Author Archives: katfraus

Kat’s Presentation

Second semester undergraduate lab member, Kat, gave a presentation titled Examining Curvilinear Relationships within PTG. Her presentation addressed the literature that has found quadratic relationships between trauma and PTG. This relationship suggests that moderate amounts of trauma may support greater PTG, while events perceived as less traumatic may not shake one’s core beliefs enough to facilitate PTG, and very severe traumatic events may be too debilitating to experience growth. In contrast, other studies have found only a linear relationship between trauma and PTG, so no consensus has been made when defining the relationship. For her presentation, Kat aimed to test for these relationships using data from one of our lab’s previous studies. Uniquely, the data is from a sample of high school students, and measures for PTG based on multiple events, both of which are less prevalent in the literature. Kat analyzed the data to examine if there is a curvilinear relationship between PTG and different measures of trauma severity, such as the stressfulness or number of traumatic events reported. The results were mixed, which indicates finding curvilinear relationships may be due to statistics or a combination of many different variables, and therefore needs to be further studied. Kat plans to continue working with this dateset and investigating the relationship between trauma and PTG. Nice job on your presentation, Kat!

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OUGSRC 2020

Members of the lab attended the Graduate Student Research Colloquium on campus in March and presented their posters. We also had the opportunity to listen to presentations and view other OU graduate students’ posters from a variety of subjects, ranging from evolutionary psychology to engineering and biological sciences!

Olivia and CJ presented their poster: The Association Between a Caregiver’s Education and Their Child’s Levels of Openness and Personal Growth. They hypothesized that parents with higher levels of education would have children with higher levels of openness and more personal growth. Their results found that children whose parents had a master’s degree or higher reported both greater levels of personal growth and openness than those with parents who had a bachelor’s degree or less. The higher level of openness in children with highly educated primary caregivers could be due to the fact that the caregivers are often from a higher social class, which may allow parents to provide children with more opportunities for new experiences, therefore increasing their openness, and indirectly encouraging personal growth.

Kara Presented her poster Perfectionism in medical professionals increasing deliberate rumination and PTG. She investigated how perfectionism may increase rumination following a medical mishap, leading to PTG. Perfectionist behaviors have been found to increase rumination, which is known to be positively related to PTG. Her results found that perfectionism, overall, positively correlated with the frequency of thinking about the mishap. In turn, the frequency of thinking about the mishap also positively correlated with PTG. Rumination forces individuals to work through the event that causes psychological struggle, while perfectionism increases the desire to understand why things went awry. Future research may help training medical professionals to ruminate on their mistakes to facilitate growth.

Olivia and Kat presented their poster A Sense of Personal Growth and Creative Behaviors among Children, in which the number of creative behaviors children have engaged in outside of school was positively related to their sense of personal growth. Interestingly, the relationship was consistent when controlling for other variables and demographics, except for gender. They found that the relationship between creativity and personal growth was much stronger in girls than in boys, which reflects gender differences in perceiving or reporting growth.

Dr. Taku had a good time serving as a poster judge with Drs. Jennifer Vonk and Lisa Welling!

Everyone worked hard and did a great job presenting their posters!

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Brooklin’s Michigan Academy & MOM Presentation

Second year undergraduate lab member, Brooklin, recently gave her last presentation in the lab, as she will be graduating this semester. Brooklin presented her analyses for one of the lab’s current studies, Survey using Vignettes, in preparation for the Michigan Academy and the Meetings of Minds conferences. Her presentation for Michigan Academy examined the relationship between resilience and optimism among college students, by utilizing different measures of optimism. Uniquely, one of the optimism scales measured how participants rated and adjusted their probabilities of experiencing various life events. The results confirmed the positive correlation between resilience and optimism measures, but indicate that controllable events show greater correlation to resilience in comparison to events that happen at random. For Meetings of Minds, Brooklin further explored these scales, measuring if resilience correlates with optimism and having the perception of control over events in life. Her presentation highlighted the overlap between traits of resilience and optimism, and she plans to analyze the events to see, of those participants, who did not change their scores and determine whether they are low or high in optimism. Great Job Brooklin, you worked hard this semester! We can’t wait to see what you accomplish at University of Detroit Mercy next year, good luck!!

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