Volume 11 (03)
Methodology of psychology
Background. Discussion of the social origins of personality formation, based on the biological individual, is a characteristic feature of modern interdisciplinary researches at the junction of natural science and the humanities. At the same time, evolutionary aspects of the relationship between the biological (innate) and the social (acquired) — i.e., the problem of the origin of sociality — come to the forefront.
Objective. This article presents and discusses the hypothesis that the evolutionary origins of sociality are processes of evolutionary divergence (increasing individual diversity) and convergence (symbiosis) that define two oppositely directed vectors of the development of life from its simplest forms.
Method and Results. The theoretical and experimental data used to discuss the hypothesis are considered here from the standpoint of the historical evolutionary approach to the processes of formation (evolution) of the uniqueness of the personality and of social interpersonal relations. The approach is based on an understanding of these processes as a special case of the evolution of interacting systems on the basis of two opposing trends — towards preserving and towards changing the system. The hypothesis allows us to answer two questions about the ambivalence of human existence in society: (a) Why do all people, regardless of their social status, find it so difficult to endure loneliness, which is incompatible with both the mental and even physical health of each of us? (b) Why at the same time do all of us involuntarily protect the “boundaries” of our own physical, mental, and social “Me”, the violation of which is as destructive (unacceptable) to us as is loneliness?
Conclusion. Systematic historical-evolutionary analysis of the sciences of nature, society, and humankind allows us to isolate general patterns of development of complex systems, leading to a more accurate understanding of the phenomenon of personality. Such an interdisciplinary approach was used in this work on the biological roots of sociality and the particular features of individual existence in the external and to some extent social environment that generates unique individuals.
Keywords: systems, social communities, evolution of societies, sociality, symbiosis, indi- vidual diversity, person, historical and evolutionary approach
Background. We use Social identity theory as a theoretical framework, specifically focusing on strategies of identity management. The study is based on the following theoretical assumptions. First, identity management strategies might serve as mediators between different identity threats and behavioral patterns in intergroup relations. Second, identity management strategies help to make the shift from the individual to the group level of analysis, allowing us to take the consequences of intergroup behavior for a group entitativity into consideration. Third, identity management strategies strongly depend on the social context of intergroup relations.
Objective. In the current study, we look into the relationships between identity management strategies of the ethnic Russian majority and their attitudes towards multiculturalism to identify whether certain strategies are helpful or harmful for the acceptance of multiculturalism in Russia.
Design. We use Russia vs. the West comparison to evoke the perception of identity threat. We measure strategies of identity management based on this comparison, as well as attitudes towards multiculturalism in a survey of 307 Russian participants.
Results. The findings suggest that identity management strategies are indeed related to attitudes towards cultural diversity and equality in Russia, as well as to acculturation expectations of whether minorities should adopt the mainstream Russian culture or keep their own. We find that strategies of individualization, individual mobility and assimilation have mostly negative consequences for acculturation expectations, as they all show patterns that support assimilation of minorities instead of integration. We also find support for the “scapegoat” hypothesis, showing that choosing the strategy of changing the comparison group results in more negative attitudes toward cultural diversity and equality for all in Russia. The strategies of social creativity (change of the categorization dimension, temporal comparison, comparison with a standard, etc.) seem to be irrelevant for attitudes towards multiculturalism.
Conclusion. Our findings suggest that none of the strategies of identity management promote acceptance of multiculturalism. However, strategies of social creativity are the only ones that do not have negative consequences for support of multiculturalism. Theoretical and practical implications for multiculturalism policy adoption in Russia are discussed.
Keywords: identity management strategies, national identity, multiculturalism, Russia
Background. This study was carried out using the framework of S. Schwartz’s theory of basic human values.
Objective. This article examines the dynamics of the basic values of Russians (2008– 2016) and the relationship between value orientations and economic attitudes among Christians and Muslims in Russia.
Design. The dynamics of values of Russians were analyzed based on the five waves rounds of ESS (2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2016), each of which included around 2,000 respondents. The 2010 sample included ethnic Russians as well as respondents from the North Caucasus (N = 278).
