This is the second in a series of four articles scheduled for publication in this journal. In the previous article I proposed a description of a new so-called existential criterion of normal and abnormal personality that is implicitly present in the works of Erich Fromm. According to this criterion, normal and abnormal personalities are determined, first, by special features of the content of their position regarding existential dichotomies that are natural to human beings and, second, by particular aspects of the formation of this position. Such dichotomies, entitatively existent in all human life, are inherent, two-alternative contradictions. The position of a normal personality in its content orients one toward a contradictious predetermination of life in the form of existential dichotomies and the necessity of searching for compromise in resolving these dichotomies. This position is created on a rational basis with the person’s active participation. The position of an abnormal personality in its content subjectively denies a contradictious predetermination of life in the form of existential dichotomies and orients one toward a consistent, noncompetitive, and, as a consequence, one-sided way of life that doesn’t include self-determination. This position is imposed by other people on an irrational basis. Abnormality of personality interpreted like that is one of the most important factors influencing the development of various kinds of psychological problems and mental disorders — primarily, neurosis. In this article I show that this criterion is implicitly present in the personality theories of Sigmund Freud and Alfred Adler, although in more special cases. In the following articles I will show that this criterion is also implicitly present in the personality theories of Carl Jung, Carl Rogers, and Viktor Frankl.
human nature, human essence, existential dichotomy, normal personality, abnormal personality
The structure of reflection as the basis of the procedural organization of consciousness
The relationship of consciousness to the reflexive processes is one of the fundamental problems in psychology. To date, however, many important aspects of this problem remain poorly understood. This article attempts a theoretical study of this problem. The subject of research is the interconnection between consciousness and reflexive processes and also the structure of these processes. This study presents theoretical and empirical materials revealing the interrelatedness of these two fundamental subjects of psychological research. In connection with this issue, I introduce a new methodology for psychological research, which I refer to as the metasystem approach. This approach is grounded in the claim that reflection is the basic procedural means of consciousness and is based on a heterarchical principle. This article proposes a new structural, polyprocess method for revealing the psychological nature of reflection and the contents of reflexive processes. I propose a new explanation for the basic properties of the psyche that underlie consciousness: self-sensitiveness (sensitivity to oneself). I theoretically prove the following proposition: reflection has a fundamental heterogeneity because its processes are localized on completely different hierarchical cognitive levels of personality. In addition, I show that in the structural organization of reflection as an integral process in relation to other (“secondary,” metacognitive) processes, another basic principle is involved — the principle of hierarchy. The property of reflexivity (and the process of reflection as a procedural manifestation of this property) should be understood as a species in relation to the more common attribute inherent in the psyche: self-sensitiveness. Elementary manifestations of this property have been observed for the simplest sensory processes.
Quantitative psychological research is focused on detecting the occurrence of certain population phenomena by analyzing data from a sample, and statistics is a particularly helpful mathematical tool that is used by researchers to evaluate hypotheses and make decisions to accept or reject such hypotheses. In this paper, the various statistical tools in psychological research are reviewed. The limitations of null hypothesis significance testing (NHST) and the advantages of using effect size and its respective confidence intervals are explained, as the latter two measurements can provide important information about the results of a study. These measurements also can facilitate data interpretation and easily detect trivial effects, enabling researchers to make decisions in a more clinically relevant fashion. Moreover, it is recommended to establish an appropriate sample size by calculating the optimum statistical power at the moment that the research is designed. Psychological journal editors are encouraged to follow APA recommendations strictly and ask authors of original research studies to report the effect size, its confidence intervals, statistical power and, when required, any measure of clinical significance. Additionally, we must account for the teaching of statistics at the graduate level. At that level, students do not receive sufficient information concerning the importance of using different types of effect sizes and their confidence intervals according to the different types of research designs; instead, most of the information is focused on the various tools of NHST.
