Total Comp Abstracts.docx - Webpub - Allegheny College

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					2009-2010 Comp Abstracts
Justin D. Abbott

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

An Experimental Analysis of the Effects a Pitcher‟s Protective “L” Screen has on
Batter‟s Performance

This study explores the affects a pitcher‟s protective “L” screen has on batter‟s
performance. Five pitchers and ten batters from the Allegheny College baseball team
participated in the experiment. The experiment was designed to detect any affects the
pitcher‟s “L” screen has on the batter‟s ability to hit a baseball. The experiment
investigated potential discriminative stimuli used by the batter that could be affected
from the use of an “L” screen during live, indoor hitting simulations in a standard batting
cage. The study was divided into two trials, one in which the pitcher used an “L” screen
to pitch to the batter, and one in which the pitcher did not use an “L” screen. The
dependent variable was measure of well-hit baseballs by the batter, or solid contact with
the ball. The results of the experiment indicate that batter‟s performance is significantly
decreased when an “L” screen is used. This suggests that alternative methods to the
“L” screen would be beneficial to batter‟s performance during batting practice or live
hitting simulations. The external validity of the experiment could be strengthened if
more participants and trials were used, along with eliminating the constraints of
performing the study in an artificial cage setting, as opposed to an actual baseball field.



Megan M. Atkinson

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Investigating external pressure and interrogation techniques in relation to true and false
confessions

Previous research has shown that participants are more likely to give false confessions
when criminal interview techniques such as minimization (i.e. making a suspect‟s crime
seem less serious) are paired with a deal (i.e. an opportunity to confess in return for an
avoidance of more serious punishment). However, there is no research literature on
whether the likelihood to give a false confession could be influenced by the
interpersonal pressure to confess before an accomplice. This study will seek to add to
the literature by studying whether participants‟ rate of false confessions can be
influenced by this form of interpersonal pressure when compared to the type of pressure
brought about by the extra personal influence to confess before a crime is reported to
an authority figure. The current study had participants placed in situations where they
could be considered „guilty‟ or „innocent‟; and they were accused of the “crime” of
collaborating on problems with a confederate they were told to do by themselves. The
experimenter then tried to elicit a confession while also using additional methods (i.e.
minimization and deal). The rate of both true and false confessions related to the
condition of guilt or innocence which participants were assigned. We found participants
guilt or innocence significantly affected if they signed a confession or not.



Natasha N. Beatty

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin

Exercise and Daytime Sleep Architecture

Exercise and daytime sleep influence nocturnal sleep; however, it remains unclear if
exercise influences daytime sleep architecture (Tanaka, Taira, Arakawa, Urasaki,
Yamamoto, Okuma, Uezu, Suqita, & Shirakawa, 2002). Twenty-five college students
who either participated in a cardiovascular or weight lifting workout or who did not
exercise completed the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI; Buysse, Reynolds, Monk,
Berman, & Kupfer, 1989) before polysomnography was recorded and scored according
to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (Iber, Ancoli-Israel, Chesson, & Quan,
2007). It was expected that cardiovascular exercise would facilitate and lengthen sleep
more than weight lifting exercise or a sedentary lifestyle (Trinder, Paxton, Montgomery,
& Fraser, 1985), although both exercise groups were expected to experience more
stage three sleep and demonstrate better sleep quality on the PSQI (Buysse, Reynolds,
Monk, Berman, & Kupfer, 1989) than the sedentary group. Although none of the group
comparisons were significant, the sedentary group had displayed poorer sleep quality
based on Global PSQI scores, fell asleep quicker than both exercise groups, spent
more time in stages one and two of sleep, and slept the most during testing. The
cardiovascular group had the best sleep quality scores and spent the least amount of
time in stages one and two of sleep. The weight lifting group spent the least amount of
time in stage three of sleep. The results suggest that exercise facilitates sleep quality,
and thus exercisers may not benefit from or require as much daytime sleep as
sedentary young adults.



Brittany E. Bell
Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The Effects of the Use of Figurative Language in Advertisements on Purchase Intent

Figurative language is commonly used in advertisements. The purpose of the present
study was to investigate whether the use of simple and complex tropes in
advertisements affects purchase intent. Fifty-two participants were asked to watch a
video advertisement for a high involvement product (i.e., a laptop) and a low
involvement product (i.e., an external hard dive). The ads contained either metaphors,
hyperboles or no figurative language. The participants were then asked to complete a
survey about their purchase intentions and attitudes toward the advertisement. It was
hypothesized that consumers evaluating high involvement products would be more
positively influenced by the use of figurative language in an advertisement than
consumers evaluating low involvement products. This hypothesis was not supported. In
addition, it was predicted that the use of figurative language in an advertisement would
have a more positive influence on a consumer than not having figurative language in an
advertisement. This hypothesis was partially supported. Finally, it was proposed that the
use of complex tropes would affect those examining high involvement products while
the use of simple tropes would affect those examining the low involvement products.
This hypothesis was not supported.



Christopher L. Bell

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross

The Effects of Oxytocin and Vasopressin on Social Recognition Behavior in a Valproic
Acid Rat Model of Autism

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterized as a heterogeneous
neurodevelopmental disorder that can be described by a broad spectrum of symptoms,
including: impairments in reciprocal social interactions, abnormal development and use
of language, repetitive and ritualized behaviors, a narrow range of interests, and
emotional reactivity. The Valproic Acid (VPA) rat model of Autism was the primary “test
subject” in this study because previous research has questioned its validity. The current
study focuses on one ASD symptom in particular; the deficit in social interactions and
the VPA model. This deficit was tested using the social recognition paradigm (Ferguson
et al., 2001). The effects of Oxytocin (OT) and Vasopressin (AVP) were applied to the
VPA model to determine whether or not they increase social recognition among trials.
Current research has indicated that OT and AVP may be key players in ASD. The
problem is thought to lie within the neurohypophyseal system due to a molecular
misregulation of the receptor through insufficient gene expression. The social
recognition paradigm was performed with nine healthy mature adult VPA-Sprague
Dawley rats. Olfactory investigation was measured in seconds for five, one minute trials
after introduction of an ovariectomized female and on the fifth trial a novel female was
introduced. An intramuscular injection of each neuropeptide was administered 15
minutes prior to the social recognition paradigm. Results indicated no social recognition
among VPA rats, and an increased social recognition for VPA rats exposed to OT and
AVP. Statistical significance was found between trials as well as for OT and VPA aJeff
Cross trials. The results indicate a relation between each of the neuropeptides on social
recognition, validating the VPA model.



Leigh A. Bender

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: JW P. Heuchert

Animal Assisted Interventions, Anxiety and Personality

In this study examined the relationship between within-subjects anxiety scores,
personality traits, and the effectiveness of animal assisted activities. Past research has
had inconsistent results on whether animal assisted activities statistically significantly
reduces anxiety levels, and research on why some people respond better than others is
sparse. Using Speilberger‟s State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (1983) to measure state
anxiety, and the NEO-FFI (Costa & McCrae, 2004) to measure personality type, the
relationship within anxiety scores was measured in conjunction with personality.
 Through correlation and analysis of variance, a sample consisting of 39 (35 female, 4
male) undergraduate students revealed a statistically significant decrease in anxiety
level after contact with the therapy dog by (p<0.01), a positive correlation between
difference scores and Neuroticism level by (p<0.01), and a negative correlation between
difference scores and Extroversion levels by (p<0.01). There was a positive correlation
between difference scores and Openness by (p<0.01), and no significance between
Agreeableness and Conscientiousness and difference in anxiety scores.



Kristin C. Blankemeyer

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

The Effects of Environmental Enrichment on the Inflexible Behaviors of Autism
Many autism research studies have been devoted to studying social interaction and the
ability to communicate but relatively few have been dedicated to researching restricted
and ritualistic behavior. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of the
environment on the ability to accomplish a reversal learning task, using an animal model
of autism. Twelve Sprague-Dawley rats were prenatally exposed to sodium valproate
(VPA), and twelve rats were prenatally exposed to saline. For each exposure group, half
of the rats were housed in standard laboratory cages and the other half inhabited
enriched environments, with various novel objects introduced twice weekly. All rats were
trained until they acquired the behavior of turning down the right-arm of a T-maze to
receive a food reinforcer. The reversal learning task occurred when the food reinforcer
was placed down the left-arm of the T-maze. Latency and number of errors were
recorded for each rat. Results showed that VPA rats had significantly greater latency to
retrieve the reinforcer than the control group, regardless of environmental condition.
Possible explanations and implications are discussed.



Maggie L. Bodenlos

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The Effects of Authority and Familiarity on Interruptions

The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of authority and familiarity on
positive and negative interruptions. Male dyads were formed as either friend (N=20) or
stranger (N=20) groups and a leader was randomly assigned. Each pair group was
asked to play a game where they discussed whether statements were true or false
within a ten minute period of time. After ten minutes was up, the researcher entered and
received the answers to the statements. These conversations, both during task as well
as during the report to the researcher, were recorded by videotape and then coded for
both positive and negative interruptions. After the ten minutes of conversation was
complete, each participant completed a post-test questionnaire regarding their own as
well as their partner‟s behavior. Results show that overall, non-leaders made more
interruptions than leaders. Non-leaders were involved in more positive and negative
interruptions depending on whether it was d!
uring pair task or during the report to the researcher. However, in terms of familiarity,
strangers did not play a significant role in interruptive behavior. When examining verbal
interruptions, results suggest that future research should consider the ways in which
authority is defined as well as the context in which familiarity variables are assessed.



Ashley E. Brown
Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Does a relationship exist between birth order, number of siblings and leadership style?

There has been a large amount of proposed theories and research done on the topic of
birth order, number of siblings and their relationship to leadership style. Findings show
that first-born children tend to become task-oriented in their leadership and later-born
children tend to become more relationship-oriented in their leadership. This study
examines the relationship between birth order, number of siblings and leadership style
of a sample of undergraduate Allegheny College students enrolled in Psychology
courses. The study split participants into first-born children and later-born children and
examined three types of leadership styles. The Fiedler‟s Least Preferred Coworker
Scale was used to assess this relationship and a demographic questionnaire was used
to obtain information on the participants‟ sex, class year, birth order position, and
number of siblings in their family. Results showed a significant difference between birth
order position in relation to leadership style for participants scoring in the lower 50%
range for task-oriented and participants scoring in the upper 50% for relationship-
oriented. These ranges contained participants who are heavily set in their leadership
style as opposed to those scoring towards the middle of the spectrum. All other results
were not significant for those two measures.



Kelli L. Burke

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Family Violence Levels and their Relationship with Child Abuse Potential


This study primarily explored the relationship between family violence levels and the
mothers‟ child abuse potential. A total of 33 mothers were examined in the study, all of
whom were biological mothers of a child between the ages of 3 and 5. The measures
included the Child Abuse Potential Inventory and the Conflict Tactics Scales – Couple
Form R. In families with higher overall violence levels, the results indicated that these
mothers had significantly higher potentials to abuse their children. No significant
relationship was found between overall family violence levels and mothers‟ problems
with child and self or with mothers‟ problems with family. Participants reporting frequent
use of verbal aggression were found to be significantly likely to abuse their children,
have problems with their child and self, and experience problems from others. Women
describing high levels of minor and severe violence in their family were found to have
significantly high potentials to abuse. This study also examined how closely related the
mothers‟ reports of their own violent acts were to their report of their partners‟
corresponding violent acts. Results indicated that participants‟ reports of their reasoning
and verbal aggression conflict-resolving behaviors were significantly correlated with
their reports of their partners‟ same acts. No significant relationships were found
between mothers‟ reports of their own minor, severe, and overall violent behaviors and
their reports of corresponding behaviors of their intimate partners.



Molly Carter

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross

The effects of pilocarpine-induced seizures on vascularity and astrocytes in the
amygdala and hippocampus in rat animal models of autism and epilepsy

The goal of this experiment was to examine the effects of seizures on astrocyte
domains, blood-brain barrier (BBB) blood vessels, and the cerebral vasculature in the
amygdala and hippocampus in rat models of autism (VPA) and Control animals. A link
has been made in human studies between epilepsy and autism, and this study used
animal models of both to further explore this connection. Four treatment groups were
used: VPA No Insult, VPA Insult, Control No Insult and Control Insult. A single IP
injection of pilocarpine (160mg/kg) was administered to induce epilepsy for the insult
groups and subjects were sacrificed after 12 hours. Evan‟s Blue Perfusions, Fluororuby
administration in the right lateral ventricle and Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein (GFAP)
staining allowed for the BBB, vasculature, and the number of GFAP positive astrocytes
to be seen under a microscope. The results found that both VPA and Control subjects
showed an increase in the average number of astrocytes after seizures, with Control
subjects showing a larger increase in the average number of astrocytes compared to
VPAs in the amygdala and with VPAs showing a larger increase in the average number
of astrocytes in the hippocampus after seizures. A relationship was found between
astrocyte proliferation and the average number of blood vessels in the BBB as a
response to seizures in both the amygdala and hippocampus in VPA and Control
subjects. Differences in astrocyte proliferation and the average number of blood vessels
in the amygdala and hippocampus after seizures were found, with VPAs showing an
increase in average blood vessels in the hippocampus and amygdala but Controls
showing a decrease in average blood vessels both with the presence of astrocyte
proliferation.



Ashley R. Crosby

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Computer-Mediated Communications In Classrooms: Effects Of Blogging And
Podcasting On Information Recall

 Although previous CMC research has examined student perceptions of its use in the
classroom, few studies have examined the effect on student performance. The present
study examined the effect of type of CMC (blog, podcast) on information recall. Thirty
undergraduate students were asked to listen to a podcast and read a blog as many
times as necessary until prepared for each quiz following the CMC, a post-test
questionnaire was provided after the final quiz. The primary hypothesis was that
students would learn more from a blog than a podcast. The results indicated that the
blog was significantly more interesting than the podcast, the blog was significantly
easier to follow than the podcast, the blog was significantly more comfortable to use
than the podcast, and finally students‟ significantly perceived they would learn more
from the blog than the podcast. While students preferred blogging, recognition scores
were equivalent aJeff Cross conditions. Overall, the results suggest the importance of
considering factors other than students‟ perceptions when exploring the effects that
teaching methods, specifically those including CMC, have on the recall of information.



Kristen L. Cushman

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman

Individual differences in attention on TOVA performance during noise

The TOVA, a continuous performance task, was completed by 37 Allegheny College
students (14 males and 23 females) under silence (with noise-dampening headphones)
and noise (constant stream of white noise from headphones, 70 dB). Participants also
completed a second continuous performance task, the IVA+ Plus, and were split into
groups of low, medium, and high attention on the basis of visual attention quotient
score. Personality trait of extraversion-introversion was assessed with the Eysenck
Personality Questionnaire-Revised, and a multitasking questionnaire assessed
multitasking behaviors. The influences of sustained attention ability and extraversion
were examined on overall sustained attention (ADHD score), impulsivity (commission
errors), and inattention (omission errors). Compared to silence, there was no significant
effect of noise on ADHD score or commission errors. Overall, participants had
significantly less omission errors and less instances of impulsivity in silence than they
did in noise (p < .05). Extraverts had fewer omission errors than introverts in both noise
and silence. However, when silence was first, extraverts performed better than
introverts in silence but worse than introverts in noise (p < .01)
Stephen P. Dickson

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

A Virtual Disorder: Internet Addiction and Whether or Not It should be Included in the
DSM-V

A comprehensive review of Internet addiction research is necessary in order to
determine the next step towards effectively dealing with problems associated with
Internet use. This study attempts to assemble what is known about Internet addiction
and, with this knowledge, recommend a course to effectively address the current
concerns about excessive Internet use. This will include a recommendation for or
against the inclusion of Internet addiction in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of
Mental Disorders, fifth edition (DSM-V): a move that has been recommended by some
researchers (J. J. Block, 2008). First, this study will prove the importance of researching
Internet addiction. It will then explore what it means to be a mental disorder, review the
literature on Internet addiction and finally pass judgment on whether or not Internet
addiction is a true disorder.



Jessica G. DiPietro

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross

The Effects of an Acute Pilocarpine Induced Seizure on Astrocytic Cell Populations and
Cerebrovasculature in VPA and Control Sprague Dawley Rats

Autism, a pervasive developmental disorder is characterized by impairments in social
interactions, difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, and increased
restrictive and repetitive behaviors. Autism shows a 5 to 40 % comorbidity with epilepsy,
which is categorized as having at least two unprovoked seizures. Epilepsy is caused by
enhanced synchronous neuronal activity within the brain. Prenatal Valproic Acid
exposure (376 mg/kg) created an animal model of autism while, pilocarpine (160 mg/kg)
was used to induce temporal lobe epilepsy. It was hypothesized that acute pilocarpine
induced status epilepticus would lead to cerebrovascular changes and increase the
number of reactive astrocytes in the hippocampus and amygdala of VPA and control
Sprague Dawley rats. Reactive astrocytes were labeled with anti-glial fibillary acidic
protein and fluororuby was used to label endothetial cells lining the vasculature. Distinct
trends were observed as a function of pilocarpine exposure. VPA animals were more
vulnerable than controls while males were more susceptible than females. Cerebral
vasculature frequency was increased in the hippocampus compared to the amygdala
while more activated astrocytes were found in the amygdala than in the hippocampus.
 Overall, successful GFAP staining of activated astrocytes and intracerbroventricular
injection of flurororuby was achieved for the first time at Allegheny College.



Margaret D. Dolce

Major: Psychology


Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Evaluation Of Art Therapy Techniques On The Treatment Of Post Traumatic Stress
Disorder

Art therapy is an extremely beneficial alternative therapy because it allows for the
adaptation of treatment to all ages, cultures, and genders. It can become more
structured through specific mediums such as; crayons, pencils, paint, chalk, charcoal
used on paper, bark, soil, clay, and metal; the possibilities are endless. No matter how
barren, dry, destroyed, advanced technologically, or politically restricted an
environment; art therapy can be implemented. Post traumatic stress disorder is trigged
by a traumatic event. It is often hard after a traumatic event for memories to be stored
in a verbal manner, so non-verbal forms of communication become necessary. This
study will explore why art therapy is the most beneficial treatment of those with post
traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).



Jamison L. Drab


Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

An Overview of the Field of School Psychology and Its Practices

School psychology is a rapidly growing field in the United States. Though some of its
early practices date back to before the development of the education program in
America, the field did not gain major interest until the 1960s and 1970s. Major
developments in governmental programs dealing with education has paved the way for
the field of school psychology. However, not much is known about the field by the
general public. In a country that offers a free public education and with a constant push
for a better education, it is important to understand how this field influences the
education system and better its quality.



Katherine A. Eriksen

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

Some Effects of Varied Training Delays on Delayed Matching-to-Sample in Humans


The present experiment used the delayed matching-to-sample procedure to determine
whether the temporal distance between sample and comparison images could be
examined as an inherent part of a sample stimulus. Allegheny College participants were
trained to match images at a particular delay (i.e. 0.001, 15, 30, or 45 s) and were later
tested during 5 trials to match 5 of the same images at delays of 0.001, 15, 30, 45, and
60 s. Given previous research (Sargisson and White, 2001) where it was determined
that pigeons could be trained to most accurately match stimuli at delays other than 0 s,
it was hypothesized that the present experiment‟s participants during testing would
make the maximum number of matching responses at a delay time that they were
trained in comparison to all other nontrained delay values. It was found, however, that
there was no significant main effect on image matching levels at the testing delays for
each group nor was there a significant main effect of training delay or a significant
interaction between the testing delay and the training delay, p>0.05. This implies that
matching scores for each delay group at each testing delay did not differ greatly from
one another. Thus, it was suggested that the temporal distance between the sample
and comparison images was not an inherent part of the sample stimulus.



Sara H. Fernandez

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

An Early Childhood Curricular Module About Dwarfism

The medical condition of dwarfism has a stigmatized history. Recently, efforts have
been made to enforce positive images of individuals with dwarfism. At the same time,
there is an increasing desire to teach children about diversity and acceptance.
Research on cognitive development of preschool-aged children suggests that they are
open to explanations about different concepts. Therefore, individuals must take
advantage of preschoolers‟ susceptibility to knowledge and create curricula about
diversity. There is no set curriculum about dwarfism for preschoolers. This curricular
module demonstrates an example of a potential curriculum to teach preschoolers about
dwarfism.



Brian G. Filler

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Patricia Rutledge

The Effect of Goal Contents and Motives on Happiness of College Alumni

The current study investigated goal contents and the motives behind those goals for
career choice and how they correlated with overall happiness. The study was designed
as a replication of a 2004 study, and analyzed a group of college alumni. Intrinsic (e.g.,
community outreach, personal fulfillment) and extrinsic (e.g., pay, prestige, and power)
were measured for goal contents and autonomous versus controlled feelings were
measured for motives. Data was obtained from alumni who attended a small, selective
liberal arts college (N=79). Participants completed the Positive Affect Negative Affect
Schedule, and the Satisfaction With Life Scale, which were combined to evaluate
overall happiness; as well as 16 questions regarding personal career goals. Bivariate
correlations were calculated for overall happiness, total autonomy, and total goal
content as well as for individual goals, which made up the totals. While there were some
significant correlations found between individual components of the study, no significant
correlations were found between autonomy or goal contents and overall happiness. This
research suggests that there may certain types of career goals that positively affect
happiness as well as goals that negatively affect happiness.



Nicola C. Flynn

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

The Effect Of Casual Video Game Play On Working Memory Ability

In recent years video games have become a popular subject of research, ranging from
demonization of violent games, to praise for the educational potential of video games.
This study seeks to demonstrate a relationship between casual video game play, as
practiced by students on a leisure schedule and increased working memory as
measured by operation span. A moderate result was found for male participants and an
overall significant effect was found, but no relationship was found in the female
participants data. Participants in this study were undergraduate students enrolled at
Allegheny College. Possible effects of sex differences are discussed.



Samantha E. Ford

Major: Psych/Other

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

The Effects of Long-term Exposure of Aspartame and High Fat Diets on Adult Female
Sprague-Dawley Rats.

Alzheimer‟s disease is recognized as one of the most rapidly expanding health
concerns in America. Current research suggests that almost half of the population will
develop this neurological disease after the age of 85. However, individuals who come
from low socioeconomic status (SES) are more likely to develop this disease.
Differences in the level of education was initially thought to be the sole reason for this
 However, variation in general health habits appears to be a more accurate indicator of
Alzheimer‟s disease development among lower SES citizens. Diet patterns that seemed
to coincide with Alzheimer‟s disease consisted of very few fruits, a lot of meats, butter,
cream, high-fat dairy products, and refined sugars. The goal this study was to determine
if memory loss increases when the amounts of refined sugar and fat increase in a rat‟s
diet. The study was a 3x2 factorial in which diet was varied (aspartame diet, fatty diet,
and standard diet), and directional signal were shown to rats (correct and incorrect
identification). Rats were tested in a standard T-maze where percent error in the correct
identification of directional cards was recorded. Subjects were exposed to their diets for
at least 5weeks. A one-way ANOVA showed no significant difference in error between
the three treatment groups. There was a significant difference between treatments for
weight lost and gained (p<.05). Due to various finds about the importance of diet, BMI,
genetics, and physical activity as indicators of Alzheimer‟s disease, more research
needs to be conducted on the effects of cardiovascular health (which includes all these
risk factors) in relation to SES and susceptibility to neurodegeneration.



Daniella M. Furey

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Effects Of Greek Letter Organization Membership On Participation In Non-Greek
Organizations
Looking exclusively at members of Greek Letter organizations at Allegheny College, a
survey was administered to one hundred and eleven participants, all active members of
an Allegheny Greek Letter organization. The hypothesis of this study was that the
voluntary membership in a sorority or fraternity encourages active membership in other,
non-Greek student organizations. The survey results revealed that for the most part
membership in a Greek Letter organization had no effect on membership in other
organizations. It was also discovered that the majority of participants were already
active members of other organizations before joining their Greek Letter organization.
Since there was a large difference between the amount of female and male participants
in the sample, a sub-group of forty four participants was also examined.



Patrick J. Furey

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Patricia Rutledge

The Role of Disinhibition Expectancies in the Association Between Campus Group
Affiliation and Heavy-Episodic Drinking

Heavy-episodic drinking (HED) is positively correlated with positively-valenced
expectancies of alcohol's effects. Specifically, euphoric social and sexual disinhibition
expectancies may be indirectly associated with more frequent HED. Alcohol disinhibition
expectancies (ADEs) may relate to the high risk for HED of undergraduate Greek and/or
intercollegiate athletic students. Archival data were obtained from a sample of N = 1,737
college students on: (1) student affiliation with campus organizations, (2) ADEs, and (3)
HED. Regression analyses indicated a positive correlation of social and sexual
disinhibition expectancies with HED. Associations between student group affiliations
and ADEs were explored. The relationship between group affiliation and HED may not
be direct.



Erin C. Gaskill

Major: Neuroscience/VESA

Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin

Adolescent Subjective Social Status and Response to Negative Stimuli & Health
Symptoms

Subjective social status (SSS) was examined in relation to response time for pictorial
stimuli and health symptoms. It was hypothesized that low SSS would be correlated
with a bias to negative stimuli and would positively correlate with negative health
symptoms. Participants completed the MacArthur Scale of Subjective Social Status
(Adler et al., 2000; Goodman et al., 2007), the Dot Probe Task (Shaver, 2006), and the
Symptom Checklist-90-R (Derogatis & Lazarus, 1994). The hypothesis was not
confirmed regarding the dot probe task; however, a number of correlations between low
SSS and SCL-90-R scales were significant. The Global Severity Index (GSI), Paranoid
Ideation, and Psychoticism scales were all significantly higher for low SSS than for
medium SSS. The Hostility scale was significantly higher for low SSS than for medium
and high SSS. These results suggest that low SSS was associated with a number of
negative health symptoms.



Ryan J. Hanson

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Determination of how mice detect different frequencies and pulse widths of nasal CO2
by use of the electroolfactogram

Atmospheric CO2 is an important environmental cue that can signal the presence of
food, predators, and environmental stress (Luo et al. 2009). In mice, a small subset of
olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) that coexpress phosphodiesterase 2A (PDE2A),
guanylyl cyclase D (GC-D), cGMP-sensitive cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels,
and carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) are responsible for the detection of CO2 (Hu et al.
2007). The purpose of the present investigation was to determine how these specialized
cells can detect CO2 at concentrations as low as 0.066%, when mice expel 4% CO2
with each expiration. Electroolfactogram (EOG) was used to record from the olfactory
mucosa of wild type mice to study the response characteristics to CO2 and the odorant
propyl acetate. Mouse respiration was simulated by pulsing CO2 over the olfactory
epithelium as a phasic wave that alternated between 0% and 4% CO2. The EOG signal
was composed of a succession of negative deflections synchronized with the simulated
respiratory rhythm. The EOG signal also demonstrated that the mechanism for CO2
detection is faster than the cAMP-mediated pathway used commonly for odorant
detection. These results emphasize (1) the importance of taking into account the
respiratory activity in studies on the functioning of the olfactory system; (2) provide
insight into how mice can discriminate between low concentrations of CO2; and (3)
explain the receptors ability to follow changes in CO2 due to respiratory cycles.



Shane P. Hennessy

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Other

Effects of the Ca2+-Activated Cl- Channel Blocker Niflumic Acid on Odor and CO2
Detection

CO2 is an essential olfactory signal for a variety of animal behaviors such as feeding,
ventilation, mating, and avoiding predators (Sun et al., 2009; Sharabi et al., 2009).
Although the detection of odorants has been well established, the olfactory CO2
transduction cascade is still a work in progress. The purpose of this study was to
examine EOG responses in intact mice olfactory epithelium after the application of
mammalian ringers or niflumic acid. The EOG is a negative electrical potential recorded
at the surface of the olfactory epithelium and represents the summated generator
potential in the olfactory receptor neurons. The goal of the experiment was to determine
whether the Ca2+-activated Cl- channel used in odorant detection was also used in
CO2 detection. In this study, EOG responses to both odorants and CO2 before and
after the application of Ca2+-activated Cl- channel blocker niflumic acid, as well as
mammalian ringers, were recorded. Application of niflumic acid significantly attenuated
the EOG response to both odorants and varying CO2 concentrations. These results
suggest that the same Ca2+-activated Cl- channel utilized in odorant transduction is
also used to amplify the signal in CO2 detection. This study provides a greater
understanding of olfactory CO2 chemoreceptors which have been suggested to play a
role in Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (Filiano & Kinney, 1994).



Abby E. Herskovitz

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Can mint-flavored treats do more than just freshen breath?:
An examination of the act of chewing gum and its potential effect on working memory


College students are always looking for ways to keep their brains alert and working at
their full potential. Some students swear by caffeine or even regular naps, but some
anecdotal evidence has made some primary and secondary school educators suggest
that chewing gum or eating a piece of mint candy can improve cognitive functioning and
lead to better grades. The present study sought to add to current research that suggests
there is a positive relationship to the act of chewing gum and cognitive function
(Stephens and Tunney, 2004). This study aims to examine this claim further by testing
whether the act of chewing gum or the flavor of a gum sized piece of candy could be
responsible for the any positive effects on cognitive function. Participants‟ will perform a
complex cognitive task (i.e. Working Memory) while doing a variety of activities related
to the act of chewing gum and eating candy. The implications of the results in relation to
improving cognitive functioning will be discussed.



Rachel Higgins

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Psycholinguistic Markers In Computer Mediated Communication: The Influences Of
Topic On The Expression Of Sarcasm Markers In CMC

The goal of this study was to examine the various linguistic markers and strategies used
to convey sarcasm over Computer Mediated Communication (CMC). Thirty participants
took part in the study, discussed a sarcasm and a non-sarcasm inducing prompt and
either knew or did not know the study was examining sarcasm. Participants conversed
with an anonymous partner over America Online Instant Messenger and then filled out a
post-test questionnaire. It was hypothesized that participants would use linguistic
markers such as ellipsis, emoticons, and indicators of laughter such as lol/haha to
indicate they were being sarcastic. It was found that while there was no significant
difference in which linguistic markers participants used more often than others, patterns
did exist as to which strategies were employed to indicate sarcasm.



Sarah A. Holick

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

Situational Specificity To Tolerance And A Conditioned Compensatory Response To
Ketamine In Sprague-Dawley Rats

Associative tolerance is often seen to be more pronounced in the presence of
environmental stimuli that are associated with repeated administrations of a drug,
leading to major complications with medical and illicit drug use. Due to a decline in the
medical use of dissociative anesthetics, there is limited, if any, research pertaining to
the effects of associative tolerance. The present study examined the potential for
situational specificity and a conditioned compensatory response with repeated injections
of ketamine in male Sprague-Dawley rats. The study consisted of two groups: the
control, or saline, group (n=5), and the experimental, or ketamine group (n=5). A low
dose of 35 mg/kg of ketamine was administered to the experimental group. Results
showed evidence of situational specificity to tolerance; tolerance for the experimental
group was more distinct in the conditioned environment compared to a novel
environment. However, there was no evidence to support the expected conditioned
compensatory response of hypersensitivity to pain.



Hillary L. Houghton

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

Effect of Alcohol Intoxication Level and Gender on Regret After the College Hook Up

The focus of this study was to examine regret as a consequence of the college hook up.
Specifically, whether or not level of alcohol intoxication and gender have any influence
on regretful feelings. A survey was designed specifically for this study to look at alcohol
intoxication level and feelings. Participants were presented with a scenario and they
answered for their assigned character; women answered for the female character and
men answered only for the male character. It was hypothesized that the female
character in the survey who is more drunk than their partner, will have more regret than
if she had a partner of equal or lesser alcohol intoxication. A second hypothesis
surmised that the male character will not have regret as a consequence of the hook up.
A total of 96 participants were used in this study; 48 females and 48 males. They
ranged in age from 17-23 years with a mean age of 19.6 years. There was no significant
finding for female characters who were more drunk. The female character in all
conditions felt high levels of regret. The male character did have negative emotions;
however, their experiences were predominantly positive.



Kyle M. Janes

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

Ethanol Intoxication and Its Effects on Shock Avoidance Behavior in Sprague-Dawley
Rats

A common phenomenon reported in humans intoxicated by ethanol is an experienced
"sobering up" when they are presented with a stressful, scary, or aversive situation.
 The present study examined the performance of rats under an escape/avoidance
schedule while intoxicated with three different percentages of alcohol (5%, 10%, and
20% solutions at 1 ml/kg), hypothesizing that if the phenomenon exists, then rats can
avoid electric shock while intoxicated as well as they can while they are sober. The
results supported the hypothesis; the rats avoided electric shock with no significant
difference as compared to the saline solution. Anxiety, a major motivating operation, is
discussed in terms of its effects on behavior and responding as a conjecture for the
study's results and as a proposed subject for further research.



Jessica K. Kenemuth

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Other

Investigation of the role of the cGMP-sensitive cyclic nucleotide-gated channel and
guanylyl cyclase-D in the CO2 transduction pathway in mice

Mammals detect carbon dioxide (CO2), a fundamental environmental signal, within the
nasal cavity. Detection of CO2 in mice occurs in a small subset of neurons within the
olfactory epithelium that express guanylyl cyclase-D (GC-D), cGMP-sensitive cyclic
nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels, phosphodiesterase 2A, and carbonic anhydrase II
(Hu et al. 2007). The exact role of each component is not completely understood. The
role of the cGMP-sensitive CNG channels and GC-D was investigated by recording
olfactory receptor responses to CO2 and odorants using electro-olfactograms (EOGs). It
was hypothesized that inhibiting the cGMP-sensitive CNG channel would decrease the
detection of CO2, but odorant detection would be unaffected. It was also hypothesized
that GC-D knockout mice would not be able to detect CO2 but would be able to detect
odorants. EOG responses to 0-50% CO2 and odorants were recorded from wild type
mice before and after the topical application of a cGMP-pathway inhibitor, L-cis-
diltiazem, on the olfactory epithelium. The results showed that inhibition of the cGMP-
sensitive CNG channel with L-cis-diltiazem caused a significant decrease in the EOG
response to CO2. These results suggest that the CNG channel is required for the
detection of CO2, but blocking the channel with 0.1 mM L-cis-diltiazem still allowed for
some detection of CO2. EOG responses to odorants after L-cis-diltiazem application
resulted in an unexpected significant decrease from baseline. The EOG results with
GC-D knockout mice suggest that GC-D may not be necessary for the detection of
CO2. The GC-D knockout mice were able to detect CO2 as effectively as the wild type
mice. Odorant detection was mostly intact in the knockout mice, as expected. These
results emphasize the need for further investigation into the CO2 transduction pathway.



Aric F. Logsdon

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross
Fluoro-Ruby Labeling Assay Of The 6-OHDA Model Of Parkinson's Disease Pre-
Treated With A Selective Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitor

This study was conducted to examine the effects of desipramine in the 6-OHDA rat
model of Parkinson‟s Disease. The amount of destruction to dopaminergic neurons of
the nigrostriatal pathway and righting latencies on the inverted geotaxis board were
measures. Unilateral injections of 6-OHDA (8 &#956;g free base in 4 &#956;l ice cold
saline containing 0.01% ascorbic acid, (2&#956;l / 5min)) and Fluororuby (0.5&#956;l of
4% solution, (0.4&#956;L/min in 5 min)) in the Substantia Nigra pars compacta (SN) of
the right hemisphere resulted a degeneration of DA neurons in the SN, as well as a loss
of NE neurons. The Fluororuby injections concurrently labeled the SN as well as the DA
axons projecting to the striatum. Desipramine (DMI) is a selective norepinephrine
reuptake inhibitor. It protects the NE neurons from 6-OHDA and increases extracellular
NE by selectively inhibiting reuptake of the NE terminals in the SN. NE is presumed to
act as a compensatory agent for DA degeneration as neurodegenerative diseases, such
as Parkinson‟s disease (PD), progress. Therefore, protecting NE neurons from 6-OHDA
with the use of DMI should alleviate some motor deficits and increase FR labeling of DA
neurons in the SN, as well as axons projecting to the striatum. Fluororuby alone was
also injected into the left SN to label the neurons and the axons projecting to the
striatum of a control hemisphere. Two groups were used in this study: a 6-
OHDA/Fluororuby group, and a 6-OHDA /Fluororuby co-administered with DMI group.
Response latencies on the inverted geotaxis test and the occurrence of FR labeled
structures (FR+) were compared between the two groups. The DMI treated subjects
were expected to have more FR+ and shorter response latencies due to the protective
effects of DMI. The right SN in the DMI group showed more FR+ structures than the
right SN of the 6-OHDA group. More FR+ structures were seen throughout the
nigrostriatal pathway of the DMI group. The 6-OHDA group had longer righting latencies
compared to the DMI group one week and three weeks after surgery. These results
suggest that rats were able to make more axial movements by protecting the NE
neurons in the nigrostriatal pathway with DMI administered 30 minutes prior to 6-OHDA
exposure. Also more neurons survived in the SN and more FR+ structures were seen in
the nigrostriatal pathway from DMI neuroprotection.



Katarina J. Marinzel

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin


The Effects Of The Nintendo WII On Mood

Research has demonstrated that the Nintendo Wii has had many positive physical
benefits, such as lower limb mobility and better balance (Marmeleira et. al., 2008;
Brumels, 2009). The goal of this study was to investigate the relationship between the
Nintendo Wii and mood, focusing on the difference between playing individually and
playing with two other participants. The hypothesis of this study was that all of the
participants would show an increase in mood after playing Nintendo Wii Bowling.
However, the participants in the Wii socialization group would show a greater increased
mood on the Profile of Mood States (POMS) questionnaire than the participants in the
individual Wii group. The participants included thirty-eight female Allegheny College
students, aged eighteen to twenty-two, recruited from Allegheny College Psychology
classes. Measurements were obtained from participants before and after a twenty
minute experimental session, using the Profile of Mood States questionnaire to assess
mood. There was a significant interaction between playing the Nintendo Wii and mood;
however, there was not a significant interaction between group size (individual or
socialization) and mood.


