey found that the participants believed a play therapy session should be 30-60 minutes on average in order for it to be effective. The survey also found several patterns in which types of play therapy are most commonly practiced for different types of conditions. For example, the most preferred types of play therapy to practice were Child- Centered Play Therapy and Non-Directive Play Therapy. Another pattern found was that play therapy was most popularly practiced with clients who have anxiety disorders and least used with clients who have oppositional defiant disorder.
  • A Literature Review Of Alternative Approaches To Escape Extinction In Feeding Protocols

    Gonsalves, Joanna; Setzer, Olivia (2021)
    This literature review investigated different treatment packages for feeding protocols in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). A literature review was conducted on case studies with participants under the age of eighteen with at least one problem behavior related to feeding. The case studies included were peer-reviewed and published in a journal article in the past twelve years. The review considered a set of variables for each study that included: the number of children who were treated, the effectiveness of the treatment, consistency of results between participants, consistency of results across studies, and follow up treatment effectiveness. Based on the literature reviewed, the results indicated there was no single treatment package that consistently demonstrates a decrease in inappropriate mealtime behavior and an increase in acceptable mealtime behavior. High probability sequences, noncontingent reinforcement, behavioral skills training, least-to-most prompting, and lag schedules of reinforcement were at least moderately effective at decreasing inappropriate mealtime behavior and increasing appropriate mealtime behavior without using escape extinction.
  • Is the Lewis (LEW) Rat an Appropriate Control for the Spontaneously Hypertensive Rat (SHR)?

    Aparicio, Carlos; Hensley, Jason (2021)
    The Spontaneously Hypertensive rat (SHR), the most widely accepted rodent-model of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), is compared with its normotensive control the Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rat looking for between strains differences in impulsive choice. But the WKY is not a proper control for the SHR when the procedure requires locomotion to choose. The SHR has deficiencies in dopamine activity in nucleus accumbens causing lower tolerance to delayed outcomes than the WKY. Locomotion and anomalies in dopamine in the Lewis (LEW) rat are like those in the SHR, suggesting that the LEW is a good control for the SHR. This possibility was analyzed with SHRs and LEWs responding to concurrent-chains procedures. Choice was measured in the initial link where two random interval schedules arranged entries to two terminal links, one delivering 1-food pellet immediately and the other delaying 4-food pellets 0.1, 5, 10, 20, 40, or 80 s. Impulsive choice increased with training, but the SHRs showed faster changes in preference, making more impulsive choices than the LEWs. The hyperbolic-decay model and the generalized matching law fitted the data well. Positive correlations between discounting rate and sensitivity of choice to the immediacy of reinforcement suggests compatibility between the models of choice.
  • Delay Discounting and Polydipsia in Spontaneously Hypertensive and Lewis Rats

    Aparicio, Carlos; Malonson, Malana (2021-07)
    The choices made by Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats (SHRs) were compared with those made by the Lewis rats (LEWs) responding to a concurrent-chains procedure varying the delay to the larger later reinforcement (LLR). Impulsive choice was measured in conditions where a bottle of water was or was not available in the choice situation. Both strains produced discounting functions with proportions of choice decreasing with increasing delay to the LLR. At the beginning of training the LEWs made more impulsive choices than the SHR, but late in training both strains produced similar discounting rates suggesting same levels of impulsivity. Sensitivity of choice to the magnitude of the LLR also increased with extended training in the choice situation. Adding the bottle of water to the choice situation did not affect the impulsive choices made by the SHRs and the LEWs, but both strains developed polydipsia indicating that it was induced by food, with the SHRs drinking substantially more water than the LEWs. Licking mostly occurred in blackouts and before starting the choice cycles, showing a tendency to decrease in the initial and terminal links of the concurrent-chains procedure. Licking persisted when the water was removed from the choice situation, but the spout of the bottle was available for the rats to lick, indicating that water was not necessary to maintain licking. Overall, these findings support the laws of allocation, induction, and covariance (Baum, 2018a, 2018b).
  • Streaming Consciousness: Treading the Conceptual Rapids of Psychological Theory

    Noonan, Anne; Hayden, Felicia Marie (2016-05-01)
    This thesis is the first section in a book length project. The aim of this thesis is to explore the relationship between the academic field of psychology and the creative nature of the field. Through use of memoir, detail, and conscious experience, this thesis is a contemporary interpretation of the theories of Sigmund Freud.
  • The Effect of Instagram on Self-Esteem and Life Satisfaction

    Gonsalves, Joanna; Dion, Nicole Annette (2016-05-01)
    This quasi experiment examined the effects of Instagram, a social media site that consists of posting pictures, on self-esteem and life satisfaction. Specifically, I looked at the effects of following celebrities on Instagram in relation to the ideas of social comparison theory. Traditionally aged college females (N = 51) were assigned to either the control group where they were asked to use Instagram as they normally would, or the experimental group where they were asked to follow 15 specific celebrities for 4-6 weeks. Participants were given a pretest and posttest which included a self-esteem and a life satisfaction survey. There were no statistically significant differences found between the experimental group and the control group, nor between the pretest and posttest scores, and there was no interaction effect between time of measure and experimental group. However, a subgroup of participants that initially followed a minimal amount of celebrities before the experiment showed a decline in their life satisfaction at posttest which approached statistical significance. Further experimental research is needed to confirm that altering one's social comparison group on Instagram can lower life satisfaction among traditionally-aged college females.

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