Browsing by Author "Powell, Russell A."
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- ItemAcademic procrastination: the pattern and correlates of behavioural postponement(2006) Powell, Russell A.; Howell, Andrew J.; Watson, David; Buro, KarenUsing a series of computer-based assignments, we examined whether students’ submission patterns revealed a hyperbolic pattern of temporal discounting, such that few assignments are submitted far ahead of the deadline and submission of assignments accelerates at an increasing rate as the deadline becomes imminent. We further examined whether variables related to self-regulation – namely, self-reported procrastination, implementation intentions, say-do correspondence, and perceived academic control – correlated with behavioural postponement. Results revealed strong behavioural evidence of temporal discounting, especially among those who identified themselves as procrastinators. Among the self-regulation measures, only say-do correspondence consistently correlated with procrastination.
- ItemCorrecting the record on Watson, Rayner, and Little Albert: Albert Barger as 'psychology’s lost boy'(2014) Powell, Russell A.; Digdon, Nancy; Smithson, Christopher; Harris, BenIn 1920, John B. Watson and Rosalie Rayner attempted to condition a phobia in a young infant named 'Albert B.' In 2009, Beck, Levinson, and Irons proposed that Little Albert, as he is now known, was actually an infant named Douglas Merritte. More recently, Fridlund, Beck, Goldie, and Irons (2012) claimed that Little Albert (Douglas) was neurologically impaired at the time of the experiment. They also alleged that Watson, in a severe breach of ethics, probably knew of Little Albert’s condition when selecting him for the study and then fraudulently hid this fact in his published accounts of the case. In this article, we present the discovery of another individual, Albert Barger, who appears to match the characteristics of Little Albert better than Douglas Merritte does. We examine the evidence for Albert Barger as having been Little Albert and, where relevant, contrast it with the evidence for Douglas Merritte. As for the allegations of fraudulent activity by Watson, we offer comments at the end of this article. We also present evidence concerning whether Little Albert (Albert Barger) grew up with the fear of furry animals, as Watson and Rayner speculated he might.
- ItemDeterminants of choice for pigeons and humans on concurrent-chains schedules of reinforcement(1989) Belke, T. W.; Pierce, W. D.; Powell, Russell A.Demonstrated that the determinants of choice and preference are different for pigeons and humans exposed to the same concurrent schedules of reinforcement. Four male pigeons and 4 male undergraduates replicated E. Fantino's (see record 1970-03386-001 ) experiment that manipulated initial-link duration to test the divergent predictions of the delay-reproduction and reinforcement-density equations. Condition 1 exposed Ss to VI 90-sec and 30-sec initial links. Conditions 2 and 3 arranged equal initial-link schedules of 40 sec or 120 sec. Pigeons strongly preferred the alternative with the shorter terminal-link time to reinforcement, while delay-reduction equations did not predict the performance of humans in the unequal initial-link.
- ItemDid Freud misinterpret reported memories of sexual abuse as fantasies?(1995) Powell, Russell A.; Boer, Douglas P.Argues that Freud may have misinterpreted real memories of sexual abuse as imaginary after his abandonment of the seduction theory. Certain theoretical statements by Freud, as well as his advice to Jung concerning a 6-yr-old girl who had accused her foster-father of sexual abuse, indicate that he may have been significantly biased toward interpreting certain types of incest allegations as fantasies. Increased awareness of Freud's biases, both in his early tendency to pressure patients into believing that they were victims of abuse and in his later tendency to regard certain types of incest allegations as unreal, may contribute to a more objective approach to the diagnosis and treatment of sexual abuse in the future.
- ItemDid Freud mislead patients to confabulate memories of abuse? a reply to Gleaves and Hernandez(1994) Powell, Russell A. ; Boer, Douglas P.Claims that Sigmund Freud had often used highly suggestive procedures to elicit the memories of childhood seductions from his patients and had not considered alternative explanations for the evidence he presented when first claiming that recovered memories of sexual abuse were real. Freud's abandonment of seduction theory within a year of first proposing it.