Ryan Mazzone

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Academic Advisor: Jeff Cross

The effect of delayed glial inhibition by minocycline on measures of spontaneous
morphine withdrawal in Sprague-Dawley rats

Glial cells have been implicated as potential players in chronic pain, and have been
linked to opioid analgesia, opioid tolerance, and opioid withdrawal. This study looks at
the effect of the glial inhibitor minocycline on morphine withdrawal when administered in
subjects with pre-established opioid dependency. Female Sprague-Dawley rats (N =
15) were divided into control, SC minocycline injection, and IP minocycline injection
groups. After establishing morphine dependence, subjects in the injection groups were
given minocycline, following which all were allowed to lapse into spontaneous opioid
withdrawal. Measures of several behavioral variables, locomotion, and a withdrawal
severity score were used to see if there were differences between groups. In addition,
measures of analgesia and body weight were assessed and compared. The results
indicated an adverse effect of IP injections of minocycline, but a possible positive effect
of SC injections as evidenced by attenuation of withdrawal-induced weight loss.



Amanda L. McNeely

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White
The Relationship Between First Names And Inference Of Depression Symptoms

The relationship between the judged severity of depression symptoms and the
commonness and stereotypes of a person was explored with the hypothesis of
uncommon names being rated more depressed. The independent variables were the
commonality of a name (unusual and common) and gender. The dependent variable
was the level of depression inferred using a questionnaire and description of a mildly
depressed individual. One way ANOVAs and independent samples t-tests showed no
significant differences in total scores between males and females, uncommon and
common names, and an anonymous condition. An analysis of mean ratings for each
individual question by commonality, gender, and name, only revealed females having
higher possible friendship ratings. Likeability ratings were higher among common
names and although it was close, the difference wasn‟t statistically significant. Even
though there was a lack of significance, there was a trend in the data for uncommon
names to receive higher depression ratings.



Stephanie L. Miller

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Ozorak

The Psychology And Spirituality Of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction

This paper examines the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program, which
utilizes Buddhist mindfulness meditation and Yoga to reduce stress and decrease
chronic pain, from the fields of both psychology and religious studies. Stress as a
cultural problem leading to physical and mental problems, and MBSR‟s potential to help,
are discussed. Also explored is the cultural background of MBSR and its validity as both
a religious practice and psychological technique. It is concluded that MBSR is in a
unique position in the history of religion as both an entirely psychological technique
while also acting as a religious practice.



Douglas R. Montgomery


Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Using the MAM Developmental Model of Schizophrenia to Study the Therapeutic
Effects of Estrogen on Deficient Sensorimotor Gating
Epidemiological studies have shown that, compared to men diagnosed with
schizophrenia, women show first sign of psychotic symptoms on average 5 years later.
 In an attempt to model sensorimotor gating deficits in the rat, neurogenesis was briefly
disrupted with methylazoxymethanol acetate (MAM) during late gestation at embryonic
day 17 (E17). The aim of the current investigation was to explore the therapeutic
effects of estrogen on eliminating, or at least reducing deficient sensorimotor gating in
the prepulse inhibition (PPI) of acoustic startle response paradigm. Rats were tested at
pre- and post-puberty in an automated startle apparatus for their startle responses to
pseudorandom combinations of 110-dB acoustic pulses and 74-dB, 78-dB or 82-dB
acoustic prepulses. As compared with the control-group rats, the MAM-treated rats
showed no alterations in sensorimotor gating. In addition, treatment with 17&#946;-
estradiol did not cause an increase in PPI. The ineffectiveness of estradiol treatment to
enhance PPI of acoustic startle could be because it influences other symptoms of the
disorder or works in adjunct to antipsychotic drug treatment. However, a significant
trend was observed, with MAM-treated (15 mg/kg) and MAM-treated (20 mg/kg) rats
exhibiting less PPI on week 8 than on week 4. This suggests that something happened
around the time of late adolescence or early adulthood to cause this phenomenon,
similar to the temporal pattern of the emergence of symptoms in human patients.



Lauren E. Mursch


Major: Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

Behavioral Characteristics and Myelination in Sprague-Dawley Rats Prenatally Exposed
to Phencyclidine

Recent research has found irregular oligodendrocyte maturation in a rat model of
schizophrenia. It was hypothesized that such rats would have less myelination, and that
myelin would positively correlate with performance on behavioral assessments. This
study examined the integrity of the corpus callosum in the frontal cortex and
performance on pre-pulse inhibition (PPI) and a delayed alternation T-maze task in rats
prenatally exposed to phencyclidine (PCP) compared to controls. Few differences were
seen between groups; only average percent PPI was significantly different among
females. This was attributed to an ineffectively low does of PCP. Area of the corpus
callosum was strongly correlated with performance on the spatial alternation task but
weakly correlated with PPI, implying that the frontal cortex may not directly mediate PPI.



Edward J. Page
Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross

The Neuroprotective Effects of an Omega-3 Fatty Acid Enriched Diet on Alzheimer
Disease

Alzheimer‟s disease (AD) is a devastating neurodegenerative disease that mainly
affects the elderly. The diagnosis of AD has been increasing over the past few decades
and there is no cure for the disease. One way to reduce severity of AD is using different
supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids that may have a neuroprotective effect. This
study examined the neuroprotective effects of omega-3 fatty acid, specifically DHA, on
spontaneously hypertensive stroke prone rats (n= 8). Working memory was tested using
the Morris Water maze. The animals where assigned to a placebo group or the DHA
group and gavaged 450mg of either placebo or DHA. Histology was used to confirm
vascular abnormalities using Evan‟s Blue. The results showed that the DHA group had
fewer bleeds as compared to control.



Brittney A. Pagone

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Autism Spectrum Disorders and the Neurobiological Effects Caused by the Postnatal
Administration of Propionic Acid.

Propionic acid (PPA) is a weak organic acid found naturally in the gut of animals.
Elevated levels have been found to associate with seizures, developmental delay
symptoms, and gastrointestinal issues, all of which have been found in autistic patients.
This study included the valproic acid animal model of autism (VPA), in conjunction with
the postnatal administration of propionic acid, in order to examine the autism connection
even further. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were treated with PPA per orally and then
observed in tests of object familiarity and locomotor activity for autistic-like behaviors.
Overall, with regards to behaviors, rats who received both VPA and PPA treatments
were found to be more autistic-like than their counterparts in the experiment.
Histological procedures were also completed, yet results were limited. These findings
concluded that more research involving PPA and VPA should be done in the future.
There may be a relationship between the two acids and onset of autism, but the results
from this study were not significant enough to make such a statement.



Rebecca C. Payne
Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

Effects of an Acting Intervention on Self Confidence in College Students

This study examined the possibility of a correlation between acting intervention and self-
confidence in college students between interactive and individual acting groups, as well
as a control group performing simple math problems. Past research found a link
between self-confidence and acting. 30 participants engaged in either one of these
treatments or the control group and then completed the Personal Evaluation Inventory,
which measures self-confidence. Findings showed some marginal significance of the
difference between the experimental and control conditions. Limitations and
recommendations for further research are also discussed.



Sarah A. Raley

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

Effect of Antecedent Yoga on the Sustained Attention of Preschool Children

The purpose of the present study was to examine the effect of yoga on the sustained
attention of preschool children. A visual discrimination Jeff Cross-out task was adapted
for the present study to evaluate the participants‟ sustained attention before and after a
yoga session and before and after the control activity, story time. A comparison of the
difference scores of each activity revealed that, although the data was not statistically
significant, the trends of the raw data were consistent with the hypothesis that yoga
increases the sustained attention of preschool children. However, the findings of this
study suggest further research is necessary to confirm the relationship between yoga
and sustained attention. Future studies interested in the benefits of practicing yoga in
the classroom should consider larger populations and the relationship between
sustained attention and age.



Camille A. Robbins

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey
The effect of autism spectrum disorder on coping strategies used by parents:
A content analysis of two narratives


Despite the growing numbers of children being diagnosed with autism each year-limited
attention has been paid to the way this diagnosis affects a family. Previous research
had found that the ways that parents cope with autism is unique when compared to any
other childhood disorder. The present study conducted a content analysis of two
narratives written by parents of autistic children coding for specific coping mechanisms
to see whether coping strategies change over time and/or are affected by family
cohesion and adaptability level. Results were consistent with previous research and
showed that coping strategies evolved over time and were dependent on family
cohesion and adaptability level. The study concluded with a look at limitations as well as
directions for future research.



Luca J. Scalera

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

Hippotherapy and Therapeutic Riding:

Effectiveness of Therapy with Horses for Children with Autism

The increase in diagnoses of autism has led to a greater evaluation of treatment
possibilities. Animal-assisted therapies, specifically hippotherapy and therapeutic riding
are discussed pertaining to additional treatment options for children diagnosed with
autism. This study examined the effectiveness of therapeutic horseback riding for
children with autism, measuring verbal behavior, sociability, sensory responsiveness
and behavior (Autism Research Institute, 2009). Parental guardians of the participants,
one boy and one girl both age twelve, completed a treatment evaluation questionnaire
at the beginning of therapeutic riding sessions and again at the end of an eight week
period. A comparison of the pre and post evaluations on the effectiveness of treatment
and behavior analyses indicated that there was no improvement in the children;
however limitations in the study suggest a need for further research.



Elizabeth M. Shaffer

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White
The Applicability Of Self-Defeating Personality Disorder For A Previous Victim Of
Domestic Violence: A Case Study

In this research a case study was used to examine the applicability and validity of the
proposed Self-Defeating Personality Disorder (SDPD) to a previous victim of domestic
violence. Unstructured interviews were used to allow the participant, a middle-aged
female, the most freedom in telling her story. There was insufficient evidence found to
support the participant receiving a diagnosis of SDPD. Larger questions were raised
about the role of love in self-defeating behavior, outcomes justifying a diagnosis, the
environmental aspects contributing to self-defeating behavior, and the social
construction of the SDPD diagnostic criteria.



Erin M. Smith

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

The Effects of Chronic Diazepam Withdrawal on Subsequent Ethanol Consumption,
Withdrawal, and Induced Anxiolytic Behavior in Rats

The present study examined the effects of chronic diazepam withdrawal on (1)
subsequent ethanol consumption in a free choice paradigm (FCP) between water and
increasing concentrations of ethanol, and withdrawal syndrome and (2) subsequent
ethanol-induced anxiolytic properties in an elevated plus maze (EPM). Adult male
Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to a 21-day chronic diazepam (DZM) treatment (2
mg / kg / day, i.p.). Experiment 1, 24 hours after last DZM injection, employed the FCP
with ethanol concentrations (v/v) increasing as follows: day 1, 2%; day 2, 4%; day 3,
6%; day 4, 8%; days 5-12, 10%. DZM pretreated rats consumed higher amounts of
ethanol in FCP than SAL pretreated rats. Additionally, eight hours following the last
session, DZM pretreated rats exhibited higher ethanol withdrawal symptoms.
 Experiment 2, five days after last DZM injection, exposed rats to four ethanol (ETH)
doses (0.0, 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 g/kg, i.p.) and then measured percent of time spent in and
entries into open arms in the EPM. Overall, the present study supports that chronic
DZM withdrawal facilitates increased ethanol consumption. Whether ethanol
dependence is facilitated as well could not be determined, as DZM pretreated rats
exhibited elevated ethanol withdrawal signs but did not exhibit ethanol-induced
anxiolytic behavior.



Rachel L. Stolarski
Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Effects Of Mood And Gender On Memory: A Study On Mood Dependent Memory

The focus of this study was to examine the effects of gender and mood on memory
recall. This study was more specifically aimed at the phenomena of mood dependent
memory and how it affects the recall of participants, both men and women, in different
mood states. Prior research shows that people demonstrate better recall for a list of
words when their mood at test matches closely with the one they had when they initially
studied the list (Lewis, Critchley, Smith, & Dolan, 2005). Information regarding gender
and memory show that there may be differences in the way men and women process
emotions, and that women tend to have stronger physiological responses to emotions
(MacRae, 1994 & Koch, Pauly, Kellerman, & et. al., 2007).Participants were shown a
combination of two video clips, either positive or neutral, in order to study the effects of
mood dependent memory participants were given a list of 30 words to study between
the first and second clip and were then given two minutes to recall as many words from
the word list they studied as they could remember. Recall scores were recorded for
analysis. Results showed that Female participants had a significantly higher recall score
than male participants. There was no significant difference between the three
experimental conditions of mood. Results for this study were very different from the
results that were expected. Contrary to previous research and what was hypothesized
women had a higher overall recall score than men. The effect of mood dependent
memory was not seen in this experiment due to the non-significant difference between
mood conditions. The results indicate that perhaps mood dependent memory is not as
concrete of a phenomenon as research suggests.



Jacqueline A. Strahota

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Influence Of Violent Media On Imitative 'Copycat' Behavior

This project strived to examine the potential mechanisms behind how violent media may
elicit copycat violent behavior in particular individuals. By looking specifically the
mechanisms that could be responsible for some of the connections between violent
media and real world examples of aggressive and violent copycat behavior, the hope is
that this project could be useful in developing preventive measures to avert violent
incidents such as those that occurred at Virginia Tech and Columbine. My analysis of
real world cases and possible connections to the mechanisms discussed provided
information that suggested that monitoring exposure to violent media in certain
vulnerable individuals could help prevent violent „copycat‟ behavior in specific instances.



Emilia D. Symoniak

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: JW P. Heuchert

Persuasive Peers: The Impact of School Type on Perceived Peer Pressure

There have been a number of studies on the effects of peer pressure, but only a small
body of research exists on what influences the amount of peer pressure that
adolescents experience. This study looked specifically at the role that public versus
privat and coed versus single sex high schools had on perceived peer pressure as well
as the effect of attending a religiously-affiliated school. It was hypothesized that
students who attended a private high school would report having experienced greater
peer pressure than students who attended public school, with students from single-sex
private high schools producing the highest scores. Also, students who attended a
religiously-affiliated private high school were predicted to have experienced less
negative peer pressure than students who attended a non-affiliated school. While none
of the hypotheses were supported in the findings, the study does support some trends
found in previous research done on peer pressure.



Joelle E. Tighe

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Effects of repetitive oral administration of postnatal propionic acid in rats: a possible
animal model of late onset autism spectrum disorder

Propionic acid (PPA) is a short chain fatty acid and metabolic end product of enteric
bacteria. It is found to cause locomotor and behavioral changes when given through
intracerebroventricular infusion to rats. Children with late-onset autism have been
reported to exhibit autistic symptoms and gastrointestinal problems at the onset of the
condition after a period of otherwise normal development Administering PPA orally to
rats at 5-weeks and 8-weeks was used to model the behavioral changes in late-onset
autism. This model resulted in slightly increased locomotor activity and some qualitative
change. This contributes to the body of research on developing PPA as an animal
model of autism.
Scott M. Watkins

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark

The Effects of Acute Administration of Cocaine and d-Amphetamine on Motor
Funtioning

Current research has indicated that psychomotor stimulants have the effect of
amplifying motor functioning in rats. Psychomotor stimulants have been proven to be
associated with increased alertness, concentration and reaction rates; and because of
these studies an increase in motor activity and locomotor ability were improved. Studies
have also shown that the application of psychomotor stimulants increase energy and
decrease appetite in virtually all organisms that are under the influence of said drugs.
The mechanism of action neurologically for stimulants like cocaine and d-amphetamine,
acts as a reuptake inhibitor by blocking the reuptake of the neurotransmitters
Dopamine, Serotonin, Epinephrine and Norepinephrine. This allows for these
neurotransmitters to remain in the synaptic cleft for longer periods of time which
ultimately affects the central and peripheral nervous system. The areas that are
believed to be associated with increased motor activity are the nigrostriatal system and
the mesolimbic system. Both of the experimental conditions in this study act on these
areas. Additionally, the nucleus accumbens is also affected by these drugs with the
same mechanism, and this area of the brain is associated with reward. The current
study measured the proposed variable effects of cocaine and d-amphetamine on overall
motor functioning among the subjects. Recent studies have revealed that increasing the
application of psychomotor stimulants will result in an increased effect on motor
functioning. Other studies also have publicized that cocaine has a greater impact on the
increase in functioning, due to the aforementioned affects of increased energy and
alertness when compared to amphetamines. Ultimately because of the effects these
drugs have on organisms, these effects are believed to be inducing increase locomotor
activity and overall motor functionality. This means faster maze times and an increase in
natural reflexes along with many other results. The current study measured the effects
of the two experimental conditions on motor functioning tests on the 3 subjects. A within
subjects design was used during testing as each subject served as there own control,
as they were treated by all levels of the experimental conditions. Each one of the
subjects was first conditioned to each of the tests (stickmaze, wire grate, and hangtime)
and then baseline tests were conducted. Then each of the subjects were injected first
with cocaine intraperitoneally on an acute ascending order logarithmic schedule of 1, 3,
5.6, and 10 mg/kg. Moreover, each of the subjects were injected with the smallest dose
then given two days off between injections then the same dose for 3 experimental
testing days. Then each of the subjects was permitted a week resting period and then d-
amphetamine injections began using the same testing regimen. The study tested the
hypothesis that the injections of psychomotor stimulants would increase overall motor
functioning based on their performance for each of the tests. It also tested the
hypothesis that cocaine would have a superior enhancing effect on motor functioning in
comparison to d-amphetamine. The results showed a significant relationship between
baseline and experimental tests. The overall relationship being that the psychomotor
stimulants improved motor functioning for 2 of the tests based on the ANOVA results
that reveled a less the .05 relationship indicating significance. However, there was no
significant relationship found between the two experimental conditions, at .05, using the
same ANOVA tests likely due to the doses used for each drug, and/or the possibly of
the subjects‟ physical condition.



Justin R. Weimer

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: DeLamarter

Selling Out Subculture: An Analysis of the Sponsors of the Vans Warped Tour

The purpose of this project was to examine youth consumer behavior at the Vans
Warped Tour, which is an alternative rock festival that takes place annually in North
America. Using Petty and Cacioppo's Elaboration Likelihood Model of Persuasion
(ELM), advertisements from both corporate and non-profit organizations were collected
and analyzed for their content and aesthetic characteristics. The ads were
representative of specific peripheral routes of persuasion and heuristic strategies, which
further reinforces the findings of the ELM Additionally, this project was completed in
conjunction with the Communication Arts Department and is a combined project.



Emily C. West

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Calion Lockridge

Issues of Masculinity and Femininity in Dance

Objective: The purpose of this study was to analyze the perception of specific types of
dance movements as masculine or feminine in order to investigate the foundations of
stereotypes of male dancers as being effeminate and/or homosexual.
Methods: 46 participants volunteered to view and judge 4 trials of 24 movement clips
lasting approximately 5 seconds each in a single 20 minute session on one of 3 nights.
The participants then completed a short survey about their gender, knowledge of dance
history, dance courses taken at Allegheny College, and knowledge of Laban Movement
Analysis.
Results: Participants judged the feminine clips as significantly more feminine than the
masculine and non-gendered clips. They also judged the masculine clips as significantly
more masculine than the non-gendered and feminine clips. Non-gendered clips were
judged as significantly more masculine than the feminine clips and significantly less
masculine than the masculine clips.
Discussion: Because there was a significant difference in the judgments between
masculine and feminine clips, there is support for the argument that specific dance
styles and movements contribute to historically evident and present stereotypes
concerning male dancers and produce a certain kind of “filter” on the public‟s
assumptions of their effeminacy and homosexuality. The feminine movements used in
ballet and contemporary dance, homosexual attraction to dance, and historical
associations of the arts with women and effeminate and/or homosexual men all have a
part in America‟s perceptions of male dancers and assigning homosexuality as their
“default” sexuality.



Jessica L. Wilson

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Effect of prenatal exogenous corticosterone administration on sensorimotor gating and
hippocampal size: potential relevance to schizophrenia.

Aberrant ventral hippocampal functioning may underlie the dopamine dysregulation in
schizophrenia. Hippocampal tissue loss has been observed in the methylazoxymethanol
acetate (MAM) and prenatal stress animal models of schizophrenia, which may lead to
this aberrant functioning. Behavioral impairments relevant to schizophrenia, such as
deficits in sensorimotor gating, have also been expressed in these models. The purpose
of the present study was to examine the effect of direct prenatal exogenous
corticosterone administration on the development of behavioral and anatomical
impairments relevant to schizophrenia as compared to the MAM animal model of
schizophrenia. The MAM treatment group displayed higher percent of pre-pulse
inhibition than controls; therefore, MAM was not successful at inducing impairments in
sensorimotor gating. The corticosterone treatment group demonstrated a smaller
percent of pre-pulse inhibition than controls at the highest pre-pulse; therefore, prenatal
corticosterone produced a slight deficit in sensorimotor gating. The corticosterone and
MAM treatment groups were found to have slightly smaller mean ventral hippocampal
width than control, with the corticosterone group exhibiting the smallest width. Several
slides indicated a missing ventral hippocampus in the corticosterone group where it
should anatomically be located. These observations indicate that prenatal
corticosterone may have affected the development of the ventral hippocampus, but
additional research must be conducted.
Daniel R. Winston

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The Effects of Written Grammar on Face-to-face Communication and Impressions

Grammar‟s effects on both ratings of, and eye contact made when meeting, the author
were studied. Participants were given writing prepared by the researcher to represent
high or low grammar and rated the author. Participants met a confederate posing as the
author and had a conversation. It was hypothesized that high grammar would cause
higher ratings. This was supported for several traits. It was also hypothesized that high
grammar would cause more eye contact in meeting the confederate. This was not
supported. It was last hypothesized that ratings and eye contact by those given low
grammar would increase after the conversation to match those given high grammar.
This was supported for ratings but not for eye contact. Grammar affects impressions,
but closer interaction can erase them.



Christina S. Zanic

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Exploring The Role Of The Psychologist In The Administration Of Involuntary
Antipsychotic Medication To Restore Competency To Stand Trial In Criminal
Defendants

Restoring the competency to stand trial of mentally ill criminal defendants has remained
a contentious issue within the areas of both legal and clinical research. Although past
Supreme Court rulings permit the practice, psychologists are ethically obligated to
refrain from participating in the forced administration of antipsychotic medication to
incompetent trial defendants. Forced medication in these instances compromises the
well-being of the defendant for the sake of furthering the government‟s interest of
adjudicating a criminal case. A review of the relevant case law and an exploration of the
existing background knowledge will prove that research into more patient-centered
competency restoration programs is warranted.
2008-2009 Comp Abstracts

Omar Alsaadi

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Finding Connections: A Teenager With Autism And His Music Preferences

K.M. 1 is a 15 year old male who was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and autism at six
years of age. K.M. attends a regular school that has a dedicated division for autistic
children. Most of these children have an individual assistant to watch over them,
including K.M. His assistant has been with him for 6 years. K.M.'s parents play music for
him when he is feeling anxious, and it helps calm him. The purpose of this study was to
attempt to understand which type of music K.M. enjoys the most. After observing K.M.'s
behavior during 8 sessions of 4 different genres of music, the researcher was able to
conclude what type of music is most fitting for K.M. Once it was recognized which type
of music was most effective, a CD was made that was comprised of songs of this type.
This CD could be played when K.M. is feeling anxious, and would be more effective
than the type of music already played for him. By relieving K.M. of as much anxiety as
possible, quality of life would improve.


Heather A. Baird

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Medication Non-Adherence and Criminal Responsibility in Offenders with Schizophrenia
or Bipolar Disorder

Criminal responsibility can become a complicated issue when the supposed criminal is
suffering from a chronic mental illness such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. This
type of situation is complicated further when the patient is non-adherent to their
medication. Using the theory of meta-responsibility these patients would be held
accountable for their actions because they chose to be non-adherent which directly
caused their illness to relapse. There are numerous reasons why patients become non-
adherent including lack of insight, negative side effects of medication, stigma of mental
illness, and non-adherence as a coping mechanism. There are also several factors that
support a patient being held criminally responsible, such as intact insight when
medication is discontinued, learning from previous relapses, comorbid substance
abuse, public and individual safety and the idea that non-adherence is a choice. The
combination of these factors leads to the conclusion that, in the majority of cases,
patients who discontinue medication then commit a crime should be held criminally
responsible for their actions. Observation of a series of relevant court cases over the
past 140 years shows how the legal system has progressed from allowing the smallest
symptom of insanity to completely remove criminal responsibility, to taking into account
the etiology of mental illness in some recent cases.


Tamara E. Belden

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Examining Comics Theory: The Effect Of Character Facial Realism On Narrative
Engagement

The purpose of this research was to examine the effect of character facial realism on
narrative engagement during comic book reading. Participants (N = 31) read a comic
booklet through twice, featuring either low or high facial realism. After they completed
the task, they responded to a post-test questionnaire containing items designed to
measure narrative engagement. The majority of the measures asked participants to
respond to statements using a 6-point Likert-type scale (1 = "Strongly Disagree;" 6 =
"Strongly Agree"), including the transportation scale (Green & Brock, 2000; Green,
2004), entertainment rating, story-relevant belief survey, and Reysen likability scale
(Reysen, 2005). The remaining measures were cued recall for narrative events and an
open-ended prompt to describe the comic's protagonist. Response times for both
readings and completion of the questionnaire were also recorded. The results showed
little support for the hypothesis that facial realism affects narrative engagement.
However, microanalysis of the dependent variables indicated that facial realism did
affect how easily participants felt they could put the story out of their mind, as well as
how similar they found the protagonist to themselves.


Lesley B. Bittner

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

An Examination Of Maternal Stress Level Changes As A Function Of Ages Of Children
With Autism

The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between maternal
stress levels and the ages of their autistic children. A well-established questionnaire
was used to assess stress, pessimism, depression, and parent and family problems of
nineteen mothers of autistic children of various ages. It was found that mothers of
younger children were more depressed than mothers of older children. It was also found
that mothers who felt unable to provide peer support for their child were more stressed
than mothers feeling able to provide support for the child with regard to peer issues. The
findings in this study have important implications as they provide support for the idea
that stress can manifest in different ways for the mother at different stages of an autistic
child's life. Future research should be conducted due to the varying results of this study.


Christopher L. Brightbill

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman

Distinctiveness Heuristic Training

Since the introduction of the term in 1999 by Schacter, Israel, & Racine, the
distinctiveness heuristic has appeared in myriad experiments examining the cognitive
processes underlying false memories and the prevention of them. The distinctiveness
heuristic (DH) is used by most people as a means of determining the truth or falsehood
of their recognition according to a phenomenological experience of expecting to be able
to remember distinct information. While most of the literature on the DH manipulates
variables at encoding stages (presenting distinctive information at encoding such as
pictures instead of words), substantially less of the literature manipulates variables at
retrieval. The goal of the present research was to manipulate retrieval processes by
training participants to more effectively utilize the DH to guard against false memories
that are created by a DRM-like categorized list paradigm. Manipulation of the
independent variable included two between-subjects levels: simple feedback training,
and verbose feedback training. Simple feedback training was intended to increase
participant confidence in their answers, while verbose feedback training was intended to
increase their awareness of the phenomenological experience of expectation of
accuracy. It was hypothesized that simple feedback will reduce false recognition the
least because it does not explicitly target the DH. Verbose feedback should reduce false
recognition at a greater rate because it trains participants to use the DH more
effectively. Because differences between false recognition rates between groups is not
significant, the conclusion was made that participants will use the DH regardless of the
exact content of feedback, but that feedback is nevertheless necessary to reduce false
recognition rates.


Jonathan R. Davis

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

The Social Perceptions And Motivations Of The Gaming Culture Of College Students: A
Study Of The Allegheny Role-Playing And Gaming Organization (Argo)
This study examines the individual and global in and outgroup dynamics of the
Allegheny Role-playing and Gaming Organization (ARGO) of Allegheny College. Data
on the individual dynamics were gathered using the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI)
scale of empathy (Davis, 1980), along with two original surveys that were used to
measure some of the global in and out group dynamics of ARGO. The individual and
larger group dynamics are: what are the motivations and reasons behind a person
engaging in gaming, a person's reason for joining the gaming group, and social
perceptions of the group by both members and nonmembers of ARGO. The
Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI) revealed that ARGO members scored lower than the
general population in all four of the subtests. These subtests were the Fantasy,
Perspective-Taking, Empathic Concern, and the Personal Distress Scales. The general
surveys used to measure in and outgroup attitudes also revealed that nonmembers
perceive members as being more academically adept than the general population, while
members see themselves as having a normal aptitude, in conflict with actual academic
performance data. The survey also indicates that ARGO members are perceived as
following common "nerd" stereotypes, revealed by scores that indicate that non
participants in ARGO perceive its members as doing less academic work and engaging
in less physical exercise in comparison to the rest of campus.


Anna B. Dixon

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: William DeLamarter

An Examination Of A Parent's Ability To Conduct A Functional Analysis For Their
Child's Self-Injurious Behavior

Applied behavior analysis has been recognized as one of the most successful
treatments for children with autism. Many of these children engage in problem
behaviors with self-injury being the most dangerous and life-threatening. Spots in
treatment facilities are very limited though, and some parents do not have the means for
therapy. Many parents choose to conduct their own functional analysis and treatment at
home to save time and money. This study examines the many reasons why applied
behavior analysis is the leader in the treatment of self-injury and why parents should not
attempt to self-treat their children using this technique. Treatment using applied
behavior analysis is a long and arduous process that should be left to the professionals.


Vincent M. Donofrio

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Effects Of Speaker And Listener Sex On Social Perceptions Of Speakers With Speech
Disfluencies.
The purpose of the present study was to determine the effects of sex of the speaker and
the sex of the listener on the social perceptions of disfluent speakers (stutter).
Participants listened to an audio recording of either a disfluent male or female speaker
reading from an identical script and were then asked to complete a ten-item
questionnaire assessing perceived personality traits of the speaker. This assessment
provided measures of perceived ambition, intelligence, stress, self-esteem,
decisiveness, reliability, emotional stability, social adjustment, employability, and
physical attractiveness. The present study hypothesized that male participants would
rate disfluent speakers more negatively than female participants, male participants
would rate the male disfluent speaker more harshly than the female participants and
lastly, female participants would rate the female disfluent speaker less negatively than
the male participant would rate the male disfluent speaker. The first hypothesis was
confirmed for participant sex in self-confidence in that females rated speaker levels of
self-confidence higher and was then refuted in stress ratings as females also gave
higher perceived ratings of speaker stress than the male participants. The second
hypothesis regarding speaker sex was disconfirmed in that the male speaker was rated
as more physically attractive then the female speaker regardless of the sex of the
participant. The final hypothesis was disconfirmed by an interaction in the trait of
ambition in which female participants rated the male speaker more harshly than the
male participant rated the female speaker. This information is important in the
development of effective counseling of those with speech disfluencies.


Jessica A. Edmunds

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

Perceptions Of Children's Behavioral Responses To Physical Violence

This study focuses on how college students perceive children's behaviors when they are
exposed to domestic violence within their homes in different socioeconomic statuses.
Data was collected from Allegheny College students (N=109). Each student answered a
questionnaire based on a scenario that they were randomly assigned. The results
showed that students perceived that lower socioeconomic status had a higher influence
on children acting out than those in higher socioeconomic status. Students also
perceived that violence had no influence on whether children from both lower and upper
socioeconomic status would decide to do positive things with their lives, such as go to
college.


Pember B. Edwards

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White
The Effect Of Dental Procedure, Sex, And Prior Experience On Dental Anxiety In
Patients

This study was conducted to determine if dental procedure, sex, and prior experience
have an effect on dental anxiety in patients. Dental procedures were separated into two
categories: intrusive and extrusive. Fifty-two patients from two dental practices in
Western Pennsylvania completed a questionnaire about their perceived anxiety prior to
a scheduled dental procedure. Patients were also encouraged to state what caused
their anxiety if any was actually present. There were no significant results; however, a
few patients in this study reported that positive experiences with their present dentist
have made visitations less anxiety-provoking. This result is consistent with previous
research, which focused on developing specific, individualized coping skills to help
lower patients' dental anxiety.


Evanee B. Frank

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The Investigation Of Cues To Deception Through The Manipulation Of Cognitive Load

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of cognitive load on cues to
deception. Specifically, cognitive load was manipulated by altering the difficulty of the
task. The goal of the study was to determine how cognitive load affects the generation
of verbal and non-verbal cues to deception. It was proposed that cognitive load (high
task difficulty), as defined by recalling an event in reverse chronological order, would
decrease the appearance of non-verbal cues to deception (iconic and non-iconic
gestures) increasing verbal cues to deception ("um" and "uh"). Specifically, it was
hypothesized that high task difficulty would decrease iconic gestures more than the non-
iconic, while affecting verbal disfluencies equally. The results of the study revealed that
cognitive load was not sufficiently manipulated, as there were no significant effects.
However, the study was able to reveal main effects for type of statement, suggesting
that behaviors differ in the lie and truth condition.

Amy C. Gardner

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: William DeLamarter

Interpersonal Attraction: The Impact Of Physical Appearance Versus Personality Trait
Information

In interpersonal attraction, physical appearance and personality traits interact to form
impressions. Sixty male undergraduate college students between the ages of 18 and 22
provided ratings of overall attractiveness, interest in meeting, interest in working with,
likelihood of friendship with, likelihood of dating and likelihood to recommend a friend to
date a female model. The model was either of high attractiveness or low attractiveness
and described with positive trait adjectives or with a mix of positive and negative trait
adjectives. High attractiveness was rated the strongest consistently. Mixed trait
adjectives with high attractiveness was also preferred.


Annie T. Ginty

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin

A Matter Of Balance: Baseline And Recovery Pulse Is Lower For Individuals With A
Balanced Outlook On Life Stressors.

Objective: A significant change in heart rate and blood pressure during an acute
psychological stressor can indicate future development of cardiovascular disease
(Johnston, Tuomisto, Patching, 2008; Philips et al., 2005; Treiber et al., 2003; Carroll et
al., 2003). The purpose of this study is to examine the influence stressful events have
on an individual's cardiovascular reactivity to an acute psychological stressor, compared
to the influence one's perception of the same events have on cardiovascular reactivity.

Participants and Methods: Participants were recruited from an undergraduate institution
in northwest Pennsylvania (n=100). Participants filled out questionnaires to determine
perceived stress levels (Perceived Stress Scale), actual stress levels (Undergraduate
Stress Questionnaire), and anxiety levels (Beck Anxiety Inventory). Participants also
completed in a mental arithmetic task. Mean arterial pressure (MAP), pulse, systolic
blood pressure, and diastolic blood pressure were measured before, during, and after
the mental stressor.

Results: Participants who had a balance between their perceived stress and actual
stress had a significantly lower baseline and recovery pulse when compared with
individuals who had a low perceived stress level and a high perceived stress level.
There were no significant differences between perceived stress and cardiovascular
reactivity.

Conclusions: The perception of life events does not have an impact on cardiovascular
reactivity to an acute mental stressor, however, the perception of life events does have
an impact on baseline and recovery pulse rates.



Lucas R. Glover

Major: Neuroscience/Psychology
Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross
The Effects Of Dorsal Hippocampal Or Ca3 Lesions On Spatial Reference And Working
Memory In Two Spatial Tasks

The rodent dorsal hippocampus is necessary for normal spatial memory, where dorsal
lesions produce an important in this mnemonic function. It is not known which specific
subregions within the dorsal hippocampus mediate spatial memory. In the present
study, rats were trained in the radial maze before bilateral neurotoxic lesions of dorsal
CS3 (dCA3) or dorsal hippocampus (dHPC). Post-operative testing showed that both
groups were impaired on reference and working memory. The same rats were then
tested for spatial acquisition in the Morris Water Maze (MWM) and later tested on
retrieval. All groups acquired the task equally but only the dHPC, and not dCA3, group
showed impaired retrieval. Upon subsequent testing of working memory ability in the
MWM, dHPC rats, but not dCA3, showed deficits. Analysis of behavioral data followed
histological confirmation of lesion placement showing selective dCA3 and dHPC lesions
made by ibotenic acid and colchicine, respectively. These behavioral results suggest
that encoding of a reference memory may only depend upon the tissue available within
the hippocampus, where the ventral portion may compensate for the lost dorsal section.
Upon retrieval of this information, however, the dHPC is required and may utilize a
larger neural network for successful retrieval. As for spatial working memory, the dCA3
is differently involved in working memory where compensatory mechanisms can act
depending on delay and/or task-specific demands that recruit other areas besides the
dCA3.



Amy Graham

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

Female College Student's Formality And Politeness Use In Email

The purpose of this research was to examine the language used in emails written by
female college students. This study examined whether gender and status of an email
recipient affected the formality and politeness of the language used in the email.
Participants were asked to compose an email to a student or professor who were either
a male or female in order to request a meeting. The study's design included participants
typing an email to one of the four possible recipients in response to a prompt which
provided participants with a hypothetical scenario. The results of this study showed that
status was found to have a minimal impact on formality and that one's status did have
an impact on the type of politeness used. The hypothesis that gender affected either
formality or politeness was not supported.

