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American Psychologist

W David Stahlman, Kenneth J Leising
There is little scientific debate regarding the validity of Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection, which effectively describes how relevant ancestral histories produce both an organism's genetic characteristics and innate behavioral repertoires. The combination of variation and selection in the production of novel forms can be extended beyond Darwinian theory to encompass facts of ontogeny. The present article sheds light on an underappreciated and critical insight, namely, that the consequences of behavior have a selective effect analogous to that observed in biological evolution...
March 19, 2018: American Psychologist
Mesmin Destin
By many accounts, young people from modest socioeconomic backgrounds who succeed in education and secure gainful employment should expect to experience better physical health as a result of their elevated social position. However, increasing evidence indicates that experiences of socioeconomic mobility may not accompany a health benefit but rather can lead to poorer physical health for some individuals. On certain indicators, adults who originated from disadvantaged backgrounds and achieved educational and economic success found themselves in worse health than their childhood peers who did not experience an upward socioeconomic trajectory...
March 19, 2018: American Psychologist
Stephanie A Torres, Catherine DeCarlo Santiago, Katherine Kaufka Walts, Maryse H Richards
Currently, 15 million Mexican and Central American individuals live in the United States, with this number projected to rise in the next few decades (Lesser & Batalova, 2017; Zong & Batalova, 2017). Research has begun to investigate the impact of the nation's immigration practices and policies on immigrant Latino/a families and youth. Current immigration policies can create vulnerabilities, including fear and mistrust, discrimination, limited access to services, parent-child separation, and poverty...
March 5, 2018: American Psychologist
M Alexandra Kredlow, Howard Eichenbaum, Michael W Otto
Modification of the ongoing influence of maladaptive cognitive, emotional, and behavioral patterns is a fundamental feature of many psychological treatments. Accordingly, a clear understanding of the nature of memory adaptation and accommodation to therapeutic learning becomes an important issue for (1) understanding the impact of clinical interventions, and (2) considering innovations in treatment strategies. In this article, we consider advances in the conceptualization of memory processes and memory modification research relative to clinical treatment...
March 1, 2018: American Psychologist
Serena Does, Naomi Ellemers, John F Dovidio, Jasmine B Norman, Avital Mentovich, Romy van der Lee, Phillip Atiba Goff
Long-standing research traditions in psychology have established the fundamental impact of social categories, such as race and gender, on people's perceptions of themselves and others, as well as on the general human cognition and behavior. However, there is a general tendency to ignore research staff demographics (e.g., researchers' race and gender) in research development and research reports. Variation in research staff demographics can exert systematic and scientifically informative influences on results from psychological research...
March 1, 2018: American Psychologist
Idris Adjerid, Ken Kelley
The potential for big data to provide value for psychology is significant. However, the pursuit of big data remains an uncertain and risky undertaking for the average psychological researcher. In this article, we address some of this uncertainty by discussing the potential impact of big data on the type of data available for psychological research, addressing the benefits and most significant challenges that emerge from these data, and organizing a variety of research opportunities for psychology. Our article yields two central insights...
February 22, 2018: American Psychologist
Wendy S Grolnick, David J Schonfeld, Merritt Schreiber, Judith Cohen, Valerie Cole, Lisa Jaycox, John Lochman, Betty Pfefferbaum, Kenneth Ruggiero, Kenneth Wells, Marleen Wong, Douglas Zatzick
There is compelling evidence of the potential negative effects of disasters on children's adjustment and functioning. Although there is an increasing base of evidence supporting the effectiveness of some interventions for trauma following disaster, more research is needed, particularly on interventions that can be delivered in the early aftermath of disaster as well as those that can address a broader range of adjustment difficulties such as bereavement that may be experienced by children after a disaster. This article identifies gaps in the knowledge of how best to intervene with children following disasters...
February 15, 2018: American Psychologist
Tess M S Neal
This article delineates 2 separate but related subfields of psychological science and practice applicable across all major areas of the field (e.g., clinical, counseling, developmental, social, cognitive, community). Forensic and correctional psychology are related by their historical roots, involvement in the justice system, and the shared population of people they study and serve. The practical and ethical contexts of these subfields is distinct from other areas of psychology-and from one another-with important implications for ecologically valid research and ethically sound practice...
