• Adolescent attachment in Nepal: testing the factorial validity of two scales

      Sochos, Antigonos; Lokshum, Chetana; University of Bedfordshire; Centre for Learning and Children’s Rights, Nepal (Psychology Press Ltd, 2016-10-04)
      Attachment theory is an important framework in the psychology of human development and has direct relevance to the study of adolescence. The cross-cultural validity of attachment constructs and measures has been the subject of lively debate among experts. Using confirmatory factor analysis, the present study tested the factor structure of the Adolescent Attachment Questionnaire and the Adolescent Unresolved Attachment Questionnaire in a sample of 279 Nepali adolescents. The hypothesised models had a good fit and further tests established the measurement invariance of the two instruments. The cross-cultural validity of the measures was supported but areas of cultural variation were also highlighted.
    • Analgesic effects of self-chosen music type on cold pressor-induced pain: Motivating vs. relaxing music

      Garcia, Rebecca; Hand, Christopher J.; Glasgow Caledonian University; University of Bedfordshire (Sage Publications, 2015-09-07)
      The attenuation of perceived pain through exposure to music is known as music analgesia. The present study used a mixed-methods design, investigating whether self-chosen music moderated participants' psychological and physiological responses to pain during cold pressor (CP) tasks. Thirty participants took part (14 males, 16 females; M-age = 27.77 years). Three levels of musical stimulation were employedrelaxing music, motivating music and a silent control condition. Dependent variables included: CP tolerance time, Profile of Mood score, visual analogue pain ratingintensity and unpleasantness (VAS-I & VAS-U), blood pressure and pulse rate. Qualitative semi-structured interviews further investigated perceived differences between musical stimulation types. Results demonstrated a significant effect of musical exposure on VAS-U scores [F (2, 56) = 3.60, p = .034]. Pairwise comparisons revealed that VAS-U scores were significantly lower after exposure to relaxing music than after silence. Qualitative analyses of interview transcripts revealed dominant themes of distraction, absorption and context-dependent memory induction, with the most-preferred condition being motivational music. Results of the current study suggest that active listening to music reduces pain unpleasantness ratings, and that individual preference is an important determinant of the overall emotional and distraction properties of musical stimuli.
    • Assessment of the validity of a Computerised Assessment Technique compared with equivalent paper and pencil tests on executive functions in 7-9 yr old children

      Ertubey, Candan; Roberts, P.; Teoh, Kevin; Cavendish, P.; Robertson, I.; University of Bedfordshire (2011-01-01)
    • Attachment - beyond interpersonal relationships

      Sochos, Antigonos (British Psychological Society, 2015-12-01)
      Antigonos Sochos considers whether a familiar concept can be extended to social groups, ideological systems and social institutions.
    • Attachment provision in the Saudi orphanages: exploring the narratives of residential staff

      Sochos, Antigonos; Al-Jasas, Najla (Wiley, 2020-01-27)
      This qualitative study explored the accounts of 50 residential childcare staff in Saudi Arabia, aiming to identify ways in which staff and residential institutions may function as attachment objects for the children in their care. Rather than conducting a formal attachment assessment, a semi‐structured interview schedule was utilised, intending to generate novel insights into the child–carer relationship. Informed by attachment theory, thematic analysis suggested that keyworkers' narratives were organised around three conceptual dichotomies – social rejection versus social acceptance , distress versus containmen t and development of the self versus bonding . The accounts also indicated that staff and institutions might encounter significant challenges in providing emotional security to the orphans, challenges touching upon all three levels – individual, dyadic and collective.
    • Attachment security and the social world

      Sochos, Antigonos (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014-12-31)
      With an overview of the existing attachment theory literature and new contributions to the field, this book proposes that social groups seek protection and security as they collectively construct their ideologies and social institutions. In doing so, the book extends attachment theory to show how it can inform wider socio-cultural phenomena.
    • Attachment style and relationship difficulties in parents of children with ADHD