Results. We found that the most preferred value among Russians is Security. However, the importance of this value decreased over 10 years (2006–2016). Such values as Achievement, Tradition, and Power were relatively stable among Russians during this period. In addition, between 2006 and 2016 we observed the increasing priority of the values of Hedonism and Stimulation. Using our own data set, we examined the relations between values and attitudes toward different types of economic behavior.
Conclusion. We found that the patterns of the relations between values and attitudes toward different types of economic behavior had similarities as well as differences among Christians (in the Central Federal District and the North Caucasus Federal District) and Muslims (in the North Caucasus Federal District) in Russia.
Keywords: culture, values, economic behavior, economic attitudes, cross-cultural comparison
Background. In today’s hectic civilization, it is very important for a person to maintain personal boundaries which help him or her keep his/her identity. Personal sovereignty (PS) is a trait that demonstrates the extent to which a person’s empirical Self is respected by his/her social environment. Whereas the genesis and correlations system of personal sovereignty in proximal relationships have been investigated widely, little is known about whether they are culturally sensitive or not.
Objective. In this study, we aimed to investigate the patterns and genesis of personal sovereignty in relation to age and gender, by comparing individuals from Armenian, Chinese, and Russian cultures. Our sample consisted of 780 respondents, of whom 223 were from Armenia, 277 from China, and 280 from Russia; 367 were adolescents (Mage = 13) and 413 were youth (Mage = 21); there were 361 males and 419 females.
Method. The “Personal Sovereignty Questionnaire–2010” was used.
Results. The results suggest that culture, age, and gender all impact on the sense of personal sovereignty. Although there were no differences between cultures on the main PS score, we did find different PS patterns within all three cultures and when comparing males versus females. The PS scores in youth were higher than in adolescents, except in Armenia where the results were inverted. All age trends in PS were found in females, but not in males. Gender differences in PS within each culture were found in youth but not in adolescents.
Conclusion. We discussed and explained the outcomes with reference to the specificity of the way each culture endorses traditional or secular-rational values, which values determine the prevalent attitudes towards gender roles and demands on adolescents and youth.
Keywords: personal sovereignty, empirical Self, psychological space, culture, personal boundaries, values, gender roles
Background. This article addresses the influence of personal, professional, and organizational factors on procrastination in employees of a modern Russian industrial enterprise. Procrastination has been studied extensively since the 1970s, producing great research material and diagnostic tools that remain relevant to this day. Yet despite the large number of studies, no single point of view has emerged on the causes of this phenomenon.
Aim. To investigate how personal, professional, and organizational factors influence procrastination in employees of a modern Russian industrial enterprise.
Design. 120 employees of a Russian industrial enterprise participated in the study, including 70 women and 50 men, mean age 35 years, mean work experience in this enterprise 4.3 years. We used four diagnostic methods to characterize work activity and organizational culture, personal characteristics, and specificity of an occupational stress syndrome. We used correlation and regression analysis to analyze the results.
Results. The data identified significant personal, professional, and organizational predictors of procrastination in the modern professional, such as being outgoing (the quality of sociability), innovative, detail-conscious, and conscientious. Equally significant are characteristics of the work situation such as its content and the significance of tasks. A significant weight in the predictive value of the regression model lies in the robust consequences of professional stress (anxiety and depression), openness toward change in the organization, and social desirability.
Conclusion. The level of procrastination among the employees of this enterprise predicts typical behavior patterns in performing professional tasks, subjective appraisal of the job situation, the experience of stress and its consequences, and perception of the organizational culture.
Keywords: procrastination, predictors of procrastination, typical behavior patterns in occupational situations, occupational stress syndrome, stress consequences, work environment, organizational culture
Background. This article reports on the results of an empirical study of interrelationships between indicators of decision-making strategies (indexed by the Iowa Gambling Task, IGT) and traits of tolerance and intolerance for uncertainty that capture the unity of cognitive and personality components of situational representations.
