• Justify Your Alpha

      Lakens, Daniel; Adolfi, Federico G.; Albers, Casper J.; Anvari, Farid; Apps, Matthew A. J.; Argamon, Shlomo E.; Baguley, Thom; Becker, Raymond B.; Benning, Stephen D.; Bradford, Daniel E.; et al. (Nature Publishing Group, 2018-02-26)
      In response to recommendations to redefine statistical significance to p≤ .005, we propose that researchers should transparently report and justify all choices they make when designing a study, including the alpha level
    • Learning to Think in a Second Language: Effects of Proficiency and Length of Exposure in English Learners of German

      Athanasopoulos, Panos; Damjanovic, Ljubica; Burnand, Julie; Bylund, Emanuel; University of Chester (Wiley, 2015-01-29)
      The aim of the current study is to investigate motion event cognition in second language learners in a higher education context. Based on recent findings that speakers of grammatical aspect languages like English attend less to the endpoint (goal) of events than do speakers of non-aspect languages like Swedish in a nonverbal categorization task involving working memory (Athanasopoulos & Bylund, 2013; Bylund & Athanasopoulos, 2015), the current study asks whether native speakers of an aspect language start paying more attention to event endpoints when learning a non-aspect language. Native English and German (a non-aspect language) speakers, and English learners of L2 German, who were pursuing studies in German language and literature at an English university, were asked to match a target scene with intermediate degree of endpoint orientation with two alternate scenes with low and high degree of endpoint orientation, respectively. Results showed that, compared to the native English speakers, the learners of German were more prone to base their similarity judgements on endpoint saliency, rather than ongoingness, primarily as a function of increasing L2 proficiency and year of university study. Further analyses revealed a non-linear relationship between length of L2 exposure and categorization patterns, subserved by a progressive strengthening of the relationship between L2 proficiency and categorization as length of exposure increased. These findings present evidence that cognitive restructuring may occur through increasing experience with an L2, but also suggest that this relationship may be complex and unfold over a long period of time.
    • A leftward bias for the arrangement of consumer items that differ in attractiveness

      Rodway, Paul; Schepman, Astrid; University of Chester (Taylor & Francis, 2020-06-24)
      People are frequently biased to use left side information more than right side information to inform their perceptual judgements. This research examined whether the leftward bias also applied to preferences for the arrangement of everyday consumer items. Pairs of consumer items were created where one item was more attractive than the other item. Using a two-alternative forced choice task, Experiment 1 found a robust preference for arrangements with the more attractive consumer item on the left side rather than the right side of a pair. Experiment 2 reversed the judgement decision, with participants asked to choose the arrangement they least preferred, and a bias for arrangements with the more attractive item on the right side emerged. Experiment 3 failed to find an effect of the ‘attractive left’ preference on participants’ purchasing intentions. The preference for attractive left arrangements has implications for the display of consumer products and for the aesthetic arrangement of objects in general. The findings are discussed in relation to hemispheric asymmetries in processing and the role of left to right scanning.
    • A leftward perceptual asymmetry when judging the attractiveness of visual patterns

      Rodway, Paul; Schepman, Astrid; Crossley, Becky; Lee, Jennifer; University of Chester (Taylor & Francis, 2018-04-15)
      Perceptual judgements concerning the magnitude of a stimulus feature are typically influenced more by the left side of the stimulus than by the right side. This research examined whether the leftward bias also applies to judgements of the attractiveness of abstract visual patterns. Across four experiments participants chose between two versions of a stimulus which either had an attractive left side or an attractive right side. Experiments 1 and 2 presented artworks and experiments 3 and 4 presented wallpaper designs. In each experiment participants showed a significant bias to choose the stimulus with an attractive left side more than the stimulus with an attractive right side. The leftward bias emerged at age 10/11, was not caused by a systematic asymmetry in the perception of colourfulness or complexity, and was stronger when the difference in attractiveness between the left and right sides was larger. The results are relevant to the aesthetics of product and packaging design and show that leftward biases extend to the perceptual judgement of everyday items. Possible causes of the leftward bias for attractiveness judgements are discussed and it is suggested that the size of the bias may not be a measure of the degree of hemispheric specialisation.
    • The long-term effectiveness of the International Child Development Programme (ICDP) implemented as a community-wide parenting programme