      Sochos, Antigonos; Yahya, Fatahyah; University of Bedfordshire; University of Malaysia Sarawak (Springer, 2015-04-07)
      Previous studies report that parents of children with ADHD often experience difficulties in their couple relationship. The present study investigated the role of adult attachment style in relation to problems with dyadic adjustment and conflict communication. A cross-sectional design was employed, involving 98 parents of children and adolescents with ADHD and 153 parents of offspring without the disorder (age range in 3 to 19). Participants completed the following: Experiences in Close Relationships Questionnaire-R, Communications Pattern Questionnaire, Dyadic Adjustment Scale, and Conner's Parent Rating Scale–48. According to the findings, the two parental groups differed regarding relationship difficulties only when attachment style was controlled for. Moreover, attachment avoidance moderated the impact of having a child with ADHD on dyadic adjustment while attachment anxiety moderated such an impact on conflict communication. Also, parents of children with less severe ADHD symptoms were more likely to experience relationship problems, while having a child with ADHD moderated the effects of gender on the roles taken in demand-withdraw communication. Considering adult attachment style may provide useful insights into how parents of children with ADHD relate to each other and may inform supportive interventions.    
    • Authoritarianism, trauma, and insecure bonds in the Greek economic crisis

      Sochos, Antigonos; University of Bedfordshire (Springer, 2019-01-10)
      This correlational study investigated the link between authoritarian attitudes, psychosocial trauma, and attachment insecurity in the context of a significant community and personal threat – the recent economic crisis in Greece. The study utilised a large community sample and five self-report measures - Right-Wing Authoritarianism Scale-S, Social Group Attachment Scale, Relationship Questionnaire, Perceived Cohesion Scale, and Impact of Events Scale-R. It was hypothesised that authoritarianism would be independently linked with insecurity in two types of bond (person-to-person and person-to-state) via the experience of post-traumatic stress and perceptions of social cohesion. Structural Equation Modelling indices suggested that the model had a very good fit.
    • Awareness facts: the view and attitudes of faith based communities towards HIV positive and AIDS in Milton Keynes

      Ncube, Z.; Ertubey, Candan; University of Bedfordshire (TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD, 2008-09-01)
    • Being an immigrant academic

      Gaitan, Alfredo; Jankowska, Maja; University of Bedfordshire (Lifewide Education Community, 2016-07-01)
      It was estimated that in 2014, almost a third of all academics working in Higher Education in UK were non-UK nationals (HEFCE, 2016). Many more are non-UK born. The presence of these academics in the UK offers both opportunities and challenges to them, their colleagues, their students and the higher education institutions they work for (Hosein, Shu-Hua Yeh, Rao N., & Kinchin, in preparation). We are two of those academics who left their countries of birth and have worked at the same university in the UK for some time. This article is based on conversations we have had over several years and, more specifically, a recent one that started when one the authors (MJ) shared an article with the other (AG) entitled ‘Pathways through life: Development at the junctions, inflections, disruptions and transitions of life' (Jankowska, 2016). The manuscript, which was initially part of MJ's ‘personal learning ecology’ (Jackson, 2016), served as the ‘learning object’ around which we could converse. It afforded further joint co-construction of knowledge and a new shared understanding of what it is like to be an immigrant academic. Through our conversations we have come to recognise some striking similarities, as well as some differences, in our experiences prior to and during our working lives in the UK. The broad and complex range of experiences we have had in the in this country relate to the concept of 'cosmopolitanism', understood as 'a perspective, a state of mind, or to take a more processual view- a mode of managing meaning', which 'entails first of all an orientation, a willingness to engage with the Other’ (Hannerz, 1990, pp. 238-239). Although we work in higher education, a sector that accepts many kinds of Others (staff and students) and prides itself on being diverse and gaining from diversity, as individuals, we have always had to work to understand this way of doing things (the British way) and of being academics, while at the same time, being aware of that other way of being academic that is rooted in our backgrounds and our surviving links. We want to draw on the notions of 'articulation' and 'dislocation' to try to elucidate our experiences and relationships with people, institutions and knowledge. We use these notions to examine the extraordinary opportunities to see the world from multiple perspectives and grow personally and professionally open to immigrant academics, but also want to highlight the psychological cost for such individuals.  
    • Bicultural Iranians’ political tendency: in between two cultures

