Title page for ETD etd-03202011-182259

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Baldner, Conrad
Author's Email Address csbaldne@vt.edu
URN etd-03202011-182259
Title Communication and attributions: The interrelations of parent and peer support, disclosure, and learned helpless attributions.
Degree Master of Science
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Dunsmore, Julie C. Committee Chair
Axsom, Daniel K. Committee Member
Deater-Deckard, Kirby Committee Member
  • Disclosure
  • support
  • learned helplessness
  • attributions
Date of Defense 2011-03-04
Availability restricted
Previous research has shown benefits of adolescents’ disclosure of activities to parents in reducing risk of deviant child behavior (Kerr & Stattin, 2000; Stattin & Kerr, 2000). In the current study I examine the effect of disclosure on learned helpless attributions, through the mediators of paternal, maternal, and peer support in sample of college undergraduates enrolled in psychology classes. In two online data collection points, participants completed measures on peer, paternal, and maternal support, disclosure, and negative attributions. In order to examine associations among these variables, I tested three general models: 1) disclosure would predict negative attributions through support, 2) support would predict negative attributions through disclosure, and 3) support would moderate the relations between disclosure and learned helpless attributions. Results demonstrated interrelations of disclosure with peer, maternal, and paternal support. Disclosure, peer support, and maternal support were negatively correlated with learned helpless attributions. However, the first and second models were not supported. The third model was partially supported in regard to maternal support. When maternal support was low, greater disclosure was associated with greater learned helpless attributions. Future longitudinal and experimental research is needed to further discern pathways of association for these constructs.
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