      Skar, Ane-Marthe Solheim; von Tetzchner, Stephen; Clucas, Claudine; Sherr, Lorraine; University of Oslo ; University of Oslo ; University College London ; University College London (Taylor and Francis, 2014-08-21)
      Short-term effectiveness of the International Child Development Programme (ICDP) for parents in the general population has been studied. The aim of this paper was to investigate the longer term impact of the ICDP programme on parents looking for sustained changes 6–12 months after the programme. For this, a nonclinical caregiver group attending the ICDP programme (N ¼ 79) and a nonattending comparison group (N ¼ 62) completed questionnaires on parenting, psychosocial functioning, and child difficulties before, on completion and 6–12 months after the ICDP programme. Analyses compare changes in scores over time. The results revealed that the ICDP group showed significantly improved scores on parenting measures, less loneliness, and trends towards improved self-efficacy compared to the comparison group 6–12 months after programme completion. The ICDP group also reported that their children spent significantly less time on television and computer games and a trend towards fewer child difficulties. Key positive effects sustained over time but at a somewhat lower level, supporting community-wide implementation of ICDP as a general parenting programme. It is concluded that more intensive training with follow-up sessions should be considered to sustain and boost initial gains.
    • Longitudinal associations between social skills problems and different types of peer victimization

      Fox, Claire L.; Boulton, Michael J.; Keele University ; University of Chester (Springer, 2006-06)
      This article discusses a study in which 449 children aged 9 to 11 years completed an inventory to assess the bidirectional longitudinal associations between three different types of victimization and submissive/nonassertive social behaviour.
    • A longitudinal study exploring the relationships between occupational stressors, non-work stressors, and work performance

      Edwards, Julian A.; Guppy, Andrew; Cockerton, Tracey; University of Portsmouth ; University of Chester ; Middlesex University (Taylor & Francis, 2007-04)
      This article examines the causal relationship between work, non-work stressors, and work performance.
    • Looking behaviour and preference for artworks: The role of emotional valence and location

      Kreplin, Ute; Thoma, Volker; Rodway, Paul; Liverpool John Moores University; University of East London; University of Chester; Oxford University (Elsevier, 2014-09-07)
      The position of an item influences its evaluation, with research consistently finding that items occupying central locations are preferred and have a higher subjective value. The current study investigated whether this centre-stage effect (CSE) is a result of bottom-up gaze allocation to the central item, and whether it is affected by item valence. Participants (n=50) were presented with three images of artistic paintings in a row and asked to choose the image they preferred. Eye movements were recorded for a subset of participants (n=22). On each trial the three artworks were either similar but different, or were identical and with positive valence, or were identical and with negative valence. The results showed a centre-stage effect, with artworks in the centre of the row preferred, but only when they were identical and of positive valence. Significantly greater gaze allocation to the central and left artwork was not mirrored by equivalent increases in preference choices. Regression analyses showed that when the artworks were positive and identical the participants’ last fixation predicted preference for the central art-work, whereas the fixation duration predicted preference if the images were different. Overall the result showed that item valence, rather than level of gaze allocation, influences the CSE, which is incompatible with the bottom-up gaze explanation. We propose that the centre stage heuristic, which specifies that the best items are in the middle, is able to explain these findings and the centre-stage effect.
    • Managing relationship decay: Network, gender and contextual effects.

      Roberts, Sam G. B.; Dunbar, Robin I. M.; University of Chester; University of Oxford (Springer, 2015-10-21)
      Relationships are central to human life strategies and have crucial fitness consequences. Yet, at the same time, they incur significant maintenance costs that are rarely considered in either social psychological or evolutionary studies. Although many social psychological studies have explored their dynamics, these studies have typically focused on a small number of emotionally intense ties, whereas social networks in fact consist of a large number of ties that serve a variety of different functions. In this study, we examined how entire active personal networks changed over 18 months across a major life transition. Family relationships and friendships differed strikingly in this respect. The decline in friendship quality was mitigated by increased effort invested in the relationship, but with a striking gender difference: relationship decline was prevented most by increased contact frequency (talking together) for females but by doing more activities together in the case of males.
    • Manipulation of glycemic response with isomaltulose in a milk-based drink does not affect cognitive performance in healthy adults