      Kaviani, Hossein; Kinman, Gail; Salavati, Mojgan; University of Bedfordshire; Psychological Counselling Office, Tehran (OMICS, 2017-06-10)
      The present study aimed to examine differences in a range of psychosocial variables and  political tendencies across three groups, namely Iranian new-comers (who have lived in the UK for less than two years), bicultural Iranians (born and raised in the UK or raised in the UK since they were under 10 years old), and UK citizens (bicultural participants were excluded). The target variables measured in the present study consisted of empathy, Theory of Mind (ToM), flexibility, suggestibility, openness to experiences, normative identity style, interpersonal trust, prosocial behaviour, egalitarian sex role, authoritarianism and adherence to democracy. A series of MANOVAs revealed significant main group effects for most of variables. The results of post hoc and polynomial tests yield an incremental linear trend on empathy, theory of mind, interpersonal trust, openness, prosocial behaviour and adherence to democratic values for groups ordered as Iranian new comers, bicultural and British; a decreasing trend was also observed on normative identity style, suggestibility, and authoritarianism. The between-two cultures’ findings of bicultural group might be explained by learning through political socialization. This provides support for the fact that being raised in a different cultural setting can have a vivid impact on people’s psychological characteristics and socio-political tendency.
    • Brain activation in highly superior autobiographical memory: the role of the praecuneus in the autobiographical memory retrieval network

      Mazzoni, Giuliana; Clark, Andrew; De Bartolo, Adriana; Guerrini, Chiara; Nahouli, Zacharia; Duzzi, Davide; De Marco, Matteo; McGeown, William; Venneri, Annalena; University La Sapienza; et al. (Elsevier, 2019-03-05)
      This is the first study to examine functional brain activation in a single case of Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM) who shows no sign of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). While previous work has documented the existence of HSAM, information about brain areas involved in this exceptional form of memory for personal events relies on structural and resting state connectivity data, with mixed results so far. In this first taskbased functional magnetic resonance Imaging (fMRI) study of a normal individual with HSAM, dates were presented as cues and two phases were assessed during memory retrieval, initial access and later elaboration. Results showed that initial access was very fast, did not activate the hippocampus, and involved activation of predominantly posterior visual areas, including the praecuneus. These areas typically become active during later stages of elaboration of personal memories rather than during initial access. Elaboration involved a balanced bilateral activation of most of the autobiographical network areas, rather than the more typical shifts observed in people without HSAM. Overall, the pattern of brain activations, which rests on repeated observations in a single individual, highlights a strong involvement of the praecuneus and an idiosyncratic initial access to personal memory representations. Implications for the nature of personal memories in HSAM are discussed.
    • Building resilience in early-career social workers: evaluating a multi-modal intervention

      Kinman, Gail; Grant, Louise; University of Bedfordshire (Oxford University Press, 2016-12-19)
      It is widely recognised that social workers need to increase their emotional resilience to protect their wellbeing and enhance the quality of their professional practice, but there is little evidence-based guidance on how this might be achieved. This study evaluated a multi-modal intervention that aimed to improve emotional resilience and wellbeing in newly-qualified social workers from children’s services in England. More specifically, it examined whether the intervention enhanced several personal resources associated with resilience (emotional self-efficacy, reflective ability, self-compassion and compassion satisfaction/fatigue) together with the overall level of mental health. A repeated measures wait-list controlled design was utilised. Twenty-five social workers in their first year of qualified practice in children’s statutory services received training over a two-month period. The control group comprised 31 early career social workers also working in statutory children’s services. An online survey obtained data before the intervention and two months afterwards. Evidence was found that the intervention was effective in enhancing some personal resources, as well as psychological wellbeing more generally. The finding that psychological distress and compassion fatigue increased during the study period for the control group raises some concerns. The potential of the findings to inform sustainable, evidence-based interventions to protect and promote wellbeing in early career social workers is discussed.
    • Burnout, occupational stressors, and social support in psychiatric and medical trainees