The main research problems and tasks of a new scientific field in Russia—the psychology of professional health — are formulated. A definition of professional health as the abilities of a person successfully to cope with the demands and requirements in a professional environment is offered. A psychological vision for professional health with four basic provisions is proposed. The aim of the research was to study the extent of the influence on the professional health of managers of such psychological factors as systems of values, stress in professional activity, individual and psychological features, strategies for overcoming stressful situations. Data are provided from research conducted in 2002-2012 on managers in Russian companies. Taking part in the research were 651 managers of various organizations in St. Petersburg, Moscow, Yekaterinburg, Veliky Novgorod, and Kharkov. For collecting empirical material on methods of supervision, I used polls, tests, interviews, content analysis, self-reports of participants in training programs, and a method for forming the experiment. In addition I employed psychodiagnostic techniques intended for studying the cognitive, behavioral, and emotional components of health, a technique for revealing the personal potentials (regulatory, communicative, intellectual) of the managers, and also my own techniques. The study positively correlated health with such values as having interesting work, having a happy family life, being financially secure, having an active life, and giving and receiving love. Connections between the behavioral manifestations of type A behavior and the managers’ values were revealed. The greatest negative impact on the managers was made by such factors of professional activity as an excessive workload, emotional pressure at work, difficulty in carrying out activity, and insufficient time. Health is important in the structure of the professional activity of managers; it acts as a strategic resource by providing at the least cost efficiency and reliability during all stages of a professional career.
professional activity, professional health, managers, psychological factors, stress factors
The attitudes of Russian teenagers toward sexual aggression
The data reported in the article describe the attitudes of teenagers to problems concerning sexual violence and aggression. Given the lack of any national systems that could monitor negative factors in the teenage environment, including sexual aggression, special value lies in the data obtained through questionnaires, as these data allow us to evaluate the prevalence of such factors, and they also describe the typical lifestyles of modern Russian teenagers.
The main objective of the study was to describe the age dynamics and gender specifics of teenagers’ attitudes toward the problem of sexual aggression: its prevalence, probable reasons for it, ways of dealing with such situations.
This article is based on data from a research project conducted in 2012 in the Krasnoyarsk region. The research particularly addressed various aspects of schoolchildrens sexual behavior and their attitudes toward sexual violence. The main research method was a paper questionnaire. It was administered to 1,540 children in the 7th, 9th, and 11th grades.
The results showed that every tenth teenager indicated the presence of sexual-violence victims in their circle. According teenagers’ opinions about the reasons for sexual violence the main reasons are “bad luck,” “provocative appearance” “carelessness”. The majority of teenagers will seek help in case of rape.
The answers of teenagers who have sexual experience regarding possible solutions for sexually traumatic situations show their readiness to take responsibility for their behavior and its consequences, as well as for their mental and physical health. In this respect sexual experience can be viewed as an indicator of teenagers’ personal and psychological readiness to lead a grownup life independently of their parents.
To sum up, analyzing schoolchildren’s replies, even to those questions that were not asked directly but in oblique form, allows us to conclude that the teenage environment involves an aggressive (unlawful) component, which usually appears to be a “hidden layer” of interpersonal relations in the microsocial circle of a schoolchild. As a result, the threat of becoming a victim of bullying (ostracism) can block a teenager’s search for help.
puberty, prevalence of sexual aggression, reasons for sexual aggression, sup¬port for victims of sexual violence, demographic and socially stratified factors
Personal characteristics of effective managers in organizational cultures of different types
Since the 1990s Russian enterprises have been experiencing difficulties in transitioning to the market-innovative model of development. In the context of the current variability of management paradigms, we had an opportunity to study the internal and external regulators of organizational changes that are typical for a transitioning economy. Organizational culture (ОС) was studied as an external factor, while the personal traits of middle managers were viewed as internal factors because these managers are the agents for values and for behavior models, from corporate directives to “front-desk’ personnel. The goal of this theoretical and empirical study was to determine the personality traits of middle managers who were deemed effective by top management in companies transitioning to the market-innovative model of development in the context of different types of OCs.
During the preliminary stage, we conducted a comparative analysis of the requirements for the personal traits of middle managers who are working in stable conditions as well as in conditions of transfer to the market-innovative model of development, and we selected the relevant methods of empirical research. During the first stage of the empirical part of our research we defined a group of four enterprises with OCs of different types, identified their effective mid-level managers based on expert evaluations by the top leadership, and formed test groups. During the second stage we studied the personal characteristics of these managers.
We determined that the personality traits of managers deemed effective by their leaders form integral complexes, which in turn correlate in a certain way with the type of ОС of an enterprise. We identified four models of an effective manager: Mentor, Dictator, Innovator, and Businessman; these managers have varying degrees of work productivity, value priorities in the development of ОС, personal self-concepts, organizational leadership skills, and types of decision-making. It has been demonstrated that in the evaluation of the effectiveness of a manager of an enterprise, the correspondence of his/her personal traits to the characteristics of the ОС prevailing in the company is a more important factor than his/her agreement with the long-term goals of the company and, therefore, with the more promising type of ОС. This phenomenon opens a way to utilize such functions of ОС as internal integration but prevents external adaptation, which in turn becomes a serious psychological obstacle in the development of an enterprise.
