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Personal Memories and Social Associations: How Positive Emotions Influence the Activation of Implicit Prejudices

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The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of two positive discrete emotions, awe and nurturant love, on implicit prejudices. After completing an emotion induction task, participants completed Implicit Association Test blocks where they paired photos of Arab

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of two positive discrete emotions, awe and nurturant love, on implicit prejudices. After completing an emotion induction task, participants completed Implicit Association Test blocks where they paired photos of Arab and White individuals with "good" and "bad" evaluations. We hypothesized that nurturant love would increase the strength of negative evaluations of Arab individuals and positive evaluations of White individuals, whereas awe would decrease the strength of these negative evaluations when compared to a neutral condition. However, we found that both awe and nurturant love increased negative implicit prejudices toward Arab individuals when compared to the neutral condition.

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2018-05

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The content of Native American cultural stereotypes in comparison to other racial groups

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Despite a large body of research on stereotypes, there have been relatively few empirical investigations of the content of stereotypes about Native Americans. The primary goal of this research was to systematically explore the content of cultural stereotypes about Native

Despite a large body of research on stereotypes, there have been relatively few empirical investigations of the content of stereotypes about Native Americans. The primary goal of this research was to systematically explore the content of cultural stereotypes about Native Americans and how stereotypes about Native Americans differ in comparison to stereotypes about Asian Americans and African Americans. Building on a classic paradigm (Katz and Braly, 1933), participants were asked to identify from a list of 145 adjectives those words associated with cultural stereotypes of Native Americans and words associated with stereotypes of Asian Americans (Study 1) or African Americans (Study 2). The adjectives associated with stereotypes about Native Americans were significantly less favorable than the adjectives associated with stereotypes about Asian Americans, but were significantly more favorable than the adjectives associated with stereotypes about African Americans. Stereotypes about Native Americans, Asian Americans and African Americans were also compared along the dimensions of the stereotype content model (SCM; Fiske, et al., 2002), which proposes that stereotypes about social groups are based on the core dimensions of perceived competence, warmth, status, and competitiveness. Native Americans were rated as less competent, less of a source of competition, and lower in social status than Asian Americans, and less competent and lower in social status than African Americans. No significant differences were found in perceived warmth across the studies. Combined, these findings contribute to a better understanding of stereotypes about Native Americans and how they may differ from stereotypes about other racial groups.

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2013

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Power in Motion: Response Dynamics of Social Power, Goal-Oriented Motor Movement, and Sexual Perception

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Research on the psychology of social power has shown how experiences of power tend to promote goal-oriented behavior and sexual perception in individuals. These experiences need not be generated through real-life power dynamics, but can be primed experimentally in the

Research on the psychology of social power has shown how experiences of power tend to promote goal-oriented behavior and sexual perception in individuals. These experiences need not be generated through real-life power dynamics, but can be primed experimentally in the lab. A recent study has explored how power affects even lower level goal-oriented motor movement, showing how increased power facilitates the initiation of goal-oriented motor actions (Maner et al., 2010). However, this research did not explore how these goal-oriented motor movements promoted by power dynamically evolve over time, or can be influenced by sexual perceptual processes. Using an experimental paradigm known as computer mouse-tracking, we designed an experimental task to asses how participants’ – primed with either a High or Low sense of power – motor movements and sexual perceptual processes co-evolved and influenced one another during decision-making. We analyzed four distinct mouse-tracking variables, including traditional reaction time measures and novel measures indexing real-time decision-making processes. Several hypotheses are proposed and discussed. No significant findings emerged, however general trends showed promising signs for future iterations of the study. The study limitations and proposed future directions for studying these phenomena are discussed.

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2016

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Perceptions of officers who use force in police-civilian interactions

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Police officers in America interact with civilians on a daily basis as function of their job, and the way people perceive police officers can either help or hurt officers in performance of their duties. I conducted an experiment to test

Police officers in America interact with civilians on a daily basis as function of their job, and the way people perceive police officers can either help or hurt officers in performance of their duties. I conducted an experiment to test whether people perceive a police officer’s use of force differently depending on the officer’s race and gender. First, when an officer uses force, I propose competing hypotheses that a female officer will be viewed as less favorable than a male officer; however, because female aggression is less expected, I also predict that they will be viewed as more favorable than male officers. Second, when an officer uses force, I predict that a Black officer will be viewed as more aggressive than a White Officer. Lastly, I predict that perceptions of the officer (i.e., perceived aggression and emotional reactivity) would mediate the relationship between officer gender and attitudes towards the officer. Using an experimental survey design with a video of a police-civilian interaction, I found support that female officers were viewed more favorably than male officers when force was used. I found no support that Black officers would be viewed as more aggressive than White officers. Lastly, I found partial support that perceptions of the officer mediated the relationship between officer gender and attitudes towards the officer.