- ItemDid Freud mislead patients to confabulate memories of abuse? A reply to Gleaves and Hernandez(2004) Powell, Russell A.; Boer, Douglas P.Gleaves and Hernandez have argued that skepticism about the validity of Freud's seduction theory, including by Powell and Boer, is largely unjustified. This paper contends that their analysis is in many ways both inaccurate and misleading. For example, we did not, as they implied, reject the possibility that some of Freud's early patients were victims of childhood sexual abuse. We also maintain that the weight of the available evidence indicates that false memories of traumatic events probably can be implanted, and that Freud's (1896/1962a) original evidence for the validity of his patients' recovered memories remains lacking in several respects-particularly in view of the extremely suggestive procedures he often used to elicit such memories.
- ItemDissociative identity disorder and the sociocognitive model: recalling the lessons of the past(1999) Lilienfeld, S. O.; Kirsch, I.; Sarbin, T. R.; Lynn, S. J.; Chaves, J. F.; Ganaway, G. K.; Powell, Russell A.In a recent article in this journal, D. H. Gleaves (1996; see record 1996-01403-003 ) criticized the sociocognitive model (SCM; N. P. Spanos, 1994) of dissociative identity disorder (DID) and argued in favor of a posttraumatic model (PTM) in which DID is conceptualized as a consequence of childhood abuse and other traumatic events. The present authors demonstrate that (a) many of Gleaves's arguments were predicated on misunderstandings of the SCM, (b) scrutiny of the evidence regarding the psychopathology and assessment of DID raises questions concerning the PIM's conceptual and empirical underpinnings, (c) the treatment literature suggests that iatrogenic factors play an important role in the etiology of DID, and (d) the evidence linking child abuse to DID is more problematic than implied by Gleaves. The present authors conclude that Gleaves's analysis underemphasized the cultural manifestations of multiple role enactments and that the history of DID imparts a valuable lesson to contemporary psychotherapists.
- ItemDreams of the rarebit fiend: food and diet as instigators of bizarre and disturbing dreams(2015) Nielsen, Tore A.; Powell, Russell A.In the early 1900s, the Dream of the Rarebit Fiend comic strip conveyed how the spicy cheese dish Welsh rarebit leads to bizarre and disturbing dreams. Today, the perception that foods disturb dreaming persists. But apart from case studies, some exploratory surveys, and a few lab studies on how hunger affects dreaming, there is little empirical evidence addressing this topic. The present study examines three aspects of the food/dreaming relationship; it attempts to: (1) assess the prevalence of the perception of food-dependent dreaming and the types of foods most commonly blamed; (2) determine if perceived food-dependent dreaming is associated with dietary, sleep or motivational factors; and (3) explore whether these factors, independent of food/dreaming perceptions, are associated with reports of vivid and disturbing dreams. Three hundred and ninety six students completed questionnaires evaluating sleep, dreams, and dietary habits and motivations. Items queried whether they had noticed if foods produced bizarre or disturbing dreams and if eating late at night influenced their dreams. The perception of food-dependent dreaming had a prevalence of 17.8%; with dairy products being the most frequently blamed food category (39–44%). Those who perceived food-dependent dreaming differed from others by reporting more frequent and disturbing dreams, poorer sleep, higher coffee intake, and lower Intuitive Eating Scale scores. Reports of disturbing dreams were associated with a pathological constellation of measures that includes poorer sleep, binge-eating, and eating for emotional reasons. Reports of vivid dreams were associated with measures indicative of wellness: better sleep, a healthier diet, and longer times between meals (fasting). Results clarify the relationship between food and dreaming and suggest four explanations for the perception of food-dependent dreaming: (1) food specific effects; (2) food-induced distress; (3) folklore influences, and (4) causal misattributions. Research and clinical implications are discussed.
- ItemEffectiveness of treatment for dissociative identity disorder(1998) Powell, Russell A.; Howell, Andrew J.In a study by J. W. Ellason and C. A. Ross (1996), patients with Dissociative Identity Disorder reported a decrease in symptoms on the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory–II over a 2-yr follow-up period. Patients judged to have achieved integration of their personalities rated themselves as more substantially improved on the Millon–II than did patients judged not to have achieved integration. Ellason and Ross suggested that this improvement reflected the influence of treatment; however, for several reasons, their findings are open to alternative interpretations. First, in the absence of proper control conditions, one cannot rule out the contribution of other factors to the over-all improvement of patients such as regression of symptoms toward the mean following the initial assessment. Second, patients' self-reported improvement was less substantial when data were reanalyzed using more appropriate statistical criteria. Third, the greater improvement observed among integrated patients relative to nonintegrated patients may reflect influences other than differential responsiveness to treatment, such as less severe pathology prior to treatment. More systematic research is needed to clarify the effect of treatment on Dissociative Identity Disorder.