The ОС of an enterprise has a powerful potential to attract employees with certain sets of psychological traits. Important tasks for the psychological support of the organizational development of an enterprise could be the development of a criteria database for the evaluation of managers and the development of a management talent pool based on the market-innovative vector of development of an enterprise with relevant changes in the ОС.
Since the turn of this century, a substantial body of research has been published on the neuroscience of creativity. Now, it is necessary to study the neurophysiological correlates in true-to-life, professionally specific situations. The aim of our empirical research was to study the neurophysiological correlates of musical improvisation, a spontaneous creative activity. The participants were 136 right-handed practicing musicians aged 19 to 36 (102 males and 34 females), divided into two groups—professionals (56 people) and amateurs (80 people). EEG signals were recorded in a resting state (eyes closed) and during three types of internal musical activity (perceiving, mentally reproducing, and mentally improvising) from 21 scalp electrodes according to the International 10-20 System. For statistical analysis, we used ANOVA and post hoc analysis. For the main neurophysiological correlates of musical creativity, we revealed higher values of EEG spectral power in the delta band and the dominance of long-distance functional cortical connections in the high-frequency bands. Variable neurophysiological correlates were differentiated according to emotions and the professional level of the musicians. The distinguishing EEG pattern in the professional musicians during improvisation was the predominant activation of the left- hemisphere cortical regions simultaneously with high interhemispheric integration in the high-frequency band along the “creativity axis.” The revealed neurophysiological correlates of musical creativity during improvisation included basic and variable components and were characterized by a specific frequency-spatial organization of bioelectric cortical activity in the musicians.
musical creativity, improvisation, brain cortex, EEG, spectral power, co¬herence, frequency band
Mnemonic abilities of primary school children with delayed mental development
This paper presents the results of research regarding the mnemonic abilities of primary school children with developmental delays. Empirical studies of impaired mental development offer an opportunity to elucidate the psychological mechanisms underlying the process of normal development and enable us to consider at a micro level the formation of mental processes in ontogeny, which would, under normal conditions, be nondescript and not always amenable to psychological analysis. The research addresses an experimental investigation of productivity and qualitative characteristics of mnemonic abilities among primary school students with developmental delays. V.D. Shadrikov’s Theory of Abilities, developed in a systemic approach framework, is the theoretical basis of the research. The method of deploying a memorization activity, as elaborated by V.D. Shadrikov and L.V. Cheremoshkina, was the investigation tool used. The sample included students in grades 1 to 4 between ages 7 to 12 and included a total of 100 children (66 boys and 34 girls). The control group of primary school students with typical development included 105 children (50 boys and 55 girls). The research consisted of several stages: a pilot study, experimental research (the test task was to memorize card #1; the basic task was to memorize cards #2 and #3; to reproduce cards #2 and #3; and to poll the students), mathematical data processing, and a description of the levels of mnemonic ability development among primary students with developmental delays. The following procedures were employed during statistical analysis: Spearman r3, Mann-Whitney U-test, Jonckheere-Terpstra test, and Kruskal-Wallis test.
The structure of mnemonic abilities in primary schoolchildren with developmental delays was determined to vary according to the underdevelopment of their operational mechanisms. For example, memory functions are based on the use of inborn mechanisms, and a portion of children differ in the type of underdevelopment of their perceptive abilities and attention abilities. Operational and regulative mechanisms of mnemonic abilities in primary schoolchildren with developmental delays are determined to exist at early stages of their formation. Significant differences in productivity and mnemonic abilities in primary school students with developmental delays were observed in comparison with their typically developing peers. In both children with developmental delay, as well as typical children, gender did not present any significant differences in memorization or the employment of functional mechanisms of mnemonic abilities. The analysis shows, and this paper discusses possible causes for subjects’ inability to copy simple nonverbal material after its correct reproduction is shown.