Objective. Our study tested the hypothesis that overcoming uncertainty in decision making goes beyond cognitive representations of the task but instead is rooted in the construction of the amodal image of an uncertain situation that captures the meaning regulation of perception and action. We hypothesized that when a person is faced with multi-stage decisions, their strategies reflect the contribution of individual differences in attitudes towards uncertainty.
Design. Using data obtained from n=60 typically developing adults (68% men; Mage = 30.58), we examined the contribution of tolerance/intolerance for uncertainty to a variety of IGT dependent variables at five different stages of the game.
Results. The data was analyzed using the mixed linear model method as implemented in the lme4 package for R. The results indicated that tolerance for uncertainty significantly contributes to the initial level of behavioral risk, ensuring readiness for decision making under uncertainty.
Conclusion. Tolerance for uncertainty plays an important role in early stages of orientation in an uncertain modeled game situation, and contributes to the productive development of probabilistic expectations. Intolerance for uncertainty, on the other hand, was shown to contribute to risk in decision making after trial failure, potentially limiting learning in uncertain conditions through risk aversion.
Keywords: decision making, Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), tolerance for uncertainty, tolerance for ambiguity, intolerance for uncertainty, risk acceptance
Background. Contemporary rehabilitation of memory impairments relies on the use of external compensatory strategies. In Russian neuropsychological tradition, rehabilitation is understood as a transformation of a higher mental function, based on intact elements of that function and on use of external and internal means. Such a restructuration approach may be applied to memory.
Objective. This article describes the basic principles underlying memory rehabilitation and gives an example of their successful implementation in a clinical case.
Design. A 62-year-old patient was admitted 6 months after severe traumatic brain injury with primary damage to his le frontal and temporal lobes. He faced difficulties in social living and activities of daily life, mainly due to memory impairment. Neuropsychological assessment revealed moderate impairment of different memory types: modal nonspecific impairment with mild but persistent impairments in autobiographic and semantic memories. During a 3-week rehabilitation program, an algorithm involving the use of text was developed in consideration of the structure of memory impairment (impaired selectiveness, excessive inhibition and pathologic inertness of memory traces).
Results. After multiple trials and modifications, the resulting algorithm (written retelling with the use of keywords, self-correction with writing correct variants instead of errors), allowed reproduction of the presented text with 100% recall of significant information and no false memories. The use of the developed memorization technique in everyday life allowed the patient to effectively memorize relevant information.
Conclusion. The described approach—restructuration of memory on the basis of preserved chains—is a feasible strategy of memory rehabilitation.
Keywords: neuropsychological rehabilitation, neurorehabilitation, memory, traumatic brain injury
Background. Special features of communicative development in children with Down Syndrome are reported to correlate with intellectual disability, while their mothers’ communication with them is considered to be a reaction to difficulties in building rapport with the child. The cultural-historical approach to human psychological and mental development (Vygotsky, 1982) supports research into the contribution of maternal behavior to the development of communication in children with Down Syndrome.
Objective. To analyze the relationship between the development of responsive and initiative communicative actions in children with Down Syndrome and features of maternal communicative behavior.
Design. The subjects were 15 pairs of mothers and their children diagnosed with “trisomy 21, Down Syndrome, full (or complete) type of trisomy” and 18 pairs of mothers and their typically developing children. The children in the experimental group are from 18 to 36 months old, the age of mothers is from 24 to 41 years. e children in the control group are from 18 to 36 months old; the mothers’ age is from 20 to 44 years. The research included collection of video data and expert video recording analysis. Communication was recorded of mothers and their children without a toy, and then with a toy. Videos were made three times, every 1.5 or 2 weeks, and each session lasted 20 minutes; two videos were analyzed, excluding the first one. The analysis was performed by three experts — researchers at the Federal State Budget Scientific Institution “Institute of Special Education of the Russian Academy of Education” — calculating the frequency of the children’s responsive and initiative communicative actions. A qualitative analysis of the mothers’ communicative behavior was conducted: Repeated patterns of the mothers’ communicative behavior in both groups were identified, and the number of mothers with these communicative actions was calculated.