- ItemEpisodic-like memory in zebrafish(2016) Hamilton, Trevor; Myggland, Allison; Duperreault, Erika; May, Zacnicte; Gallup, Joshua; Powell, Russell A.; Schalomon, Melike; Digweed, ShannonEpisodic-like memory tests often aid in determining an animal's ability to recall the what, where, and which (context) of an event. To date, this type of memory has been demonstrated in humans, wild chacma baboons, corvids (Scrub jays), humming birds, mice, rats, Yucatan minipigs, and cuttlefish. The potential for this type of memory in zebrafish remains unexplored even though they are quickly becoming an essential model organism for the study of a variety of human cognitive and mental disorders. Here we explore the episodic-like capabilities of zebrafish ( Danio rerio) in a previously established mammalian memory paradigm. We demonstrate that when zebrafish were presented with a familiar object in a familiar context but a novel location within that context, they spend more time in the novel quadrant. Thus, zebrafish display episodic-like memory as they remember what object they saw, where they saw it (quadrant location), and on which occasion (yellow or blue walls) it was presented.
- ItemEssentialist beliefs, stigmatizing attitudes, and low empathy predict greater endorsement of noun labels applied to people with mental disorders(2014) Howell, Andrew J.; Ulan, Justine A.; Powell, Russell A.Maass, Suitner, and Merkel (2014) identified several negative consequences of the use of noun labels (e.g., John is a schizophrenic) applied to people with mental disorders. The current studies examined whether the endorsement of noun labels is associated with individual differences in essentialist beliefs, stigmatizing attitudes, and empathy, seeking to replicate and extend the findings of Howell and Woolgar (2013). In Study 1 (N = 282), undergraduates with high scores on measures of essentialist thinking and stigmatizing attitudes were more likely to endorse noun labels. In Study 2 (N = 258), undergraduates with low empathy scores and high stigmatizing attitude scores were more likely to endorse noun labels. These findings are discussed with respect to additional implications of noun labels applied to those with mental disorders, such as perceived treatability.
- ItemImmediate and delayed incorporations of events into dreams: further replication and implications for dream function(2004) Nielsen, Tore A.; Kuiken, Don; Alain, Genevieve; Stenstrom, Philippe; Powell, Russell A.The incorporation of memories into dreams is characterized by two types of temporal effects: the day-residue effect, involving immediate incorporations of events from the preceding day, and the dream-lag effect, involving incorporations delayed by about a week. This study was designed to replicate these two effects while controlling several prior methodological problems and to provide preliminary information about potential functions of delayed event incorporations. Introductory Psychology students were asked to recall dreams at home for 1 week. Subsequently, they were instructed to select a single dream and to retrieve past events related to it that arose from one of seven randomly determined days prior to the dream (days 1–7). They then rated both their confidence in recall of events and the extent of correspondence between events and dreams. Judges evaluated qualities of the reported events using scales derived from theories about the function of delayed incorporations. Average ratings of correspondences between dreams and events were high for predream days 1 and 2, low for days 3 and 4 and high again for days 5–7, but only for participants who rated their confidence in recall of events as high and only for females. Delayed incorporations were more likely than immediate incorporations to refer to events characterized by interpersonal interactions, spatial locations, resolved problems and positive emotions. The findings are consistent with the possibility that processes with circaseptan (about 7 days) morphology underlie dream incorporation and that these processes subserve the functions of socio-emotional adaptation and memory consolidation.