      Dye, Louise; Gilsenan, Mary B.; Quadt, Frits; Martens, Vanessa E. G.; Bot, Arjen; Lasikiewicz, Nicola; Camidge, Diana; Croden, Fiona; Lawton, Clare (Wiley, 2010-04-07)
      Previous research suggests that glucoregulation and nutrient interventions, which alter circulating glucose, impact cognitive function. To examine the effect of modulating glycemic response using isomaltulose on cognitive function 24 healthy male adult participants consumed energy and macronutrient-matched milk-based drinks containing 50 g isomaltulose, 50 g sucrose or a water control in a counterbalanced within-subject design. Interstitial glucose was measured continuously in 12 subjects and all provided 9 capillary measures on each test day. A 30-min cognitive test battery was administered before and twice (+35 and +115 min) after drink ingestion. Immediate, delayed, recognition, verbal and working memory, and psychomotor performance were assessed. Glycemic profiles induced by the drinks differed significantly during the first but not the second post-drink test battery. Neither administration of the sucrose nor isomaltulose drinks produced consistent effects on verbal or working memory, or psychomotor performance. This study used isomaltulose as an investigative tool to lower glycemic response. Importantly, it demonstrates a lack of effect of modulating glucose on cognitive performance based on reliable, continuously measured glycemia. It refutes the hypothesis that glycemia is associated with cognitive performance and questions the suggestion that isomaltulose has an effect on cognitive performance.
    • Many Roads Can Lead to Rome – Supervisors perspectives on successful supervision and the challenges.

      Lafferty, Moira E.; Hemmings, Brian; Katz, Jonathan; Cunliffe, Matthew; Eubank, Martin; University of Chester, University of Greenwich, Liverpool John Moores University (British Psychological Society, 2019-09-30)
      The article focuses directly on the stories of supervision and supervision in practice at the micro level by drawing on the views and experiences of three supervisors, two (Brian and Jonathan) with numerous years supervisory experience and one newly qualified supervisor (Matt). Brian and Jon, supervise their QSEP candidates through a combined group and individual supervisory programme in contrast, Matt adopts an individual approach with all his supervisees. In the remainder of this article, these three supervisors present their thoughts and personal experiences on three core areas, developing the supervisory relationship, challenges to supervision and the concept of continued development as a supervisor.
    • Measuring deviant sexual interest in Adolescents using the emotional Stroop task.

      Price, Shelley A.; Beech, Anthony R.; Mitchell, Ian J.; Humphreys, Glyn W.; University of Chester, University of Birmingham, University of Birmingham, Oxford University (SAGE, 2014-10)
      Adolescent sexual abusers are a heterogeneous group of offenders that often receive generic assessment and treatment services that are modeled on research findings from adult sex offender samples. The emotional Stroop task has been used to measure deviant sexual interest in adult samples. The purpose of the present study was to test whether the emotional Stroop task could also be used to assess deviant sexual interest in adolescent samples. Three groups of adolescents (a) sexual abusers (n = 24); (b) offending controls (n = 21); and (c) nonoffending controls (n = 21) completed two emotional Stroop tasks related to deviant sexual interest and tests of executive function. Adolescent sexual abusers were significantly slower to color-name some word stimuli than both adolescent offending controls and adolescent nonoffending controls. However, the task was unable to differentiate between the groups on most of the Stroop word categories. Very little research has been conducted with adolescent offender samples and the emotional Stroop task. Reaction time (RT) and Stroop bias outcome data for adolescent samples appear to be more unsystematic and weaker than has been observed in previous adult data. Based on potential difficulties with reading and development, the emotional Stroop task may not be a task suitable for measuring deviant sexual interest in adolescent samples.
    • Mental health nurses' experiences of schizophrenia rehabilitation in China and India: A preliminary study

      Higgins, Louise; Dey-Ghatak, Priya; Davey, Gareth; University of Chester (Wiley, 2007-01-12)
      This article reports on preliminary open-ended discussions with mental health nurses in China and India in order to gain insights into the cultural and social issues that surround social rehabilitation of patients with schizophrenia.
    • Metacognitive beliefs as psychological predictors of social functioning: an investigation with young people at risk of psychosis

