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Behav. Sci., Volume 5, Issue 2 (June 2015) – 10 articles , Pages 154-340

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Open AccessArticle
Body Mass Index and Sociodemographic Predictors of School Lunch Purchase Behavior during a Year-Long Environmental Intervention in Middle School
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 324-340; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020324 - 10 Jun 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3518
Abstract
Modifying the school food environment is on the national agenda as one strategy to improve the nutritional quality of children’s diets. Because few environmental-level interventions have been rigorously evaluated, the evidence base to inform programs and policies is limited. Of concern is the [...] Read more.
Modifying the school food environment is on the national agenda as one strategy to improve the nutritional quality of children’s diets. Because few environmental-level interventions have been rigorously evaluated, the evidence base to inform programs and policies is limited. Of concern is the impact that changes to cafeteria offerings will have on participation in school meal programs. This study evaluates school lunch participation in the setting of a year-long middle school cafeteria intervention by examining the association between body mass index (BMI), sociodemographics, and the purchases of school lunch meals. IMOVE meals were healthier choices that met stringent nutritional criteria and were offered alongside standard lunch meals. Students who were overweight had a significantly higher purchase rate for both types of meals compared to those with a healthy BMI. Non-white race, younger age, being male, and low-income status were also significantly associated with participation in school lunch. Results indicate that nutritionally vulnerable students participate in school lunch and are equally likely to buy healthy alternatives or standard meals. This behavioral observation has important implications for school foodservice programs and policies. These results are timely given recent federal legislation to improve the school food environment to influence students’ food choice behaviors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eating Behaviors)
Open AccessArticle
“Bad Romance”: Links between Psychological and Physical Aggression and Relationship Functioning in Adolescent Couples
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 305-323; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020305 - 09 Jun 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3491
Abstract
Assortative mating is an important issue in explaining antisocial, aggressive behavior. It is yet unclear, whether the similarity paradigm fully explains frequent displays of aggression in adolescents’ romantic relationships. In a sample of 194 romantic partner dyads, differences between female and male partners’ [...] Read more.
Assortative mating is an important issue in explaining antisocial, aggressive behavior. It is yet unclear, whether the similarity paradigm fully explains frequent displays of aggression in adolescents’ romantic relationships. In a sample of 194 romantic partner dyads, differences between female and male partners’ reports of aggression (psychological and physical) and different measures of relationship functioning (e.g., jealousy, conflicts, and the affiliative and romantic quality of the relationship) were assessed. A hierarchical cluster analysis identified five distinct subgroups of dyads based on male and female reports of psychological and physical aggression: nonaggressive couples, couples with higher perceived aggressiveness (both physical and psychological) by females, couples with higher aggressiveness perceived by males and mutually aggressive couples. A substantial number of non-aggressive dyads emerged. Of note was the high number of females showing one-sided aggression, which was, however, not countered by their partner. The mutually aggressive couples showed the least adaptive relationship functioning, with a lack of supportive, trusting relationship qualities, high conflict rates and high jealousy. The discussion focuses on the different functions of aggression in these early romantic relations, and the aggravating impact of mutual aggression on relationship functioning and its potential antisocial outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
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Open AccessReview
Goal-Directed Resilience in Training (GRIT): A Biopsychosocial Model of Self-Regulation, Executive Functions, and Personal Growth (Eudaimonia) in Evocative Contexts of PTSD, Obesity, and Chronic Pain
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 264-304; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020264 - 01 Jun 2015
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 5590
Abstract
This paper presents a biopsychosocial model of self-regulation, executive functions, and personal growth that we have applied to Goal-Directed Resilience in Training (GRIT) interventions for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obesity, and chronic pain. Implications of the training for the prevention of maladaptation, including [...] Read more.
This paper presents a biopsychosocial model of self-regulation, executive functions, and personal growth that we have applied to Goal-Directed Resilience in Training (GRIT) interventions for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obesity, and chronic pain. Implications of the training for the prevention of maladaptation, including psychological distress and health declines, and for promoting healthy development are addressed. Existing models of attention, cognition, and physiology were sourced in combination with qualitative study findings in developing this resilience skills intervention. We used qualitative methods to uncover life skills that are most salient in cases of extreme adversity, finding that goal-directed actions that reflected an individual’s values and common humanity with others created a context-independent domain that could compensate for the effects of adversity. The efficacy of the resilience skills intervention for promoting positive emotion, enhancing neurocognitive capacities, and reducing symptoms was investigated in a randomized controlled trial with a veteran population diagnosed with PTSD. The intervention had low attrition (8%) and demonstrated improvement on symptom and wellbeing outcomes, indicating that the intervention may be efficacious for PTSD and that it taps into those mechanisms which the intervention was designed to address. Feasibility studies for groups with comorbid diagnoses, such as chronic pain and PTSD, also showed positive results, leading to the application of the GRIT intervention to other evocative contexts such as obesity and chronic pain. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Teachers’ Perceptions of Bullying of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) Students in a Southwestern Pennsylvania Sample
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 247-263; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020247 - 28 May 2015
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 4825
Abstract
This study was designed to ascertain teachers’ perceptions of bullying of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth. In a sample of 200 educators (61.0% female; 96.5% White) from a county in southwestern Pennsylvania, there was a significant positive relationship between the [...] Read more.