Results. Mothers’ actions that correlated with the development of responsive and initiative communicative actions in typically developing children were identified, including: the adult caregiver addresses her child directly and personally; she pays attention to the child’s actions and supports them; she plays with the child as with an equal. The communicative behavior of mothers of children with Down Syndrome did not differ from that of the mothers of typically developing children in terms of the behavioral characteristics listed above. Thedevelopment of responsive and initiative communicative actions in children with Down Syndrome correlates with a greater number of characteristics of maternal communicative behavior, such as: continuing the communication despite approximate, uncertain, or contradictory signals from the child; creating vivid and positive emotional support for interactions; and keeping in mind the child’s language and motor limitations.
Conclusion. Our research suggests that for the development of communication in children with Down Syndrome, maternal communicative actions that correlate with the development of communication in typically developing children are not sufficient.
Keywords: development of communication in children, communicative behavior of children, communicative behavior of the mother in communication with a child, children with Down Syndrome
Background: Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), also known as domestic violence, spousal abuse, and relationship violence, among other names, is becoming a widely recognized social and public health problem. Theory and practice suggest it is vital that the issue be addressed comprehensively in both the healthcare and socio-legal contexts. The theoretical perspectives underlying inquiries into the nature and etiology of the IPV phenomenon are of fundamental importance in promoting our understanding of how to prevent, reduce, or eliminate the problem. In order to integrate various aspects of knowledge about the phenomenon, it is important to consider and evaluate the approaches to IPV currently prevalent in the field.
Objectives: The present article aims to provide a critical overview of the existing theories, methodological frameworks, typologies, and definitions of Intimate Partner Violence.
Design: The present paper reviews the international literature on the conceptual frameworks and definitions of IPV. First, it draws on the conceptual frameworks of violence; it then reviews relevant theories and definitions of IPV considered from sociocultural, individual, and integrative perspectives. The disparities, limitations, and explanatory powers of these theories, as well as their clinical and research applications, are discussed in an attempt to bring more clarity into the current state of understanding in the field.
Results and Conclusions: Our review suggests that there is no universally accepted definition of IPV, nor a conceptual framework that would encompass the complexity of the phenomenon. Some of the theoretical frameworks for studying IPV appear to provide potential advantages over others, but their empirical viability has yet to be determined. We argue that, due to the complex multifaceted nature of IPV, a narrow theoretical stance might exclude a variety of exploratory factors and limit understanding of the phenomenon.
Keywords: Intimate Partner Violence (IPV); theory of IPV; domestic violence; spouse abuse, interpersonal violence; violence against women (VAW).
Background. Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative illness, which occurs with increasing frequency as people age. While progressive memory impairment is the upfront element associated with the disease, other neurocognitive troubles are also associated with it, such as language impairment which can degenerate into aphasia. Language disorders interfere and worsen the functioning of memory.
Aim of the study. To evaluate semantic and textual impairment in AD patients.
Methods. The current study involved 151 AD patients undergong consultation at Brest University Hospital. Certain socio-demographic data (sex, age, cultural levels) were collected, as well as results from the following neuropsychological tests: Folstein (MMSE); Dubois’s 5-word test; Dubois’s frontal assessment test battery (fluencies); Cornell’s scale for depression; and Barbizet’s test ( “The Lion’s tale”). All were subject to textual analysis. Our sample of demented patients included 102 females and 49 males of average age 80.3 ± 6.91.
Results. All the tests, including the number of items recalled much later in the Barbizet’s test, showed impairment, all the more by Folstein’s test being altered. The demented patients’ formal fluency was less impaired than their semantical lexical fluency (scored respectively 5.74 ± 1.09 versus 4.41 ± 2.19; t = 5.60, p < 0.01). The demented cohort exhibited more intrusions (n = 36) than inversions in the delayed recollection of the Lion’s Tale, both for items and the episodes in which they occurred (n = 19). The regressive PLS analysis showed that, to explain the overall scores relating to “ e Lion’s Tale”, calculated later, only attainment of lexical fluency had any notable influence (Regression coefficient CR=0.224) or, more accessorily, the cultural level (CR = 0.12).