      Bright, Measha; Parker, Sophie; French, Paul; Fowler, David; Gumley, Andrew I.; Morrison, Anthony P.; Birchwood, Max; Jones, Peter B.; Stewart, Suzanne L. K.; Wells, Adrian; et al. (Elsevier, 2017-09-14)
      Poor social functioning has been found to be present in those at risk for psychosis. This study aimed to examine metacognitive beliefs as potential predictors of structured activity (measure of social functioning) in those with an At Risk Mental State (ARMS). Regression and correlation analyses were conducted. The sample included 109 young people. Age was found to be positively correlated to structured activity. Metacognitive beliefs concerning uncontrollability and danger of worry were found to negatively predict structured activity. This was after controlling for age, gender, treatment allocation, cognitive schemas, positive symptom severity, social anxiety, and depression. Metacognitive danger items were most important. Age was the only control variable found to be an independent predictor of structured activity in the regression model, despite negative bi-variate relationships with structured activity found across three cognitive schema subscales and social anxiety. This is the first study to find that higher negative metacognitive beliefs about uncontrollability and danger predict lower social functioning in an ARMS sample, and that the perception of thoughts being dangerous was of particular importance. Psychological interventions should consider targeting this metacognitive dimension to increase social functioning. Future longitudinal research is required to strengthen findings in this area.
    • The moderating role of psychopathic traits in the relationship between period of confinement and criminal social identity in a sample of juvenile prisoners

      Boduszek, Daniel; Dhingra, Katie; Debowska, Agata; University of Huddersfield; SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Katowice, Poland; Leeds Beckett University; University of Chester (Elsevier, 2016-03)
      The main aim of the current study was to examine how primary psychopathy may interact with period of confinement to predict Criminal Social Identity (CSI) scores, while controlling for covariates. Methods: The Measure of Criminal Social Identity, Levenson Self-report Psychopathy Scale, and the Measure of Criminal Attitudes and Associates were administered to 126 male juvenile offenders incarcerated in prisons in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Results: Results indicated no significant direct relationship between period of confinement and CSI scores. However, as expected, a significant moderating effect of primary psychopathy on the association between period of confinement and CSI scores was observed while controlling for covariates. Specifically, the significant effect of period of confinement on CSI was observed only for those participants who scored higher (1 SD above the mean) on primary psychopathy (affective and interpersonal features). Conclusion: For incarcerated juveniles with greater primary psychopathic traits, the formation and/or intensification of CSI may be an adaptive response to incarceration.
    • Modifying self-blame, self-esteem, and disclosure through a cooperative cross-age teaching intervention for bullying among adolescents

      Boulton, Michael J.; Boulton, Louise; University of Chester (Springer, 2017-05-17)
      Bullying is common among school students, and some victims hold self-blaming attributions, exhibit low self-esteem, and do not seek social support. A wait-list control pre/post-test experimental design, with random allocation, was used to assess the effects of a novel cross-age teaching of social issues intervention (CATS) on the latter three variables among peer-identified victims of bullying (N = 41, mean age = 14.5 years). In small co-operative groups of classmates, participants designed and delivered a lesson to younger students that informed them that bullies not victims are in the wrong, victims have no reason to feel bad about themselves and that seeking help can be beneficial. CATS led to a significant improvement on all three dependent variables with mostly large effect sizes, these positive effects were even stronger with a bigger dose of intervention (six versus four hours), and changes in self-blame, and separately changes in self-esteem, mediated the positive effect of the intervention on help-seeking. The theoretical and practical implications of these results were discussed, especially in terms of supporting a highly vulnerable sub-group of adolescents.
    • More than zero tolerance? Burnout and tolerance for patient aggression amongst mental health nurses in China and the UK

      Whittington, Richard; Higgins, Louise; University of Liverpool ; Chester College of Higher Education (Blackwell, 2002-06-18)
      This article discusses attitudes toward patient aggressive behaviour amongst mental health nurses in China and the UK and the relationship between these attitudes and burnout.
    • Mothers and Fathers Attending the International Child Development Programme in Norway

