Using Technology to Enhance Aging in Place

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), aging in place is “the ability to live in one’s own home and community safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income, or ability level.”  Aging in place may benefit both the individual and society by allowing older adults to maintain connections with others in [...]

Why Do Immigrants Stay in Communities with Harsh Immigration Laws?

Tough immigration laws have been passed in several states in recent years, including Arizona, Alabama, South Carolina, and Utah. These laws include such provisions as restricting unauthorized immigrants’ access to education and health services and authorizing police to demand papers proving citizenship from individuals they suspect of being in the country unlawfully. According to Valdez [...]

Native Land Reclamation: Predicting Motivation to Participate in Collective Action

In order to predict whether individuals will join in collective action, most psychological studies turn to social identity theory. According to this approach, people are more likely to join in collective action if they have a strong collective identity, particularly if their group is perceived as threatened in some way. Giguère, Lalonde, and Jonsson (2012) [...]

Increasing Mental Health Literacy

Public education campaigns focusing on physical conditions, such as HIV, obesity, and stroke, are widespread. Yet similar efforts are lacking when it comes to knowledge about mental illness. According to Jorm (2012), survey data from several countries show insufficient knowledge about recognizing, preventing, and treating mental health problems, including “knowledge of effective self-help strategies for [...]

Violence Exposure and Sexual Risk

African American adolescents are at increased risk for violence exposure, which includes being the victim of violence as well as witnessing violence. Wilson and colleagues (2012) observed that few studies have addressed the impact of violence exposure on African American girls. They were particularly interested in the relationship between violence exposure and sexual health, since [...]

Why Low-Income Children Miss Opportunities to Participate in Activities Outside of School

Children in low-income families may have few opportunities to participate in activities that provide the developmental enrichment central to children’s social, emotional, and cognitive well-being. Previous research identified numerous benefits of participation in these activities (such as sports, music lessons, and community clubs), including higher levels of academic achievement and lower levels of substance abuse.  [...]

Psychological Consequences of Exposure to Gang Violence

Gang and community violence is a significant public health risk, with adolescents more likely to be the victims of violence than adults. Kelly (2010) conducted an extensive literature review to investigate the psychological consequences to adolescents of exposure to gang and community violence. She reviewed 103 studies on this topic that were published in peer-reviewed [...]

Opposing the Ground Zero Mosque

Opposition to a planned Islamic community center and mosque near Ground Zero in lower Manhattan has been viewed as a manifestation of anti-Muslim attitudes. Jia, Karpen, and Hirt (2011) proposed another explanation – that this opposition stems from motivation to regain a positive American identity, which may have weakened as a result of recent economic, [...]

Community Norms about AIDS-Related Prejudice

This study investigated the relationship between community members’ motivation to control AIDS-related prejudice and the experience of stigma by community members with HIV or AIDS. As hypothesized, individuals with HIV or AIDS felt less stigmatized in communities where residents were internally motivated by personal values to control prejudice. In communities where residents were externally motivated [...]

Loosening the Link between Childhood Poverty and Adolescent Smoking and Obesity

Poverty is often associated with elevated health risks, such as a higher body mass index (BMI) and increased smoking behavior. Evans and Kutcher (2011) hypothesized that the negative effects of poverty on adolescent health may be reduced by sufficient social capital. In this study, social capital was defined as (1) Community cohesion — social ties [...]