Joshua J. Guthrie
Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: William DeLamarter

The Effect Of Emotionality And Auditory Complexity On An Indivudual's Subjective
Estimation Of The Passage Of Time

The main goal of this research was to examine the affect of emotional valence and
auditory complexity on an individual's subjective passage of time. This study presented
these two variables simultaneously in a video compilation to participants and recorded
their estimations of the temporal duration of that video. Results of this study did not
coincide with previous research on subjective time perception. However, more research
must be done because of the applicability of this information to advertising and
marketing. This information may be used to make effective, more efficient
advertisements that better serve to educate possible consumers about the usefulness of
a particular product.


Meghan E. Haddad

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin

The Effect Of Mindfulness Meditation And Intense Cardiovascular Exercise On Stress
Reduction

Cardiovascular disease has often been positively associated with stressful life events.
Certain long term behavioral changes, such as practicing exercise and meditation, have
been suggested as reducing the negative effects of stress on health. It was
hypothesized that meditation would cause the lowest cardiovascular response to stress,
followed by exercise, compared to a non-exercising, non-meditating control. Thirty
participants were placed in either a meditation, exercise, or control group based on
questionnaire answers. A mental arithmetic stressor was given to each participant and
heart rate and blood pressure were measured during baseline, stressor, and recovery.
Heart rate reactivity and systolic blood pressure reactivity did not differ significantly
between groups, but the control group had significantly lower diastolic blood pressure
reactivity than the exercise group. Differences in perceived stress among groups, the
law of initial values, and the lack of generalizability of laboratory stressors may account
for differences between the experimental results and the hypothesis.


Nicholas R. Joseph

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Patricia Rutledge
Parental Substance Abuse Problems: Predicting Alcohol And Marijuana Use In College
Students

This study examined various predictors of college alcohol and marijuana use,
specifically parental alcohol and drug problems, gender, grade point average,
perceptions of risk, and perceptions of environment. Prior research supports the
importance of parental factors on adolescents and college-aged young men and women
and their substance use behaviors. During the years of 2001, 2003, 2006 and 2008,
undergraduate students (n = 184, 334, 206, 153) completed the CORE Alcohol and
Drug Survey that inquired about their substance use behaviors. Findings showed that
risk perceptions had the highest significance in predicting alcohol and marijuana use in
students. Findings also indicated that despite previous research support, parental
problems were not significant in predicting alcohol and marijuana use in students.
Limitations of the study are noted and implications are discussed.


Ashton R. Kohler

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Adoption Processes: The Open Adoption Claim

In light of historical and social changes that have triggered a trend toward openness in
adoption practice, this review examines the implications of open adoption. As the
frequency of open adoptions is increasing, there is still much debate about whether this
type of adoption is best for the birthmother, adoptive parents and adoptee. Openness in
adoption is emotional and debatable and involves the balancing of interests and rights
among the adoptive triad. This review examines potential risks and benefits of open
adoption evidenced by research findings and explained through various leading
theoretical perspectives. It is suggested that while forms of openness are beneficial,
some forms can also be problematic and must be considered and practiced with
caution. Furthermore, the choice of adoption method should be a case-by-case matter
that focuses on the rights and development of the adoptee.


Sarah B. Leis

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin

Group And Individual Work While Brainstorming An Investigation Of Productivity And
Creativity

In order to explore the effect of group brainstorming on creativity and productivity, 90
undergraduates from a small, private, liberal arts college completed the Alternate Use
task both individually and in groups of three. Both creativity and productivity were found
to increase when working in groups as compared to brainstorming alone. Another
variable that correlated with creativity and productivity was comfort level when sharing.
Further, productive collaboration correlated with a positive opinion of group work, as
surveyed by participants. Researchers encourage the creativity and productivity-
enhancing factors of group brainstorming to be further explored so that more efficient
groups can be created in the future.


Kelli E. McCune

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

Facial Symmetry's Role In Personality Perceptions And Interpersonal Relationships

The aim of the current experiment was to test for perceptions of personality and
attraction based on facial symmetry. A within groups design was utilized. The
participants were 49 male undergraduate students between the ages of 18 and 22. The
same woman was used for both the symmetrical and asymmetrical photographs. Facial
features were altered using Photoshop to make the woman's face asymmetrical or
symmetrical. A questionnaire assessed the participants' perceptions of the woman in
the photograph. It combined the McCrae and Costa (1976) personality scale, the
Campbell (1999) romantic attraction scale and the Montoya and Horton (2004)
interpersonal attraction scale. An independent samples t-test was carried out. The
results showed that the symmetrical woman was perceived as significantly less
"neurotic" than the asymmetrical woman (t=-2.70, p=.01). There was no significant
difference between the symmetrical and asymmetrical groups for the remaining "Big
Five" personality traits or for interpersonal or romantic attraction. The results suggest
that perceptions of certain personality attributes such as neuroticism are influenced by
facial symmetry but that there are factors outside of evolutionary theory that influence
social perceptions as well.


Alexandra L. Papa

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

The Effect A Liquid Conservation Training Session Has On Preschoolers' Gender
Constancy Score

The present study assessed whether a conservation of liquids training session would
influence a child's gender constancy level. The independent variable was a
conservation of liquids training session. The dependent variable was the child's gender
constancy score. The participants were all attending the Meadville Children's Center
preschool and the experiment was conducted on the premises. The children were all
from the Meadville and Crawford County area. There were 16 participants in total, 5
girls and 11 boys of Caucasian and European decent. The subjects were between the
ages of 3 and 5. The experimental group experienced a conservation of liquids training
session and the control group received no training. Both conditions did the traditional
conservation of liquids task and then completed the Slaby and Frey (1975) Gender
Constancy Interview. It was found that age was a significant predictor of a child's gender
constancy score. It is suggested that conservation of liquid training sessions influenced
a child's understanding of conservation and more training sessions could benefit
children's understanding of conservation and its properties.


Alexandria Perryman

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Exploration Of The Vital Components Of Environmental Enrichment Effects On The
VPA Model Of Autism

Autism is a severe developmental disorder marked by a variety of impairments in
communication skills (both verbal and non-verbal), impairments in social skills, and
stereotyped or repetitive behaviors and restricted interests. Prenatal exposure to
valproic acid (VPA) on day 12.5 of gestation has been shown to create an effective
model of autism in rats. Researchers have used this model to investigate the
experiential and genetic components of the behavioral symptoms and etiologies of
autism. The current study focused on experiential factors contributing to autism by
comparing the effects of physical, social and combined environmental enrichment on
the development of rats prenatally exposed to valproic acid. Most previous research
refers to environmental enrichment as only an enhancement of the physical
environment in which the rats are raised. However, this study proposed that there may
be a strong social component involved in effective environmental enrichment and that
combining the physical and social components may produce the most effective results.
A variety of behavioral assessments including pre-pulse inhibition, locomotor activity,
stereotyped/repetitive activity, social familiarity preference, object preference, and the
elevated plus maze to measure anxiety suggested that both physical and social
enrichment play a role in reducing the symptoms that are seen in the VPA model of
autism. The results increase the possibility of reducing the behavioral symptoms of
autism through a therapeutic environment by further explaining possible contributing
factors.


Meghan L. Petroccia

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky
The effects of context on cross-language interactions during production

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of context on cross-language
interactions during language production. Second language learners of Spanish (N=39)
completed a picture-naming task, where they had to verbally name a picture in Spanish
as quickly and as accurately as possible. For half of the participants, the picture was
preceded by an English distractor word. While for the other half of participants, the
picture was preceded by a semantically related, English sentence. Reaction times and
errors were recorded for each participant. Afterwards, participants completed a
language history questionnaire. While the interaction showed that the sentence
condition's reaction times remained constant regardless of related and unrelated
distractors, the single word condition showed a strong trend of facilitation, suggesting
that context could diminish cross-language interactions. Results also indicated that
reactions times were slower overall for the sentence condition as compared to the
single word condition. This difference suggests that the first language's strength of
activation due to the presentation of the sentence is increasing the difficulty of switching
to second language production, thus indicating a decrease in cross-language
interactions. These findings suggest that future research should consider the effects of
context when studying cross-language interactions.


Courtney P. Rademacher

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The Effects of Leadership and Gender on the Generation of Verbal Disfluencies

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of leadership and gender on the
generation of disfluencies. The participants in the study were female, college
psychology students (N=54). For the study the participants worked in pairs and were
asked to have a conversation regarding a given hypothetical scenario. For each pair
there was a participant assigned the role of the leader and one assigned the role of the
partner. After their conversation was over each participant completed a questionnaire
which included questions from the Bem Sex-Role Inventory to assess how gender
played a role. Their conversations were recorded and the disfluencies "um," "uh," and
"like" were counted. The post-test questionnaires were also coded to find the gender
identity of each participant. The results found that the disfluency "uh" had a significant
effect on the role of the participant as leaders used it more than partners, which was
supported by previous research. There was also an interaction between role and the
gender of the participants. The results indicated the masculine partners used "uh" more
often than feminine partners. Future research is suggested to further understand the
results found in this study.


Michele M. Ramos
Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: William DeLamarter

Strength Of Religiosity & Priming Effects On Decision Making In Moral Dilemmas

The main goal of the current study was to examine strength of religiosity and priming on
decision making in moral dilemmas. Participants read a fabricated newspaper article on
either religious counseling in prison or mental health counseling in prison. They then
answered questions about morality, religion, and the likelihood of performing specific
behaviors in a moral dilemma situation. The results did not fully support the hypothesis
that strength of religiosity and priming a religious concept will affect decision making in a
moral dilemma, though the results obtained suggest several different future research
ideas.


Jamie E. Reints

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman

The Effects of Personal Music on a Sustained Attention Test of Variables of Attention:
An Externally Valid Study&#8232;

This study explores how listening to one's own personal music via iPod&#63722; affects
attention and overall performance on a computerized continuous performance task
(CPT) of sustained attention, Test of Variables of Attention (TOVA). Participants (N=24)
took a CPT Visual TOVA twice, in random order of music first (n=11) and silent first
(n=13). It was hypothesized that individual baseline differences of attention determined
whether the music condition is favorable and beneficial for the individual. Individuals
displaying greater baseline attention deficits as defined by attention group (low,
moderate, high) in the silent condition, performed significantly better while listening to
music, then optimally aroused participants at baseline, due to an increase in stimulation,
as explained through the theory of optimal stimulation (Zentall & Zentall, 1983). In
conclusion participants performing better in silence did worse in music and participants
performing poorly in silence did significantly better with music.


Alicia R. Revitsky

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Prenatal Exposure To Corticosterone And Postnatal Social Isolation As A Model Of
Schizophrenia In Sprague Dawley Rats
This experiment used four groups of animals: exposure to corticosterone prenatally
(n=10), exposure to social isolation postnatally (n=6), both treatments (n=8), or neither
treatment (n=5) to examine prenatal exposure to corticosterone and postnatal social
isolation as an animal model of schizophrenia. Corticosterone was administered through
a 50mg corticosterone tablet with a 21 day release cycle subcutaneously implanted on
day 16 of pregnancy in dams. Both prenatal exposure to stress and social isolation
during childhood and adolescence have been linked to the etiology of schizophrenia as
expressed through the characteristic deficit in prepulse inhibition that many individuals
with schizophrenia exhibit. A 2.0mg/kg d-amphetamine intraperitoneal injection was also
given in each group of animals 1 week after initial behavioral testing to see if this
enhanced any behavioral effects. Abnormalities in the hippocampus are often seen in
schizophrenic individuals specifically in the CA3 region and so this region was inspected
in animals from each group post mortem. Prepulse inhibition data were collected using
startle response amplitude on Responder-X software (Columbus Instruments) and
neuroanatomical effects results were examined using the nissl staining procedure, a
Nikon Eclipse 600 microscope, and the Spot Basic Computer Program. The results of
this study found that the corticosterone treatment alone group and the social isolation
alone group had significantly higher mean PPI and startle responses, respectively. It
was also found that amphetamine mildly enhanced startle response in the prenatal
corticosterone exposed subjects, but produced mild deficits in PPI in the socially
isolated group that was also exposed to corticosterone prenatally. No gross anatomical
differences were seen in the hippocampal CA3 region across treatment groups.


Rebecca K. Rich

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey

An Investigation Of The Use Of Imaginative Play In Class Room Settings Of Children
With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Children with ASDs have deficits in social skills and play. It has been thought that the
cognitive level of children with autism spectrum disorders reflects their social and play
developmental levels. It has been shown that a variety of social interventions are useful
in increasing the social skills. This investigation looked at how play and imaginative play
are being used to increase social skills in inclusive settings. It was found that play is the
natural way that typical children develop these skills, and in return autism social
interventions use play to increase these skills. There were no cases of specific use of
imaginative play to increase social skills. Implications of this study are that play should
be used more frequently to increase social skills in ASDs.


Kelly K. Rogers
Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Sarah Conklin

The Effect Of A 10,000-Lux Light Box On Mood Of Tanners Compared To Those Who
Do Not Use Tanning Beds

The use of tanning beds has become a popular trend that continues to increase. Many
reasons are given to why people use tanning beds; one in particular is mood
enhancement. However, the UV radiation emitted during tanning bed use is not healthy.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) lights have been studied to increase mood in people
not only affected by SAD, but also healthy individuals. The current study attempts to find
a healthier alternative to tanning for mood enhancement as it studies the effect of
10,000-lux SAD light on mood of tanners compared to non-tanners. Results show a
significant effect from bright light exposure, thus proposing a healthier alternative for
mood enhancement.


Carina D. Saary

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The phonological loop memory as a predictor in Foreign- accent comprehension

The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of the phonological loop memory
on foreign- accent comprehension. Foreign- accented speech can cause problems with
comprehension, such as misidentification of words and increased processing time for
the word or words. The nonword digit span was chosen to asses participants'
phonological capacities. After, each participant was then tested against two different
foreign- accented speeches, Japanese and Spanish, and then against non- accented
speech. The number of errors on a transcription task determined the subjects'
comprehension scores. While the transcription task was the only variable of
significance, the role of the phonological loop as an aid to language comprehension was
nonetheless taken into account. These findings suggest that future research is needed
to properly assess the loop's role in deviated language comprehension.


Krystle Sauers

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Impact Of Humorous Videos On Reducing Depressive Symptoms In College Students

The purpose of this study is to examine the health benefits of humor and its effects on
individuals with possible depressive symptoms. This study took place at Allegheny
College in Carnegie Hall in selected classrooms. In the first session, both male and
female college students (N=73, Neutral=34, Humor=39) completed a questionnaire
used to measure depressive symptoms at that present moment with seven different
subsets including mood, energy, mental, tension, optimism, satisfaction, and
companionship. Topic questions were based off of the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI)
(Beck et al., 1961), as well as the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale
(CES-D). During the second session, participants were randomly assigned to watch a
video montage (humorous or neutral) and shortly after took another questionnaire.
Findings included three significant interactions within the subsets of mood
F(1,71)=31.79, p=.001, &#951;2=.07, energy F(1,71)=26.152, p=.001, &#951;2=.07,
and mental well being F(1,71)=26.157, p=.001, &#951;2=.06. Overall data analysis
revealed that watching a video (especially humor) increased scores, in turn decreasing
depressive symptoms. Therefore, future research may involve the use of monitored
vitals as well as longer videos. It is predicted that in future studies, longer videos over a
period of time will increase the likelihood of more positive healthier symptoms in
participants.


Ann K. Schellberg

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman

Reaction Time of Older Adults in False Memory Training

Reaction time of older adults in a false recognition study involving training is an area of
research that has never been looked at prior to now. Older adults are known to be able
to use the distinctiveness heuristic to reduce false recognition, but not as effectively as
younger adults and false recognition is known to slow reaction time in comparison to
true recognition, except in older adults, perhaps indicating why they do not use the
distinctiveness heuristic as readily. This study looks at how false recognition training
influences reaction time in older adults and how this compares to their accuracy. In this
study, participants counted syllables for a list of words and then imagined or counted
syllables again for a series of categorized lists. At test, half received training instructions
and feedback to remember distinctive information. The most prominent finding was that
overall, training increased reaction time for all false memory types as well as for controls
and old items. It was also found that people who answered correctly to old items in the
syllable counting condition took longer than people who answered correctly in the
imagery condition, but if they were incorrect, this had no effect on their reaction time.


Christina B. Sutphen

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman
The Affects And Recovery Of Language And Motor In Preschoolers Who Have Endured
A Traumatic Brain Injury: A Case Study

C.S. a 3 year old boy endured a severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) at the age of two.
This case study focused on his development and recovery up to about one year post
injury. It examines his medical records and two different tests taken, the Developmental
Assessment of Young Children (DAYC) and the Bayley Scaled of Infant and Toddler
Development Third Edition (Bayley). These tests, medical records and his recovery and
development are analyzed in context to other studies involving preschool TBI and
recovery. This case study specifically explores the recovery and rehabilitation methods
for language and motor functioning. First hand observations were also conducted at
therapy sessions and in more natural environments. It also examines different factors
such as family participation in therapy and recovery and other factors especially
regarding CS's case. It was found that CS is making extensive progress especially in his
cognitive domain, but seems to be having difficulty compared to his peers in motor
functioning domain. There are suggestions for further research about preschool TBI as
well as limitations in this research.


Michele P. Tanous

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Lexical Access In Second Language Acquisition: References Paths To Activation In
Bilinguals

The purpose of this study was to examine bilingual speech production in the context of
a picture-naming task. This study specifically observed how the number of language
pathways a participant accessed influenced reaction time of picture-naming. This study
also examined recovery patterns and the neurolinguistics of bilingual brain injury by
examining the literature of bilingual aphasia. Participants who participated in this
picture-naming study were all normal, healthy students enrolled in a French course
(N=15). The picture-naming experiment consisted of four conditions (L1 Related, L2
Related, L1/L2 Related, and L1 Unrelated), which were classified as Number of
Pathways. While significant results were found between all four conditions, the results
did not support the hypothesis that when a person sees their L1 and L2 simultaneously
(L1/L2 Related condition) they will respond faster. The results indicated that the
presentation of L1 alone facilitated reaction times. This study's sample size was too
small to distinguish significant results in fluency. Therefore, these findings suggest that
further research should examine more fluent bilinguals, and possibly use bilingual
aphasics to further examine recovery patterns.


Laura S. Tuller
Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: William DeLamarter

Futile Or Functional? Psychological Perspectives On The Effectiveness Of Candidate
Endorsement

This work seeks to investigate the social psychological principles at work in political
endorsement. There is much discrepancy in arguments regarding the persuasive nature
of endorsements provided to political candidates, and how well they work to influence
voting behavior. The issue is examined through three main lenses. Communicator
credibility is assessed by breaking it down into elements of expertise and
trustworthiness. The elaboration likelihood model is used to discuss the ways in which
individuals process persuasive communication, either through the central or peripheral
routes to persuasion. Audience variables influencing which route is used was also
examined, as it plays a key role in determining what type of persuasive communication
will be most effective in eliciting attitude change. Finally, the theory of planned behavior
is explored as a model to offer insight into the contexts under which individuals are
motivated and able to act based on their attitudes. This is especially relevant to the
issue of political endorsement, as attitude change is only meaningful if it results in actual
votes. Ultimately, the research reflects the narrow psychological conditions under which
one must craft a political endorsement in order for it to be an effective means of
persuasion and subsequent action.


Kaitlin M. Walsh

Major: Psych/Other
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Effect Of Structured Nature Of An Art Project On Mood, Engagement, And Enjoyment In
Children

The present study explored the effect of a structured and unstructured art project on the
mood, engagement, and enjoyment of children. In the first session, students filled out a
single question rating scale assessing their mood and then they listened to a lesson on
the uses and functions of mandalas. Students then colored either a structured or
unstructured mandala and filled out a post-activity questionnaire assessing mood,
enjoyment, and engagement after they were finished coloring. The second session was
almost identical to the first session except that students who colored a structured
mandala in the first session colored an unstructured one during the second session and
the students who colored an unstructured mandala in the first session then colored a
structured one. Results of the study do not completely support the hypothesis. However,
the results did generate interesting findings.


Jennifer L. Warren
Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

Detecting Deception Through Facial Expressions And Emotions

The purpose of this study was to examine whether emotional expression and gaze
influenced the ability of participants to detect deception through nonverbal cues. The
study also explored the confidence, perceived difficulty, perceived value, and enjoyment
of detecting deception in the task. Participants were shown short video clips of a
confederate without sound and asked to focus on nonverbal cues to determine whether
the confederate was telling a truthful or deceptive statement. After they viewed all of the
clips and made their responses, they were given a short post-test questionnaire that
asked them to rate their confidence in their answers, perceived difficulty of the task,
perceived value of the task, and the enjoyment in the task. The hypothesis of the study
was that expression and gaze would affect the ability to detect deception. However, the
results gave little to no evidence to support the hypothesis except for a main effect of
expression in the results for confidence and perceived difficulty ratings.


Michael P. Wick

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Stress Induced Development Of Schizotypal Symptoms

In order to create symptomology similar to schizophrenia in humans, pregnant Albino
Norwegian rats were placed under stress on gestation day 12. Previous studies have
shown that this procedure greatly increases the likely hood of the young rats developing
schizophrenic like symptoms. Because schizophrenia is associated with delayed onset
the rats were tested at both youth and adulthood to examine if any deficits in prepulse
inhibition could be found. This study, however, failed to replicate previous findings.
During the study it became noticeable that the stress did have a profound effect on a
number of the mothers.


Amanda S. Wieser

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: William DeLamarter

Designing Public Health Messages In Accordance With The Elaboration Likelihood
Model: Increased Risk For Type II Diabetes Calls For Intervention In At-Risk
Populations
The elaboration likelihood model (ELM) of persuasion is evaluated in this paper in
accordance with variables of message-learning to determine which variables together
make a persuasive message that is arguably better than others. Aspects of motivation
and ability to process messages are linked to the message recipient's individual
responses to the argument presented. Public health messages can be designed with
these factors in mind to persuade recipients to adopt attitudes in support of healthy
lifestyle changes. More specifically, adolescents and young adults at an increased risk
for developing type II diabetes can be targeted through the specific creation of
persuasive messages to realize the importance of diet and exercise in the prevention of
obesity and type II diabetes. Recommendations are made for the development of a
public health message that accounts for factors of message-learning in cooperation with
the ELM to provide a comprehensive argument in favor of attitudes that support
preventative measures of type II diabetes in at-risk populations.


Matthew D. Winters

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Sleep Quality and Athletic Performance: Is There a Relationship between Sleep Quality
and Athletic Performance in College Students?

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between sleep and athletic
performance among college students. A correlation study was done in which students
completed a onetime test, completing questionnaires about their sleep quality and
performing the Harvard Step Test as the measure of athletic performance. The results
concluded that no significant relationship is present between the Pittsburgh Sleep
Quality Index and the Harvard Step Test as the measures of sleep quality and athletic
performance. However, significant relationships were recorded between student's
gender, class year, and individual answers on several questionnaires including both the
self-designed exercise and sleep questionnaires. These results indicate that while no
significant results were found between sleep quality and athletic performance in this
particular study, more research is needed to understand the potential relationship
between sleep and athletic performance among college students in order to better
understand the effects sleep quality has on student's lives.




2007-2008 Comp Abstracts
Jessica A. Adamczak



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Patricia Rutledge



Relationships Among Healthy Lifestyle Factors in College Students.



Physical activity, nutritional intake, and alcohol consumption are indicators of overall
health. Because healthy practices established in adolescence typically carry into
adulthood it is important to understand these behaviors as a way to offer information
and targeted intervention programs. This study examined the correlation among activity,
nutrition, and alcohol consumption in a sample of college students (N=298). Results
indicate a positive relationship between total daily exercise and fruit and vegetable
consumption. Male participants exhibited a negative relationship between time spent
sedentary and heavy drinking frequency; female participants displayed a positive
relationship between amount of daily exercise and frequency of alcohol consumption.
Findings imply that students who are eating healthy also are engaging in higher levels
of physical activity, but are consuming more alcohol.




Alicia M. Adatepe



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Gwen Kenney-Benson



Confidant Attributes and Outcomes of Secret Revelation



While most research on secrecy has focused primarily on what attributes a person looks
for when choosing to share a secret, but little research has focused on the outcomes
that result following secret revelation. The present study examines the relationship
between participant reported positive and negative outcomes and the confidant‟s ability
to offer new insights, discretion, and presence of absence of judgment. Participants
were asked to recall two times that they shared a secret, one resulting in a positive
outcome and another resulting in a negative outcome. They then answered questions
about what they expected from their confidant prior to revelation and the actual
attributes of their confidant following revelation. Overall, participant‟s rated their
confidant better able to offer new insights, more discreet, and less judgmental in secret
revelations that resulted in positive outcomes versus those that resulted in negative
outcomes. Results showed a positive correlation between more positive outcomes and
the ability to offer new insights, with no correlation between negativity rating and ability
to offer new insights. There was a negative correlation between more negative
outcomes and discretion (more negative outcomes correlated with less discreet
confidants), with no correlation between discretion and positivity rating. Finally, there
was a positive correlation between negative outcomes and confidant judgment, with
participants reporting more judgmental confidants in secret revelations that resulted in
negative outcomes. The results suggest a complex relationship between confidant
attributes and outcomes of secret revelations. Implications for future research are
discussed.




Julie Agostinelli

Major: Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman

Protective Effects of Maternal Folic Acid Supplementation against Valproic Acid
Teratogenicity in an Animal Model of Autism

Previous studies have shown that maternal folic acid (FA) supplementation can reduce
the deleterious effects of prenatal valproic acid (VPA) exposure. The current study
sought to evaluate different doses of supplementation. Four groups of Sprague-Dawley
rats received VPA only, VPA and 5 mg/kg of FA, or VPA and 10 mg/kg FA; one group
served as a control. Assessments of social recognition, object preference, elevated plus
maze and histology of the amygdala were performed. The control rats and the rats in
the VPA + 5 mg/kg FA group demonstrated intact social recognition as shown by a
decrease in olfactory investigation across trials one through four. The VPA-only rats and
the rats in the VPA + 10 mg/kg FA group did not show intact social recognition. The
control rats and the VPA + FA-supplemented rats also spent more time investigating the
novel object than the familiar object. As expected, the VPA only rats spent more time
with the familiar object. The results of the elevated plus maze were inconsistent.
Histology indicated similar cell densities between the control and VPA +5 mg/kg groups.
Rebecca B. Aiken



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Gwen Kenney-Benson



Adolescent Self-Identity Development: The Impact of Christian Youth Ministry



This paper attempts to critique the effects that Christian youth ministry programs has on
the development of self-identity in adolescents. Through interviewing youth ministers
from the Pittsburgh area and researching popular youth ministry material, it discovers
the guidelines that youth ministry must follow in order to have a beneficial or a negative
impact on an adolescent‟s identity development process.




Ellis G. Arato



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Deb Dickey



Feminine Sexuality: A Comparison of the Sexual Double Standard with a Year of
Cosmopolitan



Magazines contain images that send societal messages about female sexuality. I
analyzed featured article images from Cosmopolitan during the year 2007 for messages
regarding sexuality, sexual behavior and its implications. A total of 151 images were
extracted from the articles and were coded for sexual suggestiveness, physical position,
body display and facial view. Empirical research was conducted on the sexual double
standard of our western society. A discussion involved the message of sexuality that
Cosmopolitan sends the female population and a comparison of these messages to
empirical research about the double standard evident in our society.




Rachel M. Atchley



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman



The Relationship between Depression, Anxiety, and Cognitive Performance in Older
Adults.



The current study explored how cognitive neuropsychological testing could predict
levels of depression and anxiety in older adults. Various subtests from the Weschler
Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) III and Weschler Memory Scale (WMS) III were
administered to 48 participants aged 60-80 years (37 female and 11 male), and these
data were subsequently compared to their Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) II and Beck
Anxiety Inventory (BAI) scores. Performance on working memory, short-term memory,
episodic memory, semantic memory, and processing speed were all assessed.
Questionnaires concerning individual information, such as gender and years of
education, were also analyzed in relation to BDI and BAI scores. Ultimately, poor
performance on working memory tasks predicted higher depression scores, a
preference for later hours as measured by the Morningness-Eveningness Questionnaire
(MEQ) predicted higher anxiety scores, and poor performance on semantic memory
tasks predicted higher anxiety and depression scores. On average, women had higher
anxiety and depression scores than men. Interestingly, age did not significantly
correlate with cognitive performance, nor did it predict anxiety or depression scores.
This research offers evidence that poor performance on specific types of memory tasks
can predict anxiety and depression scores in older adults.




William S. Babe
Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Ozorak



The Use of Role Models to Study the Effects of Stereotype Threat on Mathematical
Abilities



The purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of role models on
stereotype threat during a mathematical exam. The participants were college students
from introductory level psychology courses and the general population of the college.
The participants were asked to read a brief, opening paragraph giving the names and
accomplishments of either female, male or female and male mathematicians and
scientists and then solve 8 math problems. The researcher then calculated the number
of problems answered correctly for each participant to determine whether the sex of the
participant and the gender orientation of the paragraph had an effect on the number of
problems correctly solved. The hypothesis was that men, overall, would score higher
than the female participants. It was also hypothesized that women reading the female
oriented paragraph would score higher than women reading the control paragraph,
while women reading the male paragraph would score the lowest. None of the
hypotheses were confirmed.




Krystal M. Baldwin



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross



The Neuroprotective Effects of Caffeine, Nicotine, and Minocycline Against an AF64A
Rodent Model of Alzheimer's Disease
Recent research has shown that there are a variety of drugs that have the potential to
prevent symptoms of Alzheimer‟s disease (AD). The focus of present research has
been on prospective treatments that will maintain memory and learning processes in
people afflicted with AD. These treatments can act on the system in a variety of ways-
including the increase of acetylcholine or reducing the activity of microglia. Caffeine and
Nicotine act on the activity of acetylcholine while minocycline is thought to have an
affect on microglia. This study (n=20) compared the neuroprotective effects of caffeine,
nicotine, and minocycline against a rodent model of AD in tasks involving the following:
spatial memory via the Morris Water maze, object preference, and the ability to learn
IRT>t schedules by pressing a lever in the operant chamber. The rodents were
surgically administered AF64A bilaterally into the nucleus basalis of the brain to create
AD-like symptoms. Histology was used to confirm cell death in the brain and compare
ventricle size. The results showed that there were a variety of effects in the study
between the AD group and the treatments in the behavioral tasks assessing spatial
memory, object preference, and the ability to learn an IRT>t schedule.




Abby E. Bodenlos



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Gwen Kenney-Benson



ADHD and the Exposure to Current Environmental Risk Factors: An Analysis of the
Past and Present



The purpose of this research is to analyze the relationship between attention-
deficit/hyperactivity disorder and environmental risk factors. The increasing numbers of
ADHD diagnosed in American today is alarming and the role of genetics alone in
explaining this increase seems unlikely. Implications have been made that
environmental factors may be related to the expression and severity of the ADHD
related behaviors. Therefore, an analysis of possible current factors may explain this
increase in diagnoses of the disorder. Also, an analysis of the dynamic interactive
relationship between individual child and environment helps to put into perspective the
likelihood of current environmental risk factors as playing some role in the expression of
ADHD symptoms. This analysis concludes by suggesting that future research needs to
be done in regards to the relationship between ADHD and current environmental risk
factors.



Meghan Borden

Major: Neuroscience

Neuroprotective Potential of Post-surgical Administration of Rapamycin for Increasing
Grafted Cell Survival of Fetal Dopamine Grafts in 6-Hydroxydopamine Lesioned Rats.

Parkinson's diease is one of the most common degenerative neurological diseases and
is characterized by the gradual and selective deterioration of dopamine neurons in the
nigrostriatal pathway resulting in motor deficits and possible impairments in cognitive
functioning. Currently, none of the known pharmaceutical treatments provide
successful, long-term therapy and most of them produce unwanted side-effects.
Therefore, researchers have recently begun examining alternative methods of treatment
to solve the problem. For example, transplantation of fetal mesencephalic cells into the
dopamine-deprived areas may be a promising therapeutic option because it is the only
method that attempts to replace the neuronal tissue damaged throughout the course of
the disease. Unfortunately, only five percent to twenty-five percent of the transplanted
cells survive. The most notable causes underlying cell death inculde the activity of the
brain's immune system via microglia activation and the excitotoxic cascade. Rapamycin
has been shown to exhibit possible antiproliferative and immunosuppressive abilities.
The current study aimed to examine the potential of rapamycin for improving the
survival and efficacy of the grafted cells. Fifteen rats with unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine
lesions of the substantia nigra were divided into three experimental groups. graft
survival was assessed both behaviorally and histologically and complex analyses of
variance showed that none of the results were statistically significant. It is worth noting
that (G + R) Group, which received rapamycin and a fetal graft, showed subtle
behavioral improvements and slightly more integration of the grafts into the host tissue.
Although further research is necessary the results of the present study provide evidence
for rapamycin's potential as a successful neuroprotective agent.




Elisa K. Bosilovic



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman
The Effects of Prenatal Folic Acid Supplementation on Socio-Sexual Behaviors in
Sprague Dawley Rats: The Valproic Acid Animal Model of Autism



 The purpose of this study was to analyze folic acid‟s preventative effects within the
valproic acid animal model of autism, specifically looking at socio-sexual behavior.
Treatment groups consisted of 2 control dams, 2 dams that were administered
VPA+folic acid (FA) and 2 dams that received VPA and plain peanut butter. Plain
peanut butter and peanut butter containing folic acid was administered to dams 2 weeks
prior to VPA administration and throughout gestation after dams were impregnated.
VPA was administered on day 12.5 of gestation to VPA male subjects at 460 mg/kg,
female VPA subjects at 375 mg/kg and in all VPA+FA subjects at 460 mg/kg (reasons
for dosage variation are indicated within study). The socio-sexual behavior of subjects
was assessed with social recognition testing, object preference testing and sexual
behavior testing. Social recognition testing evaluated investigation time across 5 trials
when treatments were in the presence of the same ovariectomized stimulus rat from
trials 1-4 and a novel stimulus rat for trial 5. Social memory was indicated by a decrease
in investigation time from trials 1-4 and a sharp increase in investigation during trial 5.
Social recognition analysis revealed intact social memory for male controls and
moderate social memory for the male VPA+FA subjects. VPA subjects displayed a
deficit in social memory as investigation times were consistent across trials. In female
control and VPA rats, social memory was not apparent and VPA+FA females only
displayed a sharp increase in investigation time in trial 5. Social memory was not
evident otherwise. Object preference testing used a Y-pronged maze and evaluated
investigation time for subjects (not including gender as a factor) when presented with a
familiar and novel object stimulus. Analysis of scores used a proportion that indicated a
preference for novelty for scores above .5 and a preference for familiarity for scores
below .5. Control and VPA+FA subjects displayed a preference for novelty as was
hypothesized and the VPA subjects displayed a preference for familiarity, as is
characteristic in autistic individuals. Sexual behavior evaluated proceptive and receptive
behaviors in male and female subjects during a single 15 minute trial where subjects
were paired with either control males or females. Results for male rats indicated
increased mounting frequency in VPA+FA males compared to control males. Otherwise,
there were no other significant results revealed for male or female subjects.




Danielle R. Brigham
Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross



 The Neuroprotective Effects of Shunting and Ketamine in the Kaolin-Induced Rat Model
of Hydrocephalus.



Shunting is a very common treatment for hydrocephalus, however because numerous
complications can arise from shunting, other treatment methods are necessary. The
present study looked to see if the neuroprotective ketamine could be more beneficial to
hydrocephalic animals. Adult Sprague-Dawley rats were made hydrocephalic by
injecting kaolin (250 mg/mL in 0.9% saline) into the cisterna magna. Four different
experimental groups were tested: kaolin, kaolin/ketamine, kaolin/shunt, and
kaolin/shunt/ketamine. Rats treated with ketamine (10 mg/kg ) were given daily
injections, and rats receiving shunt treatment had a shunt implanted into their lateral
ventricle (0.5 mm posterior; 1.6 mm to the right of bregma). Weight, motor ability, and
cognitive ability were examined through various behavioral testing. Brain tissue was
stained with Fluoro-Jade C to analyze areas of cell death. Ventricle area was also
measured in all experimental groups and a control group. All animals lost a significant
amount of weight after hydrocephalus induction; however there were no significant
differences across the experimental groups. In the motor tasks, the animals treated
with ketamine seemed to perform more poorly than the non-treated animals. In the
cognitive task, the shunted animals performed significantly worse than any other
experimental group. No cell death, as indicated by Fluoro-Jade C staining, was
observed in the brain tissue; however the kaolin animals had significantly larger
ventricular area than the control animals. All animals receiving a treatment also had
slightly smaller ventricular area than the animals not treated. Ketamine seemed to play
a minor role in decreasing ventricle size, but it may have actually contributed to poorer
performance on motor and cognitive tasks. Thus, continued research is needed on
hydrocephalic treatment methods.



Shawn Campbell

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Rod Clark

The Histology of Drug Use in Western Civilization: Why We Are Ethically Obligated to
Legalize Medicinal Marijuana
This paper examines the historical use and abuse of drugs throughout the development
of Western Society. Analysis begins with the first single-celled organism, and moves
forward to modern times. The paper examines the arguments made for and against the
historical banning of marijuana, namely the scientific evidence. Argument is made that
the banning of marijuana was not based in scientific evidence, but rather in moral,
economic, political, and emotional reasoning. The paper examines drug use policy in
general. The paper concludes that under certain controlled conditions we are morally
and ethically obligated to provide relief from suffering. The paper argues that marijuana
can provide such relief.


