Elizabeth M. Hill and Christina M. Frederick, Sierra Nevada College
Full paper: www.kon.org/urc/v15/hill.html
Abstract: The current study examined physiological effects of meditation music and binaural beats on humans, solo and in combination. A binaural beat is the presence of two separate auditory tones with equal amplitude and slightly differing frequencies (Goodin et al., 2012). Meditation music is often used with binaural beats to calm individuals (Chan et al., 2008). There is reason to believe binaural beats and meditative music impact human vital signs (Wahbeh et al., 2012). Heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen saturation were recorded from 60 participants, tested individually, and randomly assigned to one of three listening groups: Beat + Music, Music Only, or Beat Only. Participants experienced their assigned auditory stimulation through headphones for 6 min. Physiological responses were recorded before and during auditory stimulation. A one- way ANOVA showed a significant difference in mean heart rate between listening groups (p = .046). Due to sample size limitations, a subsequent Tukey test (Abdi & Williams, 2010) could not identify the location of the significant difference. The largest difference in averages (at 9.05 bpm) existed between Beat Only and Music Only groups, therefore, indicating this as the location of the significant difference. No significant difference was found between listening groups in blood pressure (systolic: p = .937; diastolic: p = .954) or oxygen saturation (p = .752). It is recommended future studies in this domain incorporate larger sample sizes to ensure statistical sensitivity.
Read the full paper: Physiological Effects of Binaural Beats and Meditative Musical Stimulation
Shelby Kiser, Kansas State University
Full paper: www.kon.org/urc/v15/kiser.html
Abstract: In current United States housing trends, prices and square footage are rising as personal satisfaction and fulfillment decline. This is a result of people assuming that upgrading their living standards will provide instant gratification, but it may only lead to unhappiness. As our houses grow larger, so do our debts. During the most recent economic down turn a renewed interest in small scale living arose. People began seeing the value in downsizing, reducing debt, and living more sustainably. Evaluating the functional, environmental, economic, and psychological aspects of living small will help determine what challenges one will face by reconsidering how and where they live. With a deeper understanding of the connections and value of home, designers are able create dwellings that can positively influence the users. The potential impact starts with designers, therefore it is crucial to be educated and actively implementing this knowledge into designs.
Read the full paper: Small Scale Living and the Meaning of Home
Brandi Jones, Truman State University
Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v15/jones.html
Abstract: Pharmacy staff and patient health literacy practices were assessed for pharmacies in a rural MO county with many residents at risk for low health literacy. Using AHRQ’s Pharmacy Health Literacy Assessment Tool, overall weaknesses of county pharmacies determined as a result of the Assessment Tour section of the Tool included lack of interpretation services and poor print font size and clarity of leaflets. When a focus group was also conducted as part of the Tool, participants identified several barriers to service including reliance on their doctors, not their pharmacists, for medication information. The pharmacies in this sample were not as effective as they could be in meeting the needs of those with lower health literacy levels, and it is suggested that with some intentional changes, these pharmacies can better serve their patients with low health literacy.
Read the full manuscript: Could our patients be better served? A health literacy assessment of rural community pharmacies
Melanie Mann, Bonnie Ahn*, Lolita Boykin*, Southeastern Louisiana University
Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v15/mann.html
Abstract: The goal of this study is to provide insight into the challenges that college students with suicidal thoughts face as a marginalized group and to yield information that will expand the existing body of knowledge regarding this topic. The study was based on the collective experiences of three college students and the language constructed by them during in-depth interviews. Results suggest that these interviewees experienced pain and suffering over a prolonged period of time inspiring thoughts of suicide. All participants stated that they did not want to be thought of negatively or misunderstood, so they didn’t talk about it on campus or to their parents. It is crucial for the general college student population and mental health professionals to recognize and validate the struggles of these students, particularly during crisis. Advocacy in colleges and universities will take on special importance as more students with special needs, particularly those with mental health issues make the transition from secondary to postsecondary education. The experiences of these three participants are important and meaningful; however they may not necessarily be representative of the greater populations.
Read the full manuscript: Exploring Suicidal Ideation in College Students