This study was designed to ascertain teachers’ perceptions of bullying of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth. In a sample of 200 educators (61.0% female; 96.5% White) from a county in southwestern Pennsylvania, there was a significant positive relationship between the teachers’ perceptions of the supportiveness of school staff towards students regardless of sexual orientation and those teachers’ reports of the frequency of bullying victimization experienced by LGBTQ students. Teachers’ perceptions of a higher level of staff and student support was associated with higher reported frequencies of students’ use of derogatory language about LGBTQ individuals and various types of bullying of LGBTQ students. Teachers with a lesbian, gay, or bisexual orientation were found to rate the school staff and students as significantly less supportive of students regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression in comparison to heterosexual teachers. Finally, teachers who either were unaware of or believed that their school lacked an anti-bullying policy reported significantly higher rates of physical bullying victimization of LGBTQ students when compared to the rates observed by teachers who reported knowledge of their schools’ anti-bullying policies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
Open AccessArticle
Childhood Sexual Violence and Consistent, Effective Contraception Use among Young, Sexually Active Urban Women
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 230-246; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020230 - 22 May 2015
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2903
Abstract
Unintended pregnancy (UP) is a significant public health problem. The consistent use of effective contraception is the primary method to prevent UP. We examined the role of childhood sexual and physical violence and current interpersonal violence on the risk of unintended pregnancy among [...] Read more.
Unintended pregnancy (UP) is a significant public health problem. The consistent use of effective contraception is the primary method to prevent UP. We examined the role of childhood sexual and physical violence and current interpersonal violence on the risk of unintended pregnancy among young, urban, sexually active women. In particular, we were interested in examining the role of childhood violence and interpersonal violence while recognizing the psychological correlates of experiencing violence (i.e., high depressive symptoms and low self-esteem) and consistent use of contraception. For this assessment, 315 sexually active women living in Philadelphia PA were recruited from family planning clinics in 2013. A self-administered, computer-assisted interview was used to collect data on method of contraception use in the past month, consistency of use, experiences with violence, levels of depressive symptoms, self-esteem and sexual self-efficacy, substance use and health services utilization. Fifty percent of young sexually active women reported inconsistent or no contraception use in the past month. Inconsistent users were significantly more likely to report at least one prior episode of childhood sexual violence and were significantly less likely to have received a prescription for contraception from a health care provider. Inconsistent contraception users also reported significantly higher levels of depressive symptoms and significantly lower levels of self-esteem. The relation between childhood sexual violence and UP remained unchanged in the multivariate models adjusting for self-esteem or depressive symptoms. These findings highlight the long-term consequences of childhood sexual violence, independent of current depressive symptoms and low self-esteem, on consistent use of contraception. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Rumble: Prevalence and Correlates of Group Fighting among Adolescents in the United States
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 214-229; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020214 - 04 May 2015
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3227
Abstract
Objective. Group fighting is portrayed as a piece of Americana among delinquent youth, but the behavior produces significant multifaceted negative consequences. The current study examines the heterogeneity and correlates of group fighting using national-level data. Method. Employing data from the National Survey on [...] Read more.
Objective. Group fighting is portrayed as a piece of Americana among delinquent youth, but the behavior produces significant multifaceted negative consequences. The current study examines the heterogeneity and correlates of group fighting using national-level data. Method. Employing data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health between 2002 and 2013 (n = 216,852), we examine links between group fighting and temperamental, parental, and academic factors as well as other externalizing behaviors (i.e., violence, crime, substance use). Results. The prevalence of group fighting in the United States is 14.8% with 11.33% reporting 1–2 group fights and 3.46% reporting 3+ group fights. A clear severity gradient in school functioning and academic performance, sensation seeking, parental disengagement, violence and delinquency, and substance use disorders is seen in the normative, episodic, and repeat offender groups. Conclusions. Youths who participate in 3+ group fights display the exceptionality and severity of other serious/chronic/habitual antisocial youth which suggests that group fighting should be considered a significant indicator of developing criminality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
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Open AccessCommunication
Problematic Game Play: The Diagnostic Value of Playing Motives, Passion, and Playing Time in Men
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 203-213; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020203 - 30 Apr 2015
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3892
Abstract
Internet gaming disorder is currently listed in the DSM—not in order to diagnose such a disorder but to encourage research to investigate this phenomenon. Even whether it is still questionable if Internet Gaming Disorder exists and can be judged as a form of [...] Read more.