Amanda R. Cargould

Major: Neuroscience

Currently every year 730,000 Americans experience a stroke (Sauerbeck, 1998). It is
projected that by 2050 this number will increase to more than 1 million (Oddone et al.,
2000). Stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States, taking
approximately 150,000 lives each year (Sauerbeck, 1998; Oddone et al., 2000). It is
well documented that much cell loss due to stroke is found in the hippocampus,
specifically in the CA1 region. As an attempt to naturally counteract this cell loss, the
brain adapts and changes; this is referred to as plasticity. Discovering how to encourage
plasticity and recovery from brain damage has been the focus of many studies. Based
on research exercise could be a viable treatment plan for recovering stroke. The aim of
this present study was to determine if an enriched environment would improve recovery
in rats that experienced occlusion of the common carotid artery. The rats were
measured using 6 behavioral tests; elevated body swing, nose dot test, catalepsy,
akinesia, negative geotaxis, and a qualitative assessment of neglect and movement in
an open field. There were 4 treatment groups; sham-enriched environment (EE), sham-
non-enriched environment (NEE), stroke-EE, and stroke-NEE. Ischemia was induced by
occluding the right common carotid artery using a clamp for 60 min. Only one behavioral
test, negative geotaxis yielded significant results; main effect of time and interaction
effect between time and surgery.



Michael F. Chen



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Gwen Kenney-Benson
The Use of Coping Strategies by Athletes



The purpose of this study was to assess different types of athlete‟s use of coping
strategies. The 40 (female = 17, male = 23) athletes that participated in the study
completed revised versions of the SIQ (Hall et al. 1998) and COPE inventory (Carver et
al. 1989). Results revealed no gender, sport type, or year in school differences in using
coping strategies prior to a competition. The mean comparisons revealed imagery to be
the most commonly used coping strategy. Future research might be more specific in
type of athlete, age, and years of experience with that sport.




Lisa M. Coleman



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



Fear Of The Dentist: Examining The Effect Of Dental Anxiety On The Dental Stroop
Test



The purpose of the present study was to examine whether instituting a negative mindset
with anxiety provoking questionnaires will negatively influence performance on the
Dental Stroop test. Half of the participants were given the questionnaires prior to the
Stroop tests and the other half of the participants were given the questionnaires after
the Stroop tests. It was hypothesized that completing the questionnaires before Stroop
tests would cause a decrease in performance on the Dental Stroop test in comparison
to the Neutral Stroop tests. Overall dental fear will also be compared to the times on
the Dental Stroop and overall Stroop index. It was hypothesized the greater the dental
fear, the higher the time on the Dental Stroop and the higher the Stroop index. No
significant results were found.
Anna E. Creighton



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross



Regional Auditory Sensitivity to Conspecific Mating Calls of the Gray Treefrog, Hyla
versicolor.



This project focuses on the vocal advertisement behavior of the gray treefrog, Hyla
versicolor, and how social exposure affects the functioning of the upper-level (midbrain
and forebrain regions) auditory system of the anuran brain. This system acts in the
sensory processing and generation of calls, as well as mediating hormonal activity. To
view the effects of social influence, a comparative study was conducted between
regulated call exposure and a regional neural metabolic activity measure. Twenty-three
gray treefrogs were caught in Wisconsin during May 2007 and taken to the
neuroendocrinology lab at the University of Notre Dame. The frogs were divided into
two groups and either exposed to a chorus recording for four hours at night or exposed
to continuous white noise (static). After three weeks, the frogs were sacrificed; the
brains were removed and immediately frozen. Once at Allegheny College in October
2007, the brains were sectioned and the slides were frozen. A procedure of labeling the
enzyme cytochrome oxidase was preformed on a random sample of slides per frog, and
Nissl cell staining was done on the remaining slides. Comparisons of the distributions
of cytochrome oxidase activity and the neuronal distributions were made based on cell
count and gray-shade intensity observations. These data were compared to other
works on anuran social behavior. The information from this study can be applied to the
evolutionary development of social behaviors and the relationship between the
environment and social behavior.




Katie A. Cross



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky
The Effects of Gender Identity and Authority on Interruptions



The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of gender identity and authority on
positive and negative interruptions. In the first session, female college psychology
students (N=72) completed a version of the Bem Sex-Role Inventory. The participants
were scored as either feminine or masculine and the two extremes were contacted to
return for the second session (N=48). In the second session, mixed and same-gender
dyads were formed and a leader was randomly assigned. The dyads were asked to
come to a solution to a problem solving scenario within 10 minutes. Their conversations
were recorded and their interruptions were coded as positive or negative. After they
completed the task, they answered a post-test questionnaire. Results indicate that
partners made more interruptions than leaders, and these were usually positive
interruptions. However, the interaction between the gender of the leader, the gender of
the partner, and their respective roles was more indicative of interruption patterns than
gender or authority alone. These findings suggest that future research should consider
contextual factors when examining verbal interruptions.




Jeffrey M. Day



Major: Psychology

Minor: Communication Arts



Comp Advisor: Patricia Rutledge



Drinking Behavior of College Student-Athletes: A Look at Binge Drinking and Negative
Consequences



This study examined alcohol use among college students, specifically the differences in
heavy episodic drinking (binge drinking) between student-athletes and non-athletes.
Prior research indicates that student-athletes consume more alcohol, binge drink more
often, and experience more negative consequences related to alcohol use than non-
athletes. Undergraduate students (N = 298) completed a questionnaire that inquired
about their drinking behaviors. Findings indicate that varsity status, sex and residence-
type have significant effects on reports of binge drinking. Athletes also report
experiencing a higher number of selected negative consequences. The limitations of
the study are noted and prevention interventions are discussed.




Mia M. DiIanni



Major: Psychology

Minor: Mathematics



Comp Advisor: Searle-White



The Mother-Daughter Relationship: Correlation with the Occurrence of Eating Disorder
Behaviors



The present study explored the mother-daughter relationship as a correlation with
eating disorder behaviors, as measured by the Eating Disorder Inventory - 3 (EDI-3),
the Family Environment Scale (FES), and a measurement called “My Mom”. It was
hypothesized that there was a correlation between the two, meaning that females would
have a greater chance of partaking in eating disorder behaviors if their relationship with
their mother was poor. The mother daughter relationship was defined by the mother‟s
autonomy towards the daughter, the mother‟s responsiveness towards the daughter,
and the mother‟s demanding habits towards the daughter. Fifty-three female
participants ages seventeen to twenty-two completed the aforementioned tests. The
hypothesis was confirmed. Significant correlations were found between the
determinants of the mother-daughter relationship as measured on the three subscales
of the EDI-3 and the occurrence of eating disorder behaviors. The subscales of the
EDI-3 were low self-esteem, personal alienation, and perfectionism. Additionally,
correlations were also found between the family environmental factors measured and
the occurrence of eating disorder behaviors based on the three subscales of the FES
tested. The subscales of the FES were cohesion, conflict, and achievement orientation.
Along with these findings, some of the subscales of the FES were found to be
correlated with the determinants of the mother-daughter relationship.




Jennifer M. Estes



Major: Psych/Other

Comp Advisor: Josh Searle-White



Psych Common Childhood and Adolescent Experience in Opiate Addicts



Spanish Diferencias entre la cultura latina y la cultura norteamericana con respecto a
los factores de riesgo y de prevención de la drogadependencia



Psych Four categories of environmental risk factors have been shown to increase a
person‟s chance for developing Substance Abuse Disorder and include: 1)
psychological functioning 2) peer relationships 3) stressful life events and 4) family
environment. This study investigates what childhood and adolescent experiences are
common among a group of substance users who are addicted to opiates and among a
control group made up of participants who have never had a history of substance
abuse. In this study it was hypothesized that risk factors common to opiate addicts
include parental conflict and divorce, physical or sexual childhood abuse and other
negative life events. The study‟s results accepted the hypothesis and it was found that
physical/sexual abuse and parental conflict/divorce, as well as association with deviant
peers, were the risk factors most common among this group of opiate addicts. It is
beneficial to research common environmental risk factors among specific groups of drug
abusers because it provides the potential to focus on appropriate skills, coping
mechanisms and therapy methods in treatment and prevention programs for those
individuals who experience these common events. With this information new treatment
methods can be implemented in treatment programs which would result in higher
recovery rates then the current treatment programs and the number of people initiating
drug use would also decrease due to prevention programs.
Spanish Hay muchas diferencias entre la cultura latina y la cultura norteamericana con
respecto a la drogadependencia. Más especificamente, cuando una persona se muda
de su país de origen a los Estados Unidos se experimenta un concepto se llama „la
aculturación.‟ Un resultado de la aculturación es que las personas mudadas se
adoptan la cultura dominante y hay muchos cambios con respecto al ambiente familiar,
el estado psícologico, los grupos de amigos y la ocurrencia de los eventos negativos.
Además, con estos cambios hay un aumento en el consumo de drogas y los estudios
actuales han encontrado que las personas que son immigrantes en los Estados Unidos
tienen problemas más graves con la drogadependencia. Este estudio mirará las
diferencias entre las culturas y investigará como la toxicomanía difieren entre las dos.
También, estudiará el efecto de la aculturación y los factores de riesgo en la adicción
de drogas entre los heroinómanos norteamericanos y los heroinómanos latinos.



Corey Fling

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Rod Clark

Effects of Lactation Exposure to Thimerosal in Rats

In this study two pregnant dams received 7 shots. One received 6 mg/kg thimerosal and
the other received 6 mg/kg saline via per oral gavage injections on lactation days 5-11.
The 25 offspring were tested for motor function on an incline, choice discrimination in a
Y maze, and toy recognition in a T maze. Results from the incline suggested a slight
motor deficit in the thimerosal group during the first trial. Results from the Y maze were
inconclusive. Results from the T maze suggest deficiencies in the recognition on the
part of the thimerosal group. Follow-up studies are necessary to progress.



Richard M. France



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman



The Effects of Physical and Social Environmental Enrichment during Adolescent
Development in the VPA Rat model of Autism.
Autism is a severe developmental disorder marked by a variety of social impairments
including a preference for familiarity, deficits in communication, and stereotyped
behaviors. Prenatal exposure to valproic acid (VPA) on day 12.5 of gestation has been
shown to create an effective model of autism in rats. Researchers have used this
model to describe the experiential and genetic components of the behavioral
heterogeneity and etiologies of autism. The current study focused on experiential
factors contributing to autism by examining the effects of physical and social
environmental enrichment on the development of rats prenatally exposed to VPA.
Enhancement of both social and physical environment involved housing animals in a
constantly changing and highly interactive environment. Most research refers to
environmental enrichment as an enhancement, or increase in stimuli, of the physical
environment in which a rat is raised. However, the current study proposed that there is
also a strong social component to a housing environment that should be enriched by
increasing the variety of social behavior present. Specifically, social enrichment was
achieved by housing rats together that belonged to different treatment groups (control &
VPA); a social concept defined as a mixed peer environment. A multitude of behavioral
assessments suggested that both physical and social environmental enrichment played
a role in reducing negative behavioral alterations such as familiarity preference, anxiety,
and other irregular social behaviors that are commonly reported in the VPA model of
autism. The results also begin to support the possibility that environmental factors
throughout development may be associated to marked neurological differences
regarding the cross sectional area of the amygdala, a key limbic structure believed to
underlie many of the social deficits found in autism. The results increase the possibility
of reducing the behavioral symptoms of autism through a therapeutic environment by
explaining possible environmental contributors.



Sarah Goetz

Major: VESA
Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Ozorak

The Accessibility of the Meadville Market House to Local Low-Income Individuals and
Families: Problems and Solutions

The Meadville Market House is a great asset to the local community. However, statistics
indicate that Market House consumers tend to fall within the middle to upper income
range. This project seeks to understand why local low-income individuals and families
typically do not shop at the Meadville Market House. Additionally, some possible
solutions to the situation purposed.

Daniel Goldstein

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky
The Effect of Context on First Impressions



The purpose of the present study was to determine whether or not context has an effect
on first impressions. Participants watched one of three video clips featuring a target
person participating in one of three activities: basketball, Halo (videogame), and
studying. Then, participants were asked to fill out a ten-item personality assessment of
the person in the video clip. This personality assessment rated across the Big Five
personality dimensions: extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, emotional
stability and openness to experiences. It was hypothesized that participants would rate
the target significantly differently across the three contexts. The hypothesis was
confirmed for agreeableness, furthering the body of knowledge on first impressions and
impression formation.

Adrianne Louise Grand

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky

The Effects of Various Aspects of Imagery on Ease of Motion Scores and Athletic
Performance in Novices and Collegiate Athletes

The two studies in this paper examined the use of imagery on ease of motion and
athletic performance. In experiment 1, type of imagery (facilitating/ inhibiting) and time
of imagery (before/during) were investigated. Participants completed two sessions in
this study and each required jogging on a treadmill for six minutes. Arm carry, head tilt
and distance traveled were measured. All three variables were significant for type of
imagery (facilitating/inhibiting). Facilitating images resulted in higher ease of motion
scores that inhibiting images; arm carry=facilitating (M=77.56, SD=6.02), inhibiting
(M=75.04, SD=5.77), head tilt=facilitating (M=2.56, SD=1.22), inhibiting (M=3.93,
SD=1.49), distance/pace=facilitating (M=14:44 minutes, SD=3:40), inhibiting (M=15:41
minutes, SD=4:02). The second experiment investigated type of imagery
(facilitating/inhibiting) and environmental context (congruent, runner:
cheetah/incongruent, runner: dolphin). In addition to the previous dependent variables,
physiological variables and self perception variables were measured. Arm carry was
significant for facilitating images; facilitating (M=80.50, SD=4.15), inhibiting, (M=78.62,
SD=4.28).




Molly I. Guest
Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark



The Immediate Withdrawal of Valproic Acid and Its Implications on the Discontinuation
of Anti-Epileptic Drugs.



This research investigated the possibility of conditioning epilepsy and it‟s relation to
pseudoepilepsy as well as the withdrawal effects of the anti-epileptic drug Valproic Acid
(VPA). Data were collected using six Sprague-Dawley rats. The first procedure
consisted of attempted Pavlovian conditioning that was unsuccessful. This suggests
that both epilepsy and pseudoepilepsy are not conditionable. Also, this implies that
many of the theories surrounding pseudoepilepsy are invalid until further research is
done. The second procedure found that VPA does have withdrawal effects. The rats,
after chronic injections, were taken off the drug abruptly which resulted in seizures.
This indicates that anti-epileptics drugs (AED‟s) should be weaned out of a humans
system, answering part of the debate among neurologists on how fast to withdrawal
AED‟s




Laurie H. Hanniford



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Searle-White



Fitting the Pieces Together: Communication in a Child with Autism



M.E. ¹ is a ten year old male who was diagnosed with autism at two years of age.
During the summer months, M.E. is paired with a Therapeutic Staff Support in order to
improve his behavioral and communicative functioning. The purpose of this study was
to discover if levels of communication with the TSS varied both within different contexts
and across contexts for a child with autism. After viewing the child in these different
social contexts and analyzing the observations, the researcher was able to conclude
what works best for the child. Once it was determined which activity program is most
effective for the child, suggestions were made on how to build on the child‟s interests,
actively engage the child‟s attention, and provide regular reinforcement. By improving
the child‟s communication abilities, an increase in social interaction will most likely take
place. From there, the child will have greater opportunities to be exposed to appropriate
behavior models (Koegel et al., 1992) and hopefully have an increase in learning
opportunities. Once communicative capability is increased, quality of life can
substantially improve. ¹ pseudonym




Jonathan E. Harms



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman



Chronic vs. Acute Intermittent Nicotine Administration as a Neuroprotective Against 6-
OHDA Animal Models of Parkinson‟s Disease



Parkinson‟s disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the loss of
dopamine neurons in the substantia nigra projecting to the corpus striatum. Though a
hereditary component of PD has been suggested, only 5-10% of PD cases are related
to an autosomal-dominant gene, and twin studies have mostly failed to show a genetic
link. Correlational studies have shown a dose-dependent inverse relationship between
smoking and PD. These findings support an involvement of environmental factors in
PD, and have lead to studies on nicotine, the primary alkaloid of tobacco smoke, as a
possible neuroprotective agent. However, nicotine is also a strong poison, and is
known to cause addiction. In this regard it is perhaps not surprising that protection
afforded from nicotine shows differential involvement. Protective effects of nicotine
seem to depend on the dose of nicotine used, the rate at which it is delivered, and the
target area. One reason for these considerations is that chronic exposure to nicotine is
sufficient to cause nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) desensitization. While
nAChR desensitization was formerly thought to be its protective trait, the requirement
for receptor activation to witness its protective effects is growing in acceptance. These
studies have lead to the exploration of acute nicotine treatments. The present study
was designed to compare more directly the differences between chronic and acute
schedules of nicotine administration. It was predicted that an acute and intermittent
nicotine administration schedule would have the most meaningful protective effects
against a 6-hydroxydopamine induced hemiparkinsonian lesion. On the other hand, a
chronic intermittent dosing regimen was expected to cause receptor desensitization,
thus inhibiting nicotine‟s neuroprotective effect. Though the results were not of
statistical significance, the overall trend found from a relatively novel motor task was in
agreement with their predictions.



Caitlin Hesch

Major: Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross

The Effectiveness of Fetal Cell Grafts in Repairing Kainic Acid Lesions to the CA3 of the
Hippocampus

The hippocampus, a structure known for its role in learning and memory, is often the
target of damage of neurodegeneration. Impairment to the hippocampus has been
linked to diseases like Alzheimer's (Richardson et al., 2003) and temporal lobe epilepsy
(Kobayashi et al., 2001). Although the hippocampus is one of the only structures in the
brain with the ability to generate new neurons into adulthood (Eriksson et al., 1998),
these new neurons lack the ability to repair the damage done by these diseases. Fetal
cell grafting has been proposed as possible treatment for hippocampal degeneration, as
it has previously been effective in treating Parkinson's disease in rat models and human
clinical trials. This study focuses on the ability of embryonic age 15d hippocampal fetal
cells to repair kainic acid (KA) lesions to the CA3 of the hippocampus and restore
spatial learning capacity in rats. To examine this question, three groups or 7 rats were
used: a non-lesion-non-grafted group, a KA lesion-non-grafted group, and a KA lesion-
fetal cell grafted group. The lesions were effective in removing CA3 tissue and
significantly reducing rats' ability to learn water maze. The grafted group showed
survival of fetal cells in all animals. However, the grafts were unsuccessful in repairing
the lesions, and did not restore rats' ability to learn the water maze. The grafted group
was significantly worse than the controls at learning the maze, suggesting that the graft
surgery was more of an insult to the brain. In the future it will be necessary to find a
method to increase the survival and integration of the fetal cells into the host tissue.
This could be possible with neurotrophic factors or an enriched environment, as both
have been shown to increase the survival of newly generated hippocampal neurons
(Frielingsdorf et al., 2007; Nilsson et al., 1999).

John J. Heurich

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman



The Effect of Lesions in the Hippocampus and Perirhinal Cortex on Various Tasks of
Declarative Memory: Evidence of a Double Dissociation?



Declarative memory is an important aspect of everyday functioning of humans, by
allowing for the formation of episodic and semantic memories. Declarative memory has
also been shown to exist in nonhuman animals, and is reliable on the medial temporal
lobe system. Some evidence has also shown specificity of structures within the medial
temporal lobe system. Hippocampal and peri-postrhinal lesioned rats were subjected to
a radial arm maze task and a spontaneous object recognition memory task in an
attempt to replicate a double dissociation found by Winters et al . During histochemical
analysis it was determined that the peri-postrhinal lesion group did not sustain
substantial damage and therefore had to be removed. No rats were removed from the
hippocampal lesion group. Hippocampally lesioned animals did not show a significant
impairment on the radial arm maze task when compared to surgical controls.
Hippocampally lesioned animals also showed no significant impairments on the
spontaneous object recognition task when compared to surgical controls.




Jenny Huang



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Gwen Kenney-Benson



The relationship between perceived appropriate parental control and perceived actual
parental control and self-esteem of college students



Few studies have investigated the relationship between perceptions of appropriateness
and perceptions of actual parental control. This study examines the relationship
between perceived appropriate and perceived actual parental control. College students
(N=141) completed measures evaluating self-esteem, perceived appropriate parental
control and perceived actual parental control. As perceived actual parental control
increased, self-esteem decreased. Students‟ perception of appropriate control is
positively correlated with their perception of actual control. Mean differences between
appropriate and actual control were compared to self-esteem. It was found that self-
esteem was only negatively correlated when perceived actual control was higher than
perceived appropriate control. When perceived actual control is equal or less than
appropriate control, it is not negatively correlated.




Jessica L. Humphrey



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Heuchert



Perfectionism in College Students: Parental Expectations, Fear of Failure, and
Achievement Motivation



The purpose of the study is to explore the relationship between parental expectations
on perfectionism, fear of failure, and achievement motivation in college students.
Questionnaires used to assess a person‟s parental expectations, fear of failure,
achievement motivation, and perfectionism were administered to 70 undergraduate
college students. Several hypotheses predicted the relationships between the
variables. The findings of this study have important implications as they provide further
support for the notion that parental expectations affect students‟ perfectionism. Future
research needs to be conducted due to the mixed results of this study.




Jochen O. Hutzenlaub



Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Searle-White



Social Overload: Crowding, Mood States, and Punishment



The effect of crowding on mood states, as scored by the POMS Standard Form and a
short questionnaire was assessed in 16 male participants with a specific focus on
aggression. The study was influenced by the research done by Cox, Paulus, & McCain
(1984) in several prisons across the United States. Crowding was not found to have an
effect on aggression, but a notable effect on fatigue and vigor were documented. A
philosophical discussion examining the two main theories of punishment (retribution and
utilitarianism) and a branch of utilitarianism known as rehabilitation follows. These are
then applied to crowding in prisons. Rehabilitation arguably offers the best option for
dealing with offenders because it offsets retributivist arguments, and satisfies utilitarian
arguments.




Edward J. Jenkins



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White



Mike and Tom: A Documentary Film



For my senior comprehensive project I decided to make a 26-minute documentary
about my uncle Thomas Longo and my friend Michael Day titled Mike and Tom.
Thomas was diagnosed with manic depression when he was 21 years old. Michael was
diagnosed with dysthymia, or chronic depression, when he was 18 years old. The
movie is about how these two men have lived their lives and coped with their disorders.
The purpose of this project was to successfully combine psychology and the
documentary tradition to better convey their story.
Maria C. Kennihan



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman



The Effects of Time and Imagery on Explicit Autobiographical Memories.



Memory cannot always be relied upon because it is prone to errors. This study focused
on source- monitoring errors, which refers to retrieving memory but confusing the
source of where that memory has been derived. In previous research, participants made
source-monitoring errors whereby memories/beliefs from the past were confused with
newly imagined memories/beliefs. The current study asked whether how recently
participants imagined an event affected whether they would make source-monitoring
errors. This study hypothesized that memories/beliefs from the past would be similar to
past-imagined events, leading to source-monitoring errors, yet different from recently
imagined events, helping participants avoid making source-monitoring errors.
Undergraduate participants (N=43) from Allegheny College rated their confidence that
events in their life had occurred on a Life Inventory Events (LEI) questionnaire that had
both low confidence memory items and high confidence memory items (Session 1). All
participants returned two weeks later to take the LEI a second time (Session 2). After
completing the LEI the first time, participants were assigned to an imagery group.
Participants imagined the low confidence life events immediately after completing the
LEI in Session 1, just prior to completing the LEI in Session 2, or not at all. It was found
that the imagery in Session 1 group had the most source-monitoring errors, and that the
imagery in Session 2 group had the same amount as the group with no imagery
(control). These results imply that time has a significant effect on memory errors.



Yuling Kristin Khor



Major: Psych/Other

Comp Advisor: Gwen Kenney-Benson
The Psychology of Snacking: A Diary Study of Academic Workload and Attitudes
Towards Between-Meal Snacking Amongst College Students



This study investigated the relationship between snacking behavior, intake and
preferences amongst college students with their personal and environmental factors:
the academic workload, stress levels, attitudes, gender, age and lifestyle. One hundred
participants completed a snacking diary recording their daily academic assignments and
snacks consumed for four consecutive days, noting their affective states (bored,
stressed, or sad) each time. Total snack intake differed significantly with student
housing, meal plan availability, class year, and the number of regular meals. However,
total snack intake was not significantly different based on academic workload, gender,
BMI, diet, or exercise. Boredom and stress levels correlated positively with snacking
frequency, and negatively with percentage of healthy snacks consumed. Overall ratio of
regular: healthy snacks consumed were 2:1. Healthier snacks were more preferred by
females, while there were no distinction with class year, BMI, and nutritional knowledge.
The results affirmed the general understanding of the basic physiological-metabolic
hypothesis on snack intake quantity and frequency, and supported the findings of earlier
research that individuality and the environment interact closely to determine snacking
behavior and preferences.



Jonathan J. Klabnik

Major: Neurochemistry

Novel Dopamine Prodrugs: Possible Future Antiparkinsonian Agents

Parkinson's Disease was first diagnosed in 1817 as a motor disorder; however
knowledge of this disease has progressed widely and it is now known to be a
deterioration of dopamine cells within the substantia nigra. The leading treatment fort
this disease is levodopa, a precursor of dopamine. However, this compound eventually
begins to stop affecting the body, a side effect known as the "wearing off" effect. In this
study, two novel compounds and their synthetic strategies, by means of glycosylation
and peptide bonding, are discussed. Also, a physiological study method is introduced to
test for such compounds.



Kristin M. Lane
Major: Psych/Other

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



The verbal overshadowing effect: Factors that affect accurate identifications



The purpose of this study was to examine what affect that mode of communication
(written vs. spoken) and type of description (suspect vs. scene) had on verbal
overshadowing in witness identifications. Participants viewed a short video of a staged
crime and then were asked to either provide a written or spoken description of either
just the suspect from the video, or the entire scene. The control group did not provide
descriptions and completed a filler task instead. Then participants were asked to
identify the suspect from a 2x3 photo spread. It was hypothesized that participants who
provided spoken descriptions would have greater identification accuracy than
participants who provided written descriptions. It was further hypothesized that
participants who provided a spoken description of the entire scene would have the
greatest identification accuracy. The second hypothesis was supported. The results of
the study are discussed within the confines of current research.




Krista M. Laux



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman



The Effects of Dopamine Degeneration in the Substantia Nigra of Rats on Spatial
Memory



This study explored the hypothesis that dopamine degeneration, whether induced by
the neurotoxin 6-OHDA or the pesticide rotenone, would produce deficits in spatial
memory in rats. Fourteen rats were subjected to unilateral substantia nigra lesions then
tested on amphetamine induced rotational behavior and performance on the Morris
water maze. Seven control rats were also tested on the water maze. Statistical analysis
confirmed that lesioned rats performed worse on the water maze than control rats, with
rotenone rats performing the worst, but neither trial number nor its interaction with the
group was a factor in their performance differences. These results suggest that
dopamine degeneration in the substantia nigra negatively affects spatial memory, and
this could stand as an animal model of memory deficits in human Parkinson‟s disease.




Rachel Learned



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



Interviewing Strategies: Perception of Small Talk and Note-Taking



The present study examined interview techniques of small talk and note-taking, and
their impact on the experience of the interviewee. The interviewer conducted 62 one-on-
one interviews with first-year students from Allegheny College. Results showed that the
use of small talk positively influenced participants‟ perceptions of the interview
experience and the attributes of the interviewer, as well as the quantity and quality of
their responses to the interview questions. In contrast, the use of note-taking seemed
to have a more limited, but still somewhat positive influence on these variables.
Although the use of note-taking was expected to negatively influence the perceptions
and performance of the participants, if anything, results showed a small benefit with
note-taking. Furthermore, the study showed interesting (though not significant) trends
in which using small talk while taking notes had the best effect, but not using small talk
while taking notes had the worst.



Ashley E. Lloyd



Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Joshua Searle-White



An Evaluation of Strategies Used by Teachers to Benefit Children with ADHD



The present study was conducted to investigate the strategies used by teachers to
benefit children with ADHD in the classroom. Sixteen people residing in Pittsburgh,
Pennsylvania and Meadville, Pennsylvania participated in the study. The participants
were presented with a survey that asked questions about behavior, social, and
academic interventions used for children with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
From the data collected, the researcher found behavior management charts and
academic modification to be beneficial, but no social intervention that was significant.




Julie Mach



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman



Attention-shifting factors in spatial route learning and eyewitness memory consolidation



The role of attention in memory formation involves both covert and overt orientation
mechanisms towards select features in a given environment and influences how
memories for objects and events are encoded and stored in the brain. This study
investigated the influence of an eyewitness event on endogenous attention and memory
for a spatial navigation task and additionally manipulated retention period to assess the
role of sleep versus wake periods on memory consolidation. Participants (N = 58)
watched a 6.5 minute video that traveled through a suburban neighborhood and then
completed scene sequencing and aerial map-drawing tasks either immediately (short
delay), after 12 hours of diurnal wakefulness (long day), or after 12 hours overnight with
a period of sleep (long night). Half-way through the video, crime group participants saw
a purse robbery occur and the male assailant flee the scene, while control participants
saw a male and female walk pass each other with no interaction, and participants were
later asked to identify the man‟s clothing and the event location from separate photo
arrays. A video x delay between-subjects ANOVA revealed that the crime group had
fewer correct sequencing hits for scenes after the event than did the control group, and
within subjects comparison of hits before and after the event indicated this difference
was because crime group hits decreased significantly after the event compared to
before while the controls‟ did not . No differences were found across delay groups for
scene sequencing but accuracy for map-drawing showed an interaction between video
and retention time (short vs long delay) because the short delay crime group scored
significantly higher than the short delay control group, but the long delay crime and
control groups did not differ. Although there were no differences in identification
accuracy between groups for the target‟s clothing or location, the event did produce a
shift in endogenous attention that effectively altered memory for spatial navigation.
More research is needed to determine the contextual factors (i.e. emotionality and
violence in eyewitness scenarios) that may influence latency of attentional shifts, and
because route learning and survey learning were affected differently by event type and
retention period, potential disparities between their underlying neural mechanisms and
their relationship with executive control is discussed.




Laura C. Manella



Major Psych/Other

Comp Advisor: Jeff Jeff Hollerman



The Effects of Neuroprotectants N-acetylcysteine, Minocycline, and MgSO4 on
Rotenone-Induced Parkinsonian Behavior and Brain Degeneration in Sprague-Dawley
Rats



Parkinson‟s disease is a major neurodegenerative disorder with few truly effective
treatments. Through a multiple step cascade, excitotoxicity has been implicated in the
cell death in PD. Excessive glutamate release has been linked to this excitotoxicity,
especially in the substantia nigra pars compacta. Three neuroprotectives were used in
this study in attempts to lessen the extent of bilateral rotenone-induced cell death in
Sprague-Dawley rats. N-acetylcysteine, a pro-drug for cystine, minocycline, and
MgSO4 were used as treatments before and after a bilateral rotenone injection to the
substantia nigra pars compacta of Sprague-Dawley rats. Results implicated an
effectiveness of rotenone as a model for Parkinson‟s disease, and although no
significant effect of the neuroprotectives were found, minocycline showed a trend
towards a better recovery from surgery on post-surgery day 3. This study supports the
importance of not only elucidating the important mechanisms of cell death in
Parkinson‟s disease, but also the concurrent development of effective neuroprotective
drugs that can block these specific mechanisms of cell death such as excitotoxicity and
apoptosis. Neuroprotection is an important avenue not only to slow the progression of
disorders like Parkinson‟s but also other causes of massive neuronal cell death such as
traumatic brain injury and stroke.



Todd F. Maurer

Major: Psychology
Comp Advisor: Rod Clark

Cycle of Violence

On June 30th, 2002 the US prison population topped 2 million for the first time in
history, according to the Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). This
marks a very infamous day in history for our judicial and corrections systems. It seems
as if the prison regime that currently operates is not punishing the individuals who
commit crimes in the right way due to the obvious rise in recidivism over the past twenty
years. In the foreseeable future some 600,000 of these inmates will be released; with a
historic relapse into criminal lives of about 50 percent of these former inmates crime is
looking to reach an all time high in the not so distant future. To combat these problems
many criminologists, and progressive corrections officers are looking at the idea of
alternative ways to imprison these individuals, educate them on a wide array of topics
and skills, along with new security measures and proactive counselors. Many studies
delve into the various problems that exist either inherently with many prison personality
factors, (Hodges, Giuliotti, & Propotage, 1994; Chaiken, 1997; Gaes, Camp, & Nelson,
2004) or the various problems with the establishment that runs the prisons. Others look
at how various educational and vocational programs could and should be introduced to
produce a better member of society in the end (Gerber & Fritsch, 1993; Clark, 1991). In
the end the current system has failed us in many ways, but more importantly it has
failed many of the inmates. These failures yield a far worse individual at the end of their
stay than when they arrived. With the addition of many new vocational and education
programs along with the many new reinforcement schedules the progressive prison
setup may very well be the answer to this ever-increasing problem.

Jamie A. McCartney



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman



The Effects of Developmental Hyperserotonemia: An Animal Model of Autism.



The current study examined the validity of maternal hyperserotonemia in pregnancy as
a way to create an animal model of autism in Sprague-Dawley rats. More specifically,
fluoxetine was administered to female Sprague-Dawley rats during pregnancy to create
a hyperserotonemic environment during prenatal development of the offspring.
Fluoxetine treatments were administered during the first half of gestation (days 1-11) or
the second half of destation (days 11-21) in an attempt to determine whether early
exposure or later exposure to increased maternal serotonin results in differing
behavioral findings. While the causes of autism remain hidden, past and present
research has supported the role of abnormal serotonin system development in autism.
This study manipulated the development of serotonin using maternal
hyperserotonemia. Behavioral assessment of the resulting pups included social
preference, object preference, motor geotaxis, tactile stimulation, and spontaneous
alternation tests.

Animals in both 1st half and 2nd half gestation treatment groups showed abnormal
social behavior, increased fear response, a need for sameness, preference for a familiar
object, and increased motor function when compared to control animals. Although
some variation occurred across the behavioral testing, overall, there were no significant
differences noted between treatment groups. Animals exposed to maternal
hyperserotonemia during early development differed from controls more significantly in
motor function, social preference, and object preference. Animals exposed to maternal
hyperserotonemia during late development differed from controls more significantly in
response to tactile stimulation and spontaneous alternation.



Katie McCool

Major: Neurosicence

The Effects of Prenatal Choline Supplementation on the Valproic Acid Animal Model of
Autism

Perinatal supplementation with choline, an essential nutrient and DNA methyl donor,
has been shown to lead to lifelong improvements in cognitive and neurological function.
The purpose of this experiment was to examine the effect of prenatal choline
supplementation on the behavioral abnormalities observed in rats with the valproic acid
(VPA) model of autism, which is induced through prenatal exposure to VPA on day 12.5
of gestation. These abnormalities include: deficits in social behavior, hyperactivity, and
stereotypic behaviors, and increase anxiety. VPA animals displayed deficits in social
recognition, and control animals exhibited intact social recognition. Although results for
locomotor and stereotypic activity and anxiety were not significant, the trends indicated
that VPA animals exhibited hyperactivity, more stereotypic behaviors, and higher levels
of anxiety that the control animals. Due to an insufficient number of subjects, the results
for the effects of choline on VPA were inconclusive, but several lines of evidence linking
choline availability, VPA, and autism suggest the need for additional research.



Seth D. Mercer



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman



Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Long Term Memory



The purpose of this study was to find the effects of sleep deprivation on memory,
specifically long-term memory. Past research indicates that sleep deprivation has a
strong effect on recognition memory when measured right after the deprivation, but not
much research has looked at whether recognition memory is affected after participants
are later able to gain proper rest after the lost consolidation phase. It is hypothesized
that long-term memory recall will be worse under sleep deprivation than without sleep
deprivation, but participants under sleep deprivation may do slightly better on
recognition tasks after recovering their sleep.




Natalie M. Nagy



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky
Language in Email: Female College Students‟ Personal Language Use in
Conversations Through Email



The main goal of this research was to examine the language used in emails composed
by female college students. The study explored whether or not the sex and the status of
the recipient changed the amount of personal language used in email. Participant
composed an email based on a hypothetical scenario they were given. They composed
these emails to a friend or professor, with the sex of the recipient being either male or
female. While the results of the current study supported the hypothesis that status
affects the personal language use in email, there was little support of the hypothesis
that sex affects personal language use.




Jennifer L. Philips

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Rodney Clark



Behavioral Effects of Pre-Natal Exposure to Valproic Acid on Memory



Six male Sprague-Dawley rats were used to determine the behavioral effects of a pre-
natal valproic acid insult on the hippocampus by testing memory. Pre-natally insulted
rats were compared with age and gender control rats, to determine if memory capacity
was compromised by the valproic acid insult. Both sets of rats were tested with a
familiar object and a novel object placed in a standard Y-maze for investigation
frequency and side preference. It is hypothesized that the pre-natally insulted rats will
have little or no memory of the familiar object and will spend just as much time
investigating the familiar and novel objects. The results conclude that the valproic acid
rats do in fact spend more time on average investigating both objects, while the control
rats spent more time investigating the new novel object.
Ryan J. Place

Major: Psychology

The Effects of Oxytocin on Sensorimotor Gating and Fear-potentiated Startle
Throughout Development: Valproic Acid Induced Autism in Sprague-Dawley Rats

This study observed behavioral effects of valproic acid (VPA) on Sprague-Dawley rats
(n=25). VPA at 12.5-day gestation replicates the anatomical, neurochemical, and social
behavioral alterations of autism. Sensorimotor gating and startle response threshold
were quantified via motor response using Responder-X apparatus. Motor response was
assessed as a function of developmental period (adolescence, PND 30-40; adulthood,
PND 60-70), intraperitoneal oxytocin (OT) administration, and degree of VPA exposure
(low dose, 100 mg/kg; normal dose, 367 mg/kg). VPA rats showed impairments in
sensorimotor gating and abnormalities in startle response threshold. The impairment in
sensorimotor gating was more consistent at adulthood and was eliminated in response
to OT treatment. The abnormality in startle response threshold was maintained despite
differences in developmental period and OT treatment.