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Agent

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Date Created
2017

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Scientific Researchers: Are Religious Believers Seen as Being Less Scientific?

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This study investigated whether research by researchers affiliated with a religious academic institution would be seen as of less scientific merit than research done by researchers affiliated with a nonreligious academic institution. Such a bias may exist given the different

This study investigated whether research by researchers affiliated with a religious academic institution would be seen as of less scientific merit than research done by researchers affiliated with a nonreligious academic institution. Such a bias may exist given the different value systems underlying religion and science, the widespread perception of a conflict between religion and science, and research on differences in cognitive styles and stereotypes about religious versus nonreligious people. In this study, U.S. participants recruited from Amazon Mechanical Turk completed an online survey, which included an abstract of an article describing scientific research with authors’ names and academic institutions, and questions on perceived scientific merit, religiosity, spirituality, religion as Quest, and perceived conflict between religion and science. There was a significant difference in the perceived merit of the researchers, with the group believing the researchers were affiliated with a religious academic institution rating the research as lower in scientific merit than the group believing the researchers were affiliated with a nonreligious academic institution. The perceived level of conflict between religion and science was found to moderate the relationship, such that higher levels of perceived conflict between religion and science showed a greater difference in scientific merit between groups.

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Agent

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Date Created
2018

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The impact of individuals' racial identity and perpetrator's racial group membership on empathy for an outgroup victim

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The previous research literature was reviewed on how perpetrator's group membership and individuals' racial identity impact intergroup attitude and behavior, as well as factors contribute to intergroup bias on individuals' empathy level. This study was designed to extend the existing

The previous research literature was reviewed on how perpetrator's group membership and individuals' racial identity impact intergroup attitude and behavior, as well as factors contribute to intergroup bias on individuals' empathy level. This study was designed to extend the existing research on intergroup relations by exploring the effect of perpetrator's ingroup/outgroup membership and the strength of racial identity on people's empathy toward the outgroup victims. A web-based survey was disseminated and administrated at a southwest university. One hundred and six Caucasian American college students who completed the survey and met the criterion of eighteen years old or older were involved in this study. Participants were randomly assigned to read one of two target stories and one distracter story, and reported their empathy level toward each story. And then the participants' strength of racial identity was measured.

Controlling for demographic variables, regression analyses revealed that, as expected, the interaction of the perpetrator's group membership and individuals' racial identity significantly predicted the level of empathy toward the outgroup victim. When the perpetrator was an ingroup member, people who highly identified with their group exhibited less empathy for the outgroup victim. However, perpetrator's membership and the strength of racial identity failed to predict individuals' outgroup empathy separately.

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Agent

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Date Created
2015

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Stress and music on students' mental health: evaluating music as a coping strategy for stress

Description

Stress is an arguably universal phenomenon that has maladaptive effects on individuals’ mental health (i.e., depression). Individuals traditionally deal with stress through various coping strategies that fall under three coping styles: emotion-oriented coping, avoidance/disengagement coping, and problem-oriented coping. Furthermore, numerous

Stress is an arguably universal phenomenon that has maladaptive effects on individuals’ mental health (i.e., depression). Individuals traditionally deal with stress through various coping strategies that fall under three coping styles: emotion-oriented coping, avoidance/disengagement coping, and problem-oriented coping. Furthermore, numerous studies have focused on the stress-reducing properties of music, but the literature lacks an examination of the use and effectiveness of music as a coping strategy. The current thesis examined the moderating role of music as a coping strategy in the link between stress and depression. Based on existing research, the author predicted that for participants who endorsed music coping as emotion-oriented or avoidance /disengagement-oriented, there would be an exacerbation of the stress-depression link. However, for participants who endorsed music coping as problem-oriented, there would be an attenuation of the stress-depression link. In an online survey-based study of 207 students attending Arizona State University, the author found that emotion-oriented music coping and avoidance/disengagement music coping exacerbated the relationship between stress and depression. The author, however, did not find support for the prediction that higher endorsement of problem-oriented music coping would buffer the effect of stress on depression. These results suggest that music coping may parallel alternative coping strategies in some respects but not others. Overall, the study findings support the further examination of music as a coping strategy in order to replicate emotion-oriented coping as the primary use of music.

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Date Created
2017