UMBC Psychology Department

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 606
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    Virtual Civil Commitment Hearings: Convenience at the Cost of Compromised Communication and Safety Assessments
    (American Psychiatric Association, 2023-11-14) Hare, Stephanie M.; Benzer, Sandra; Knight, Stephanie R.; Rouhakhtar, Pamela Rakhshan; Reeves, Gloria M.; McDonald, Kathryn; RachBeisel, Jill
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    Attending to what’s important: what heat maps may reveal about attention, inhibitory control, and fraction arithmetic performance
    (Frontiers, 2023-11-01) Godwin, Karrie E.; Thompson, Clarissa A.; Kaur, Freya; Iwai, Yuika; Fitzsimmons, Charles J.; Taber, Jennifer M.
    Math proficiency is an important predictor of educational attainment and life success. However, developing mathematical competency is challenging, and some content (e.g., fractions) can be enigmatic. Numerous factors are suspected to influence math performance, including strategy knowledge, attention, and executive functions. In two online studies, we investigated the relationship between adults’ fraction arithmetic performance, confidence judgments, inhibitory control (a component of executive functions), and attention to strategy-relevant fraction components. We explored the utility of heat maps (based on mouse clicks) to measure adults’ attention to strategy-relevant fraction arithmetic components (operationalized according to each mathematical operation). In Study 1, attending to strategy-relevant fraction components was correlated with inhibitory control, but this finding did not replicate in Study 2. Across both studies, inhibitory control and attention to strategy-relevant fraction components were correlated with arithmetic accuracy. Intraindividual variability in participants’ attention to strategy-relevant fraction components was also found. Our findings suggest that heat map questions may be a viable alternative to assess participants’ attention during fraction tasks and that attention to specific fraction-arithmetic problem features is related to problem-solving accuracy.
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    Pain Cognitions as Predictors of Caregiver Readiness to Vaccinate their Child Against COVID-19
    (2023-01-01) Rasooly, Tali; Dahlquist, Lynnda; Psychology; Psychology
    Background: Caregiver vaccine hesitancy towards the COVID-19 pandemic is multifactorial in nature and can be explored using the Health Belief Model (HBM) and its associated constructs (perceived susceptibility, severity, cues to action, benefits and barriers). However, minimal investigation has explored whether caregiver pain cognitions influence vaccine acceptance or rejection. Aims: This study aimed to measure caregiver pain cognitions, both for themselves and their children, the other constructs of the HBM, caregiver characteristics, and caregiver readiness to vaccinate their children against COVID-19. This study hypothesized that caregiver pain cognitions will contribute to observed vaccine hesitancy, above and the constructs of the HBM. Additionally, this study aimed to explore whether caregiver attitudes towards their childÕs pain mediate the relationship between their own pain attitudes and readiness to vaccinate their child against COVID-19. Finally, sociodemographic variables were examined as possible moderators of the relationship between caregiver pain attitudes and readiness to vaccinate against COVID-19. Results: Data was analyzed from 299 caregivers of children aged 6 to 11 years via an online survey. Caregivers rated perceived threat of COVID-19, cues to action, barriers and benefits of vaccination, readiness to vaccinate against COVID-19, pain-anxiety, needle fear and phobia, fear of child pain and catastrophizing about childÕs pain. The dependent outcomes were caregiver stage of change and readiness to vaccinate child against COVID-19. Hierarchical regressions were used to determine predictive ability of HBM constructs and pain attitudes on parent vaccination readiness. After controlling for parental vaccination status, HBM constructs accounted for an additional 36% of the variance in readiness to vaccinate, which is a large and significant effect (f2 = 1.5; p < .001). When added to the existing HBM model, neither caregiver attitudes towards their own pain (p = .35) nor towards their childÕs pain (p = .34) was predictive of caregiver readiness stage to vaccinate. Conclusions: The established constructs of the HBM can be used to predict caregiver readiness to vaccinate against COVID-19. However, data were collected from a non-representative sample, limiting applicability of findings. Needle fear and broader pain attitudes did not significantly contribute to parental decisions to vaccinate their children against COVID-19.
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    Persistence in Residential Substance Use Disorder Treatment: The Roles of PTSD, Grit, and Emotion Regulation
    (2023-01-01) Meyer, Laurel E; Schacht, Rebecca L; Psychology; Psychology
    Dropout rates from substance use disorder (SUD) treatment are high and substantially hamper the potential therapeutic benefit of such programs. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is common among individuals with SUD and is associated with poor clinical outcomes, relapse, and treatment dropout. However, studies examining PTSD as a predictor of dropout from SUD treatment are limited and have demonstrated conflicting results. Additionally, most research on treatment dropout in individuals with co-occurring PTSD-SUD has focused on risk factors for dropout; less attention has been given to factors that might contribute to persistence in treatment, such as self-regulatory abilities. The current study used Temporal Self-Regulation Theory as a framework to examine whether PTSD symptomology (representing behavioral prepotency) predicted premature termination from residential SUD treatment. The study also examined whether grit and emotion regulation (representing self-regulatory capacity) were associated with treatment persistence among individuals with co-occurring PTSD. This analysis used data from 146 adults receiving residential treatment for SUDs. Participants completed self-report measures of PTSD symptomology, grit, and emotion regulation. Chart data was reviewed to determine treatment termination status. PTSD symptomology did not predict premature termination, and there were no main or interactive effects of grit or emotion regulation. Consistent with previous research on predictors of SUD treatment dropout, exploratory analyses revealed that younger age and a dual diagnosis of an alcohol and drug use disorder predicted premature treatment termination. Clinical and theoretical implications of these findings are discussed.
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    Hate Crime Attributions and Sentencing: Examining the Racial and Sexual Minority Intersection
    (2023-01-01) Lankford , Jordan Devante; Pitts, Steven C; Psychology; Psychology
    Research examining joint effects of racial and sexual minority status as relates to hate crimes is limited. This study aims to add to existing literature regarding the relations between assignment of blame of both the perpetrator and victim and recommended length of sentencing of the perpetrator when considering both racial and sexual minority status of the victim simultaneously. Participants were 131 University of Maryland, Baltimore County students in undergraduate psychology courses. Racial by sexual minority status interaction effects were observed for each blame measure, though not for recommended length of sentencing. The simple effect of sexual orientation on victim blame was stronger for White victims, wherein straight victims were ascribed more blame than gay victims. There were counterintuitive findings for perpetrator blame such that those assigned to the Black straight condition endorsed higher perpetrator blame than those assigned to the Black gay condition. Considering perpetrator blame, the findings were unexpected. Specifically, when the victim was Black, participants ascribed greater perpetrator blame when the victim was also straight. A small, though trending, simple effect when the victim was White was consistent with hypotheses wherein greater perpetrator blame was ascribed if the victim was also gay. Future research should seek to replicate these findings, as well as examine further racial and sexual minority intersectional identities.