Gregory D. Richards

Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Ozorak



The Effects of Music with Lyrics on Problem Solving Ability.



This experiment examines the effect music with lyrics has on participant‟s ability to
solve problems. The participant‟s (N=31) in the experiment served as their own
controls. Participants came to one of two days of testing and answered three questions
in different conditions, silence and distraction conditions. The conditions were
alternated on test days, one day the music played first and on the other day music
played second. The orders of problems were not changed as questions 1-6 were
administered in the same order. The participants were allotted 15 minutes for each
condition in which they were asked to answer 3 questions. It was hypothesized that
problem solving ability would be hindered by the playing of music with lyrics. The
results of the study did not show a significant effect of the music with lyrics on the
participant‟s ability to solve problems; however the overall mean score of correct
responses did head in the direction hypothesized.
Angela Ricciardi

Major: Psychology

The Effect of Seasonal Cues on the Mood of Individuals with Seasonal Affective
Disorder

The present study utilized positive summer and winter scenes as cues in order to
induce mood. The effect of the mood induction was assessed in two ways: self-reported
mood ratings and the valence of recalled autobiographical memories. Participants were
also assessed for symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It was hypothesized
that summer images would improve the mood if individuals with SAD. No significant
results were found but limitations and future research are discussed.

Michael P. Roth



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Jeff Hollerman



The Psychophysiological Responses of Siddha Meditation Practice When Varying
Discriminative Stimuli Are Presented to a Yogi



The purpose of this study was to study the relationship between various
psychophysiological responses (EEG, EOG, heart rate- pulse, and blood oxygen
content) to different meditative SD (discriminative stimulus) stimuli during Hindu
meditation practice, specifically Siddha yoga-meditation techniques with an expert and
novice meditator (yogi). Past research has evaluated and researched the impact of
many different environmental stimuli have had on the meditative experience of different
meditation practices. However, these studies were not concerned with the spiritual
experience of the yogi, nor did the researchers explain the reasoning behind why
certain stimuli were used with certain meditative disciplines. It is the goal of this study to
find what stimulus produced better spiritual effects in the yogi participant vs. the novice
participant, and to observe simultaneously what physiological changes occur within the
brain. It is hypothesized that the expert yogi participant will demonstrate high alpha and
theta power in the primary somatosensory cortex/post central gyrus (S1), while
achieving oneness with Braham and the Self. Furthermore, it is hypothesized that with
increasing eye focus (low EOG variance) on a particular given stimulus that the yogi will
enter a state of moksha (oneness with nature/liberation) and that each meditative stimuli
will have unique psychophysiological effects on the S1. Results have found low EOG
variance, decreased heart rate for certain meditative stimuli SD, and a greater presence
of theta, and alpha band waveforms during meditation when compared to a non-
meditator under certain stimuli. Overall, both hypothesis have been proven to be true.




Gregory C. Rother

Major: Neuroscience

Two different models can be used to explain drug seeking behavior when discussing the
etiology of addiction: physical dependence and behavioral dependence. Both models
are able to describe why addiction occurs, but there is no model of how they may
interact even though there is mounting evidence that one does not dominate over the
other. Three Sprauge-Dawley rats were conditioned under a FR-1 schedule of
reinforcement to self-administer electrical brain stimulation in the nucleus accumbens
prior to IP injections of saline and cocaine (10 mg/kg) at staggered times (0 minutes, 10
minutes, 20 minutes) before given an opportunity to nose poke for reinforcement.
Results showed that IP cocaine injections significantly increased the number of nose
pokes during a 25-minute session regardless of the trail type. Because nose poking for
electrical stimulation and cocaine activate the same pathway in the nucleus accumbens,
it can be determined that initially after conditioning, a behavioral model is more accurate
in describing drug addiction although this may give way to a biological model after
several trials.


Elise Helene Schmidt

Major: Neuroscience

Afferent and Efferent Distribution of the CEM of the Amygdala in Sprague-Dawley Rats
Prenatally Exposed to Valproic Acid

VPA is a known terratogen that induces structural and behavioral anomalies in rats that
mirror those anomalies seen in human individuals with autism. This study compared to
the inputs to and the outputs from the CEM (central medial) amygdaloid nuclei in control
rats and in rats that were prenatally exposed to a single dose of valproic acid (VPA) on
GD 12.5. VPA ad control rats were subjected to an injection into the CEM of the
amygdala with either Flurogold, a retrograde tracer, or Fluro-ruby, an anterograde
tracer. The samples were mapped on serial schematics of the brain and compared
between groups. When the cellular distributions were compared between control and
VPA rats the cellular distributions were different for each group within each stain
treatment. Within the Fluorogold the VPA animals showed contralateral and ipsilateral
labeling while the control group only showed ipsilateral labeling. IN the Fluoro-ruby
group the VPA animas showed ipsilateral labeling in contrast to the control group who
showed contralateral and ipsilateral labeling.


Robert S. Schreiner



Major: Psychology/Neuroscience



The Effects of Oxytocin and Vasopressin on Social Recognition in Male and Female
VPA Rats



Social recognition is a salient component of complex social engagement in humans. It
has been well documented, however, that autistic patients show a remarkable lack in
several social skills, with social recognition possibly being one of them. Social
recognition also underlies many types of social interactions in rodents and can thus be
easily studied in the laboratory using the valproic acid (VPA) rat model of autism.
Studies report mixed gender differences regarding social recognition in rats and thus
gender was taken into consideration in the present study. Furthermore, it has been well
documented that the neurohypophyseal peptides oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (AVP)
have varied roles in social recognition. In the present study, the social recognition skills
of control and VPA rats were tested over 5 trials. The first 4 trials used the same
ovariectomized female and a new ovariectomized female was introduced in the 5th
trial. VPA rats were then subjected to both OT and AVP treatments at separate times
and performed the same test. Control rats habituated investigative behaviors across
trials, whereas VPA rats did not. VPA rats peripherally treated with OT and AVP also
showed habituated investigative behaviors when compared to when they were not
treated. Across collapsed trials, untreated VPA rats investigated the stimulus rat
significantly longer than when they were treated. No gender differences in VPA rats
were reported. Collectively, the findings suggest that neuropeptide treatment may
facilitate social recognition in a rat model of autism. Future research is warranted to
characterize the neural basis of these findings.
Lawrence K. Sharp



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Ozorak



The Effect of Gender, Self-Efficacy and Family Structure on Problem Solving Ability



In this study, gender differences in problem solving ability were examined. The role that
self-efficacy and family structure played on problem solving performance was also
looked at. Subjects were 53 College Students, 31 female and 22 male, from
introductory psychology classes who were asked to complete two questionnaires. The
first was a mix of math and word problems and the second was rating their skill when it
came to these problems. No significant gender difference was found in the number of
correct math problems that were answered correctly. However, there was a significant
gender difference found in the number of correct reading problems, as females
answered more correctly than males. When looking at self-efficacy, there was no
significant gender difference found with reading problems. Conversely, a significant
effect of self-efficacy was found with math problems, as males reported higher scores
than females. No significant effect was found with family structure as it related to
accuracy and self-efficacy with math and reading problems.



Emmalyn Sigrist

Major: Neuroscience

The Effects of Prenatal Valporic Acid (VPA) Exposure on Behavior and Olive Formation
in the Brainstem of Juvenile Sprague-Dawley Rats

The current study examined the effects of prenatal valporic acid (VPA) exposure on
juvenile Sprague-Dawley rats. Animals were exposed to VPA on the 12.5th day of
gestation to create the model of autism. Exposure to VPA on this day has been found to
replicate the behavioral deficits and anatomical abnormalities observed in many cases
of autism. This investigation compared the brainstem, specifically the superior and
inferior olives, of VPA-exposed rats and control rats. The behavioral assessments
performed included measures of social recognition, object preference, and anxiety using
an elevated plus maze. VPA rats failed to demonstrate a social memory and exhibited a
preference for a familiar object as well as an increased level of anxiety. Anatomically,
brain weight of VPAs was significantly greater that that of the controls. When compared
to the controls, the superior olive of the VPA rats had a significantly smaller area while
the inferior olive had a greater area. The behavioral and anatomical finding in this study
demonstrate that the VPA animal model of autism has many similarities to human
autistic data thereby supporting it is a suitable model for autism research.



Jamie L. Skender



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



An Analysis of Congruency and Movement of Word Recall in Children



The purpose of the present study was to analyze how congruency and movement affect
word recall for children. First, the children learned two lists of words. One list of words
was paired with congruent movement and the other list was paired with incongruent
movement. After the completion of each list the child was then asked to recall as many
words as they could and the accompanied movements if they remembered those.
Finally, after both lists of words were completed the child was told a story using all of
the words used in the study. It was hypothesized that words paired with congruent
movements would be recalled more than words paired with incongruent movements and
that congruent movement would be a better retrieval cue than incongruent movement.
Although words paired with congruent movements were recalled more than words
paired with incongruent movements the difference was not significant. However,
congruent movement was found to be a better retrieval cue than incongruent movement
illustrating the importance of congruency for cued recall.




Amy K. Smith

Major: Psychology

Prenatal Stress and the Linkage to Anxiety-Related Behaviors During Alternate Social
Situations in Adult Male and Female Sprague-Dawley Rats
Prenatal stress has been shown to have various long-term effects on offspring after
birth such as anxiety, depression and schizophrenia. The HPA axis and the amygdala
are important systems within the brain and body that regulate the stress response. The
predisposition to anxiety is of particular interest due to the affects of maternal stress on
the HPA axis and amygdala during fetal development. The result is a constant
production of hormones that slow the deactivation of stress because of the linked but
separated environment between mother and fetus. The focus of this study was to
explore the hypothesis that predisposition to anxiety can be heightened during intense
social circumstances. A unique design was used to evaluate differences between
prenatally stressed (N=6) and non-prenatally stressed (N=6) adult male and female rats
during two alternate social situations. Five categorical behaviors, Social, Reclusive,
Aggressive, Submissive, Anxiety-Related, and Other, were examined. There were no
significant results found to confirm the hypothesis; however supporting trends give
direction for future investigation.

John J. Stepnick



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Amy Wiseman



The Effect of Athletic Participation and Observation on the Recall of Athletically-themed
Narratives



Every individual uses their memory each day, whether they are consciously aware of it
or not. Various factors affect memory, producing different outcomes for each person.
One such factor is expertise in a specific domain. The current study examines the effect
of participation in and observation of a sport on the recall and recognition of information
from athletically-themed narratives in psychology students at Allegheny College.
Participants (n = 52) repeatedly recalled more information from the sport narratives than
the curling narratives. However, while participants who played a sport at any level
recalled more information than those who did not participate, no difference existed
between intramural-level and varsity-level participants. Additionally, observation of a
sport only affected recall when it interacted with participation. The implications for
memory, as well as potential goals for future research, including the need to procure a
larger and more distributed participant pool, are discussed in light of some potential
confounds discovered by past research.
Joshua Paul Suen

Major: Psychology

Examining Test Anxiety and Reducing Physiological Components with Relaxation
Techniques

The objectives of the current study were to (1) confirm previous research indicating the
activation of the automatic nervous system during test taking and (2) use relaxation
techniques to reduce physiological aspects of test anxiety during test taking.
Participants (N=30) were asked to participate in a senior project examining the effects of
test anxiety. Students took the Test Anxiety Inventory (TAI) that measures and
individuals' level of test anxiety. Participants (N=30) who took the TAI were deemed to
be high in test anxiety and were asked to participate in a follow up study. Participants
(N=16) responded and were randomly assigned to an experimental or control group.
Participants blood pressure and pulse were recorded and the experimental group was
asked to perform a relaxation technique (the control group received no technique).
Students were then asked to take a test during which their blood pressure and pulse
were monitored. A 2 (group) by 3 (time) mixed model analysis of variance (ANOVA) was
performed for each systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure and pulse. Results
indicated no significance of relaxation technique at reducing physiological aspects of
test anxiety. Results also confirmed an activation of the automatic nervous system
during test taking.


Nicole E. Tindall

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



The Effects of Motivation and Arousal Level of Those in a Negative Mood on False
Recall and Recognition



Mood, arousal, and motivation are three factors that have been considered to affect the
generation of false memories. A 3x2 mixed design was used for this experiment with
arousal (neutral, low, and high) and motivation (low and high) as the independent
variables. The hypotheses for the study were that participants in the negative mood
categories (high and low arousal) would have higher false recall rates than the control
(neutral) groups. Additionally, participants in the high arousal groups would have higher
false recall rates compared to the other groups. Finally, participants in the high
motivation recall group would recall more words overall and more critical lures than
participants in the low motivation group. Forty-eight participants completed a self-
assessment of mood and arousal. Motivation was manipulated by low („recall as many
words as you feel like‟) and high („recall as many words as you can‟) levels of
motivational recall instructions. Manipulations of mood and arousal were not
successful, which led to no differences in recall or recognition data among the different
arousal levels. In addition, there were no differences in the number of words or critical
lures recalled between the high and low levels of motivation. The results indicate that
using physiological changes may be the most precise way to study changes in arousal,
and also that motivational recall instructions must be presented directly to the
participant.




Benjamin M. Torsney



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



The use of a Brief Positive or Negative Imagery Intervention and its Effect on Athletes
and Non-athletes



The purpose of the present study was to examine the effects of a brief, positive or
negative imagery intervention on basketball team members from the Allegheny College
Men‟s Basketball team and male non-basketball team members from introductory
psychology classes. The participants were asked to shoot a pretest of ten foul shots,
followed by a positive or negative imagery video. After watching the video, the
participants were asked to shoot a posttest of ten more foul shots and finally fill out a
questionnaire given by the experimenter. The experimenter then totaled the foul
shooting percentages to see if there was any change from pretest to posttest. It was
hypothesized that the team members would shoot a foul shooting percentage from
pretest to posttest. It was also hypothesized that the team members would attend more
basketball games, play more basketball and watch more basketball on television. All of
these hypotheses were confirmed. However, due to a problem with the randomization of
the participants it was impossible to see if there was any effect of the imagery
intervention.




Frank A. Tupta



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Jeff Cross



Electrical Stimulation and Physical Therapy in the Rehabilitation Of a Hemiplegic Stroke
Victim



Each year in the United States 600,000 people suffer a stroke (Hallet, 2005). Stroke kills
more than 150,000 people a year, about 1 of every 16 deaths. It's the third leading
cause of death behind diseases of the heart and cancer (American Stroke Association,
2006). One of these stroke victims happened to be a close relative of mine. In 2005,
my grandmother, a woman who exemplified strength even at the age of 75, was
reduced to a hemiplegic that could no longer care for herself. After being bedridden for
about 2 months, she was confined to a wheelchair. Unable to care for herself, she was
in a nursing home for 7 months where she was able to receive physical therapy. For the
most part, all hope had been lost for the once dominant right side, which was left
completely incapacitated from the stroke. Therapists attempted to make her left side
stronger and tried to build up some ability in basic occupational therapy, but there was
little hope of regaining the use of the right side of her body. Through a combination of
physical therapy and electrical stimulation of the muscles in her right leg, she regained
movement in her right leg.


Jessica L. Watts

Major: Psychology

Difference in learning acquisition between drug versus drug and drug versus vehicle
discrimination testing
Previous research has shown that, in some cases, subjects are trained in drug versus
drug procedures has a faster learning acquisition rate than those trained in drug versus
vehicle procedures. This research has also show that subjects trained in drug versus
drug procedures have a higher sensitivity to lower doses of the training drug. In the
present study, six Zucker rats were trained to discriminate between either 3.0mg/kg
cocaine and 3.0mg/kg morphine or 3.0mg/kg cocaine and saline. A significant difference
was found between the mean sessions to criterion of the cocaine-morphine group and
the cocaine-saline group. Subjects in the cocaine-morphine group had a faster
acquisition rate than the cocaine-saline group. In the dose response-testing phase,
significant differences were found between the cocaine-morphine and the cocaine-
saline group at the 1.0mg/kg dose. The cocaine-morphine group had significantly higher
drug-appropriate-responding at the 1.0mg/kg dose than those in the cocaine-saline
group indicating possible higher sensitivity to lower doses of cocaine.

Benjamin M. Wojtasik



Major: Psychology

Comp Advisor: Aimee Knupsky



Conversational Processes: An Investigation in the Manipulation of Recall as a Function
of Listener Attitude and Speaker Self-Efficacy.



Presenting information to a listener is a common occurrence in both the educational
and professional realms. The purpose of the present study was to investigate change in
recall rates and self-reports of performance in thirty-three participants. Half of the
participants recalled a positive memory, whereas half did not. Next, participants were
asked to read a short story, with the purpose of retelling pertinent information to a
confederate, whom the participants believed to be another participant. The confederate
acted as an attentive listener to some participants, and an inattentive listener to the
rest. Participants were then asked to rate their performance, to read another short
story, and finally, were asked to take a surprise recall test based upon the first story
read. It was hypothesized that recalling a positive memory would have a beneficial
effect on performance. This hypothesis was partially confirmed. In addition, it was
hypothesized that the listener's attitude would significantly affect recall rates. It was
proposed that participants in the attentive condition would score higher on the recall test
than those in the inattentive condition. This hypothesis was not confirmed.
2006-2007 Comp Abstracts

Kristie Aikmam

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

Assessing The Need For An After-School Program For Adolescent Girls

Based on past research findings suggesting that girls develop lower self-esteem in early
adolescence, this study attempted to find the factors in an after-school program that
would improve self-esteem in adolescent girls as perceived by adults, college aged
females and adolescent girls through focus group discussion and interviews. Consistent
with past research, this study found that issues affecting self-esteem in adolescent girls
as perceived by adults and female college students were issues of body image, peer
relationships and gender bias in the classroom. The study also found a variety of
activities adults, female college students and adolescent girls perceived as enjoyable for
adolescent girls to do with older mentors in an after-school program.


Christine Avitable

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

The Threat Of Being Below Average: Anxiety, Self-Talk, And Perceived Academic Self-
Efficacy

The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of self-talk and perceived academic
self-efficacy on levels of anxiety when in a threatening testing atmosphere. Participants
were made up of first and second year Allegheny College students. The Profile of Mood
States, the Burnett Self-Talk Inventory, and the College Academic Self-Efficacy Scale
were administered before an anxiety provoking test, and the Profile of Mood States was
given again after the test. No significant results were found, but results might be found if
design is altered.
Ali Biletnikoff

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Reactive Attachment Disorder: Recommendations For An Educational Program For
Parents Looking To Adopt

An attachment is a strong, emotional bond that develops between children and their
caregivers (Bowlby, 1988). Not all children, however, develop these healthy, emotional
bonds. Many children living in adoptive homes have had multiple changes in caregivers
and may have suffered from abuse or neglect at one point in their early lives (Chaffin,
2006). Due to these circumstances, children living in adoptive homes are at risk for
developing an attachment disorder (Barth, Crea, John, Thoburn, & Quinton, 2005). This
study used observations of a local support group's sessions about Reactive Attachment
Disorder, to obtain information on how attachment disorders affect the family system.
Based on scientific research and the results of the support group meetings,
recommendations were made as to what information should be included in an
educational program for adoptive parents.


Tara Clark

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Hollerman

The Effect Of Valproic Acid On The Dipsogenic Effects Of N-Methyl-D-Aspartate In
Female Sprague Dawley Rats

N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) has been shown to have dipsogenic effects in Sprague
Dawley rats. This dipsogenic effect has been suppressed by NMDA receptor
antagonists to the point at which it was no longer measurable when measuring water
consumption. This study was done to determine whether valproic acid (VPA) would
suppress the dipsogenic effect of the NMDA and whether valproic acid functions as an
NMDA antagonist. Six female Sprague Dawley rats served as the subjects. Each rat
was injected with both the NMDA doses and the VPA doses. The drugs served as the
independent variable and the water consumption served as the dependent variable and
was measured for each trial. It was determined through the course of the study that
VPA at 50mg/kg acted antagonistionistically and reduced the water consumption elicited
by the NMDA at 30mg/kg. The VPA (50mg/kg) completely suppressed the dipsogenic
effect of the NMDA (30mg/kg). Thus, the VPA does act functionally as a NMDA
antagonist and suppresses the dipsogenic effects at these dosages.
Stephanie Cohen

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: A. Wiseman

Hey Baby, Where Have You Been All My Life? A Study Of The Association Between
Flirting Behavior, Gender, Sensation Seeking, Relationship Status, And Recognition

This study examined when people said they would exhibit certain flirting behaviors
based on their recognition of the person, their gender, level of sensation seeking, and
relationship status. A total of 117 college males and females completed sensation
seeking and flirting questionnaires. Results were analyzed using a mixed models
design. Findings indicated that people report they are more likely to flirt with someone
they recognize than with someone they do not recognize. This result was not surprising
given that participants may perceive less risk in flirting with someone they know. Those
who are in an exclusive relationship were also found to report more flirting than those
who are not. When flirting behaviors were analyzed separately, interactions were found
with sensation seeking and gender. The discussion section further interprets the specific
findings.


Leslie Dean

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Effects of Water Deprivation as an MO on d-Amphetamine Discrimination

Several past experiments have tested an animal's ability to discriminate d-amphetamine
from saline, using water deprivation as a motivating event. Further, varying doses of d-
amphetamine have been found to generalize to the training dose in these discrimination
studies. The current study sought to determine the effects of differing levels of water
deprivation on d-amphetamine discrimination. Six female Sprague-Dawley rats were
trained to discrimination 1.0 mg/kg d-amphetamine from saline under 23-hour water
deprivation. Subjects were then tested under 23-, 17-, 10-, and 0-hour deprivation,
using 0.1, 0.3, 1.0, 1.7 mg/kg d-amphetamine and saline. Finally, the D2 antagonist,
eticlopride, was administered in conjunction with the training dose of d-amphetamine to
test for antagonism. Results indicated an effect of drug dose, with drug appropriate
responding being significantly lower in 0.1 mg/kg d-amphetamine conditions than in
other drug conditions. Level of water deprivation, as well as the interaction between
deprivation level and dose, had no significant effect on drug-appropriate responding.
Eticlopride also did not affect discrimination, indicating a need for further research to
determine the role of dopamine receptors on drug discrimination.
Todd Derby

Major: Psychology

Minor: English

Sr. Project Advisor: A. Knupsky

Understanding Deception: An Analysis Of The Function And Frequency Of Deception
Cues In Truthful Vs. Deceptive Statements

The purpose of the present study was to observe how verbal and nonverbal language
change across different discourse contexts. Participants watched a video clip and were
asked to first lie about the content of the video to one confederate. Next, participants
were asked to tell the truth about the content of the video to a second confederate.
Finally, participants were asked to one more time tell a story about the video clip, this
time in the presence of both confederates, each of whom had heard conflicting
accounts, thus simulating the uncomfortable social situation of being caught in a web of
lies. Specifically, it was hypothesized that participants would produce more hesitations
and discourse markers in deceptive conditions than in truth conditions. Further, it was
hypothesized that participants would produce fewer hand gestures in deceptive
conditions than in truth conditions. The hypotheses were confirmed, adding to our
growing understanding of deceptive discourse.


Kasandra Foster

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Effect Of Nmda, Mefloquine, And Pcp On Schedule Control Responding In Rats

In this study N-Methyl-D-aspartic (NMDA), mefloquine, and phencyclidine (PCP) were
studied to determine if mefloquine and PCP have similar behavioral effects and if
mefloquine works as an antagonist to the NMDA receptor as PCP does. The subjects
were six male Sprague-Dawley rats. The study was conducted under a FI 30 schedule
of water presentation. The results showed no significant change in responding when
PCP or mefloquine were administered with NMDA in comparison to when NMDA was
administered alone. However, the study revealed a significant decrease in responding
at 30mg/kg of NMDA compared to baseline and saline. Significant decreases were also
apparent for saline and 1.7mg/kg of mefloquine versus the corresponding baseline.


Christine Garver
Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLamarter

The Effect Of The Violent Portrayal Of Women In The Media On The Crime And
Aggression Rates Of Women As Explained By The General Aggression Model

The following study links the rising female crime rate and female aggression in general
to violence in the media, specifically the increasing portrayal of violent women in the
media. The study first examines other possible causes and risk factors that could lead
to female aggression. Then, the theories of aggression from the past century are
explored, including the social learning, cognitive neoassociation, and excitation transfer
theories. The general aggression model is finally determined to be the most
comprehensive and accurate model of aggression thus far. The link between violent
media and real life aggression is then made in the context of the general aggression
model, explaining how the portrayal of violent women in the media affects a female's
aggression level and the development of her personality.


Rashelle Glass

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Cross

The Effect Of The Palatability Of Food On An Obesity Model In Sprague-Dawley Rats

Obesity, a world-wide epidemic, adds to the risk of developing many other serious
health problems, including hypertension and premature death. Currently, many separate
underlying mechanisms for obesity have been proposed-all of which incorporate
metabolic processes and energy expenditure. Both genetic and environmental factors
contribute to the development of obesity. This experiment investigates the effect of the
palatability of food (0.5% saccharine food additive [high palatability], normal rat chow
[average palatability], and 0.05% quinine food additive [non-palatable]) and bilateral
lesions of the arcuate nucleus (at 10o from perpendicular) on the weight gain of
Sprague Dawley rats. It was hypothesized that the highly palatable food would enhance
the weight gain the most and non-palatable food would influence weight gain the least.
Although statistical significance could not be determined from the small sample, the
hypothesis was supported by the results obtained from the three subjects with bilateral
lesions of the arcuate nucleus (Arc); palatable food group subjects gained the most
weight, followed by normal-food subjects, and non-palatable food subjects. The results
of this study add to a growing body of information regarding the mechanisms of obesity.
Therefore, a cure for obesity is one hope for the future.


Nicole Hills
Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: A. Dale

Body Image, Appearnce Orientation, And Gender Personality Traits Among College
Students.

Body image, appearance orientation, and gender personality traits were evaluated using
correlations and analysis of variance (ANOVA). Data from 67 Allegheny College
students, males (N=22) and females (N=45), were used to examine the effect of grade
level on appearance evaluation, appearance orientation, and gender personality traits. It
was hypothesized that gender personality traits and appearance evaluation would not
be significantly affected by grade level; however, appearance orientation would be
negatively correlated with grade level. Female college students would have lower body
images and higher appearance orientation as compared to male college students.
Results did not support a significant relationship between grade level and appearance
orientation. F(66) = 0.715, p>.05. As predicted, gender personality traits and
appearance evaluation, F(66)= 0.145, p>.05, were not significantly affected by grade
level. F(66)= 0.486, p>.05. Female students' data supported the trend of having lower
body images (M= 3.30) and higher appearance orientation (M=3.42) as compared to
male college students (Meval = 3.35, Mort = 3.29); however, these results were not
significant. Significant results were found when the Allegheny College sample was
compared to the population means. Allegheny students collectively, zobt = -3.10, p<.05,
and Allegheny females, zobt = -3.67, p<.05 were less masculine then the population.
Allegheny males, zobt = -2.21, p<.05, and females, zobt = -5.44, were significantly less
appearance oriented compared to the population. These significant differences may
account for the lack of significant results hypothesized.


Emily Kachmar

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

A Feminist Perspective to the Role of Sex and Gender Identification in Narcissistic
Entitlement in the Classroom

This study explored the differences between sex and gender identity on narcissistic
entitlement within the classroom. Teachers' attitudes of gender, perceptions of students'
academic success that view males as more competent than females, and their tendency
to separate the sexes are explored as a basis for entitled behavior in males. This study
demonstrated the differences in entitled behavior in the classroom between males and
females, as well as masculine, feminine, androgynous, and undifferentiated gender
identities. Results indicated that entitled behavior differed across sex. Results also
indicated that participants who identified as masculine were more entitled in the
classroom than participants who identified as feminine.


Reid Levin

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

Listening To Music While Writing: Does It Help?

This study explored whether listening to music and speed of music affects writing
quality. It was hypothesized that writing quality would decline while listening to music,
faster music would cause lower quality writing than slower music, and writing quality
would be lowest at the extremes for participants' music rating (i.e. those who love or
hate the music). Writing quality was examined across five dimensions: significance,
focus, story strength, sentence/word strength, and mechanics. Results showed a
decrease in quality for mechanics and sentence/word strength among those who
listened to music versus those who did not, and a decrease in writing mechanics for fast
music versus no music. No correlation was found between music rating and writing
quality.


Elizabeth Marsh

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: A. Knupsky

The Perceptual Representation Of Time: An Analysis Of Embodied Realism

The purpose of this paper was to investigate the theory of embodied realism as it
applies to the cognitive and philosophical understanding of time. The first chapter is a
brief analysis of the theory of embodied realism. The second chapter applies this theory
to the concept of time. Chapter three presents cognitive research into the claim that
spatial information is accessed while processing temporal statements. Participants were
30 Allegheny College students who responded to 36 temporal perspective statements
by answering true or false to the relative occurrence of a fictitious event. The true/false
response required the participants to move their hand either toward or away from their
body. Their responses were measured in reaction time (RT). It was hypothesized that
when the direction taken to respond and the perspective implied by the statement were
incongruent, RT would increase. This hypothesis was not supported by the present
study. The fourth and final chapter presents a philosophical critique of the theory of
embodied realism.
Rachel McCloskey

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

"Mirror-Looking: A Reflection Of Narcissism, Self-Esteem, Or Both?"

The research question to be examined will investigate narcissistic personality traits and
self-esteem levels at a small liberal arts college in Northwestern Pennsylvania. In
addition to measuring the relationship of self-esteem with narcissism (using self-report),
an observational method will be employed to determine whether mirror-gazing, or
frequency of mirror-looking is related to narcissism and self-esteem, as well as whether
either variable is affected by current mood state. A correlation design will be used to
analyze the relationship between mirror looking and self-esteem/ narcissism. Linear
regression and the correlation coefficient R² will be calculated. Significant correlations
found between self-esteem and narcissism will then be compared to the amount of
times that the participant looks in the mirror. An additional measure of mood state will
eliminate a possible extraneous variable affecting self-esteem or narcissism levels.


Molly McCoy

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Hollerman

The Effects Of Prenatal Fluoxetine (Prozac): A Model For Autism

The current investigation examined the effects of serotonin disruption during
development by prenatal exposure to fluoxetine, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor
(SSRI). The behavioral effects of this prenatal manipulation were analyzed. Pregnant
Srague-Dawley rats were given 10mg/kg doses of fluoxetine (Prozac) by peritoneal
injections on gestational days 13-19. The behavioral tasks included a social recognition
test intended to assess social memory, and an object preference test in order to
observe novelty/familiarity preference. Treated subjects showed a constant amount of
investigation across all trials, suggesting the presence of a deficit in social recognition
and a lack of social memory. Control subjects displayed a significant decrease across
the first four trials when exposed to the same stimulus rat, followed by a dramatic
increase when a novel stimulus rat was presented. Treated subjects did not show signs
of either habituation or recognition of novelty as would be expected in an animal with
intact social memory, as in control subjects. On the object preference test, control
subjects showed a strongly significant preference for the novel object while treated
subjects showed a slight, though not significant, preference for the familiar object.
These tests supported prenatal exposure to an SSRI as an animal model for autism.
Amanda Means

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Effects Of Non-Contingent Water Delivery On Lever Pressing: Some Economic
Implications.

Rats were exposed to a standard 23-hour water deprivation procedure. Following the
deprivation period, the rats were trained to lever press for water reinforcement under a
fixed ratio 5, (FR5) schedule of water presentation. Once response rates stabilized, the
water deprived rats were given periodic presentations of non-contingent water deliveries
along with their contingent water deliveries. This study attempts to determine the effect
and extent that free water delivery may have on lever pressing. The hypothesis was that
the lever pressing would decrease when non-contingent water delivery was presented.


Erin O'Brien

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Heuchert

The Relationship Between Knowledge About Aging, Anxiety About Aging, And Negative
Stereotypes About Older Adults

The present study examined the relationship between knowledge about aging, anxiety
about aging, and negative stereotypes about older adults. Fifty-seven undergraduate
students from introductory psychology courses at Allegheny College completed the
Anxiety About Aging Scale (Lasher and Faulkender, 1993), What Do You Know About
Aging? A Quiz (Breytspaak, Kendall & Halpert, 2006), and individual items indicating
negative stereotypes found in the aging quiz. Four subscales of the AAS were used to
measure anxiety about aging including: Fear of Old People, Psychological Concerns,
Physical Appearance, and Fear of Losses. Correlations were run between the variables
in order to determine any relationships. A significant negative correlation was found
between knowledge and negative stereotypes (r=-.644, p<.01). A significant positive
correlation was also found between anxiety and negative stereotypes (r=.284, p<.05).


Lauren O'Keefe

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark
Social Recognition Testing On Prenatal Valproic Acid Exposure

The effects of prenatal exposure to valproic acid (VPA) on the behavior of Sprague-
Dawley rats was accessed in the present study. Rats were exposed to VPA on the
12.5th day of gestation. Two Dams received intraperitoneal injections of VPA in
volumes of.1mL/100g at a doses of 367 mg/kg. These dams produced two litters. Social
recognition testing was completed twice. In the first test, controls and VPAs failed to
show habituation. Control rats were 34 days old. VPA treated rats were 48 days old.
Both control rats and VPA treated rats showed decreased frequency of behaviors and
increased in duration with each trial. The second test used controls that were 92 days
old. Controls showed habituation. Frequency and duration decreased with each trial in
controls. Frequency decreased but duration increased with each trial with the VPAs.
VPAs did not habituate in this second test. This supported that size and age of rats is a
factor in social recognition testing. This test was repeated using a different set of
controls that did exhibit habituation after each trial. VPA rats demonstrated significant
social deficits. As a result they were unable to discriminate between a novel and familiar
stimuli. The third test used socially isolated VPA treated rats and group housed VPA
treated rats. Both groups were 73 days old. The socially isolated VPAs were socially
isolated for 36 days prior to testing. The group-housed VPAs were group housed for 36
days prior to testing in houses of 4. The socially isolated VPAs showed a slightly higher
frequency of behaviors. Neither group showed habituation. Socially isolated VPAs
showed a significantly higher duration of behaviors when compared to group housed
VPAs. This indicated that the housing conditions normalized some of the social
investigative behaviors in the group housed VPAs. The socially isolated VPAs also
showed increased aggressive behaviors.


Andrew Peterson

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

The Effects Of A Temporally Spaced History On Operant Responding On Rats In A
Simple Drug Discrimination Procedure

The purpose of this study was to see how given dosages of a drug would alter (increase
or decrease) the response rates of rats on a fixed ratio schedule as time between test
sessions increases in a d-amphetamine discrimination. This study sought to examine
how history (both drug and response) effect responding when all other variables are
controlled. Therefore the present study suggest that, as history (the length of time
between training and testing) increases, the rate of responding will remain the same for
a greater than usual period of time because drug history will lead to continued
responding even under an extinction phase. For this study, there were two independent
variables. The first was drug dosage. The rats were trained to respond under the
stimulus control of 1.0 mg/kg d-amphetamine or saline with d-amphetamine being
associated with right lever responding and saline associated with left lever responding.
The final tests were conducted with dose response curves using: saline, 0.1 mg/kg, 0.3
mg/kg, 1.0 mg/kg, and 1.7 mg/kg of d-amphetamine. The second independent variable
was time (relating to the end of training and testing). The rats were trained for 40
consecutive days, with 20 sessions conducted on each lever. A period of 5 days was
used to "sham" the rats so that they would be used to the handling associated with
conducting research using cumulative dosing. The dose response curves were then
conducted 1, 3, 6, 10, and 20 days post-training and shamming with no other training in
between. The final showed no significant data in terms of the relationship between
responding and the amount of time post training. These results suggest that drug history
has a stronger effect on responding than does response history alone, although further
research should be done to clarify the exact relationship between drug and response
histories.


Sarah Reifer

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

The Potential Benefits Of Arts Education On Adolescent Self-Concept

The present research study was designed to assess whether or not participation in and
exposure to the arts were associated with adolescent self-concept, with specific respect
to the self-concept facets of academics, self-esteem, and creativity. A sample of 227
college students participated in the study. Three different measures were used to
examine arts-experience, arts self-perceptions, and the facets of self-concept. Results
suggested that while experience in the arts significantly correlated with artistic interest
and ability, the examined components of self-concept were not significantly associated.