- ItemIs “Just-Get-Started” an effective self-management tactic to improve flossing?(2022) Touznik, Jessica; Powell, Russell A.Healthy behaviours are often maintained by how habitual, or automatic, the behaviour has become. Repeated initiation and repetition of a behaviour has been shown to result in an activity becoming more automatic. Thus, this study experimentally investigated the efficacy of the often recommended “Just Get Started” (JGS) tactic, which increases the likelihood of initiating a behaviour, and assessed whether it increased participants’ frequency and automaticity of flossing. Undergraduate students (n = 44) completed baseline surveys before being randomized into one of two groups: (1) a control group in which participants were only told to floss each day for four weeks, and (2) and a JGS group that was additionally given the recommendation to use the JGS tactic, that is, whenever they did not feel like flossing, to pick up the floss and floss one tooth before deciding whether or not to continue. Participants reported their frequency and automaticity of flossing after 2 and 4 weeks. Results showed that although both automaticity and flossing increased over time, there was no significant difference between the JGS and control group on these measures, suggesting that the JGS rule provided no extra benefit. Participants who made use of the JGS tactic, however, reported that the rule helped them initiate and continue flossing, which suggests that the JGS rule may be perceived as more useful than it actually is. Additional exploratory analyses revealed several differences in background experiences between flossers and non-flossers. Baseline flossing frequency also showed a small correlation with self-control, conscientiousness, and procrastination, and a strong correlation with automaticity. Limitations of the study include a small sample size and the over-reliance on self-report measures.
- ItemLittle Albert still missing(2010) Powell, Russell A.Comments on the article by H. P. Beck, S. Levinson, & G. Irons. Beck, Levinson, and Irons presented a fascinating account of how they seemingly solved the mystery of whatever happened to Little Albert, the infant in whom Watson and Rayner (1920) claimed to have conditioned a rat phobia.
- ItemLittle Albert’s alleged neurological impairment: Watson, Rayner, and historical revision(2014) Digdon, Nancy; Powell, Russell A.; Harris, BenIn 2012, Fridlund, Beck, Goldie, and Irons (2012) announced that "Little Albert"-the infant that Watson and Rayner used in their 1920 study of conditioned fear (Watson & Rayner, 1920)-was not the healthy child the researchers described him to be, but was neurologically impaired almost from birth. Fridlund et al. also alleged that Watson had committed serious ethical breaches in regard to this research. Our article reexamines the evidentiary bases for these claims and arrives at an alternative interpretation of Albert as a normal infant. In order to set the stage for our interpretation, we first briefly describe the historical context for the Albert study, as well as how the study has been construed and revised since 1920. We then discuss the evidentiary issues in some detail, focusing on Fridlund et al.'s analysis of the film footage of Albert, and on the context within which Watson and Rayner conducted their study. In closing, we return to historical matters to speculate about why historiographical disputes matter and what the story of neurologically impaired Albert might be telling us about the discipline of psychology today.
- ItemNightmare frequency is related to a propensity for mirror behaviors(2013) Nielsen, Tore A.; Powell, Russell A.; Kuiken, DonWe previously reported that college students who indicated engaging in frequent dream-enacting behaviors also scored high on a new measure of mirror behaviors, which is the propensity to imitate another person's emotions or actions. Since dream-enacting behaviors are frequently the culmination of nightmares, one explanation for the observed relationship is that individuals who frequently display mirror behaviors are also prone to nightmares. We used the Mirror Behavior Questionnaire (MBQ) and self-reported frequencies of nightmares to assess this possibility. A sample of 480 students, consisting of 188 males (19.2±1.73 years) and 292 females (19.0±1.55 years) enrolled in a first-year university psychology course, participated for course credit. They completed a battery of questionnaires that included the 16-item MBQ, plus an item about nightmare frequency (NMF) in the past 30 days. NMF scores were split to create low, medium, and high NMF groups. MBQ total scores were significantly higher for female than for male subjects, but an interaction revealed that this was true only for Hi-NMF subjects. MBQ Factor 4, Motor Skill Imitation, paralleled this global interaction for females, whereas MBQ Factor 3, Sleepiness/Anger Contagion, was elevated only for Hi-NMF males. Item analyses indicated that Hi- and Med-NMF females scored higher than Lo-NMF females on the 3 items of Factor 4 that reflect voluntary imitation (imitating famous/cartoon voices, being a physically active spectator, and learning new skills by observing), as well as on 2 other items that reflect involuntary imitation (contagious yawning and self-rated empathy). Although Hi- and Lo-NMF males differed most clearly on the sleepiness item of Factor 3, all 3 items on this factor (including anger contagion and contagious yawning) are plausibly associated with perception of and response to social threat. Results provide evidence that among females nightmares are associated with voluntary and involuntary mirror behaviors during wakefulness, while among males nightmares are associated with threat-related mirror behaviors during wakefulness. They thus support the possibility that the association between mirror behaviors and dream-enacting behaviors is due to a common mirror neuron mechanism that underlies mirror behaviors and nightmares and that involves motor, rather than emotional, resonance. These results have implications for understanding the comorbidity of nightmares and other pathological symptoms such as imitative suicidal behaviors, the influence of observational learning on dissociative symptomatology, and the predominance of threat and aggression in the dream enacting behaviors of REM sleep behavior disorder.