Conclusion. AD patients’ proficiency in tests of category fluency and their cultural levels have effects on narrativity.
Keywords: Alzheimer’s Disease, semiotics, semantics, textuality
Background. Studies of children raised in institutions have shown that they are at substantial risk in various domains of functioning, but these studies have not examined the children’s developmental change at the very early period of institutionalization.
Objective. The main aim of this study was to examine the behavioral development of institutionalized infants between three and nine months of life as a function of their birth circumstances and the nature of their institutional care.
Design. General behavioral development was studied in 58 (34 males) infants from two St. Petersburg (Russian Federation) institutions (Baby Homes, BH). The infants were divided into four groups according to 1) their gestational age—full-term children (FCh) of 37-41 weeks gestational age, or preterm children (PCh) of 30-36 weeks gestational age; and 2) the type of institutional care environment—either the typical socio-emotionally depriving, non-intervention Baby Home (NoI BH), or an institution that had undergone a program of training plus structural changes intervention (T+SC BH). All the children were assessed at approximately three and nine months of age with the Battelle Development Inventory (BDI; LINK Associates, 1988).
Results. Both the FCh and PCh children from the NoI BH displayed significant declines in their BDI Total scores between three and nine months, whereas only the FCh children in T+SC BH improved over this period of time. In general, the FCh group had higher mean BDI Total developmental quotients (DQs) than the PCh group, and children from the T+SCh BH displayed higher scores than children from the NoI institution.
Conclusion. Thus, the current study showed that the impact of spending their early months in an institution on infants’ development depends on the gestational age of children and the type of institutional care environment.
Keywords: institutions, full-term (FCh) and preterm (PCh) infants, time, intervention, development
Background. While the phenomena of intentional destroying and damaging of private property have been known since ancient times, the term “vandalism” appears only in 19th century. In the 20th century, much research devoted to vandalism was conducted in the spheres of criminology, sociology, psychology, and education. Nevertheless, little attention has been paid to investigating the correlation between a child’s propensity for vandalism and the child-parent relationship.
Objective and Method. The main purpose of our research was to investigate the correlation between the styles of family upbringing and adolescents’ propensity for vandalism. For this purpose, we analyzed the main predictors of adolescents’ propensity for vandalism on the basis of the psychological diagnostics of 60 Russian families from Ekaterinburg. We investigated whether the fact that a child was brought up in a one-parent or disadvantaged family is significant for forming an adolescent propensity for vandalism. We also clarified the influence of various styles of family upbringing on an adolescent’s propensity for vandalism of different types.
Results. Based on statistical analysis, we concluded that an atmosphere of violence within the family plays a key role in forming adolescents’ propensity for vandalism. The style of maternal upbringing has a greater influence on determining adolescent destructive behavior than the paternal, especially when the father’s parenting style is “non-interference.”
Conclusion. Based on our research results, we suggest that preventive the efforts against vandalism should be directed toward the prevention of family violence, and that there should be a differential approach toward parental education directed toward correcting individual parental styles of upbringing.
Keywords: vandalism, deviations in juvenile behavior, adolescence, child-parent relationships, styles of parental upbringing, destructive behavior
Background. To build modern effective programs for the development of preschoolers’ logical thinking, it is necessary to study the specifics of the operational structures functioning within their thought systems. According to Piaget, two operational groups of thought develop in parallel and synchrony: 1) logical-mathematical (classification, seriation, and invariant construction — the conservation principle); and 2) spatial-temporal — the structuring of space (linear ordering [LO], transformation of geometric forms [TGS], reconstruction of sensorimotor space at the level of representations [RSMS]) and time. However, there has been no empirical verification of the significant links between the levels of development of an individual’s logical-mathematical and spatial-temporal operations in his/her system of thought.
Purpose. The purpose of this study was to examine the nature of the links between the elements of the logical-mathematical and spatial-operational structures in preschoolers’ systems of thought.