Megan Roby

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Effects Of Mefloquine Hydrochloride On N-Methyl-D-Aspartate (Nmda) Induced Drinking
Behavior In Sprague-Dawley Rats

Mefloquine is an under-researched, controversial antimalarial drug speculated to cause
psychotic and violent behaviors similar to those caused by Phencyclidine (PCP). As
PCP induced psychotic behaviors are often attributed to its antagonism of NMDA, the
present study investigated whether mefloquine would also antagonize NMDA. Using six
Sprague-Dawley rats, the drugs' effects on NMDA induced drinking behavior were
examined. At pretreatment time 1 hour, drinking behaviors significantly increased after
17.0 mg/kg and 30.0 mg/kg NMDA doses compared to baseline. Water consumption
following 1.0 mg/kg PCP + 17.0 mg/kg NMDA concomitant administration was
significantly less than isolated 17.0 mg/kg NMDA administration, suggesting PCP's
antagonism of NMDA. Though not statistically significant, drinking behaviors after 1.7
mg/kg mefloquine + 17.0 mg/kg NMDA concomitant administration were also
considerably less than isolated 17.0 mg/kg NMDA administration, providing support for
mefloquine's antagonism of NMDA as well. If mefloquine does, in fact, antagonize
NMDA, this mechanism may contribute to mefloquine induced psychotic behaviors.
Furthermore, given NMDA's role in causing excitotoxicity and neurodegenerative
disorders, the antagonism may imply potential neuronal protective properties of
mefloquine.


Jennifer Rodzinak

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Behavioral Intervention Strategies To Decrease "Hands In Pants" And "Inappropriate
Genital Touching" Behavior In An Adolescent Male With Autism

The present paper addresses the issue of whether the use of a token economy or other
types of behavioral intervention strategies can decrease the frequency of unwanted
behaviors such as "hands in pants" and "inappropriate genital touching." This is done by
considering different approaches to treating these behaviors in a 17 year old Caucasian
male diagnosed with autism. Strategies include using a differential reinforcement of low
rates of behavior schedule of reinforcement (DRL) that utilizes positive reinforcement,
negative reinforcement, and extinction. This study also includes alternative strategies
and techniques such as prompt hierarchies, response blocking, limiting staff, and
identifying and controlling potential discriminative stimuli.


Ashlea Vilello

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

The Reentry Experiences Of Allegheny College Study Abroad Students

The purpose of this study was to examine the specific reentry experiences of
undergraduate study abroad students at Allegheny College, as well as to analyze the
effectiveness of formal reentry training programs. Twenty-eight students (22 women and
6 men) were studied using the Student Reentry Experiences Inventory (SREI), a self-
designed questionnaire created for the specific purpose of this research. Through a
series of short statements that have been commonly associated with reentry shock
(Gaw, 2000; Martin, 1984; Uehara, 1986), this survey analyzed the participants' total
reported reentry shock symptoms. Also, this survey examined the number of coping
strategies individuals may have utilized to deal with their readjustment back into their
home culture as well as the perceived helpfulness of these strategies. The participants
completed the SREI upon their return to their home campus. The results of this study
indicate that overall, participants reported low levels of reentry shock. Also, participants
reported statistically significantly more reentry problems associated with personal issues
and readjusting back to life in the U.S. than with friends and family. The results also
illustrate that duration of stay and the amount of coping strategies used by participants
did not significantly affect their reported total reentry symptoms. Those individuals that
participated in the Allegheny College formal reentry program were found to have
statistically significantly lower total reentry symptom scores than those who did not
participate, indicating that programs such as these may be vital to the successful
readjustment of returning study abroad students.


Amelia Whitaker

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Can Pictures Enhance The Keyword Method? The Effect Of Imagery On Acquisition
And Retention Of Foreign Vocabulary

The current study investigates the use of pictures as a supplement to the keyword
mnemonic technique in foreign vocabulary acquisition, as well as the effect of time on
retention. Participants were 40 undergraduate students. One group of participants
created their own mental image for the keyword sentence provided by the experimenter.
The other group studied a line drawing depicting the keyword sentence. All participants
were tested with a cued recall task after a 3-5 minute delay, and again after one week.
The picture condition was expected to score higher than the mental imagery condition
on the delayed recall task, but the difference was expected to be negligible for
immediate recall. An interaction was found between time and condition, suggesting that
pictures could be initially more helpful than mental imagery, but that the advantage may
not remain long-term. Theoretical rationales and practical applications are discussed.


Jessica Yoos

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert
Social Anxiety In College Students: Avoidance And Response Bias In Instant
Messaging

Instant messaging (IM) is an integral part of communication for young adults. It is
problematic because it lacks prosodic factors found in spoken language and
encourages egocentrism in users. Individuals may use the internet and IM to feel less
intimidated in social situations. The purpose of this study was to examine whether
higher anxiety levels are related to: using IM more than face-to-face communication in
uncomfortable situations and rating ambiguous instant messages more negatively. IM
usage and anxiety levels of psychology undergraduates were assessed using an online
survey. The results indicated no relationship between anxiety and rating ambiguous IMs
negatively, but did show that higher anxiety levels were related to using face to face
communication more often than IM.




2005-2006 Comp Abstracts


Andrew Barto

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: T. Manson

The importance of extrinsic and intrinsic facets to job satisfaction in two occupations

The current study examined which individual facets of job satisfaction correlated more
highly with overall job satisfaction in two different jobs, full-time faculty and staff
members at an institution of higher education. Intrinsic (e.g., nature of work) and
extrinsic (e.g., pay, co-workers) facets of job satisfaction were measured. Forty-eight
faculty and 44 staff members at a small, rural, Liberal Arts College participated. The
participants completed the Job Satisfaction Survey, which measured nine facets of job
satisfaction, and an additional survey, developed by the researcher, measuring
autonomy and overall job satisfaction. Bivariate correlations were computed for each of
the 11 facets. Combined Extrinsic facets correlated more highly with overall job
satisfaction in staff, than for faculty. Combined Intrinsic facets correlated with overall job
satisfaction about equally in staff and faculty. No significant differences were found
across the occupations. The results indicate that faculty place more importance on
intrinsic aspects of job satisfaction, while staff place nearly equal importance on both
intrinsic and extrinsic aspects.

Victoria Bushmire

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Effects of Punished Responding on Feeding Behavior in PVN Lesioned Rats

A physiological punishment paradigm may exist in the naturally produced satiety signals
that occur after sufficient food intake to eliminate continued eating. Stomach and gastric
distention following eating may serve as physiological SDs to reduce food intake,
thereby making food no longer reinforcing. However, with the overwhelming prevalence
of obesity, it perhaps can be concluded that satiety signals no longer control feeding
behavior and overeating and weight gain is a result. The current study investigates the
effects of punishment on feeding behavior in PVN lesioned rats. Before and after
bilateral electrolytic lesions, lever pressing behavior was observed in an alternating
schedule of food and shock presentation. Although previous research suggests that
PVN lesioned rats make more punished responses for reinforcement, similar results
were not found in the present study. Furthermore, the results also contradict other
research that suggests when paired with food, shock may actually serve to increase
response rates.

Tricia Cubitt

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Should Children diagnosed with depression be placed on Selective Seritonin Reuptake
inhibitors?

This project looked at all available information on childhood depression, and then how it
is treated with SSRI's. It then looked at available information in journal articles and
popular books as well as clinical trials to see if SSRI's should be used to treat children
diagnosed with depression.

The Biasing Effects of Pre-trial Publicity on Potential Jurors


compabstract: This literature review was intended to investigate and report the
psychological research that has been conducted in the area of prejudicial pre-trial
publicity and the effect it has on potential jurors. The hypothesis of the paper was that
despite the legal acknowledgement of, and remedies for, pre-trial publicity still has a
biasing effect on potential jurors. Pre-trial publicity was found to work through three
different avenues of cognitive psychology: memory formation, emotional bias formation,
and schema reinforcement. The literature confirmed the hypothesis and also showed
that the various legal remedies for pre-trial publicity effects are ineffective. It was found
that further research is needed in the area and suggestions for how future research
should proceed were given.

David DeRosa II

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: T. Manson

The Biasing Effects of Pre-trial Publicity on Potential Jurors

This literature review was intended to investigate and report the psychological research
that has been conducted in the area of prejudicial pre-trial publicity and the effect it has
on potential jurors. The hypothesis of the paper was that despite the legal
acknowledgement of, and remedies for, pre-trial publicity still has a biasing effect on
potential jurors. Pre-trial publicity was found to work through three different avenues of
cognitive psychology: memory formation, emotional bias formation, and schema
reinforcement. The literature confirmed the hypothesis and also showed that the various
legal remedies for pre-trial publicity effects are ineffective. It was found that further
research is needed in the area and suggestions for how future research should proceed
were given.

Lindsay Gasparovich

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Exercise Motivations in Adult, Female Members of Curves: Looking at Perceptions of
“Women‟s Health”

The purpose of the current study was to perform an investigation into a group of adult
female members of Curves and examine the issues or themes that emerged.
Participants were asked to identify their initial reasons for choosing Curves and their
motivations for adhering to the workout. Using collected data and the application of
feminist scholarship, the study strives to illuminate the “women‟s health” debate. Results
showed that participants initially chose Curves because it offers a 30-minute workout.
There was no clear indication that participants were motivated to exercise for one
particular reason, or for reasons that fall under wellness or beauty. Instead, results
showed that participants exercised for a combination of reasons. This suggests that
women are concerned with beauty, but they are also concerned with their physical and
psychological health.
Laura Ghering

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Academic Self-efficacy and College Students' Classroom Participation

This study looks at the relationship between academic self-efficacy and the frequency of
college student classroom participation. It was hypothesized that students with high
academic self-efficacy beliefs would participate more in the classroom than students
with low academic self-efficacy beliefs. The participants (n = 254) completed two
surveys, the College Academic Self-efficacy Scale (Owen & Froman, 1988) and the
Frequency of Classroom Participation Scale. The results found that students who are
highly competent in performing school-related behaviors participate more often in the
classroom than students who are not as competent. Future research in these areas
should look at how students with a low sense of academic self-efficacy can increase
their competency beliefs, and contribute more in the college classroom.

Shane Gibbons

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLamarter

Online Violent Video game Play and Aggression

The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between online violent
videogame play and aggression. Furthermore, this study investigated the possible effect
of the interaction between game outcome and gaming environment on aggression.
Thirty-eight male participants completed three questionnaires. The Buss-Perry
aggression questionnaire was completed both before game play and after. Another
questionnaire taken post-game determined participants‟ experience with videogames,
competition, and believability of their human opponent. The results suggested, for
college men, online violent video gaming and aggression are not related. In addition,
results suggested that game outcome and aggression are not related. A stronger online
and offline manipulation may have yielded different results because participants in the
online condition did not report a stronger belief in their human opponent. Additionally,
the low sample size of the winning condition indicated a need for an easier game or
more practice time.

Elizabeth Gorr

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey
Parental Attachment as a Factor Related to College Adjustment for First-Year Students

The purpose of this study was to determine if a relationship existed between attachment
style, the independent variable, and college adjustment, which was the dependent
variable. At the present time, minimal research was available examining all aspects of
college adjustment and attachment style. The hypothesis of this study was that securely
attached individuals would have better college adjustment than individuals with fearful,
preoccupied, and dismissing attachment styles. The participants of this study were first-
semester, first year students at a small liberal arts college in western Pennsylvania. The
study found that securely attached individuals had significantly higher scores on the
Social, Personal-Emotional, and Institutional college adjustment subscales compared to
other attachment styles. No significant results were found for the Academic adjustment
subscale. No significant results were found for the dismissing attachment style.
Implications of this study include: participants' perceptions of academic ability were
inaccurate due to higher or lower perceived self efficacy, self-report is a poor way to
measure academic ability, and the dismissing attachment style may not useful in this
context.

Alicia Haley

Major: Psychology/Other

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

The Language of Poverty: Exploring Verbal Intervention Strategies That Foster and
Encourage Language Development and Vocabulary Growth in Children of Varying
Socioeconomic Statuses

Factors such as mother- child interactions, maternal education, environment, and
socioeconomic status affect how children from low and middle to upper class families
will develop language and vocabulary. However, not all children are raised in
environments that foster and supplement linguistic development. The present study was
intended to explore verbal intervention strategies based on dialogic reading methods
developed by Whitehurst et al. (1988). Such methods are intended to improve language
development and vocabulary size during early childhood. The goal of the study was to
determine if such interactive teaching and learning methods improve verbal ability
scores. The intent of the research was to determine ways to equalize linguistic
development of children from families of different socioeconomic status. Such linguistic
development has been linked to later reading ability and school achievement.
Significant improvements were found in overall pre to post- test scores at both locations.
However, only small improvements were found in the intervention group in relation to
the nonintervention group. Such findings indicate that although the interventions
appeared to be successful, other factors may have contributed to significant
improvements found in the scores of the groups that participated in the verbal
interventions.
Jessica Hays

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

Divorce and beyond: The cognitive effects of divorce on children and young adults.

The negative emotional effects of divorce on children were studied to determine if there
was a significant difference of effects between elementary school children and high
school children. Elementary school children consisted of those in kindergarten through
sixth grade while high school children consisted of ninth through twelfth graders.
Various psychological journals were used to study the three emotions that were
focused. These emotions were anger, depression and anxiety, as well as outlying
factors. Coping mechanisms were also studied to see if they had any different effects on
the two groups' emotions. Findings suggested that younger children may have more
severe emotional effects resulting from divorce, but one must also consider the outside
factors as they make the final determination on how the emotions affect an individual.

Andrea Jermain

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Reference Group Identity Dependence and Alcohol Use Among College Males

College student alcohol use is prevalent and potentially dangerous, especially among
males. Recently, most research concerning college male drinking has examined social
and gender-related influences on alcohol use, including peer influence, traditional
masculine ideology, and gender role conflict (Capraro, 2000; Huselid & Cooper, 1992;
McCreary, et al., 1999; Monk & Ricciardelli, 2003; West, 2001). The current study
further examined aspects of the masculine experience, namely masculine reference
group identity dependence. Multiple regression analysis of 44 males‟ responses to the
Reference Group Identity Dependence Scale, Bem Short Form, and the Drinking Norms
Rating Form showed that status of reference group dependence influenced the extent to
which masculinity and peer norms predicted self-reported alcohol use. Understanding
which aspects of male gender role socialization are related to, and predictive of, alcohol
use could aid in the reduction of problematic male alcohol use through the development
of appropriate prevention and intervention programs.

Ashley Judy

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Cross
The Possibility of Human Pheromonal Conveyance of Personality Trait Information,
Contributing to a Female's Attraction to a Male

The possible pheromonal conveyance of personality information was studied.
Participants included fourteen males who wore t-shirts to collect pheromones and thirty-
four females (eighteen oral contraceptive (OC) users and sixteen non-users) who rated
each shirt's scent attractiveness. The female's most and least preferred males' NEO PI-
R scores were compared to the female's ideal male personality score for all participants
and then separately for OC users versus nonusers and for fertile versus non-fertile
menstrual cycle stages. Results indicated that females successfully differentiated
between preferred and non-preferred personality traits including neuroticism,
extroversion, agreeableness, and conscientiousness through pheromones supporting
the hypothesis. OC users better differentiated between most and least preferred
neuroticism and conscientiousness scores. Fertility did not clearly affect differentiation
ability.

Stacy Lockwood

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Designing an effective rehabilitation program for substance abusing incarcerated
females

As prison populations are on the rise it is important that the reasons behind
incarceration are examined and treated appropriately. This paper will draw on
previously published articles pertaining to the causes of substance abuse in women and
the steps necessary for a successful recovery, as well as examinations of current
substance abuse rehabilitation programs offered for women through the prison system.
From this information an ideal rehabilitation program is proposed for the treatment and
recovery of substance abusing incarcerated females. The hope of the program is not
only to rehabilitate those currently in prison but also to enable them to help end the
cycle of drug/alcohol use and crime within their families and communities.

Brian Manougian

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

Child‟s Own Contingent Self-Worth as a Function of Parental Contingent Self-Worth

This study evaluated the concept of contingencies of self-worth within the parent/child
dyad. Parents serve as an important key in the development of their children. As
parents aid their children in development, it was believed that parental contingencies of
self-worth could be associated with child‟s own contingencies of self-worth. It was
discovered that parental contingencies of self-worth had no relation to child‟s own
contingencies of self-worth, even if children perceived their parents as being contingent.
Further research plans to build upon the current study by including measures that
assess the relationship between parents and children. The level of parent-child
connection could possibly have bearing on contingencies of self-worth. Moreover, future
research will aim to evaluate multiple schools to establish a more diverse sample in
regards to academic achievement.

Drew Malachosky

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advior: T. Manson

Job Applicant Faking on the NEO-FFI Personality Inventory Across Jobs.

The current study examined the extent of job applicant faking on personality inventories
across jobs in a laboratory-based setting. One hundred undergraduate students at a
small liberal arts college participated in the study. Participants were randomly assigned
to one of three job conditions (Car Salesperson, Customer Service Representative and
Accounting Clerk/Bookkeeper) or a control group. Those assigned to the three job
conditions were instructed to take the NEO Five Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI) so as to
increase their chances of being hired, whereas those in the control group were told to
answer the NEO-FFI as honestly as possible. Analysis of Variance and Tukey‟s HSD
tests were performed to find significant effects on each of the five personality
dimensions across all conditions. Results indicated that participants in each of the job
conditions scored significantly higher on conscientiousness and emotional stability than
those in the control group. Across jobs, participants in the Car Salesperson and
Customer Service Representative groups scored significantly higher on extraversion
than the Accounting Clerk/Bookkeeper and control groups. Results indicated that across
jobs, applicants in a laboratory setting are able to distort their responses on personality
profiles to fit a more stereotypically desirable description of a successful incumbent in
that position.

Sarah McNeil

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

How Siblings Influence Gender Identification and Cross- and Same- Sex Friendships

The aim of the present study was to determine if siblings play a role in gender
identification and same- and cross-sex friendships. Participants for this study were all
college-aged students with a mean age of 19.58. Participants were asked to take a
survey pertaining to friendship preference, and sibling exposure. They also completed
the Bem Sex Role Inventory to establish gender identification. This study hypothesized
that having a sibling will affect same-sex and cross-sex friendships and that having a
brother or a sister will create a more diverse gender identity. After the data collection,
these hypotheses were not completely supported. There was no significant difference
between siblings and a diverse gender identity. There was no significant difference
between femininity scores for males or masculinity scores for females with or without
opposite sex siblings. Only 31 of the 154 participants showed androgynous qualities,
suggesting that same- and cross-sex siblings do not have as strong an impact as
thought with gender identification. There were significant findings between males with
sisters and same- and cross-sex friendships, but not for females and brothers. More
research is needed to rule out the effect siblings may have on gender identification and
same- and cross-sex friendships.

Melanie Morales

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Puerto Rican Mental Help-Seeking Behavior: A Cross-cultural Investigation

The present study was conducted to investigate the mental help-seeking behaviors of
mainland Puerto Ricans compared to Anglo-Americans. Fifty Puerto Ricans and 43
Anglo-Americans residing in the city of Cleveland, Ohio participated in the study. The
participants were presented with six different mental help options to choose to seek help
from for eight different hypothetical situations. The participants were also asked to give
a justification for their choice in each question. The data was subjected to a chi-square
analysis in relation to the variables of ethnicity, sex, age level, and education level. A
significant relationship was found between choice in help option and ethnicity for half of
the questions. Overall Puerto Ricans chose not to seek help from a mental healthcare
professional in favor of some other option, while Anglo-Americans chose to seek help
from a mental healthcare professional. No significant relation was found between choice
in help option with regards to sex, age level, and education level.

Nikkilyn Morrison

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

Parential psychological control and acceptance as predictors of a child's goal orientation

This study investigated the extent to which a child‟s achievement goal orientation
(mastery, performance-approach, or performance-avoidance) can be predicted by
parental acceptance and psychological control. Children in seventh grade (N=54)
completed measures evaluating goal orientations, perceived parental acceptance, and
perceived parental psychological control. Parents (N=29) also completed a
questionnaire concerning beliefs about their own use of psychological control, which
was combined with the child‟s measure. It was found that parental acceptance positively
predicted a mastery goal orientation and negatively predicts performance-avoidance
goal orientations. Psychological control, on the other hand, was found to be associated
with lower levels of mastery goal orientation and, from only the children‟s perspective of
parental psychological control, higher levels of performance-avoidance goal orientation.
Performance-approach goal orientation was not predicted by either psychological
control or acceptance. In addition, no interactions were found between levels of parental
acceptance and psychological control and any of the three goal orientations.

Matt Motyl

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLamarter

The Politics of Gender in a Post-9/11 World: A Terror Management Perspective

:The current study was conducted to assess the effects of death-related thought on
evaluations of political candidates as a function of the candidates‟ sex and gender.
Using terror management theory, it was hypothesized that people would show a
preference for stereotypic and gender role consistent candidates. Following a death-
related thought induction, 147 participants read a masculine or feminine position
statement paired with a male or female photograph. Participants then evaluated each
candidate on a scale designed by the researcher. The results obtained were mixed.
When induced with death-related thought, participants preferred feminine candidates to
masculine candidates in nearly every evaluative measure, with the exception of fighting
terrorism. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Ashly O'Donnell

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Effects of in-utero exposure to methamphetamine on learnaing acquisition

The effects of in utero exposure to methamphetamine (MA) on learning acquisition were
investigated. MA was administered to pregnant Sprague Dawley dams at a dose of 3.0
mg/kg intramuscularly once daily. Drug administration occurred throughout either the
first, second, or third week of gestation, or not at all. Offspring were subject to 23-hour
water deprivation prior to daily behavioral testing which commenced at 9 weeks of age.
Pups were placed on a schedule of Continuous Reinforcement until the specified
criterion of 100 reinforced lever presses was met. Pups were then placed on a schedule
of FI30” for one-hour daily sessions. The results indicate that pups prenatally exposed
to MA acquired the lever pressing behavior significantly faster than the non-injection
control pups. There was no difference in responding among groups on the first day of
FI30”. Conclusions are based upon previous research findings that in utero exposure to
amphetamines results in hyperactivity.

Chelsea Pajak

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Cross

Comparing the treatment effects of direct GABA agonist and NMDA partial agonist for
the treatment of pilocarpine induced seizures

Seizure disorders and epilepsy are the number one neurological disorder in canines.
There are many treatment options for seizure disorders. They fall into three main
groups: GABA agonists, partial NMDA agonists, and NMDA antagonists. The present
study compared the effects of GABA agonist, Valproic Acid, and NMDA partial agonist,
D-cycloserine, in terms of time of onset of the seizure and the severity of the seizure.
Pilocarpine (10 mg/kg) was used to induce the seizure through an intraperitoneal
injection. First the animal was pretreated with either saline (control group), Valproic Acid
(200 mg/kg) or D-cycloserine (160 mg/kg). After seven minutes the pilocarpine was
injected and timing began. The time that the first sign of seizure activity began was
recorded. Also the severity, according to a modified Racine Scale, that the seizure
reached within 15 minutes was recorded. The seizure was then stopped using the same
dose of the same drug used during pretreatment (Valproic Acid in the control group).
The results were not significant, but found that the control group had an overall higher
time of onset and the D-cycloserine group had the lowest time of onset. Week two had
the highest time of onset and week three had the lowest time of onset. Lastly, the
control group reached the highest level of seizure severity and the valproic acid group
had the lowest level of severity. The highest average seizure severity occurred in week
one and was the lowest in week three.

Jennifer Pinaire

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLamarter

Changing Relationship Between Sex and Self-Esteem due to Change in Gender Role
Norms

Humans have a strong desire for social approval. This approval will increase their self-
esteem levels (Campbell, 1984). Self-esteem has been found to be influenced by day-
to-day events (Ninot, Gregory, Forts & Deligniers, 2005). One event that is becoming
more and more common for adolescents is engaging in premarital sex (SISCUS). The
question becomes what are the consequences of that act on an individual‟s self-esteem
level? Gender roles may play a significant role in what the outcome of premarital sex
will be on self-esteem. Gender roles are the social norm that society expects an
individual to follow like rules (Mahalik, Morrary, Coonerty-Femiano, Ludlow, Slattery, &
Smiler, 2005). In recent years gender norms regarding premarital sex have begun to
change and more adolescents are engaging in sex. As negative social norms towards
premarital sex decrease, so should the negative effect of premarital sex on self-esteem.

Jose Ramirez, Jr.

Major: Psychology/Other

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

Mexican Political and Ethnic Identity in the U.S.: An Examination of Santa Ana, CA

The large Mexican population in the United States has been the result of both historical
and contemporary events. Unlike other immigrant groups, Mexicans are highly
concentrated in the Southwest and have achieved a distinct cultural impact in the
region.
The purpose of this research is to examine both the political and ethnic identity of
Mexicans in the U.S. The results of this study concur with research that suggests that
the formation of the Mexican ethnic identity is influenced by the group‟s unique
contextual factors (e.g., dense population, immigration, discrimination). As a result,
Mexicans are in a preferable position to achieve an integrated identity (e.g., bi-cultural),
which impacts their political ideologies.

Elsa Richter

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

Psychometrics of the Profile of Mood States - Revised

The study tested the psychometric properties of the Profile of Mood States - Revised
(POMS-R), a self-report instrument. Twenty-four items and one factor have been added
to the new version of the POMS. A test of Cronbach's alpha showed test-retest
reliabilities ranging from .64 to .79, compared to the standard POMS's reliabilities of .65
to .74. A confirmatory factor analysis revealed that all except one of the 24 new items
loaded significantly on one of the seven moods. These findings suggest that the POMS-
R is an appropriate and valid revision of the POMS and that replacement of weaker
items from the POMS with new ones in the POMS-R would create an equally or more
reliable test.
Sarah Roberts

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Narcissism and Sexual Harassment Proclivities

In past research, narcissism has been linked with aggression. This study investigated
the relationship between narcissism and sexual harassment proclivities under the
assumption that sexual harassment was a specific kind of aggressive behavior. The
Narcissistic Personality Inventory was used to measure normal, or sub-clinical
narcissism, and the Sexual Harassment Proclivities Scale was used to assess likelihood
of sexual harassment. From a sample of 106 college males, results showed a significant
positive correlation between normal narcissism and sexual harassment proclivities.

David Shope

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

The Relationship between Attitudes Towards Marriage and Personality

The purpose of this study was to define the relationship between personality and
attitudes towards marriage. Fifty participants, ranging in age from 18 to 22, filled out the
NEO Personality Inventory-Revised (NEO PI-R), Marital Attitude Scale (MAS), and a
questionnaire concerning events associated with marriage (Braaten & Rosen, 1998;
Costa & McCrae, 1992). Results showed no correlation between the MAS and the
domains of the NEO PI-R. The facets of Self-Consciousness (r (50)= -.32, p<.05) and
Values (r (50) = -.47, p<.01) were found to correlate significantly with the MAS.
Significance was also found within events associated with marriage in the domain of
Extraversion (t(43)= 2.57, p<.05) and the facets Assertiveness (t(43)= 2.29, p<.05),
Values (t(43)= -2.09, p<.05), Action (F (49)=3.97, p<.05), and Compliance (F (49)=3.20,
p<.05.). This led to the general conclusion that attitudes towards marriage and events
associated with marriage correlate with aspects of personality.

Jennifer Slater

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: JW Heuchert

Family Environment, Self-esteem and Peer Relationships
This study explored the relationships between family environment, self-esteem, and
peer relationships. Participants were 134 students from Allegheny College between the
ages of 18 and 22. Participants were asked to complete a brief demographic
questionnaire asking their age, sex, academic year, and parents' marital status. They
also completed the Real Form of the Family Environment Scale, Coopersmith Self-
Esteem Inventories, and the Peer Attachment Scale from the Inventory of Parent and
Peer Attachment. It was hypothesized that a positive relationship would be present
between each of these variables. Correlations were performed for each of the variables
and t-tests and one-way analyses of variance were performed for the significant
correlations. Results supported each of the hypotheses that there was in fact a positive
relationship between each of the studied variables. Sex was found to only significantly
affect self-esteem and academic year was found to significantly affect both self-esteem
and self-report of family environment. Parental status was found to only be significantly
related to the self report of family environment.

William Smith

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

Service Learning: An Examination of Prosocial Inclination and Narcissism

Utilizing a pre/posttest design, the present study examined whether students choosing
to take service-learning courses differed in levels of narcissism and prosocial inclination
from students who registered for similar courses without ongoing service-learning
components. Furthermore, the study examined whether narcissism and prosocial
inclination changed differently in participants choosing to take service-learning courses
from those who did not. The relationship between participants‟ sex and narcissism,
prosocial inclination, and community service involvement was also examined. Thirty-one
college students between the ages of 18 and 21 participated (9 males and 22 females).
Participants completed a pretest survey approximately two weeks into a semester and a
posttest survey approximately two months later. Both surveys consisted of a
demographic questionnaire which determined the type of pedagogy participants had
chosen (service-learning or non-service-learning) and the number of community service
hours participants had completed; a measure of narcissism, Phares and Erksine‟s
Selfism Scale (1984); and a measure of prosocial inclination, Shelton and McAdams‟
Visions of Morality Social subscale (1990). No significant differences in narcissism or
prosocial inclination were found between service-learning and non-service-learning
participants at either pre-or-posttest. Furthermore, no significant changes in narcissism
or prosocial inclination were found due to pedagogy. Consistent with previous research,
female participants had significantly higher scores than male participants in prosocial
inclination and completed more hours of community service (Ozorak, 2003; Shelton &
McAdams, 1990). Limitations of the current study are acknowledged and suggestions
for future research offered.
George Thomas

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: G. Kenney-Benson

The Effects of Parental Warmth on Academic Achievement and Motivation

The purpose of this present study is to investigate any effect that parental warmth (both
paternal and maternal) has on academic achievement and motivation. 177 participants
took part in this study, in which they filled out different questionnaires measuring their
level of academic motivation, achievement (GPA), and degree of parental warmth
experienced in their childhood. Correlations were run between the independent
variables (paternal and maternal warmth) and dependent variables (motivation and
achievement) in order to distinguish any type of relationship. Analyses of variance
(ANOVA) were also run to further explore any effects. Positive correlations were found
between paternal and maternal warmth, paternal warmth and motivation, and with
motivation and GPA. Despite these correlations there were no significant results found
in the ANOVA's. Warmth (especially paternal) seems to have a positive correlation with
motivation, but not enough to have any significant effects on achievement or motivation
as a whole, which is consistent with prior research.

Nathan Thomas

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: A. Dale

An EEG Examination of Differences in Alpha Desynchronization Between Languages


During the Performance of Simple Cognitive Tasks in Different Groups of Language
LearnersThe current study set out to investigate whether examining alpha
desyncronization in the frontal and temporal lobe language areas could be a new
approach to studying the cerebral organization of language in 5 intermediate and 5
advanced orally proficient French language learners. Epoch records were taken during
the performance of simple cognitive tasks in both languages, one of which required
lexical access. According to the results, L2 lexical access was correlated with increased
right hemisphere (RH) activity. There were numerous sample and experimental control
issues in this study. The study should be replicated in order to determine if the RH
activity is still observed during L2 lexical access. The presence of the effect would then
provide evidence in support of RH activity being correlated with L2 lexical activation,
support for Knupsky‟s (2006) language model, and show that epoch studies can be
used as a tool to investigate language storage and processing during the acquisition
process.
Lindsey Tupman

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

Examining God Images through Self-esteem and Prayer Styles

This study examined the interaction between religion and psychology. This research
was intended to be a psychological study of religion as termed by Batson (1997).
Specifically God images were compared in simple t-test analysis with the self-esteem of
young adults, mainly college students. God images were further expanded by analyzing
interactions of prayer styles and specific God descriptors. Secondarily sex differences
were also explored. There was expected to be a significant positive relationship
between benevolent God images and high Self-esteem. Specifically prayer styles
relating to a Connection with God were also expected to correlate positively with all God
Images. Finally, male participants were expected to have a preference over female
participants for genderizing God as male. The results of analysis showed that all major
hypothesizes were not supported. While some secondary tests on specific prayer styles
and God images were significantly related.

Jessica Wertheim

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

The Relationship Between Family Structures And Attachment Styles on Family
Functioning in College Student.

Attachment styles are important in how one perceives their relationship with others.
One‟s parental marital structure has an effect on ones attachment style. It is through the
internal working-model that develops from out attachment-figures, that influences one‟s
relationships later in life. The main interest of this study is to see if ones parental marital
status and their attachment style influences ones perception on their family functioning.
It was hypothesized that those whose parental structures are intact and are secure
attachment will perceive their family in a positive perception on how their family
functions. It was also hypothesized that those who fall into insecure attachments come
from divorced families and will view their family in a negative light. It was found that
parental marital status does significantly differ on how one perceives their family
functioning but there was not a significant difference.

James Wilson

Major: Psychology/Other
Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLamarter

Troubled Waters within, Stormy Weather without: The Effects of Responsibility on
Attitudes towards the Physically and Mentally Disabled

By using a fictional scenario and Likert type questionnaire, attitudes toward the disabled
were evaluated on the basis of disability type and responsibility attribution. It was that
hypothesized stigma towards the mentally and physically disabled as well as
responsibility for the disability would influence overall assistance giving and general
attitudes toward the disabled. A total of 115 participants were recruited from introductory
psychology classes. While the initial hypotheses were not supported, there was some
support for Weiner‟s (1995) model of responsibility judgment. Assistance giving
behavior and responsibility assignment differed on the basis of disability condition
although participants made no explicit attribution of a difference between the mentally
and physically disabled. Alternative explanations for the lack of support for differences
based on stigma are discussed and interpreted in light of the responsibility model.

Amber Wood

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

The Teratological Effects of Paternal Ethanol Exposure: Behavioral Observations

This assay was designed to study the effects, if any, of ethanol as a paternal
teratological agent. Three treatment groups were administered differing concentrations
of ethanol, (0% acting as a control, 5% ethanol, and 15% ethanol) for the length of a
spermatogenesis cycle and then bred to virgin females. Their offspring were housed
under normal conditions until adulthood, approximately 155 days of age. Previous data
obtained from similar experiment was inconclusive, yet presented the notion that
differences were observable. Spontaneous alteration, maze learning and memory, and
a locomotor hang-test were administered as behavioral tests, to determine the presence
or absence of hyperactivity. While significant, (p> .05), statistical differences were
observed between treatment groups and control group offspring with regards to maze
learning and memory and the hang- test, no difference was observed with regards to
spontaneous alteration. The most marked differences were summarized as visual
observations made while the tests were administered; which indicate that ethanol as a
paternal teratological agent can have some affect on the behavior of their offspring.
These results are however unsubstantiated and require extensive further
experimentation.




2004-2005 Comp Abstracts
Erin Bastow

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Buday

The Effects of Student and/or Client Death on Staff Emotional and Behavioral Grief

This study examined the effects of student and/or client death on staff emotional and behavioral grief. All
participants were employees of an organization that educates and cares for individuals with mental and
physical disabilities. Participants were staff from the learning center and adult day programs. There were
75 participants total, 11 of whom were men. The studied examined the effects sex, job role (direct care,
support staff, administrative), and number of deaths experienced had on emotional and behavioral grief.
All men scored higher in behavioral grief than in emotional grief. This was not the case for all women.
Women scored higher overall than men in both emotional and behavioral grief. The number of deaths
experienced was found to be statistically significant for job role, with administrators experiencing more
deaths than direct care staff. Several recommendations were made based on this data including the
training of grief officers, compiling grief packets, and organizing memorial services.

Brittany Eaves

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

What a Tangled Web We Weave: An Examination of Deception on the Internet and Self-Esteem

This study examined the relationship between using deception in computer mediated communication
(CMC) and self-esteem. Ninty-one undergraduate students served as participants in this study. They were
asked to complete a questionnaire which asked about background information and Internet chatting
habits, and the Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory. It was predicted that those participants who used
more deception online would have lower self-esteem scores. This hypothesis was confirmed by the
results, which showed a significant correlation between the two variables. There were no significant
differences found in the types of lies told on the Internet by each sex. There were also no sex differences
found in deception scores. The implications of these results, as well as prospects for future studies, are
discussed.

Christoforos Fekos

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Discriminative Stimulus Properties Of A Binary Combination Of Caffeine And (-)Ephedrine And
Generalization From Psychomotor Stimulants.

The discriminative stimulus properties of a binary combination of 6.0 mg/kg caffeine + 4.0 mg/kg (-
)ephedrine were investigated because of their possible synergistic effect in discrimination studies. Six
adult female Sprague-Dawley rats were trained to discriminate one of two controlled stimulants; either 3.2
mg/kg cocaine or 1.0 mg/kg d-amphetamine from saline solution (0.09%). Subjects were first trained to
maintain 80%-accuracy of response to the drug-appropriate lever for a majority of consecutive sessions.
Four subjects met this criterion, two from each drug group. Cocaine group demonstrated 51.30%-
accuracy of response to drug-appropriate lever and over all decrease in mean response/minute between
saline and drug sessions. d-Amphetamine group demonstrated 77.90%-accuracy of response to the drug-
appropriate lever and only slightly decreased mean response/minute between saline and drug sessions.
Two subjects from each group received the second drug condition, a binary combination of caffeine (6.0
mg/kg) and (-)ephedrine (4.0 mg/kg). Obtained statistic for cocaine [t(1) = +.800, p<.05] revealed no
significant difference between mean %-accuracy of response to drug-appropriate lever, thereby rejecting
the null hypothesis and providing statistical evidence that suggests caffeine-ephedrine combinations may
have a synergistic effect that mimics the cocaine discriminative function. Obtained statistic for d-
amphetamine [t(1) = +37.59, p<.05] revealed a significant difference in mean %-accuracy of response to
drug-appropriate lever and therefore the evidence suggests that a binary combination of caffeine-
ephedrine does not mimic the d-amphetamine discriminative function. In general, the raw data does
suggest otherwise regardless if difference in means was found to be statistically significant.