Internet gaming disorder is currently listed in the DSM—not in order to diagnose such a disorder but to encourage research to investigate this phenomenon. Even whether it is still questionable if Internet Gaming Disorder exists and can be judged as a form of addiction, problematic game play is already very well researched to cause problems in daily life. Approaches trying to predict problematic tendencies in digital game play have mainly focused on playing time as a diagnostic criterion. However, motives to engage in digital game play and obsessive passion for game play have also been found to predict problematic game play but have not yet been investigated together. The present study aims at (1) analyzing if obsessive passion can be distinguished from problematic game play as separate concepts, and (2) testing motives of game play, passion, and playing time for their predictive values for problematic tendencies. We found (N = 99 males, Age: M = 22.80, SD = 3.81) that obsessive passion can be conceptually separated from problematic game play. In addition, the results suggest that compared to solely playing time immersion as playing motive and obsessive passion have added predictive value for problematic game play. The implications focus on broadening the criteria in order to diagnose problematic playing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Addictive Behaviors: Assessment and Treatment)
Open AccessReview
Measuring Physical Neighborhood Quality Related to Health
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 190-202; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020190 - 29 Apr 2015
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 3668
Abstract
Although sociodemographic factors are one aspect of understanding the effects of neighborhood environments on health, equating neighborhood quality with socioeconomic status ignores the important role of physical neighborhood attributes. Prior work on neighborhood environments and health has relied primarily on level of socioeconomic [...] Read more.
Although sociodemographic factors are one aspect of understanding the effects of neighborhood environments on health, equating neighborhood quality with socioeconomic status ignores the important role of physical neighborhood attributes. Prior work on neighborhood environments and health has relied primarily on level of socioeconomic disadvantage as the indicator of neighborhood quality without attention to physical neighborhood quality. A small but increasing number of studies have assessed neighborhood physical characteristics. Findings generally indicate that there is an association between living in deprived neighborhoods and poor health outcomes, but rigorous evidence linking specific physical neighborhood attributes to particular health outcomes is lacking. This paper discusses the methodological challenges and limitations of measuring physical neighborhood environments relevant to health and concludes with proposed directions for future work. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Environmental Psychology)
Open AccessArticle
Resilience in Physically Abused Children: Protective Factors for Aggression
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 176-189; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020176 - 27 Apr 2015
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 5431
Abstract
Aggression continues to be a serious problem among children, especially those children who have experienced adverse life events such as maltreatment. However, there are many maltreated children who show resilient functioning. This study investigated potential protective factors (i.e., child prosocial skills, [...] Read more.
Aggression continues to be a serious problem among children, especially those children who have experienced adverse life events such as maltreatment. However, there are many maltreated children who show resilient functioning. This study investigated potential protective factors (i.e., child prosocial skills, child internalizing well-being, and caregiver well-being) that promoted positive adaptation and increased the likelihood of a child engaging in the healthy, normative range of aggressive behavior, despite experiencing physical maltreatment. Logistic regression analyses were conducted using two waves of data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW-I). Children who were physically maltreated were more likely to exhibit clinical levels of aggressive behavior at Time 1 than children who were not physically maltreated. Children’s internalizing well-being, children’s prosocial behavior, and caregivers’ well-being were associated with lower likelihood of clinical levels of aggressive behavior at Time 1. Children’s internalizing well-being and children’s prosocial behavior remained significantly associated with nonclinical aggression 18 months later. These findings highlight the role of protective factors in fostering positive and adaptive behaviors in maltreated children. Interventions focusing on preventing early aggression and reinforcing child prosocial skills, child internalizing well-being, and caregiver well-being may be promising in promoting healthy positive behavioral adjustment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
Open AccessArticle
The Impact of Childhood Emotional Abuse and Experiential Avoidance on Maladaptive Problem Solving and Intimate Partner Violence
Behav. Sci. 2015, 5(2), 154-175; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs5020154 - 16 Apr 2015
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3854
Abstract
The purpose of the current study was to examine the joint influences of experiential avoidance and social problem solving on the link between childhood emotional abuse (CEA) and intimate partner violence (IPV). Experiential avoidance following CEA may interfere with a person’s ability to [...] Read more.
The purpose of the current study was to examine the joint influences of experiential avoidance and social problem solving on the link between childhood emotional abuse (CEA) and intimate partner violence (IPV). Experiential avoidance following CEA may interfere with a person’s ability to effectively problem solve in social situations, increasing risk for conflict and interpersonal violence. As part of a larger study, 232 women recruited from the community completed measures assessing childhood emotional, physical, and sexual abuse, experiential avoidance, maladaptive social problem solving, and IPV perpetration and victimization. Final trimmed models indicated that CEA was indirectly associated with IPV victimization and perpetration via experiential avoidance and Negative Problem Orientation (NPO) and Impulsivity/Carelessness Style (ICS) social problem solving strategies. Though CEA was related to an Avoidance Style (AS) social problem solving strategy, this strategy was not significantly associated with IPV victimization or perpetration. Experiential avoidance had both a direct and indirect effect, via NPO and ICS social problem solving, on IPV victimization and perpetration. Findings suggest that CEA may lead some women to avoid unwanted internal experiences, which may adversely impact their ability to effectively problem solve in social situations and increase IPV risk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth Aggression and Violence: Causes and Consequences)
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