      Clucas, Claudine; Skar, Ane-Marthe Solheim; Sherr, Lorraine; von Tetzchner, Stephen; University of Chester; University of Oslo; University College London (SAGE, 2014-08-19)
      Fathers are understudied in parent training studies. This study investigates whether mothers and fathers benefit equally from participating in the International Child Development Programme (ICDP) implemented as a community-wide programme in Norway in their parenting behaviour, perceived child difficulties and their psychosocial health. The questionnaire study used a pre-post design comparing 105 mothers and 36 fathers who attended a regular ICDP course. Results showed that the mothers and fathers differed on parenting behaviours prior to the course but showed similar changes, including on emotional and regulative aspects of parenting and autonomy supportive behaviours. However, only the mothers perceived a decrease in their child’s difficulties after the course while the fathers showed a greater increase in behaviours assumed to support the child’s meaning-making and in self-efficacy, and a greater decrease in anxiety after the course. ICDP courses appear to be a useful tool for supporting both mothers and fathers in their parenting role.
    • Negative cognition, affect, metacognition and dimensions of paranoia in people at ultra-high risk of psychosis: A multi-level modelling analysis

      Morrison, Anthony P.; Shryane, Nick; Fowler, David; Birchwood, Max; Gumley, Andrew I.; Taylor, Hannah E.; French, Paul; Stewart, Suzanne L. K.; Jones, Peter B.; Lewis, Shôn W.; et al. (Cambridge University Press, 2015-04-08)
      Background: Paranoia is one of the commonest symptoms of psychosis but has rarely been studied in a population at risk of developing psychosis. Based on existing theoretical models, including the proposed distinction between ‘poor me’ and ‘bad me’ paranoia, we test specific predictions about associations between negative cognition, metacognitive beliefs and negative emotions and paranoid ideation and the belief that persecution is deserved (deservedness). Methods: We used data from 117 participants from the EDIE-2 trial of cognitive behaviour therapy for people at high risk of developing psychosis, comparing them with samples of psychiatric inpatients and healthy students from a previous study. Multi-level modelling was utilised to examine predictors of both paranoia and deservedness, with post-hoc planned comparisons conducted to test whether person-level predictor variables were associated differentially with paranoia or with deservedness. Results: Our sample of ARMS participants was not as paranoid, but reported higher levels of “bad-me” deservedness, compared to psychiatric inpatients. We found several predictors of paranoia and deservedness. Negative beliefs about self were related to deservedness but not paranoia, whereas negative beliefs about others were positively related to paranoia but negatively with deservedness. Both depression and negative metacognitive beliefs about paranoid thinking were specifically related to paranoia but not deservedness. Conclusions: This study provides evidence for the role of negative cognition, metacognition and negative affect in the development of paranoid beliefs, which has implications for psychological interventions and our understanding of psychosis.
    • Neural Correlates of Theory of Mind Are Preserved in Young Women with Anorexia Nervosa

      Leslie, Monica; Halls, Daniel; Leppanen, Jenni; Sedgewick, Felicity; Smith, Katherine; Hayward, Hannah; Lang, Katie; Fonville, Leon; Simic, Mima; Mandy, William; et al.
      People with anorexia nervosa (AN) commonly exhibit social difficulties, which may be related to problems with understanding the perspectives of others, commonly known as Theory of Mind (ToM) processing. However, there is a dearth of literature investigating the neural basis of these differences in ToM and at what age they emerge. This study aimed to test for differences in the neural correlates of ToM processes in young women with AN, and young women weight-restored from AN, as compared to healthy control participants (HC). Based on previous findings in AN, we hypothesised that young women with current or prior AN, as compared to HCs, would exhibit a reduced neural response in the medial prefrontal cortex, the inferior frontal gyrus, and the temporo-parietal junction whilst completing a ToM task. We recruited 73 young women with AN, 45 weight-restored young women, and 70 young women without a history of AN to take part in the current study. Whilst undergoing a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan, participants completed the Frith-Happé task, which is a commonly-used measure of ToM with demonstrated reliability and validity in adult populations. In this task, participants viewed the movements of triangles, which depicted either action movements, simple interactions, or complex social interactions. Viewing trials with more complex social interactions in the Frith-Happé task was associated with increased brain activation in regions including the right temporo-parietal junction, the bilateral medial prefrontal cortex, the cerebellum, and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. There were no group differences in neural activation in response to the ToM contrast. Overall, these results suggest that the neural basis of spontaneous mentalising is preserved in most young women with AN.