- ItemQuestioning premorbid dissociative symptomatology in dissociative identity disorder: comment on Gleaves, Hernandez and Warner(2003) Gee, Travis; Allen, Kelly; Powell, Russell A.Comments on an article by D. H. Gleaves et al (see record 1999-03012-003 ) which purported to refute the sociocognitive model (SCM) of dissociative identity disorder by showing that many of the symptoms associated with dissociative identity disorder are displayed by patients before entering therapy or prior to diagnosis. The present authors argue that Gleaves et al's results do not refute the SCM and are in fact supportive of that model. The present authors also argue that the Gleaves et al study suffers from several deficiencies, including a misunderstanding of the SCM and its predictions concerning iatrogenesis, deficiencies in the manner in which the survey was conducted, and a failure to note some disturbing trends in the results that were obtained.
- ItemResearch notes: Little Albert, lost or found: further difficulties with the Douglas Merritte hypothesis(2011) Powell, Russell A.In some intriguing detective work, Beck, Levinson, and Irons (see record 2009-18110-004) attempted to solve the mystery of what happened to Little Albert, the infant in whom Watson and Rayner (1920) claimed to have conditioned a rat phobia. They concluded that a child by the name of Douglas Merritte, the son of a wet nurse at Johns Hopkins Hospital, very likely was Albert (the published name, Albert B, apparently having been a pseudonym). Powell (see record 2010-08987-015) and Reese (see record 2010-08987-016) outlined certain difficulties with Beck et al.’s (2009) analysis, the foremost being a comment from Watson (1924/1925) that Albert was later adopted, whereas Douglas had remained with his mother (see Beck, 2010, for his rejoinder to Powell and Reese) (see record 2010-08987-017). The present report presents an additional difficulty with the Douglas Merritte hypothesis which concerns the estimated timeline during which the baseline session (and first film session) of the Albert experiment likely took place. It is the congruence between Douglas’ age and the reported age of Albert during this estimated timeline on which the case for Douglas being Albert largely rests.
- ItemReversed scototaxis during withdrawal after daily- moderate, but not weekly-binge, administration of ethanol in zebrafish(2013) Holcombe, Adam; Howorko, Adam; Powell, Russell A.; Schalomon, Melike; Hamilton, TrevorAlcohol abuse can lead to severe psychological and physiological damage. Little is known, however, about the relative impact of a small, daily dose of alcohol (daily-moderate schedule) versus a large, once per week dose (weekly-binge schedule). In this study, we examined the effect of each of these schedules on behavioural measures of anxiety in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Adult wild-type zebrafish were administered either 0.2% ethanol on a daily-moderate schedule or 1.4% ethanol on a weekly-binge schedule for a period of 21 days, and then tested for scototaxis (preference for darkness) during withdrawal. Compared to a control group with no alcohol exposure, the daily-moderate group spent significantly more time on the light side of the arena (indicative of decreased anxiety) on day two of withdrawal, but not day 9 of withdrawal. The weekly-binge group was not significantly different from the control group on either day of withdrawal and showed no preference for either the light or dark zones. Our results indicate that even a small dose of alcohol on a daily basis can cause significant, though reversible, changes in behaviour.
- ItemSleep quality, sleep propensity and academic performance(2004) Howell, J. H.; Jahrig, J.C.; Powell, Russell A.We examined associations between measures of sleep propensity on the Epworth Sleepiness Scale, sleep quality on the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and academic performance by GPA and grades in introductory psychology for 414 students. In the total sample, neither sleep propensity nor sleep quality correlated with GPA or introductory psychology grades. However, among students carrying a full course load, those reporting poor sleep quality performed less well on academic measures than those reporting a better quality of sleep. Further research is needed to assess die moderating influence of overall demands of daytime functioning on the association between sleep quality and academic performance.