delay of mental development, mnemonic abilities, functional mechanisms, operational mechanisms, regulation mechanisms, effect of inability to redraw earlier remembered and correctly reproduced material
Qualitative syndrome analysis by neuropsychological assessment in preschoolers with attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity
The basis of this article is A. R. Luria’s conception of the qualitative approach in neuropsychology. Attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity is one of the most frequent clinical diagnoses given during preschool age. However, precise qualitative neuropsychological criteria for analysis of this clinical diagnosis do not exist and change from one approach to another. Our objective here is to propose such qualitative criteria for neuropsychological analysis of children with diagnoses of attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity at preschool age. We follow clinical methodology that is traditional for historical and cultural neuropsychology and is an alternative for the psychometrical and cognitive approach. The methodology of the study was qualitative neuropsychological assessment of the syndrome followed by detailed consideration of the types of difficulties in each case. The study analyzes mistakes and typical examples of execution of the tasks of neuropsychological qualitative assessment by regular children and by children with attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity. The results showed differences between these groups of children. The children with attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity made a lot of mistakes during assessments. Their difficulties are related to unfavorable conditions in the three functional brain blocks according to Luria’s conception. We conclude that “attention” cannot be considered the only or the main problem in children who receive this diagnosis by psychiatrists and neurologists.
qualitative neuropsychology, process of attention, disorders of attention, neuropsychological assessment, child neuropsychology
The correlation between a passion for computer games and the school performance of younger schoolchildren
Today computer games occupy a significant place in children’s lives and fundamentally affect the process of the formation and development of their personalities. A number of present-day researchers assert that computer games have a developmental effect on players. Others share the point of view that computer games have negative effects on the cognitive and emotional spheres of a child and claim that children with low self-esteem who neglect their schoolwork and have difficulties in communication are particularly passionate about computer games. This article reviews theoretical and experimental pedagogical and psychological studies of the nature of the correlation between a passion for computer games and the school performance of younger schoolchildren. Our analysis of foreign and Russian psychology studies regarding the problem of playing activities mediated by information and computer technologies allowed us to single out the main criteria for children’s passion for computer games and school performance. This article presents the results of a pilot study of the nature of the correlation between a passion for computer games and the school performance of younger schoolchildren. The research involved 32 pupils (12 girls and 20 boys) aged 10-11 years in the 4th grade. The general hypothesis was that there are divergent correlations between the passion of younger schoolchildren for computer games and their school performance. A questionnaire survey administered to the pupils allowed us to obtain information about the amount of time they devoted to computer games, their preferences for computer-game genres, and the extent of their passion for games. To determine the level of school performance we analyzed class registers. To establish the correlation between a passion for computer games and the school performance of younger schoolchildren, as well as to determine the effect of a passion for computer games on the personal qualities of the children, the Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient (r-Pearson) was used. Analysis of the results of the study indicates that there is a correlation between computer-game genres and the school performance of younger schoolchildren, that a passion for role-playing computer games adversely affects the school performance of younger schoolchildren and that the time period for a single game determines the extent to which younger schoolchildren have the personality traits necessary to maintain educational motivation and interest in an academic subject.
computer-gaming activities, passion for computer games, school performance, younger schoolchildren
Academic achievement: Intelligence, regulatory, and cognitive predictors
Using the results of two empirical studies (with different samples and academic subjects), our research was aimed at discovering the significant role of conscious self-regulation, intelligence, and cognitive features in predicting optimal academic achievement. The sample consisted of 406 students (aged 14-16) in the 8th to 11th grades of the Russian formal education system. Conscious self-regulation together with intelligence and cognitive abilities was determined to be a significant predictor of academic success. The Study 1 results revealed that the general level of self-regulation of learning activity and certain regulatory features were significant predictors of different types of mathematical achievements: academic grades, scores on exams, mathematical fluency, as well as solving logical mathematical problems and equations. The present study is the first to show the mediating role of self-regulation in relation to intelligence, cognitive features, and academic success. Study 2 found evidence that conscious self-regulation and intelligence can predict academic achievement in the humanities, mathematics, and natural sciences... At the same time, this determination has its peculiarities in particular variables of intelligence and certain self-regulation processes depending on the substantive characteristics of the academic subjects. Regression models of academic success in the humanities identified verbal intelligence associated with vocabulary as highly significant and a definitive requirement for success in these subjects. Study 1 and Study 2 showed that the only significant predictors of success in algebra and geometry were quantitative- relations intelligence and spatial intelligence. The implications of these findings for investigating predictors of academic achievement are discussed.