Monthly Archives: September 2012

School Bullying Hurts: Evidence of Psychological and Academic Challenges among Students with Bullying Histories.

Amanda Brandt, Krishny Zaveri, Ketty Fernandez, Lauraine Jondoh,
Evelyn Duran, Lindsey Bell, Jennifer Gutierrez, Nicole Benna, Daniel Cruz, Ph.D.*,
Caldwell College

Full text: www.kon.org/urc/v11/bullying/brandt.html

Part of the URJHS Special Edition on School Bullying

Abstract: Bullying carries a lifelong series of emotional scars that permanently affect children into adulthood. Bullying is associated with depression, anxiety, and poor school performance. Yet, despite considerable evidence, the effectiveness of bullying programs remains questionable. The current study examined the impact of bullying on the psychological well-being of students and on academic achievement, specifically in the area of reading comprehension. Results indicated that bullying was strongly associated with increased psychological problems and with poor reading comprehension performance. These results suggest that bullying results in student low academic achievement and implies that bullying programs must be monitored for effectiveness and anti-bullying enforced.

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Special Edition: School Bullying

Special Edition of the
Undergraduate Research Journal for the Human Sciences

Topic: School Bullying

Undergraduate students are eligible to submit papers on the theme of School Bullying for publication in the online Undergraduate Research Journal for the Human SciencesPapers submitted for consideration may describe student projects from research awards, seminars, independent studies, service-learning projects, or class projects in the student’s major. There are no deadlines; manuscripts are posted as they are approved for publication. The page, Bullying Research Ideas  (http://chapters.kon.org/bullying-research/research-ideas), may provide a starting point for research.

About the Journal: The Undergraduate Research Journal for the Human Sciences is an online national journal dedicated to the publication of undergraduate student research. The twofold purpose of the journal is to foster and reward the scholarly efforts of undergraduate human sciences students as well as to provide a valuable learning experience. The articles represent primarily the work of the undergraduate student(s). Faculty members, who deserve recognition, are identified by an asterisk next to their names. Undergraduate research not only bridges the gap between knowledge and experience but has the benefit of laying the groundwork for career exploration and development. The opportunity for undergraduates to publish in a national journal is an added value to the overall educational experience and to the process of self-discovery. The articles published in this journal will reflect appropriate scope and complexity for excellent undergraduate work. The basis for accepting papers for publication is the agreement among reviewers that the project and design are strong representatives of introductory level research.

Objectives: This theme serves one or more of these purposes: (a) assesses the impacts of bullying in the school setting; (b) evaluates action taken by individuals, families, schools, and communities that contributes to and/or ameliorates school bullying; (c) considers the place of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and gender in relation to school bullying; (d) examines action taken by families and schools that prevents cyberbullying; and (e) proposes courses of action to bring an end to school bullying.

Overview: Kappa Omicron Nu launched the Bullying – Service Learning Initiative in August 2012 as part of its Social Responsibility theme. The Bullying Service-Learning Initiative Website provides background information and resources for service-learning programs and research related to the problem of bullying as it exists in schools throughout the United States. Kappa Omicron Nu chapters and other student and community groups are invited to use this Website.

Because society is transformed most productively from the bottom up in the spheres of environmental, social, and economic change, Kappa Omicron Nu chapters and other student groups have an opportunity to make an impact in the larger community. The objective of this Bullying Initiative is to create conditions that make it possible for all individuals to get along and function better in or out of the school setting.

A Safe Place to Start Over: The Role of Design in Domestic Violence Shelters

Sarah M. Kesler,
Kansas State University

Full paper: www.kon.org/urc/v11/kesler.html

Abstract: This literary analysis explores the design of crisis centers and shelter housing, specifically focusing on those organizations serving victims of domestic violence. It investigates the housing needs of people who are connected to the shelter and its function, such as victims of domestic violence, their children, the administrative workers, and also the abuser. It examines the shelter itself by identifying the various types of space used by victims living in the shelter and how each space affects users of the facility. It also considers which aspects of shelter design influence users most, such as privacy and security, the ability to control their environment, and the effects of the transition from a familiar place to a new location. Information on the design of shelters and the services provided is not readily available (Pable, 2010; Correia & Melbin, 2005). Research specifically about centers that serve victims of domestic violence and their children is even more difficult to come by. To gain a wider perspective and better understanding of the subject, research on homeless shelters and transitional housing was included in the review. In order to more accurately see the role of a crisis center in victims’ lives, staff members from a local crisis center were interviewed to gain insight into the procedures of the shelter environment. It was discovered that design has an enormous impact on both victims residing in the shelter and administrative staff who work there. The design, space planning and functionality of the shelter affect victims psychologically, as well as physically and emotionally impacting them (Baker, Cook, & Norris, 2003). By using the conclusions found through research to improve shelter environments, victims have a better chance of recovering from their crisis situation and becoming successful members of society.

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Healthy Eating for a Low-income Family: SNAP

Catherine Elizabeth Luedtke,
Suzy Weems*,
Janelle Walter*,
Baylor University

Full paper: www.kon.org/urc/v11/luedtke.html

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to investigate healthy nutrition options for families living at or slightly above the poverty level. A hypothetical scenario was created and used as a basis for investigating food prices and determining the availability of healthy foods using SNAP allotments. Data were collected from local chain supermarkets. Then, a budget, shopping schedule, and meal plan were developed. A SNAP allotment of $468 per month was calculated for the hypothetical family of four, and our study found that healthful food could be provided for under $440. The results showed that SNAP allotments could indeed provide adequate resources for the purchase of nourishing foods for families on a low income.

