• Unemployment and Marital Quality in Single- and Two-Earner Marriages

      Bland, Andrew M. (2014-03-18)
      A need was recognized for a broad-based quantitative study on the impact of unemployment upon marital relationship quality in light of recent societal changes and the current economic climate. Recently, researchers have suggested that unemployment is less severe in partnerships that reflect progressive shifts in values and expectations within marital relationships. It was worth exploring whether this claim generalized across a broader sample of contemporary marriages, including those that uphold more traditional values. An ex post facto correlational design was used to assess how unemployment impacts marital quality in single breadwinner vs. dual-earner couples in the current economy. Participants were recruited nationwide to complete an online questionnaire consisting of a demographic questionnaire and two measures of marital quality, the Dyadic Adjustment Scale and the Revised Kansas Marital Satisfaction Scale. A canonical correlation analysis was utilized to assess the degree to which participants’ beliefs about marital roles, levels of education, duration of marriage, duration of unemployment, and frequency of unemployment affected marital quality when a spouse loses work. The canonical correlation model was not significant. The results of follow-up repeated measures ANOVAs suggested that most participants were under-satisfied with their marriages at present; however, faith in and commitment to the relationship (as evidenced by a high degree of satisfaction with how the relationship developed since it began) seemed to sustain marriages despite short-term obstacles. In addition, Pearson product moment correlations suggested that generational and socioeconomic differences may have impacted the model.
    • Using Growth Rate of Reading Fluency to Predict Performance on Statewide Achievement Tests

      Hinkle, Rachelle Whittaker (2011-09-20)
      Federal legislation has prescribed the increased use of statewide achievement tests as the culmination of a student’s knowledge and ability at the end of a grade level; however, schools need to be able to predict those who are at-risk of performing poorly on these high-stakes tests. Three studies served to identify a means of predicting statewide achievement test scores in either third or eighth grade based on CBM reading scores and rates of improvement at first, second, and third grades or third, fourth, and fifth grades using readily available statistical procedures. One-half of the third-grade data was used in Study 1, while the prediction equation generated in Study 1 was validated on the second half in Study 2. The results of Study 1 indicated that, of the sample of over 1,200 third-grade students who took the third-grade statewide achievement test, the second- and third-grade spring CBM reading scores explained the highest amount of variability in third-grade reading scores; however, reading rate of improvement was also significant. The prediction equation from Study 1 was cross-validated in Study 2 on over 1,200 third-grade students, which indicated that there was more than 95 percent concordance that those who were predicted to pass the third-grade statewide test did pass. However, when using the second-grade spring cut score of 90 words read correctly per minute, the accuracy of prediction was diminished. In Study 3, using nearly 250 eighth-grade students’ scores, reading fluency scores in third, fourth and fifth grades explained approximately 30 percent of statewide achievement test scores; however, rate of improvement was not significant in any of the grades.
    • Walking on water:African American male freshmen mastering transition for the purpose of retention and persistence at a midwestern university

      Underwood, Oscar J Dowell (2012-05-21)
      The purpose of this study was to examine the postsecondary experiences of African American college men at a Midwestern university. This study explored their college transition and endeavored to understand their lived experiences. The intent of this study was also to understand the coping strategies that African American men employ to achieve and succeed in college. The goal of this study was to describe the higher-education experiences of eight Black men in order to ascertain what major and minor themes emerged that could contribute to the literature concerning African American male transition, retention, and persistence at postsecondary institutions. The data from the transcripts of the focus group interviews of eight African American college males revealed five major themes that emerged as influential factors in the college experiences of the majority of these Black males. The themes were (a) the impact of being perceived as leaders; (b) the influence of possessing a perception of being a burden of hope for significant others; (c) the impact of a decision to overcome personal habits that could threaten achievement and college success; (d) the influence of having success connections with family, mentors, and campus organizations, whether cultural or otherwise; and (e) the influence of possessing a no-failure option college success strategy. Implications for African American college men, college leadership, student affairs leadership, faculty, and campus groups and organizations were discussed, as well as recommendations for future research.
    • Website Compliance with Ethical Guidelines by Psychologists and Professional Counselors

      Yazvac III, Joseph (2009-08-26)
      There is currently very little research investigating the ethical practice of e-therapy, and none that distinguishes between types of therapists in terms of their compliance with ethical codes pertaining to e-therapy. The American Psychological Association does not have ethical standards specific to the provision of e-therapy but the American Counseling Association does. The purpose of this study was to assess differences in ethical compliance for e-therapy websites sponsored by psychologists and e-therapy websites sponsored by professional counselors. Specific ethics codes for the practice of e-therapy of the American Counseling Association were used to generate an assessment instrument, which served as the measure of ethical compliance for both groups. E-therapy websites primarily sponsored by psychologists or professional counselors were located by predetermined search terms through the Google search engine and then evaluated for compliance. A MANOVA was then conducted to analyze differences between the two groups on compliance with sections A.12.a., A.12.g., and A.12.h. of the American Counseling Association Ethics Code, as well as an aggregate total of all three. Professional counselors were found to be significantly more compliant than psychologists with section A.12.h. and the aggregate total of all sections. However, compliance rates for both groups were generally low, and implications are discussed.

      Schwartz, Erin Coale (2011-07-20)
      Affiliation with religious organizations is prevalent in the United States and within some of these organizations negative messages about lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals are regularly espoused. Exposure to such homophobic sentiment has been found to have a detrimental impact on the mental health of sexual minorities and thereby, makes the exploration of religiosity and homophobia an imperative. This study examined differences in homophobia among the sociodemographic variables of gender, age, education level, religious affiliation, frequency of attendance at religious services, and amount of contact with lesbian, gay, and bisexual people. Additionally, a stepwise multiple regression was conducted to determine which religiosity variables were the best predictors of homophobia. The religiosity variables used in the study were Religious Fundamentalism, Quest, Immanence, as well as Intrinsic and Extrinsic religious orientations. Significant differences in homophobia were found for gender, age, religious affiliation, frequency of attendance at religious services, and number of known lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals. Religious Fundamentalism and Intrinsic religious orientation were found to be the best predictors of homophobia.
    • Women's Use of Violence: An Ecological Systems Model

      Byczek, Sara (2013-01-30)
      Women’s use of violence within intimate relationships is an important area of which both researchers and clinicians can benefit from gaining a better understanding. In the current literature on women’s use of violence, two main perspectives dominate, including the family violence perspective and the feminist perspective. The main goal of the present study was to gain a better understanding of women’s use of violence. Specifically, qualitative methodology was utilized to explore the possibility that typologies may exist within women’s use of violence that may help to explain the discrepant findings within the literature. Twelve women completed an online questionnaire that included interview-style questions developed utilizing Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems model, the Conflict Tactics Scale-2, and a measure created by the main researcher called the Contextual Relationship Measure. Key findings included (a) development of four typologies, (b) identification of characteristics associated with women who have used violence in their relationship, and (c) development of a grounded theory on women’s use of violence. Limitations and suggestions for future research are also discussed, including (a) issues related to the methodology utilized, (b) issues related to the population being studied, and (c) suggestions on how to build from the current findings.