Design. The study involved the following steps: 1) Individual diagnosis of the developmental level of logical-mathematical and spatial operations in 52 preschool children (5,8 – 7,1 years) using classica Piaget techniques and the Bender-Gestalt test; 2) identification of the operational developmental stage of each examinee; and 3) identification of the nature of the links between the logical-mathematical and spatial operational structures within each child’s thinking system, using statistical tools for data analysis (ρ Spearman; regression analysis).
Results. Statistically significant differences between the developmental levels of spatial and logical-mathematical operations were revealed, as well as between the levels of development of spatial operations LO, TGS, and RSMS as measured by the Bender-Gestalt test. It was found that all the spatial operations (LO, TGS, RSMS) were conceived at a higher level than logical-mathematical operations (classification, seriation, and the conservation principle). Significant predictors of the development of logical-mathematical/spatial operations were identified.
Conclusions. Piaget’s hypothesis that the development of the logical-mathematical and spatial operations within a child’s thinking system is an interconnected process has received statistical justification in this study. The data we obtained suggest that both operational structures have similar sets of features. As proof that an internal causal nexus between the logical- mathematical and spatial structures exists, it is necessary to conduct formative experiments in which some thought operations (predictors) will be formed by training, while previously missing operations are induced to appear in the child’s thinking system indirectly.
Keywords: logical thinking system, logical operations, spatial operations, preschoolers, Piaget
Background. Today’s research on human executive functioning (EF) demonstrates a deepening understanding of this psychological concept as a mental process, as it has been assessed in testing contexts. But little effort has been made to approach the executive function from an ecological viewpoint, one which allows its study in the context of real life, and treats this function as simultaneously mental and behavioral.
Objective and Design. The purpose of the present research was to explore how 37 Colombian children, aged four, six, and eight years old, with typical psychological development, used their executive functions in a daily context, such as school classes.
Results. Observational analysis revealed that only 40% of the participants could control and regulate their behavior to achieve class goals. In the few cases where executive regulation was observed, socio-economic status and executive performance marked the behavioral patterns used by children to control and regulate their tasks in class.
Conclusion. Participants in this study showed that, independent of their EF performance level, their ability to use EF to control and regulate a daily activity, such as their behavior in class, depends on their ability to understand the advantages of acting executively. Most importantly, this skill differs among children by variables such as socio-economic status.
Keywords: executive function (EF), children, observational analysis, cognition, socio-economic status (SES)
Background. e actual motive may be experimentally diagnosed through study of the system of perceived motivations. However, since perceived motivations are always expressed in terms that are not unambiguous (for a number of reasons, including age, gender, context, etc.), the experimental reconstruction of the actual motive is always as- sociated with an ambiguity in interpretation of the respondents’ perceived motivations. We need to use a method of diagnosing motivations that would allow us to identify, for the groups of students studied, not only the contribution of a particular perceived moti- vation, but also the substantive features of the designated motives, through the pattern of correlations of these perceived motivations.
Objective. This article presents the results of research on the age and gender specifics of learning motivations of high school students.
Design. Experimental identication of their motivational proles was made by means of factor analysis, separately for each of four groups of pupils (in Moscow schools with a traditional learning paradigm): two junior groups (8th-9th grades, 14-15 years old) of boys (62) and girls (59); and two senior groups (10th-11th grades, 16-17 years old) of boys (63) and girls (54).
Results. As a result, a motivational structure specic for the corresponding gender and age was identied and described.
Conclusion. We showed that as a child grows up, the orientation in learning becomes more and more generalized, with a stronger expression for boys than for girls. In the junior group, girls have a motivation that is oriented to the future, whereas boys do not; such motivations in boys are seen only in the senior group and are inextricably linked to the parents’ approval. Both for boys and girls, the content of their motivation for cognitive achievement in the older age group is based on two motives, which are independent at the younger age: curiosity and prestige. However, with girls, apart from a desire to learn new things, the aspiration to differ notably from others and to demonstrate their achievements to others is significantly greater than with boys
Keywords: motivation, learning activity, older adolescents, gender, personal development