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Through the Lens of Attention Restoration Theory: The Pursuit of Learning in Gardens throughout History

Amy Thielen,
Karen R. Diller,
Washington State University Vancouver

Full paper: www.kon.org/urc/v11/thielen.html

Abstract: Attention Restoration Theory (ART), the environmental psychology framework developed by S. Kaplan, has been helpful in explaining the restorative properties of natural settings for individuals experiencing cognitive depletion. Although ART associated research has focused exclusively on discerning the restorative properties of modern day environments, we wanted to explore the restorative aspects of natural settings, specifically gardens, in the past. Notably, we wanted to examine whether the properties that made historic environments restorative for cognitive depletion also made the natural settings conducive for learning and contemplation among the historic cultures researched. By applying the properties of ART to sites in the ancient Mediterranean (Greece and Rome), Song and Yuan Dynasties in China, and Stuart through Victorian England, we seek to show how the historic environmental sites exhibited the same restorative cognitive effects of present day environments and stimulated learning and intellectual contemplation.

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Analysis of U.S. Mainstream Media: A Case Study of News Reports on Occupy Wall Street Event

Laya Liu Linjun Fan, Shantou University, Guandong, China

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v11/fan.html

Abstract: The “Occupy Wall Street” (OWS) movement, started from Zuccotti Park at the Wall Street in New York City on Sep.17, 2011. It expanded to 951 cities in 82 countries around the world. The U.S mainstream media’s attitude towards OWS turned from ignorance, neutral, denial, to acceptance. Keith Olbermann, American political commentator criticized the initial media response for ignorance in the first five days. Also, Chen Weihua, deputy U.S. editor of China Daily followed with a shameful “media blackout”. However, both of them failed to give comprehensive and multi-dimensional analysis except for small sample data and subjective tendencies. To give an objective view on how U.S. mainstream media defined news value by media bias detection, this thesis tracked news coverage and analyzed the content of 4 specific mainstream media on OWS from Sep.16 to Dec.16 in 2011, including 417 publications on New York Times, 268 on Wall Street Journal, 487 news coverage on CNN.com, and 286 on NPR.org. The author combined literature research with discourse analysis to conclude that U.S mainstream media didn’t have adequate reports in the beginning but followed by regular coverage with little bias. The reason for ignorance maybe owed to OWS’s unclear goal and blocking by government.

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Effect of a Brief Worksite Health Education Workshop on the Fall Prevention Knowledge of Physical Plant Employees

Justin McDermott,
Joan Scacciaferro,
Beth Antonacci,
Alaina Kramer,
Truman State University

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v11/mcdermott.html

Abstract: Because laborers are at high-risk for workplace injuries such as those from slips, trips, and falls, employee safety training for prevention of slips, trips, and falls is recommended; physical plant laborers at a small university in Missouri participated in a brief worksite health education workshop on slips, trips, and falls prevention. After completion of the workshop, participants significantly improved their knowledge of identification and reduction of slips, trips, and falls risk. When employers provide safety training programs, and employees practice safe work habits, knowledge of health risks may be increased.

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Using Personality Profiles and Gender to Predict Affect

Chelsey L. VanDyke,
Jonathan S. Gore*,
Eastern Kentucky University

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v11/vandyke.html

Abstract: Despite the abundance of research examining the association between personality traits and affect, few researchers have examined personality profiles. The hypotheses tested in this study examined how gender, extraversion, and neuroticism interact to predict positive and negative affect. Participants (n = 2,542) completed personality and mood surveys online. Bivariate correlation analyses and hierarchical linear regression analyses were conducted to analyze the data. Results supported previous findings about the correlation between neuroticism, extraversion, and negative and positive affect, and people who are high on extraversion and high on neuroticism experienced the most affect variability. The correlation of extraversion and positive affect was stronger among men than women. The three-way interaction between gender, extraversion, and neuroticism showed that neuroticism is most strongly related to negative affect for men who are low in extraversion. These findings are important because they show the importance of accounting for personality profiles when predicting affect.

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Healthy Tazewell County Initiative: Implementation of the MAPP Process and Survey Findings

Erin N. Oates, Maureen Cluskey*,
Kevin Randall*,
Bradley University

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v11/oates.html

Abstract: The Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships (MAPP) process, provides a way for communities to collaboratively prioritize and improve public health issues by determining gaps as well as strengths in public health services (McClellan, 2005). Results from the four assessments in step three of MAPP identify quality of life issues, efficiency of current services, observation of community health status, as well as forces of technology, laws, and other ever-developing facets that may affect how public health systems function (“National Association of City and County Health Officials,” 2012). To date no studies have been found investigating the MAPP process relative to which factors citizens perceive most important to quality of life within a community. Thus, as a research question, we investigated the most important features of a healthy community listed by residents of Tazewell County, then used the quality of life questions to predict a multi-item outcome applying hierarchical regression analysis. The results of this research found that when the Tazewell Public Health Department is seeking to implement positive change in the community they should aim to focus on living in a community that (a) has a strong overall quality of life, (b) is a good place to grow old, (c) has clean air and water, (d) has an active sense that citizens can make the community a better place individually and corporately, and (e) has pride in shared accomplishments.

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Perceptions of Service: A Case Study of Post-Earthquake Haiti

Allison Mousel,
DePauw University

Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v11/mousel.html

Abstract: This study examines the perceptions of service held by service providers in post-earthquake Haiti. Data came from a case study of a group of service providers who spent three weeks in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and analysis was performed on the responses to a questionnaire distributed to this group. Results reveal discrepancies and commonalities between self-role and perspectives and that of the other, or the projected role and perspectives of other service providers and the general local community.

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