Meghan Fox

Major: Psychology and Philosophy

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Anderson

Greed: A Philosophical and Psychological Case Study of Inmates

Greed is a concept of life that has not been extensively studied by psychology or other social science
fields. Although we claim that in the 21st century societal values reflect greed in many ways, we know
little about greed or any psychological explanations of it. The ultimate aim of this research was to clarify
some important aspects of greed and find a connection between the internalizations and manifestations
of greed in a subgroup of society by developing an empirical measure and analytic framework from
theoretical research. The qualitative interviews researched what objects in life were criminals greedy
about, along with what behaviors or actions, thoughts, and feelings were associated with greed.
Philosophical theories explore greed-related sentiments very explicitly. Previous psychological research
of greed has been done through the psychoanalytic tradition. Human desires and their true meanings are
investigated. Both fields examine greed and its impressions on areas of human life and society as well as
the origins of this concept. Results of this research revealed that objects, behaviors/actions, and thoughts
of greed each had two separate subgroups. These included materialistic and idealistic objects, non-
moralistic and moralistic behaviors/actions, and thoughts showed two separate groups (concentration on
an object and its attainment and the other group was concentrating on the disregard of others). Some
feelings that were reported include fun, entitlement, excitement, frustration, stress relief, and powerful.
Overall the empirical exploration corresponded with what theories explained and this has strong
implications for psychology, philosophy, and future research.

Gabe deGarmeaux

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

The Relationship Between Gender and Persuasion in an Evangelical Christian Context

This paper explores the role of interpersonal relationships on attitude and persuasion in a religious
context. Specifically, the current study aims to determine whether there are differences in the ways that
men and women are persuaded to become Christ followers based on previous interactions with
evangelical Christians (testimony, apologist, inviter, and/or example). Participants were 83 young adults
(male = 40, female = 43) from the Gathering ministry in northwest Pennsylvania. The test measures were
subjected to a two-way chi squared and results indicated that there is no significant difference (p < 0.05)
between men and women in the way that they rank previous influential relationships with evangelical
Christians (p = 0.442). While no relationship exists between gender and type of influential relationship
with evangelical Christians and all of the types of relationships showed to be significant, both men and
women expressed that examples were influential significantly more often than the other types of
relationships.

Dawn Glover

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

A Feminist Analysis Of Sex Roles: Sex-Role Orientation, Major Choice, Occupational Plans, Slef-Efficacy,
And Openness To Experience

The purpose of this study was to provide a current, comprehensive analysis of sex roles, major choice,
and occupational chioce. Data was analyzed in order to determine the relationship between sex-role type
and traditonality of major choice and occupational plans. Self-efficacy and openness to experience were
examined as possible intermediary factors that may be related to sex role characteristics, masculinity and
femininity. All varaibles were then analyzed by gender. Results revealed that there was no overall
relationhisp between sex role orientaiton and major choice or occupational plans. However, self-efficacy
was positively correlated to masculinity and openness to experience was positively correlated to
femininity. Women were found to have a higher openness to expereince,and were more likely than men
to indicate nontradional occupational plans.

Megan Guidi

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

A comparison of the results of Functional Analyses conducted in both the Natural and the Experimental
Environment for a child with PDD-NOS

Because Functional Analyses are usually conducted in an Experimental Environment it is difficult to know
if the functions determined in that setting are actually the functions of the targeted behavior in the Natural
Environment (Holden, 2002). Some studies have found that Functional Analyses conducted in more
natural settings (e.g. residential facility, schools) can also provide researchers with clear functions of
behavior (Asmus, Vollmer, Borrero, 2002; Bailey, McComas, Benavides, Lovascz, 2002). A brief
Functional Analysis was developed for the tantrum behavior of an 8 year old girl. To focus on the
similarities or differences between the functions found from both types of environments, Functional
Analysis was conducted in a diagnostic room and then re-implemented in a natural classroom
environment. The behavior was examined under four conditions-social-positive reinforcement (attention),
social-negative reinforcement (escape), alone and the play (control) condition-to determine the controlling
function. The analyses found play to be the controlling function in both environments and the levels of the
behavior exhibited in the other conditions were not significantly different across conditions.

Shujing Hung

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLmarter
Leventhal‟s Procedural Justice Model Revisited: How Does Representativeness and Outcome Affect
People‟s Fairness Judgment?

The present study examined the effects of representativeness and outcome on the judgment of
procedural fairness. Numerous studies have explored the fair process effect on two major theoretical
axes: instrumental and relational (e.g., Thibaut & Walker, 1975; Tyler, 1989). On the one hand, Thibaut
and Walker (1975) argued that people‟s concern for procedural justice is rooted in their need for outcome
control. On the other hand, Tyler (1989) focused on status as reflected in procedural justice. This study
examined both approaches. Specifically, it examined the effect of representativeness, identified by
Leventhal (1980) as one of the determinants for procedural justice. Using a 3 X 2 factorial design,
participants‟ perception of fairness was assessed through fictitious scenarios that created three
representativeness conditions: a) no representativeness, b) indirect representativeness, and c) direct
representativeness, as well as two outcome conditions: self interest and group interest. It was
hypothesized that participants in the representative conditions would perceive more fairness than those in
the non-representative condition regardless of the outcome. Moreover, participants would discern more
fairness when outcome reflected self-interest than community interest. The overall results supported the
hypotheses. Main effects for both representativeness and outcome suggested that people‟s concern for
justice could be both instrumental and relational.

Josh Johnson

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Stereo selective Behavioral Effects of NMDA and NMLA in the Rat: Assessment Under an IRT>t
Schedule of Water Presentation

The present study was designed to assess the effects of the stereo isomers of NMDA and NMLA on
schedule-controlled responding. Behavior was maintained under an IRT>5" schedule of water
presentation. Of primary concern was the response rate and the temporal organization of responding.
Rats were given sequential doses of NMDA, NMLA, Ketamine, and MK-801. Doses were
counterbalanced and administered in a nonsequential order that varied across subjects. Injections of the
NMDA antagonists Ketamine and MK-801 when administered alone yielded considerable dose-related
decreases in response rate while NMDA and NMLA did not substantially alter the response rates relative
to saline controls. The temporal distribution of responses were, however, moved toward the end of the
interval. Antagonists administered concomitantly with doses of NMDA produced an increase in premature
responding. The antagonists administered with NMLA did not produce any alterations in the rate or
temporal distribution of responses. These data are consistent with previous research indicating that
NMLA was to a large extent inactive while NMDA had considerable effects on behavior.

Lindsey Katora

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Various Effects of Differential Housing and Stress on Discrimination Behavior in Rats

Do animals, who have had no stimulation in life, respond to stressful events in the same way as animals
who live in enriched environments? Specifically, does the occurrence of an extremely stressful event
retard an animal's ability to ever learn in that environment? The current study was designed to address
these questions that have remained unanswered. In the present study, 21 naïve albino rats, of both
sexes, were housed in either an enriched or impoverished environment. Animals in the enriched
environments were housed in large cages with a number of additional stimuli including running wheels,
balls, ceramic pot, tunnels, and bells. Enriched environment animals also had access to social contact
with other same-sexed rats. Animals in the impoverished environments were housed individually in small
standard housing containers with no additional stimuli. After a 30-day habituation period to their
respective environments, all rats experienced a stress condition of inescapable foot shock until they
displayed passive avoidance for a five-minute period. The learning ability of each animal was then tested
through the shaping of lever pressing, and performance ability was measured through a discrimination
task. The results indicate that animals from the enriched environment learned faster and demonstrated
more stimulus control than animals from the impoverished environment. However, the results are
optimistic in that animals from both environments were still able to learn, even though rates differed,
regardless of the extreme stress they experienced.

Aubrie Kohlmeyer

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Anderson

The Effects Tattooing and Body Piercings Have on Self-Esteem, Body Image, and High-Risk Behaviors of
College Students

Eighty-three undergraduate students at a small northwestern Pennsylvania college were asked to
participate in a study examining the effects of tattoos and body piercings on self-esteem, body image, and
high-risk behaviors. The participants completed four questionnaires, which were later analyzed. One
significant finding of the study was that those participants who were tattooed were linked with more high-
risk behaviors than any of the other participants. There were no significant findings linking tattoos and/or
body piercings with lower self-esteem and a lower perceived body image. There was also no significance
between the number of piercings and/or tattoos and self-esteem, body image, and high-risk behaviors.
There were no significant differences in relation to number of body modifications between those
participants who had completed their first year of college with those who had only just begun their first
year.

Lindsay Kuchta

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advsior: D. Dickey

Effects of Familial Factors on Self-disclosure of College Students

The primary aim of this study was to compare the willingness of male (n = 50 and female (n = 142) to self-
disclose information to their mothers and fathers and the levels of family cohesion and adaptability.
Results, based on a sample of college studetns, indicated that mother and father self-disclosure was
significantly related to familial factors. Further analysis explained family type, gender, marital status, living
arrangements, and year in college differences in self-disclosure. Avoiding extensive disclosure of
personal information to parents may be a function of faimly cohesion and adaptability.

John Lobaugh

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Anderson
Trait Anxiety, Competitiveness, & Academic Achievement: A Statistical Analysis of the Relationship
between Trait Anxiety, Personal Level of Competition, and Academic Achievement at a Division III
College

The present study examined the relationship between level of trait anxiety, competitiveness, and
academic achievement. Past research indicated a direct negative relationship between level of trait
anxiety and competitiveness. Utilizing the Mehrabian Trait Anxiety Test and the State-Trait Anxiety
Inventory to measure trait anxiety, the Sports Competition Anxiety Test to measure competition anxiety,
the Competitiveness Index to measure competitiveness, and self-reported GPA to measure academic
achievement, the relationship between trait anxiety, competitiveness, and academic achievement was
analyzed. Through correlation and regression analysis, a sample consisting of 146 (52 male, 94 female)
undergraduates revealed an indirect relationship between trait anxiety and competitiveness. Regression
analysis revealed that as trait anxiety increases competition anxiety increases proportionally by .22 (p <
.05), and as competition anxiety increases level of competitiveness decreases .29 (p < .05). No
relationship between level of competitiveness and academic achievement was found to exist; this is
suspected to be a consequence of the data collection methods regarding academic achievement.

Amy Morrison

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Anderson

Discovering the Emotionally Intelligent Leader: An Empirical Study of the Relationship between Emotional
Intelligence and Leadership Emergence

The purpose of the current study was to support emotional intelligence research and emphasize its
importance in the organizational world through an examination of the relationship between emotional
intelligence and leadership. Participants were tested in same-sex groups of four and asked to complete
questionnaires for emotional intelligence, self- and peer leadership ratings, and gender. Testing sessions
were videotaped and later observed to rate leadership behaviors. Results showed no significant
correlations between total emotional intelligence and overall leadership, but a few significant correlations
were found between specific dimensions of each construct and within measures for emotional intelligence
and leadership. Limitations of the study were a potential overlap in task and social-emotional leadership
behaviors and the use of measures that rely substantially upon perception. Finally, the current study
encourages further research that will work toward an accepted conceptualization and standardized
measures of emotional intelligence, and will offer better support of the concept and its significance within
organizations and other applied areas.

Maria Moyer

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Existential Psychology or Transpersonal Psychology: A New Approach to the Treatment of Depression

The theoretical ability of existential or transpersonal psychology as a viable treatment for depression was
investigated. Existential psychology originated from existential philosophy which focuses on the freedom
every person has to make his or her own choices and the meaning that results from each choice.
Transpersonal psychology was developed directly as a branch of psychology and relies on spirituality as
the way in which a person finds meaning in life. Depression is a growing problem among Americans
today despite the current treatment options available. Based on information from academic journal
articles and books research indicated that existential therapy would be a feasible alternative to current
treatments for depression.

Heather Nauman

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

Shyness, Academic Achievement, and Cognitive Performance

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between shyness, academic achievement, and
cognitive performance. It was hypothesized that shy individuals would perform more poorly than non-shy
individuals in the academic arena and on cognitive tasks due to a particular form of distracting
metacognition present only in the shy population. The effect of situationally induced self-consciousness
was also examined by way of a mirror present during one of the testing conditions. It was hypothesized
that the inducement of self-consciousness would cause shy individuals to perform more poorly than shy
individuals in the control condition. Participants included 129 Allegheny College students. Measurements
administered consisted of ademographic questionnaire, the Cheek and Buss Shyness Scale, and six
brain teaser puzzles. No significant relationships were found between shyness and academic
achievement or cognitive performance. There were also no differences found between the control and
self-consciousness conditions. Because none of the results were statistically significant, the hypotheses
cannot be ruled out and therefore, warrant further research.

Sarah O'Neill

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Dickey

School Competency as a Function of Negative Parent-Child Relations and Parental Loss

This study examined the effects of negative parent-child relations and parental loss on child and
adolescent school competency. Twenty-one individual parents with at least one biological, adoptive, or
foster child between the ages of 6 and 18 participated. Each participant completed the Child Behavior
Checklist (CBCL) to provide a measure of their child&#8217;s school competency. All children were
&#8216;at-risk&#8217; for harm from experiencing negative parent-child relations. There were two child
family groups, no-loss structured or loss structured defined as parental loss through death, divorce, or
out-of-home placement. At-risk children&#8217;s school competency scores were significantly lower than
normative data on no-risk children. Significant school competency differences occurred between at-risk
loss structured children and normative data on no-risk children and at-risk loss structured children and the
mean of both at-risk family groups. A marginal difference occurred between scores of at-risk loss
structured and at-risk no-loss structured children. Recommendations for improving this
population&#8217;s academic outlook were made (increase the awareness of caregivers, teachers, etc.).
Additional research is necessary.

Alexander Persoskie

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark
Complex Stimuli, Physical Similarity, And Overshadowing Within The Context Of Conditional
Discrimination

Participants in the present research engaged in match-to-sample training involving complex stimuli. For
participants in the Experimental Group, one element of each complex sample stimulus was similar in
appearance to one element of its correct comparison stimulus. It was hypothesized that participants'
conditional discriminations would be guided by this physical similarity, and, furthermore, that the
involvement of these elements in pre-existing equivalence classes would overshadow the learning of
conditional relations among the nonsimilar elements. Consistent with these predictions, one of the three
participants in the Experimental Group showed a clear failure of the nonsimilar elements to enter into
equivalence classes with one another. The present research is the first study to examine a factor other
than past training (i.e., blocking) that can impact on which component of a complex stimulus is learned
during conditional discrimination training. The article concludes with a brief discussion of several areas
dealing with complex stimulus control that have traditionally not been studied from a behavior analytic
framework.

Matthew Popowicz

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: W. DeLamarter

The Influence of an Audience on the Performance of Collegiate Long Distance Runners

In this study, the influence of an audience on performance of long distance track and cross country
runners was explored. 14 male collegiate long distance runners participated in this study, and were
evaluated performing under three conditions: no audience (only coactors), mere presence of an audience,
and presence of an evaluative audience (parents). It was hypothesized that the fastest times would be
recorded in the evaluative condition, while the slowest times would be recorded when only coactors, and
no audience was present. The participants also completed surveys that were used to analyze anxiety,
and perceptions of parenting styles. Results indicated the runners ran fastest in the mere presence
condition in both cross country and track, and overall ran faster during track season. Reasons were
explored as to why runners did not perform the best in the evaluative condition.

Jeannette Reid

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Psychological Autobiographies: A Window into Mental Illness


The current study investigated the potential utility of psychological autobiographies in clinical work,
suggesting that such accounts may offer qualitatively different information than more traditional accounts
of mental illness. In particular, first-hand accounts may be better adept at discussing the subjective
experience of having a disorder. And analysis of pertinent works--namely Nobody Nowhere, by Donna
Williams; An Unquiet Mind, by Kay Redfield Jamison; and When the Music's Over, by Ross David Burke--
provided support for this claim. Accordingly, professionals are advised to utilize psychological
autobiographies--in tandem with more traditional accounts--to enhance their understanding of mental
illness.

Nichole Ridgeway
Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Anderson

Perceived and Self-Reported Sex Roles of Female Athletes and Non-Athletes in Contact and Non-
Contact Sports

The current study investigated sex role perceptions in college-aged female athletes who play contact
sports and female athletes who play non-contact sports. It explored the differences and similarities
between the self-reported sex role scores of female non-athletes and athletes (those who play contact
sports and those who play non-contact sports) and the sex-role scores that their peers perceive them to
possess. The research revealed that female non-athletes were perceived as significantly less masculine
than they reported themselves to be and female athletes were perceived as significantly more masculine
than they reported themselves to be. Females who play contact sports were perceived as significantly
more masculine than they reported themselves to be. However, females who play non-contact sports
were perceived at being less masculine then they reported themselves to be, although these results were
not significant. The results suggest that for females, it is not just participation in sports that make others
perceive them as more masculine than they are, but also the type of sport that they play. It appears that
females who play contact sports have to deal with a significantly larger discrepancy between how they
see themselves and how they are seen by others than females who play non-contact sports.

Emily Roguski

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

The Effects of Prenatal OxyContin Exposure on Oral Self-Administration

This study investigated the prenatal effects of OxyContin. The experiment was designed to determine
whether prenatal OxyContin exposure increased susceptibility to oral self-administration of OxyContin
and if the prenatal exposure had an effect on the analgesic properties of the drug. The study used three
experimental groups consisting of a total of 18 Sprague-Dawley rats. Each of the three groups consisted
of six rats each and was prenatally exposed to saline, 0.3, or 1.0 mg/kg of OxyContin. The experiment
found that there was no substantial evidence to suggest a difference in the self-administration between
the three groups. It also suggests that there is an interaction between the prenatal exposure and the
analgesic properties of the drug. The results of the experiment propose that additional research be
completed to determine whether OxyContin has lasting effects on the offspring

Jamie Schutte

Major: Psychology and English

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Readers Responses to the Poetry and Suicide of Sylvia Plath

Research has shown that suicide is a powerful social force, and that individuals have certain beliefs about
those who commit suicide. Based on reader response literature from a psychological and literary
perspective, knowledge of the suicide of the author should affect how readers interpret a poem. Sylvia
Plath‟s life, death, and poem “Mirror” are discussed as a specific example of reader response theories. In
the experiment, the question addressed is: Does knowledge of the author‟s suicide effect how readers
interpret a poem? Subjects are undergraduate students at Allegheny College. The independent variable
is whether or not the participant was aware of the author‟s suicide, and the dependent variable is how the
participant rated the poem along thirteen dimensions. Participants who were aware of the author‟s suicide
rated the woman in the poem as significantly more angry and irrational, and found significantly more
images representing a cry for help. These results are tied to the particular participant cohort group.

Christopher Schmoutz

Major: Psychology and Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: R. Clark

Reduction of Ethanol Self-Administration by Treatment with Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors

Previous research has established a role for both serotonin and dopamine in the self-administration of
ethanol suggesting that medications that act upon these systems may have clinical efficacy in the
treatment of alcohol dependence. Given that decreases in both serotonin and dopamine availability may
contribute to increased ethanol intake, monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) which increase the
accessibility of serotonin and dopamine by blocking their metabolism, may provide a means of decreasing
operant ethanol self-administration. The purpose of the present study was to examine the effects of
MAOIs on ethanol self-administration. Rats were trained to self-administer ethanol (10% v/v) through a
sucrose-fading procedure. Two MAOIs, deprenyl and clorgyline were used as antagonists. Rates of
ethanol self-administration decreased in a general dose-related manner.

Ellen Smith

Major: Psychology and German

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

Mastering the Accent: An Examination of the Relationship Between Motivation and Late Learners' Foreign
Language Pronunciation Skills

High levels of motivation are often associated with overall success in foreign language acquisition. The
goal of this study is to determine whether higher levels of motivation are also associated with greater
success in mastering the specific area of foreign language pronunciation. Mastering the pronunciation of
a foreign language after adolescence is especially difficult and post-pubescent learners vary greatly in
their level of success. It is predicted that motivation is an important factor accounting for this variability.
Participants in this study were 40 English-speaking college German students who all began learning
German after age 11. The results of this study, however, suggest that student‟s pronunciation ability is not
affected significantly by motivation.

Jennifer Steinsdoerfer

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: D. Anderson

The Effect of Media Advertisements on Female Body Image

Body image is a concern among most women and evidence shows that it may be affected by the thin
ideal portrayed in the media, particularly in fashion magazines. This study examines the differences in
college female body image before and after brief exposure to advertisements. The experimental group
viewed advertisements of women representing the media's thin ideal whereas the control group viewed
advertisements of larger women. This study also examined the relationship between body image and self-
esteem as well as differences between participants of different class years. Body image was measured
using the Body Image States Scales and self-esteem was measured using the Rosenberg Self-Esteem
Scale. The study found a significant decline in the body image of the experimental group after
advertisement exposure and no significant change in the control group. This was due to the participants
comparing themselves to the women in the advertisements. The study also found a significant positive
correlation between body image and self-esteem. First year students had significantly higher initial body
image than that of all other students but there were no significant differences in self-esteem. These
results suggest that body image is a complex trait and further investigation of other variables including
weight, body mass index, and confidence are essential.

Lacey Thelin

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Searle-White

Dissociative Identity Disorder and the Insanity Defense: The Controversy of Multiple Persons in a Single
Body Committing Crimes

This paper discusses the controversies surrounding dissociative identity disorder (DID) being the basis for
an insanity defense. The insanity defense has specific criteria and tests, which a person pleading insanity
must prove in order to have a successful case. Based on research from books and articles about DID and
the insanity defense along with prior US cases dealing with these issues it can be said that DID has
aspects that do fit some of the criteria necessary for being insane, but because of the implications that
arise due to multiple personalities, such as who to evaluate, let testify, or place blame on, DID cannot be
seen as an acceptable defense for being legally insane

Rose Turshen

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: E. Ozorak

The effects of higher education on the values of balance between family dynamics and the work
environment.

This study wishes to explore how the effect of higher education stresses the importance of a working
career and the values of family life. It may seem that with such an emphasis in today‟s society to uphold a
credited job after college, that it becomes harder to manage the high demand of raising a family as well.
This study will look at college age students and their views of men and women in the work force and
family dynamics. These variables will be compared to faculty members from the same college who
currently has children to see if over time having both a career and family provides for a differing of
opinions on the work forces and family structures/values. It is hypothesized that the college age students
will have more ambitious goals about a full time career than raising a family. Also, it is hypothesized that
after having children, ones values about family dynamics and the work force will change.




2003-2004 Comp Abstracts
CELIA BARTON

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Alexander Dale

Analysis of the Anxiety Reducing Effects of Exercise Including a Qualitative component
to Explore Participant Worldviews.

The purpose of the following study is to examine the effects of exercise on state anxiety
and to incorporate into the study a qualitative component of happiness by measuring
the participants' perceptions of where they believe they will see themselves five years
from now. It was hypothesized that by incorporating a regimen of aerobic exercise into
the participant's normal routine their anxiety levels will show a marked decrease. The
participants whose initial anxiety scores are higher should show the greatest
improvement. This assumption was being made because the participants with a more
negative outlook will have a lower baseline score and therefore will have a greater
margin for improvement.

CHELSEA BENSON

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

Gender Segregation in Children's Literature: A Reflection of Reality?

This study investigated the phenomenon of gender segregation and gendered group
dynamics in children's series books. Three books were selected for examination. The
books had a reading level of 3 (age 7-10), were published in the last five years and
were reported to be best-sellers on www.amazon.com. The books also had different
reading audiences. One book was intended for males, another was intended for
females, and the last was read equally by both sexes. The researcher conducted a
content analysis and coded gendered themes in the books. Gender segregation was
discovered in the book intended for a male audience, while gender integration was
discovered in the other two books. Gender boundaries were clearly defined in the book
for a male audience and the book read by both sexes. The book intended for a female
audience had greater gender role flexibility. The research concluded that the portrayal
of gender and gender segregation in children's literature was based on the sex of the
target audience. When males are a part of the target audience, books were more
traditional in their representations of gender.

SARAH CALIGIURI
Major: Psychology/Religious Studies

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

The way religiosity and spirituality are a part of the development of disordered eating
was investigated. Disordered eating was examined historically, religiously, and
psychologically. Disordered eating was viewed as a continuum of maladaptive attitudes
about food instead of simply diagnosable eating disorders. The EAT 26, Rohrbaugh-
Jessor Religiosity Scale, and The Spiritual Involvement and Beliefs Scales were used to
determine the interactions between the three variables. Though none of the results were
statistically significant, higher EAT 26 scores were congruent with higher religiosity and
spirituality scores. Those having a Christian affiliation had higher EAT 26 scores that
their counterparts who were atheist, agnostic, or did not have an affiliation. Catholics
and other affiliations of Christianity had similar scores of disordered eating. A
considerable amount of the sample fell into the diagnosable range for having an eating
disorder. These results fell in line with previous cases studies and experimental
research.

MEGAN CAWLEY

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

This study looked at the effects of anticipatory grief on the outcome of post-death
bereavement for caregivers of Alzheimer&#8217;s disease patients. Extensive research
was performed using Sanders&#8217; (1989) work on grief which gave the introduction
to anticipatory grief. Rando (1986) and various works of Walker were utilized to
incorporate anticipatory grief into a look at the grief of caregivers of patients with
Alzheimer&#8217;s disease. Case studies were performed with Alzheimer&#8217;s
caregivers in order to incorporate analysis of anticipatory grief. The findings implicate
that caregivers are capable of experiencing some beneficial forms of anticipatory grief
unlike other long-term illnesses. This is due to the fact that the caregiver experiences
various losses throughout the duration of the illness that make them more prepared for
the actual death.

CHRISTIAN CHASEY

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

This paper examined the psychological effects of the terrorist attacks in New York City
on September 11th 2001. It was hypothesized that there would be a general rise in the
number of people who sought counseling in the United States following the attacks. The
paper also examined the psychological effects that traumatic situations can have on
people, and some of the new problems that the media coverage of the attacks created.
The paper found that there had been few studies on whether there had been an
increase in the numbers of people who sought out counseling following the attacks,
which was seen as an indication that there was no substantial rise in the numbers. It
was found, however, that there was a rise in the number of people who reported
suffering psychological disturbances following the attacks, but did not seek out
counseling.

LAUREN CONWAY

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

In this study, the effect of sex and sex role identity on verbal ability and alexithymia
scores was explored. It was hypothesized that females would have higher verbal scores
and lower alexithymia, while males would have lower verbal and higher alexithymia
scores. Ninety-eight undergraduates (57 females and 41 males, ages 18-22) completed
the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS), the Bem Sex Role Inventory (BSRI), and
the Shipley Institute of Living IQ Scale vocabulary subtest. No relationship between sex
and alexithymia scores was found. Trends were seen involving sex and verbal ability,
but no significant relationship was found. Sex role identity was not significantly related
to verbal ability but tended to produce better predictive rates for alexithymia. Significant
differences in alexithymia scores were found between three pairs of sex role types.
Undifferentiated individuals had significantly higher alexithymia scores than masculine
and androgynous individuals. Feminine participants also scored significantly higher in
alexithymia as compared with androgynous individuals.

DAVID DURST

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Previous research focusing on gender theory and gratitude conclude that specific
gender classifications (androgyny) and higher levels of gratitude are correlated to
measures of psychological well-being and positive affect. There has not yet been a
study that produces empirical research based on the possible relationship between
gender and gratitude. Therefore this study focuses on the potential link connecting
androgyny and high levels of gratitude. Measurements used to correlate both gender
(BSRI) and gratitude (GQ-6 and GRAT) were administered to 81 undergraduate college
students. Significant results were obtained in support of the hypothesis, showing that
androgynous individuals were the only gender classification associated with higher
levels of gratitude.

THOMAS ESS
Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

This study endeavors to extend the working knowledge of transformative mediation by
examining how transformative mediation can be applied to student run organizations in
a small college campus. Six participants from a Greek organization who had gone
through a mediation process were interviewed about their experience. The interviews
were then analyzed using the phenomenological method for psychological research,
which is a qualitative method. The results of the study are reported and then applied to
how transformative mediation works for student run organizations. The effects of
transformative mediation on the participants are explored, and in addition to, a
suggestion for ways to better implement mediation between groups is offered.

AMY GRANDSTAFF

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

Family functioning can be disrupted by many different factors. The relations that exist
between each individual in the family are crucial to the family functioning as a whole
(Gurman & Kniskern, 1981). When one individual in the family has a mental disability
the whole family's functioning can be affected. This case study examines three families
in which one of the children in the family has been diagnosed with autism. The parents
of the family were interviewed using questions that have been written using the
structural family model as a basis. In each family the subsystems, boundaries of these
subsystems and the hierarchical organization were examined. The findings of this case
study showed that two out of the three families were very closely knit, or enmeshed and
the third family was more disconnected or disengaged. In future research on this topic
perhaps the researcher could spend more time observing the family as a whole to get a
better grasp on the family's functioning.

RACHEL GRAY

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: Rodney Clark

The present study was designed in an attempt to create a behavioral dependency
model for oxycodone using rats as subjects. Oxycodone was interperitoneally injected
into the subjects by a means of a saline solution four times a day for four consecutive
days in a concentration of 1.0mg/kg of the subjects weight. The dependent variable of
lever pressing was observed and data recorded. Following the four days of chronic
administration the drug was withdrawn and the effects of abstinence and lever pressing
behavior continued to be observed for five days. A placebo injection was given to three
of the six rats to assure that any deviance from the baseline behavior was due to the
drug rather than the act of being injected.

LESLIE KOLB

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

This study examined the relationship between Adult Children of Alcoholics and Adult
Children of Dysfunctional Families and student adjustment to college. The participants
consisted of 134 female and 69 male psychology students at Allegheny College. Data
was collected through administration of The Family Environment Scale (Moos & Moos,
1986), The Children of Alcoholics Screening Test (Jones, 1981), and The Student
Adaptation to College Questionnaire (Baker & Siryk, 1989). Analysis of the data
collected found that no significant relationship existed between the three groups (Adult
Children of Dysfunctional Families, Adult Children of Alcoholics, and Adult Children of
Functional-Non Alcoholic Families) in regards to their scores on The Student Adaptation
to College Questionnaire. Significant differences were found to exist between the three
experimental groups on The Family Environment Scale subscales of cohesion,
expressiveness, achievement-orientation, intellectual-cultural orientation, active-
recreational orientation, moral-religious orientation, and organization.

SHANNON PALMER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Rodney Clark

This experiment explores the problem of an SSRI, fluvoxamine, and some effects it may
have on learning acquisition. The participants in the study were 10 female Sprague
Dawley rats aged 140 days at the start of the experiment and 198 at the end of the
experiment and were experimentally naive. The rats were broken into a control (saline
5mg/kg/ip) and an experimental (fluvoxamine 5mg/kg/ip) group, with 5 rats in each
group and 1 injection on the 5th day of the experiment. The subjects of this study were
on food restraint during the experiment to maintain proper learning acquisition with the
reinforcer. The apparatus used to test the rats&#8217; learning acquisition was the T-
maze. The T-maze was used to define the spatial memory of the participants before
injections and after, and followed the protocol by Gary Wenk (Wiley 1998). The
rats&#8217; average rate of learning acquisition from both tasks, with the experimental
group under the influence of a fluvoxamine injection and the control group under the
influence of a saline injection were compared between each group. Data was taken for
each rat involved in the study. The individual rat data was also analyzed based on
group. Data contains the average of each groups&#8217; correct responses from each
testing session, including the standard errors. Data was placed into the computer
program called SPSS, and from the program the one way between ANOVA statistical
tests will be run to gain whether or not the results were significant. The results of this
experiment show that the major hypothesis of this study was not confirmed by this
particular experiment. The results of this experiment show that none of the components
lead to significant differences

AMBER PRATT

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

This study investigated muscle dysmorphia in three different categories of men. These
categories consisted of non-exercisers, weightlifters, and football players. It was
theorized that the non-exercisers would express low self-esteem and body dysmorphic
disorder. This is because they are not involved in physically activity and an attempt to
change their body physically, which is a key characteristic of muscle dysmorphia. The
weightlifters were anticipated to have low self-esteem and high body dysmorphic
disorder. Weightlifters have predominately been known to be at high risk for muscle
dysmorphia, which is generally associated with low self-esteem. Finally, the football
players were projected to have high self-esteem and moderate body dysmorphic
disorder. This is because of the costs and benefits of sports. Physically activity is one of
the benefits and this leads to higher self-esteem. Since strength is such an important
factor in football some body dysmorphic characteristics were likely. Twenty-four
Allegheny men were asked to complete a survey. The results of the Body Dysmorphic
Disorder Examination- Self-Report and Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale were both used.
Analysis of the results showed there was no significant relationship between group
category and body dysmorphic disorder. The same was true for self-esteem and group.

COURTNEY REICHUBER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: William DeLamarter

Utilizing the context of recent political history, the legitimacy of the Chilean legal system
both before and after the Penal Process Code reforms of 2000 is explored. Legitimacy
is defined and viewed through the procedural justice frames of Leventhal (1980), Folger
(1977) and Blader and Tyler (2003), delineating specific criteria and levels of potential
legitimacy. The problems of the pre-reform inquisitorial system are identified, with
specific attention to those produced by the Pinochet dictatorship of 1973-1990. The
Penal Process Reforms, which trade the inquisitorial system for one of an adversarial
nature in an attempt to combat the legitimacy problems, are explained along with the
areas of potential legitimacy to which they relate. An overview of the legitimizing versus
nonlegitimizing aspects of the reforms is provided, along with a forecast for the
possibility of success of the reforms in terms of increased legal legitimacy.
JENNINE REVILLA

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

This study attempts to examine the benefits that can be found in the relationship that
forms between humans and animals. It is divided into three sections. The first section
gives background information on the human-animal bond and its importance. It also
addresses the ways in which animals have been introduced into therapy. The second
section looks at the pros and cons of using observation and self-report when studying
this area. It examines some different studies (using observation or self-report in their
methods) that have been done to assess the effectiveness of animal visits. The third
section introduces a method that could be used to assess a specific situation: the
effects that animal visits have on elderly people's level of mood in long-term care
settings. This study argues that movement is a valid way to measure level of mood.

TIMOTHY RHOADS

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

This study aims to explore death anxiety, age, sex, general anxiety, and psychosocial
development among first-year and fourth-year college students. A total of 58
undergraduate college students participated in this study. Each participant was placed
into one of four groups: first-year males, first-year females, fourth-year males, or fourth-
year females. Each participant completed a demographic sheet, the Collett-Lester Fear
of Death Scale, the Beck Anxiety Inventory, and the Constantinople Inventory of
Psychosocial Development. Results showed that females compared with males had
higher levels of total death anxiety as well as higher anxiety over other's death. It was
also found that first-year females had higher levels of anxiety over other's death than do
first-year males, and that fourth-year females had higher levels of total death anxiety as
well as higher anxiety over other&#8217;s death. No significant correlations were found
between death anxiety and general anxiety, or death anxiety and psychosocial
development. Discussion of implications for counseling of college students is also
included.

JESSICA RUTTER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

This study investigated the possible relationship between music participation and verbal
memory. An abridged form of the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test was used to
measure the verbal memory of musicians and non-musicians. One hundred and eighty-
five students from Allegheny College participated in the study. An independent samples
t-test found that there was a statistically significant difference in verbal memory between
musicians and non-musicians. Verbal memory was defined as the mean number of
words recalled and the rate of retention between trials. Results showed that musicians
had a significantly greater verbal memory than non-musicians. However, there was no
significant difference found between the verbal memories of vocalists and
instrumentalists. There are however various limitations of this study and implications for
future research.

TIFFANY SAAVEDRA

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

This study examined how males and females perceive college-aged women based on
their eating behavior and body type. One hundred and seventy-one undergraduates
were recruited through various Psychology courses at Allegheny College. Participants
were given a packet containing the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26), one of three
different food diaries (low, average, or high daily caloric intake) with one of three body
silhouettes (underweight, average weight, and overweight) hypothetically belonging to a
twenty-year-old female college student, and the Personal Attributes Questionnaire
(PAQ). The EAT-26 was used to screen for participants with a potentially distorted view
of eating. Participants scoring above 20 on the EAT-26 were not included in the
statistical analysis of the data. Participants rated the attractiveness of the hypothetical
college student using the PAQ. It was hypothesized that both male and female
participants would judge the underweight and the average weight silhouettes with the
high calorie diets as more attractive than overweight silhouettes regardless of their
caloric intake. Also, it was predicted female participants would find women with the
lowest daily caloric intake and underweight silhouette as most attractive. Male
participants were expected to rate the silhouettes with the average body type as most
attractive. Analyses of the results were performed by a two-way analysis of variance. An
alpha level of .05 was used for all parametric tests. Results supported the first
hypothesis; average weight and underweight silhouettes with high calorie diets were
perceived as more attractive than overweight silhouettes regardless of their diet.
Females actually found average weight figures with high calorie diets significantly most
attractive. Men were not found to significantly favor any body type or diet.

GRETCHEN SANDY

Major: Psychology/Religious Studies

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson
The purpose of this research was to investigate the dying process in terms of
psychological and spiritual issues, and to determine the relationship between spirituality
and healthy coping styles. Research has supported the idea of spirituality and faith
having a positive effect on one's dying experience. Interviews were conducted with
hospice social workers and a current hospice consumer in order to ascertain firsthand
accounts of this relationship. These interviews imply a positive influence of an
individual's spirituality on one's fear of dying and coping methods, a result that supports
available research. The findings may have implications for hospice programs, as they
emphasize both healthy coping styles and spiritual exploration in their work.