February 12, 2018: American Psychologist
Tracey A Revenson
Presents an obituary of Dorothy G. Singer (1927-2016) who passed away on November 19, 2016, at Yale New Haven Hospital, at the age of 89. Singer was a professor, research scientist, consultant, child therapist, and author. As the author or coauthor of more than 25 books and 200 scientific and popular articles, Singer brought new insights to child development, particularly in the areas of imaginative play and the effects of TV on children. She was a tireless advocate for the power of play in children's lives...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Kevin C Krycka
Presents an obituary of Eugene T. Gendlin (1926 -2017) who passed on May 1, 2017, at the age of 90 in Spring Hill, New York. Gendlin, an American philosopher and psychologist, is perhaps best known for his impact on psychology, psychotherapy, and research on the effectiveness of psychotherapy even though he regarded himself first as a philosopher. He established the subfield of experiential psychotherapy and was the founding editor of the American Psychological Association's (APA) Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, and Practice journal...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Mark A Stein, Jeffrey H Newcorn
Presents an obituary of C. Keith Conners (1933-2017) who passed away of heart failure in Durham, North Carolina, on July 6, 2017. Conners was a pioneer in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) research and treatment. (PsycINFO Database Record
April 2018: American Psychologist
Arthur MacNeill Horton, Daniel Allen, Antonio E Puente
Presents an obituary of Gerald "Jerry" Goldstein (1931-2017). Jerry passed away at his home in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on April 8, 2017. Goldstein was famous for his contributions to the establishment of clinical neuropsychology as a science and professional specialty. In addition to his extraordinary service to the specialty, he made important contributions to the neuropsychology of alcoholism and schizophrenia, as well as to neuropsychological rehabilitation. (PsycINFO Database Record
April 2018: American Psychologist
Neal J Cohen, Matthew Shapiro
Presents an obituary of Howard B. Eichenbaum (1947-2017). Eichenbaum, a world leader in the study of memory and the brain, died in Boston, Massachusetts, on July 21, 2017, at age 69, following recent spine surgery. Eichenbaum was a hugely creative and integrative scientist whose work combined cognitive and lesion analyses with high-density neuronal recordings, providing insights into brain computations and representations that help bridge psychological and physiological mechanisms of memory. His theories and original and elegant experiments in animals have greatly advanced our knowledge of the nature and brain mechanisms of memory in animals and humans alike...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Joseph G Ponterotto
In this reply to Young and Collins (2018), the author responds to 3 primary concerns raised about integrating psychobiography into mainstream psychology: appropriate historical context and historiographic research methods, avoiding deterministic conclusions and the role of psychobiography in theory testing, and ethical concerns related to lack of informed consent of the identified subject. The author appreciates the thoughtful comments of Young and Collins and hopes that discussion and debate about psychobiography will continue in the literature...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Jacy L Young, Brianne M Collins
This commentary addresses a recent special section on psychobiography that appeared in the pages of the July-August 2017 American Psychologist . The claims made by the authors of these articles raise a number of serious ethical, scientific, and historical concerns about psychobiography. These concerns include the potential public harm from the indiscriminate analysis of public figures; the inherent problem of publicly analyzing individuals without their participation or consent; overly deterministic conclusions of such analyses; difficulties analyzing figures from a distance and in retrospect; the impossibility of validating psychological theories through singular accounts; the presumption that psychological knowledge is ahistorical; the highly selective nature of psychobiography; and a focus on largely White, male figures as historically significant...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Kathryn J Holland, Lilia M Cortina, Jennifer J Freyd
Sexual assault is a widespread problem on college campuses. In response, many institutions are developing policies mandating that certain employees report any student disclosure of sexual assault to university officials (and, in some cases, to police), with or without the survivor's consent. These policies, conceptualized here as compelled disclosure , have been prompted and shaped by federal law and guidance, including Title IX and The Clery Act. Proponents of compelled disclosure assert that it will increase reports-enabling universities to investigate and remedy more cases of sexual assault-and will benefit sexual assault survivors, university employees, and the institution...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Benjamin Oosterhoff, Julie B Kaplow, Christopher M Layne, Robert S Pynoos
Promoting trust in public officials and active political engagement is vital to sustaining a well-functioning democracy. Developmental psychologists propose that youths' beliefs about government and participation in politics are rooted in personal experiences within their communities. Previous studies have focused on how positive experiences within youths' families, schools, and communities facilitate greater social trust and political participation. However, less is known about how negative interpersonal experiences-such as criminal victimization-intersect with youths' beliefs about the trustworthiness, competence, and knowledge of government officials, and their participation in political activity...
April 2018: American Psychologist
José M Causadias, Joseph A Vitriol, Annabelle L Atkin
Although culture influences all human beings, there is an assumption in American psychology that culture matters more for members of certain groups. This article identifies and provides evidence of the cultural (mis)attribution bias: a tendency to overemphasize the role of culture in the behavior of racial/ethnic minorities, and to underemphasize it in the behavior of Whites. Two studies investigated the presence of this bias with an examination of a decade of peer reviewed research conducted in the United States (N = 434 articles), and an experiment and a survey with psychology professors in the United States (N = 361 psychologists)...
April 2018: American Psychologist
Howard Casey Cromwell
Presents an obituary for Jaak Panksepp, who died April 18, 2017. Panksepp reshaped the landscape of psychology by highlighting emotions and coincident feelings in basic and clinical research. Most of his career was spent convincing others that the key to understanding human mental illness was the understanding of primal emotional operating systems in conserved neural circuitry. His framework was carefully laid out in his book Affective Neuroscience: The Foundation of Human and Animal Emotions (1998). His controversial writings vigorously pushed for the acceptance of nonhuman animal feelings as primary states that link to motivated action and emotional expression...
February 2018: American Psychologist
Stephen P Hinshaw, Jill Waterman
Presents an obituary for Barbara Henker, who died January 24, 2017, at the age of 81. Henker was professor emerita and a pioneering female faculty member in the Psychology Department at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Arriving in 1965, she served on the faculty in the clinical and developmental psychology areas at UCLA as the first woman faculty member hired by the department. Henker also worked in the areas of health-related behaviors, attributional styles, cognitive-behavioral interventions, and early use of electronic diaries to monitor the behavior and emotions of youth and parents...
February 2018: American Psychologist
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