EMILY SMITH

Major: Jeffrey Hollerman

Sr. Project Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

John Watson, considered by many to be the father of modern behaviorism, developed
radical ideas for a new, objective psychology. While starting research and teaching in
the new psychology department at Johns Hopkins University, he developed his ideas for
a more scientific psychology based on quantifiable methods of obervation. After a
scandalous exile from the academic world, Watson went to work at a progressive
advertising agency J. Walter Thompson. Since advertising is designed to persuade and
influence consumer buying behavior, Watson‟s new behaviorism theory fit in perfectly.
By applying the principles of a more “scientific” psychology to advertising, Watson was
able to become a huge success in the advertising world.

MARTIN SPIELER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

For the past two centuries, the United States has been developing a separation of
church and state. As a result, Americans may believe that their religious beliefs have no
place in political decision-making. Religion, however, plays a major role in Americans‟
lives and has explicit views on the controversial political issues. Using a questionnaire
consisting on Likert-Scale statements, the present study examines the level of religiosity
as well as adherence with religious authority in 286 college students on the issues of
abortion, capital punishment, and homosexuality. Investigating the religions of
Catholicism, Judaism, and Protestantism, it was found that only Catholics are more
likely than non-Catholics to adhere to Catholic views, particularly on abortion. This can
be attributed to the visibility of the Catholicism and the flexibility of Protestantism and
Judaism.

SHEALYN STENGLEIN
Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

The present study investigates the perceived sexual interest and interest in sexual
activity of 24 American and 21 French males regarding women's behavior. The
participants were given a list of 40 behaviors, 20 of which were categorized as
"meeting" and 20 of which as "dating" and were asked to rate the degree to which the
behaviors indicated sexual interest. Through it was hypothesized that the French
sample would rate behaviors to indicate higher amounts of sexual interest, it was found
that the American sample rated eight behaviors higher for women they have just met
and five behaviors higher for women with whom they are on a date. The behaviors rated
significatly higher include "agrees to go to your apartment for a drink/coffee," "kisses
your cheek," and "gives you her phone number" and there are several implications for
further cross-cultural study.

KRISTY STRINER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

The present study examined the effects of social support on stress in college students.
It also looked at sex differences, likelihood to seek support, and types of social support,
namely instrumental support and emotional support. 58 undergraduate students
constituted the participants of this study, and they were asked to complete a
questionnaire made up of the Hassles Scale, the Perceived Social Support from Friends
and Family Scale, and the Support Seeking Questionnaire. A significant positive
correlation was found between perceived social support and likelihood to seek support,
indicating those likely to seek support will receive support in return. The study produced
no significant results indicating a relationship between stress levels and perceived
social support. Both emotional support and instrumental support produced no significant
effects on stress levels. Also, no sex differences were found in regards to likelihood to
seek support, or types of social support.

JILL STUBENHOFER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

The usefulness of expert witness testimony in battered women cases is something that
has been debated for several years. The present study attempts to address this issue
by implementing a fictional scenario of a battered woman who has killed her abuser.
Mock jurors first read this scenario, and then half of the sample was presented with
testimony of battered woman syndrome. A total of 169 females and 91 males
participated in this quantitative study that examined the effects of expert testimony and
gender on verdicts and jurors' perceptions. A scale from a previous study (Schuller &
Hastings,1996)was used to determine how jurors perceive the battered woman's claims.
It was found that neither males nor females were more likely to render a different verdict
after reading the battered woman description. Males, however, were more likely than
females to render harsher verdicts. Such results suggest that the role of expert
testimony and the way it is presented should be reconsidered.

KRISTEN TURI

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Project Advisor: J. Alexander Dale

Past research has indicated that epinephrine enhances memory processes (Gold &
Zornetzer, 1983; Introini-Collison & McGaugh, 1991) and that glucose release has an
important role in this effect (Gold, 1987; Gold, 1991; Parsons & Gold, 1992).
Acetylcholine and glutamate play important roles in the memory model of long-term
potentiation, and glucose may interact with these processes (Bear, Connors, &
Paradiso, 2001; Jaffard & Micheau, 1994). This study examined the effects of
postacquisition glucose administration on a recall task presented in two different
modalities. Forty participants (29 females and 11 males) completed the study. Each
participant served as his or her own baseline. Following either 45 g glucose or 24.6 mg
saccharin ingestion, participants were assessed on recall of two word lists, one
presented aurally and one presented visually. A mixed ANOVA did not reach statistical
significance, but Mann-Whitney U tests and select t-tests found that participants who
ingested glucose had enhanced recall compared to participants who ingested
saccharin. Glucose affected the recall of the aurally presented task and the visually
presented task in the same way.

JONATHAN TURNER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

The purpose of this study was to determine whether or not an athlete‟s perceived social
status of his or her perceived role on his or her respective team would mediate an affect
on the athlete‟s level of self-esteem. Gender differences were also examined to assess
whether or not men‟s athletic teams would have higher levels of self-esteem among all
three categories of perceived role on the team being, “star”, “role”, and “bench” players.
Ninety-nine student-athletes participated in the current study (54 females and 45
males), who were members of either the women‟s basketball, men‟s basketball,
women‟s soccer, men‟s soccer, women‟s tennis, men‟s tennis, women‟s softball, or the
men‟s baseball team. Past research has shown that one of the reasons male and
female athletes participate in sports is due to an increased sense of social status (
Finkenberg & Moode, 1996). For mediating factors, such as an increased social status,
male and female athletes attain psychological benefits from their participation in sports,
such as an increased self-esteem (Bowker, Cornock, & Gadbois, 2003). The measures
used in the present study were the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (Rosenberg, 1965),
the Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory (Coopersmith, 1967), and the Self-Attributes
Questionnaire (Pelham & Swann, 1989). The current study found positive relationships
between the sex of the participants, perceived social status, and the three self-esteem
scales. A negative correlation was found between perceived role on the team and the
Social Self Peers portion of the Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory. Relevant trends
were found between the high perceived social status group in comparison to the low
perceived social status group along the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale. Additional
results of interest, although insignificant, revealed that males had higher self-esteem
levels among all three categories of perceived role on the team on the Rosenberg Self-
Esteem Scale, where as females had higher levels of self-esteem among all three
categories of the Social Self Peers portion of the Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory
and among the “star” and “bench” categories on the General Self-Esteem portion of the
Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory.

KYLA VANDREE

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: David Anderson

This study examined the effect of person-organization fit on work-related attitudes,
specifically on job satisfaction and organizational commitment. It also considered the
impact of assessing the congruency of individual and organizational values in the hiring
process on subsequent levels of organizational fit. Participants were recruited from
various departments within a medical hospital. No significant difference was found in job
satisfaction and organizational commitment as a function of organizational fit.
Additionally, there was no difference in organizational fit between individuals hired using
a value assessment and those hired without. It is important to note, however, that there
are several distinct features of the sample and organization used in this study, which
may have significant effects on the overall relationship between organizational fit and
employee attitudes. Such differences may also influence the effectiveness of value-
congruency assessments. Thus, while no significant findings are apparent in this
particular sample, the study has important implications

BRIAN VITA

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Joshua Searle-White

This study examined the levels of stress present in 90 first-year (N=45) and fourth-year
(N=45) undergraduate students. Also, the perception of potential stressful situations by
the students was analyzed. It was found that that first-year and fourth-year students did
not differ in their overall levels of stress as measured by the Perceived Stress Scale.
Significant gender differences existed for the levels of stress measurement. It was found
that females recorded higher levels of stress with an average of 21.17 while males
averaged 16.23. No significant differences were observed for division of major. In
regards to the students perceptions of potential stressful situations, first-year and fourth-
year students differed significantly on 5 of the 51 items of the College Undergraduate
Stress Scale. The situations they differed on include finals week, writing a major term
paper, a class that you hate, registration, and starting a new semester. The 5 most and
least stressful situations were ranked for each group. Of these items, only registration
was found to be statistically significant.

COURTNEY WHITEHEAD

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between personality and
clothing selection. Fifty-seven female participants completed a set of questionnaires.
The questionnaires included items pertaining to previous work experience, a personality
inventory (the NEO-PI-R form S (2002)), and a question asking participants to select an
outfit from a series of three that they felt best represented them. The results suggested
that, for college women, personality and professional clothing selection are not related.
A wider variety of outfits for clothing selection may have yielded different results
because other research has used similar procedures but with more variation in the
clothing formality. Additionally, the sample was from an undergraduate population,
where personalities are still developing. The sample may have also had a preconceived
notion for what should be worn in order to make an acceptable first impression

VALERIE WOLENTER

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

This study evaluated the differences in envy and resentment in reaction to deserved
and undeserved athletic achievement. Participants were 215 undergraduate students,
and each was given a description of a stimulus person who was either a high achiever
who put forth high effort, an average achiever with high effort, a high achiever with low
effort or an average achiever with low effort. Participants than rated a series of emotions
based on what they felt toward the stimulus person. As hypothesized, envy and
resentment were found to be different, with envy varying more in relation to
achievement level and resentment varying more in relation to effort level. The difference
between athletes and non-athletes was also evaluated. It was hypothesized that
athletes would experience more envy and resentment than non-athletes because the
description of the stimulus person was more relevant to them. It was found that athletes
and non-athletes did not differ in the amount of envy reported, but that athletes reported
more resentment than non-athletes.

SUMMER YOST

Major: Psychology

Sr. Project Advisor: Deborah Dickey

The current study examined differences in ketchup preferences between college
students and senior citizens. The colors of ketchup used were red and the new blue.
The participants were 32 college students, 10 males, 22 females, and 10 senior
citizens, 2 males, 8 females. The participants performed 3 tasks, rating the
attractiveness of both colors on a 1-5 likert scale, tasting the samples blindfolded and
rating the taste on a 1-5 scale, and tasting both samples while looking and rating them
on a 1-5 scale. It was hypothesized that both students and senior citizens would prefer
the red, but college students would be more likely to prefer blue than the senior citizens.
The results showed the only significant age effect was in the attractiveness of the red
sample; the senior citizens rated it much higher. There were significant findings
between sexes, showing that women were gave higher ratings on both of the taste
tests.




2002-2003 Comp Abstracts

DEVON R. BROST

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey D. Cross

Behavioral and anatomical effects of prenatal valproic acid and the effects of
intraventricular oxytocin on social recognition: An animal model of autism in Sprague-
Dawley rats.

Comp Abstract

The current study examined the effects of prenatal valproic acid (VPA) exposure on
developing Sprague-Dawley rats. Past research has used valproic acid to create a
model of autism. Prenatal exposure to VPA on gestation day 12.5 replicates the
cerebellar abnormalities observed in many cases of autism. Behavioral assessments
included measures of passive avoidance, social recognition, object preference and
Morris water maze performance. Prenatal valproate-treated subjects also received
intraventricular administrations of oxytocin and their social recognition was re-examined.
The cerebellum was examined using buffered thionin staining solution.
Control subjects had intact social recognition as demonstrated by a significant decrease
in olfactory investigation of a familiar stimulus animal. Treated subjects failed to
demonstrate intact social recognition. Intraventricular oxytocin had no significant effect
on social recognition in VPA-treated subjects, and there was significantly more
investigation prior to drug administration than after administration. In the object
preference task control subjects spent significantly more time investigating the novel
stimulus, while VPA-treated subjects spent significantly more time investigating the
familiar stimulus. There were no significant effects of VPA on passive avoidance
learning. Control subjects learned the water maze significantly faster than VPA subjects;
however, VPA subjects had better performance in the later trials. Histological studies
revealed differences in cerebellar white and gray matter distribution between untreated
and VPA-treated brain slices.

SIRESHA CHALUVADI

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The Progression of Schizophrenia Explored by Voxel-Based Morphometry and Region
of Interest Studies

Comp Abstract

This study compared magnetic resonance images (MRI) of 13 DSM-IV diagnosed,
unmedicated first-episode schizophrenic patients at baseline with follow up scans
acquired after 1 or 2 years of treatment with anytipsychotics and therapy. As a control,
15 healthy subjects had MRI scans done at a baseline visit as well as at a follow up visit
(also 1 or 2 years after baseline). Using a voxel-based morphometric approach
(Johnsrude 1999, Ashburner 2001), statistical parametric maps were produced to
compare gray matter concentrations. Using a region of interest (ROI) approach, the
dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and caudate were measured for volumetric
comparisons. The greatest gray matter change as indicated by VBM analysis was in the
prefrontal areas of the brain. DLPFC volumes were decreased when comparing
baseline to follow up schizophrenic scans, however caudate volumes did not change.


SHANNON N. CHERRY

Major: Psychology
Sr. Comp Advisor: Rodney D. Clark

Impacts of Age and Drug Use on the Effectiveness of Television Anti-Drug
Advertisements

Comp Abstract

Drug use has existed for thousands of years. With this, there have been several cycles
of intensified prohibition and tolerance. The present study traces the history of these
cycles with regard to legislation, then briefly traces past media campaigns. The newest
campaign directed by the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) is then
examined. In particular, the most television advertisements were evaluated by 96
participants age 17-23 to determine if the ads were effective amongst an older cohort
than targeted by the campaign. It was found that ads focusing on the effects of drug use
and driving were most effective whereas those linking drugs to terrorism were least
effective. Additionally, after viewing ineffective ads, participants were more likely to view
the source as not credible and were less likely to use other information from the same
source in future decision making.

SHARON R. CHRISTIE

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The Effect of Hippocampal Kindling on Learning and the Interaction Between
Hippocampal Kindling and the Antiepileptic Drugs: Phenobarbital and Dilantin on
Memory

Comp Abstract

The effects of continuous hippocampal stimulation on learning and memory were
examined, as well as the effects of anti-epileptic drugs on memory. A T-maze
alternation task was used to measure both learning and memory abilities. Kindling was
found to not have a significant effect on learning abilities. While kindling alone did not
have a significant effect on memory drug treatment did. Although, when combined a
significant impairment was seen. Histological analysis revealed that the further from the
target more kindling was needed to induce status epilepticus. These results suggest
that epileptics that may have learning impairment, and will likely encounter problems
with memory especially when taking anti-epileptic drugs.


LEAH J. COLE

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience
Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The Psychological and Physiological Effects of Disordered Eating on the Inhibition of
Romantic Arousal as Assessed Through the Analysis of EEG, EKG and SCR
Responses

Comp Abstract

The effects of inhibition and romantic arousal on females that exhibit disordered eating
behaviors and attitudes is a subject with limited research. This study was conducted to
test the hypotheses that emotions, inhibition, electroencephalography (EEG), skin
conductance response (SCR), and heart rate (HR) in response to romantic arousal
differ for females with disordered eating behaviors and attitudes when compared with
females that do not have disordered eating patterns. Through the use of data gathered
from the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26), self-reported scales of emotions and inhibition,
EEG, SCR, and HR, 27 females were examined. Each female was placed into the
control (low scores) or experimental group (high scores) based upon the EAT-26. The
participants viewed both a romantic and a neutral film during which they were instructed
to inhibit their emotions as physiological measures were recorded. Following the films,
each participant evaluated the emotions felt during the film, and the amount of
perceived inhibition. Results indicated that the mean scores of the EAT-26 were higher
(more disordered) for the experimental group and the experimental group rated
themselves as better able to inhibit their feelings when the neutral film was viewed. The
romantic film was rated highest for the emotion of romantic arousal when compared with
other emotions, and the neutral film was rated as humorous. For the physiological
variables, results indicated more activation in both the right and left hemispheres of the
prefrontal cortex during the film conditions than baseline conditions, as well as
increased skin conductance during the film conditions. Finally, heart rate was not
significantly affected. The findings suggest that more research is needed to determine
relationships between inhibition, romantic arousal and patterns of disordered eating.

MELISSA M. COLE

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: JW P. Heuchert

Personality, Mood, and the effects of Music on Cognitive Task Performance

Comp Abstract

Using 142 undergraduate college students at Allegheny College, the researcher
examined the relationship between personality types, music, mood, and cognitive task
performance. To measure personality the researcher used two domains of the
Neuroticism, Extroversion, and Openness Personality Inventory; Revised (NEO-PI-R)
(Costa and McCrae, 1992). The participants also completed the Profile of Mood States
questionnaire (McNair et al., 1992), as well as a questionnaire to assess the amount of
formal music instruction the participants have received. If there were significant
relationships between personality, mood, and music then the questionnaire made by the
researcher may have been useful in determining more specific reasons for distraction
other than personality traits and mood. The participants completed a reading
comprehension task, where they were assigned to one of three musical environments.
The goal for this study is to see if there is a relationship between personality type and
the level of distraction while performing cognitive tasks. It is being hypothesized
introverts will be distracted more by the music being played in the background and thus
obtain lower cognitive scores the higher the complexity of music becomes. Extroverts
will be distracted more by the lack of music and obtain higher scores while the music is
being played in the background. There was no significance found between any of the
relationships.


ALICIA M. DEBELAK

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Weiss Ozorak

Hot Words for Cook Kids: Children Using Slang as a Social Indicator

Comp Abstract

The current study examined the relationship between slang and social distinctions, with
sex differences and sibling relations. Data was collected from 15 male and 15 female
fifth grade students from a Northwestern Pennsylvania elementary school. The
participants silently read along as the experimenter read aloud vignette scenarios
concerning children who were communicating with a slang phrase or a standard phrase
of English. Each participant answered questions about the scenarios relating to how
they would answer and how others would answer in the situations. No significant
relationships or interactions were found between the variables. Trends were found in
males using more slang, in both sexes attributing slang to popular children, and,
surprisingly, both sexes attributing more slang to females than males.

ALICIA A. DeFRANCESCO

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollermans

A Schizophrenia Model: The Effects of Ketamine and Nicotine on the Startle Response
of the Rat

Comp Abstract
People with schizophrenia exhibit a deficit in prepulse inhibition (PPI). This effect can be
mimicked in the rat by administering an NMDA antagonist such as ketamine. With the
high rate of schizophrenics who smoke, nicotine has been considered as a possible
therapeutic measure in schizophrenia. In the present study, ketamine and nicotine were
administered, on a specific schedule, in order to study their effects on PPI. The subjects
used were 12 male Sprague-Dawley rats. For PPI testing, a 120db, 50ms sound burst
was preceded 200ms earlier by an 80db, 50ms sound burst. The rats&#8217; startle
responses to the first 50ms pulse alone, and with the preceding 50ms burst (the
prepulse) were recorded. It was found that none of the studied effects were significant,
although there were a few trends that indicated the expected relationship between
ketamine and nicotine on PPI. It was concluded that the doses used were perhaps too
small to observe the desired effects. Additionally, an animal model of schizophrenia
may require the actions of more than one neurotransmitter system.


ALLISON S. GADZICHOWSKI

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

Intergenerational Relationships: The Effects of Contact Between Senior Citizens and
School-Age Children

Comp Abstract

Children and the elderly are two of the most underutilized and overlooked populations in
modern-day society. The present study addressed this deficit by investigating an
intergenerational program, the Wesbury/Allegheny After-School Arts Partnership, and
the relationships formed therein. Eleven children and four senior citizens participated in
a qualitative study that examined the effects of intergenerational contact on participants'
self-esteem, interactive behaviors, and physical, social, emotional, and psychological
well-being. The Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, Elder-Child Interaction Instrument, and
qualitative interviews were used to evaluate the nature and effects of the
intergenerational relationships. Both old and young program participants experienced
increases in interactive behavior and physical, social, emotional, and psychological well-
being, while childrens' self-esteem remained at high levels throughout the program.
Such results call for a re-evaluation of the roles of children and the elderly, allowing
them to contribute to society while making substantial improvements in the lives of one
another.
Future Plans -- I plan on finishing up some science (Physics, Chemistry) courses before
going on to medical school to become a psychiatrist. I would like to work with children.


REBECCA L. GEBHARDT
Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

Prenatal Stress and the Effects on ADHD and Schizophrenia

Comp Abstract

In this study the effects of prenatal stress were assessed. Pregnant dams were placed
under psychological stress, in the form of restraint and additional light during their last
week of pregnancy. The offspring were tested on the pre pulse inhibition test and in the
locomotor chamber, in order to test for symptoms of Schizophrenia and Attention Deficit
Hyperactivity Disorder. Testing occurred at 30 days, 70 days and 73 days with the
administration of methylphenidate at 2 mg/kg doses. Low survival rates in the
experimental group made it particularly difficult to see effects. However, this in itself
suggests detrimental effects of prenatal stress. Further research concerning strain
differences and maternal behaviors affected by stress are suggested in order to create
a more powerful study.


SALLY J. HOOPLE

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: JW Heuchert

Coping, Self-esteem, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Comp Abstract

The relationships among Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Self-esteem, and
Coping Strategies were examined using self-reported scores from a series of three
surveys. It was found that those with a high level of ADHD symptoms did have
decreased self-esteem and relied more heavily on reactive coping strategies than did
those with a low level of symptoms. It was predicted that a subgroup of individuals who
use an increased amount of proactive coping strategies would be found, however, no
support was found for the existence of such a subgroup. The implications of this were
discussed.

ANDREA B. JONES

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Evelyn M. Buday
The Effects of Death On Bereavement and Coping Strategies in College-Aged Men and
Women

Comp Abstract

This study examined the differences between males and females levels of grief and
coping strategies associated with the nature of death in a college setting. Eighty-seven
bereaved individuals were surveyed from a number of different psychology courses.
Gender and other variable data were gathered on a demographic form. To measure the
use of coping strategies the COPE scale was employed, while the Grief Experience
Questionnaire (GEQ) was used to measure different levels of grief concerning the
nature of death. Analyses of the results were performed using, t-tests and analysis of
variance (ANOVA) calculations. An alpha level of .05 was used for all parametric tests.
Results did not support the hypotheses that women use more ruminative coping
strategies and a more overwhelming sense of sadness following the death of a loved
one. As hypothesized, suicide survivors did experience higher amounts of grief
reactions than unexpected natural survivors, but not from any other group. The
hypothesis that suicide and accident survivors would be significantly different from the
two types of natural deaths, regarding grief was not fully supported. The only supporting
evidence was that suicide survivors had a significantly larger amount of unique grief
reactions than all three groups. Implications for the study include a larger number of
female participants and amount of time since bereavement. Another implication is the
difficulty in applying the coping scores provided by the COPE scale, to bereavement in
general. There is a great need for more research pertaining to bereavement in college
setting due to the large amounts of college students who have lost someone close to
them during this period of life.


CORINNE L. KAISER

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The effects of chronic methylphenidate administration on spatial learning and behavior
in normal Sprague-Dawley rats.

Comp Abstract

The effect of chronic methylphenidate administration on spatial learning was studied
using normal Sprague-Dawley rats in a free-choice radial arm maze task. Locomotor
activity was also studied using the locomotor activity chamber. A 2.0 mg/kg dose of
methylphenidate was administered i.p. to a group of 7 rats and the same saline dose
was administered i.p. to a group of 7 rats. Six different dependent variables were
measured to assess learning. These included total errors made, times an arm was re-
entered without the food being consumed, times an arm was re-entered with the food
being consumed, times an arm was entered for the first time without consuming the
food, number of arms that were never entered, and total correct responses made. There
was a significant main effect across days for all dependent variables, except for arms
never entered. This indicates that all rats learned as expected. There was also a
significant main effect across days for locomotor activity. This indicates that as
expected, there was a habituation effect. Nevertheless, there was only a significant
main effect seen between groups for mean total errors and re-entry into an arm with
reinforcement consumption mean total errors and re-entry into an arm with
reinforcement consumption. This indicates that the methylphenidate rats did not learn
as quickly or as well as the saline group. However, with so few significant results
between groups more research must be conducted before it can be concluded that
methylphenidate has a detrimental effect on spatial learning.


BRIAN D. MARTINEZ

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

Introversion and Creativity: Means of social Expression

Comp Abstract

The design of this proposal consists of three primary sources to establish the essential
background information and the direction of current and future research: The first,
theoretical approaches on both creativity and introversion followed by empirical
research, and finally a historical account. The purpose of the extensive and varied
research is to illustrate that introverted people are not only creative, but also an
essential part of contemporary and historical societal constructs. The current study
hypothesized that through a variety of facets such as art, thinking strategies and other
mediums, introverted people 'redirected' and discharge their energy into creative
endeavors. Since introverts have to utilize these creative episodes to express their built
up repressed energy, which is do to their social inadequacies, we are hypothesizing that
introverted people are more creative than extraverts are. The selection of subjects for
the empirical portion of the project came from random sample of 53 undergraduate
students from various academic disciplines at Allegheny College. Participants
completed two questionnaires, the NEO-PI-R and ATTA, that measured personality
traits and creative thinking ability. The empirical portion of the study did not find
evidence to support the hypothesis

MARC T. MATTAROCHIA

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey D. Cross
A Review of the Assessment of the Elderly Based on Cognitive Ability

Comp Abstract

The present study used six control patients and six experimental patients selected
randomly from a longitudinal study of geriatric patients with depression or dementia.
Their diagnoses were made according to their performance on various tests of cognitive
ability (Mattis Dementia Rating Scale, Mini-Mental State Examination, Executive
Interview, and Hamilton Depression Rating Scale). The significance of the scores on
these tests between the control patients and those with dementia and/or depression and
the difference between baseline scoring and one and two-year follow-ups was reviewed.
Results suggest there may be a need for improvement of such means of assessment
and diagnosis, and they also suggest the decline of cognitive ability due to age as well
as disorder.

ADAM T. OSHNOCK

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: JW P. Heuchert

The Influence of Mood on Personality Self-Report

Comp Abstract

The study was conducted in order to determine the influence of mood on personality
self-report. Determining whether mood influences personality self-report will help to
determine if personality is a state or trait characteristic. One hundred and thirty-three
Allegheny College students volunteered to participate. The participants completed the
Profile of Mood States (POMS) and the NEO-PI-R on two separate occasions with the
retest being seven to ten days following the initial testing. The Pearson r correlational
data found significant positive correlations between the test-retest at the .000
significance levels for all of the factors of both the NEO-PI-R and the POMS Profile of
Mood States. The facets of the NEO-PI-R all had positive significant correlations at the
.000 significance level as well. A paired samples t-test showed a significant finding of
t(123)=2.191, p=.030 for the depression/dejection factor, and a significant finding for the
vigor/activity t(128)=2.032, p=.044. None of the personality factors and only one of the
personality facets (modesty) had significant differences at the .05 significance level.
This finding helped to support the trait theory because even though mood changed the
personality self-report scores did not change significantly on any of the personality
factors. The finding that personality is a trait characteristic will help to determine how to
accurately assess personality.


JENNIFER M. PAUL
Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

The Relationship Between Music Participation and Self-Esteem

Comp Abstract

This study investigated the relationship between music participation and self-esteem.
The Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory was used to measure self-esteem between
music and non-music samples. One hundred and sixty five Allegheny College students
participated in the current study. An independent sample t-test was used to measure if
there was a significant difference between music and non-music participants and art
and non-art music participants. Results show that music participants had significantly
higher self-esteem than non-music participants. However, art music participants did not
have higher self-esteem than non-art music participants, which contrasts with previous
research. This study shows significant findings that could benefit an individual's
wellbeing, but also contains some limitations and implications for future research.


JACQUELINE N. PETTY

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

Effect of Magazine Advertising Interpretation on Body Image

Comp Abstract

Magazine advertising has a detrimental effect on body image, although the effect is
unintentional by the advertisers. Female consumers compare their own bodies to those
of advertisement models when these models do not represent the average real-life
woman. The standards of beauty are always changing and women are expected to
follow the trends. This current study examines if factors contributing to negative body
image is determined by the advertisements central visual element, people or products.
Difference in body image perceptions was examined between a model viewing group
and a jewelry-viewing group. Further body image assessments were completed
between class years and academic major divisions. Body image was measured
throughout the experiment using the Multidimensional Body Self-Relations
Questionnaire-Appearance Scales and the Stunckard et.al. figure outlines. After the
study a focus group discussion allowed selected participants to elaborate upon the
advertising effects they experienced. The study found no significant effects between any
of the groups, except when the participants viewed the muscular body type
advertisements. This significant result suggests the trend for female body ideals is
shifting to another ideal body type.
SUSAN L. PUHALA

Major: Psychology/Other

Sr. Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Weiss Ozorak

Conversion Experience in an Evangelical Christian Context: The Role of Interpersonal
Relationships

Comp Abstract

This paper explores conversion experience within American Evangelical Christianity,
primarily focusing on the significance of interpersonal relationships between non-
believers and believers and the roles of believers in these relationships (advocate,
example, and/or inviter). In addition, it questions whether sex differences play a role in
the significance of relationships. Results from a sample of 15 participants (7 men, 8
women) from McLane Church support that interpersonal relationships are influential in
conversion. While no relationship exists between sex and significance of relationships,
men were less likely to describe their relationships and tended to focus on conversion
as a loss of control. On the other hand, women tended to describe their relationships
and focus on God's love and acceptance in framing their experiences.


JENNIFER L. ROBIE

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Weiss Ozorak

The Effect of Sex and Gender on Heterosexual Dating Scripts Among American and
British Undergraduates

Comp Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the contributions that sex and gender had on
levels of egalitarianism in an American and British undergraduates. These variables
were investigated through conversational dating behaviors and corresponding attitudes.
The American study included 114 participants, consisting of 37 male and 77 female
undergraduates at a small liberal arts college. The British study included 101
participants, consisting of 51 male and 50 female undergraduates at a large university.
Each undergraduate completed a dating questionnaire as well as the Bem Sex Role
Inventory (Bem, 1978). Results for the American study indicated that attitudes were
more egalitarian than behaviors and that women were more egalitarian than men. It also
showed no gender classification differences on the Bem Sex Role Inventory for any of
the egalitarian variables. The results reflected the American and British samples
yielding similar egalitarian behaviors.
TRACI L. ROBLE

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp. Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The Social and Behavioral Effects of Prenatal Valproic Acid Exposure in the Zucker Rat:
An Assessment of an Autistic Model

Comp Abstract

Research indicates that autism is a developmental disorder that disrupts many social
and behavioral aspects of an individual's life. The current study investigates the social
and behavioral effects of prenatal valproic acid exposure in the Zucker rat, as an
accepted animal model of autism. There was no significant difference in the social
memory of the treated rats as compared to the control group. Exploratory behavior was
broken into three types of movement, ambulatory, stationary, and total. The treated
animals demonstrated lower ambulatory movement during habituation and trial 1 yet
there was no significance between groups. In stationary movement, the controls were
significantly higher than the treated group. The controls also showed significantly higher
measures of total movement than the treated group. No significant difference was found
between groups in conditioned place preference (novelty preference). The results of this
study emphasize the need for tests that measure specific autistic symptoms induced in
rats that provide a correlate to the human population.

KRISTIE L. SEELMAN

Major: Psychology

Sr Comp Advisor: Elizabeth Weiss Ozorak

A Qualitative Analysis of Activist Perseverance: Interviews With Nine Committed Social
Activists

Comp Abstract

This qualitative study examines how the perceptions and habits of committed activists
help them to persevere despite the threat of burnout. Past research cited within this
study includes investigations conducted by Passy and Giugni (2000) and Downton and
Wehr (1998). Nine activists were interviewed, and their narratives were examined for
common themes. It was hypothesized that committed activists: (a) frame their activism
as central to their identities; (b) have access to an effective outlet for reflection, renewal,
and healing; (c) perceive that they are cooperating with others, rather than working
alone; and (d) are action-, rather than outcome-, oriented. Findings included the
indication that activism is central to identity, and there is a need to retreat from and
reflect upon one's involvement. This research provides a further understanding of civic
engagement that may be particularly useful for activist organizations that wish to
strengthen citizen involvement.


BETHANY L. SHOLTIS

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

Cognitive and Motor Assessments of an Acute Progressive Animal Model of
Huntington's Disease

Comp Abstract

Huntington's Disease (HD) is a genetically inherited neurodegerative disease in which
there is marked progressive degeneration of the striatum. The characteristic features of
patients with HD are a triad of symptoms including impaired cognitive function,
neuropsychiatric symptoms, and the cardinal clinical feature of choreic motor
dysfunction. The relationships between these motor and cognitive abnormalities, which
are incompletely understood, have been explored with animal models created in various
ways. The neurotoxin quinolinic acid (QA) is an NMDA agonist that has been shown to
mimic certain neurodegenerative diseases such as HD when administered intrastriatally
to laboratory animals. The present study investigated the cognitive and motor abilities of
19 rats lesioned either as a sham control (n = 5), with one acute bilateral administration
of 60nM QA into the striatum (n = 14), or with two acute bilateral administrations of
60nM QA into the striatum (n = 6). Following lesioning the cognitive and motor behavior
of rats was studied. Results of behavioral testing indicated that one administration of the
acid produced a slight impairment in fine motor performance. A second administration of
the acid produced a much greater impairment in fine motor performance and a slight
cognitive decline. Collectively, these results suggested that a single acute
administration of QA did not mimic the deficits in HD. However, with increased exposure
to QA through two acute administrations, fine motor performance and certain cognitive
aspects of the disease do become impaired, providing a more complete model of HD.

GEORGE J. STABLEIN

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The Effects of Dietary Sodium Chloride On Levels and Potency of Angiotensin II in
Ratus norvegicus

Comp Abstract
The manipulation of dietary salt intake as an independent variable has several
applications in the study of physiology, particularly dealing with the renin-angiotensin
system (RAS). The present study sought to examine the impact of a high salt diet (8%)
on the potency of various concentrations of intravenously infused Angiotensin II (ANG
II). Rats were maintained on a normal (1%) or high-salt diet for at least two weeks prior
to data collection. At the conclusion of the two weeks, cannulas were implanted in the
left femoral vein and artery of these animals, and the efficacy [induced drinking
(dipsogenic) response and mean arterial pressure (MAP) response] of various
concentrations of ANG II infused intravenously was examined. Statistical analysis of the
obtained data were performed in order to test the effect of the interaction between
dietary salt intake and ANG II effects on MAP and dipsogenesis and several dose-
response curves of dipsogenesis and MAP response versus concentration of ANG II
were generated. As the concentration of ANG II infused was increased, a significant
change was observed in the MAP but not in dipsogenesis. Also, the MAP response and
the dipsogenic response were not significantly different between control rats and those
on the high salt diet.

JOSHUA J. TAYLOR

Major: Psychology

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jennifer O'Donnell

An Investigation of Children's Opinions and Attitudes Toward NASA and the United
States Space Program

Comp Abstract

The present study was conducted to learn more about children's attitudes and opinions
toward NASA and the U.S. space program. Two very diverse samples of children
served as the participants. Group 1 participants were enrolled in the U.S. Space Camp
program in Titusville, FL in the summer of 2002. This group chose to come to camp and
also paid $699 to attend the 5-day program. Group 2 participants were selected from
students currently enrolled in grades 4, 5, and 6 at First District Elementary School in
Meadville, Pennsylvania. A pre/post survey design was used to collect the children's
demographic information and to learn more about their knowledge of NASA and their
attitudes toward NASA programs. The educational component between the pre and
post surveys for Group 1 was the 5-day camp and for Group 2 was a 1-hour educational
lecture. Overall, the participants' presurveys demonstrated a great deal of interest and a
positive attitude toward NASA and its space programs, but showed relatively little
knowledge about the programs. In general, interest, attitude and knowledge increased
on the postsurvey scores for both groups. Indeed, education may be an important factor
in children's attitudes toward NASA and the US space program.

JENNIFER M. VINCIGUERRA
Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey H. Hollerman

The Effects of Prenatal Stress on Learning, Memory and Stress Response in Childhood

Comp Abstract

Prenatal stress has effects on the offspring that can last into adult life. Learning and
memory can be affected as well as response to stress. Prenatal stress can cause
dysfunction of the hypothalamo pituitary adrenal axis, which controls response to stress.
The effects of prenatal stress on learning, memory and response to stress were
observed in juvenile Sprague Dawley rats (1-2 months old). Learning was tested in the
Morris water maze; memory was tested in a y-maze 2 trial memory test, a modification
of the radial arm maze. Changes in locomotor activity in response to stress were also
tested. There was a significant difference in the amount of time taken to find the hidden
platform in the Morris water maze, the control group learned significantly more quickly.
There was no significant difference in memory skills or in response to stress observed.
These findings can provide a better understanding of the possible damaging effects of
too much stress.

BREA E. WHITEHAIR

Major: Psychology/Neuroscience

Sr. Comp Advisor: Jeffrey R. Hollerman

The Behavioral Effects of Sedative, Antidepressant and Antipsychotic Medications in
People with a Traumatic Brain Injury

Comp Abstract

People who experience behavior problems as a result of traumatic brain injury (TBI) are
often medicated with antipsychotics, antidepressants and sedatives (NIH, 1999).
However, these medications were not designed to treat TBI and cause chemical
changes in brains already struggling to heal themselves. This study sought to examine
the effects of decreasing maintenance medications in 10 people with a TBI and severe
behavior problems at an in-patient rehabilitation hospital (IRH) over the course of 9
weeks. Progress for each behavior problem was measured with a one-way within
subjects analysis of variance (ANOVA). Results were significant for restraint
procedures, F (8, 72) = 4.820, p< .05, grabs, F (8, 72) = 3.314, p< .05, and episodes of
non-compliance, F (8,72) = 2.283, p< .05. Restraint procedures, grabs, episodes of non-
compliance, unsafe behaviors and physical outbursts increased in weeks 1, 2 and 3 and
then decreased until the end of the 9 weeks. All behavior problems decreased by the
end of the study. Analysis of each patient&#8217;s prescribed medications revealed 5
of 10 patients were able to tolerate a decrease in maintenance medications. This study,
along with other research, suggests people who sustain a TBI will perform better in
rehabilitation if they are not overmedicated with sedatives, antidepressants and/or
antipsychotics.

				
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