      Sochos, Antigonos; Bowers, Alexis (European Journal of Psychiatry, 2012-07-01)
      Background and Objectives: Although previous research reports that psychiatrists experience greater work-related distress than other specialties, very little is known about how psychiatric trainees compare to their medical colleagues. The aim of this study was to compare psychiatric and general medical trainees in burnout, work stressors, and social support and investigate potential buffering effects of social support. Methods: This cross-sectional study included 112 psychiatric and 72 general medical trainees, based in the UK. Participants completed three questionnaires on-line: Maslach Burnout Inventory, Specialist Doctors' Stress Inventory, and Social Support Scale. Results: According to the findings, psychiatric trainees reported less burnout, fewer time demands, more consultant and emotional support but less family support than general medical trainees. In addition, social support moderated the effects of specialty on burnout, as it substantially reduced depersonalisation in medical but not in psychiatric trainees. Conclusions: Findings may reflect recent changes in psychiatric training in the UK. Factors contributing specifically to medical trainees' burnout and factors potentially preventing psychiatric trainees from utilising social support need to be explored in future research. The cross-sectional design and the low response rate were the main limitations of the study.
    • Cannabis use and abstention in first-episode psychosis: the participants’ view

      Seddon, Jennifer L.; Copello, Alex; Birchwood, Max (Taylor & Francis, 2012-02-13)
      Cannabis use has been identified as a prognostic factor for poor outcome in first-episode psychosis (FEP). The research aimed to understand the factors that motivate or inhibit the use of cannabis in people with first-episode psychosis. Thirty first-episode psychosis patients (18 cannabis users and 12 abstainers) were interviewed using qualitative semi-structured methods in order to investigate the self reported factors perceived to influence cannabis abstention, initiation, continued use and consumption change. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using grounded theory based methods. Psychosis specific reasons were not found to be motivationally salient for the initiation or continued use of cannabis, but were found to be important for decreased consumption and cessation. Mental health concerns, such as the impact of cannabis on relapse and psychotic symptom exacerbation were also found to motivate abstention. Psychosis related reasons do not appear to motivate the initial or continued use of cannabis, although thedeleterious effect of cannabis to mental health may promote decreased cannabis consumption, cessation and abstinence following the onset of psychosis. Therefore substance use early interventions for this population should aim to increase emphasis on the potential harms of cannabis to mental health.
    • Cannabis use is associated with increased psychotic symptoms and poorer psychosocial functioning in first-episode psychosis: a report from the UK National EDEN Study

      Seddon, Jennifer L.; Birchwood, Max; Copello, Alex; Everard, Linda; Jones, Peter B.; Fowler D; Amos, Tim; Freemantle, Nick; Sharma, Vimal; Marshall, Max; et al. (Oxford University Press (OUP), 2016-05-30)
      OBJECTIVE: The use of cannabis during the early stage of psychosis has been linked with increased psychotic symptoms. This study aimed to examine the use of cannabis in the 12 months following a first-episode of psychosis (FEP) and the link with symptomatic course and outcome over 1 year post psychosis onset. DESIGN AND SETTING: One thousand twenty-seven FEP patients were recruited upon inception to specialized early intervention services (EIS) for psychosis in the United Kingdom. Participants completed assessments at baseline, 6 and 12 months. RESULTS: The results indicate that the use of cannabis was significantly associated with increased severity of psychotic symptoms, mania, depression and poorer psychosocial functioning. Continued use of cannabis following the FEP was associated with poorer outcome at 1 year for Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale total score, negative psychotic symptoms, depression and psychosocial functioning, an effect not explained by age, gender, duration of untreated psychosis, age of psychosis onset, ethnicity or other substance use. CONCLUSION: This is the largest cohort study of FEP patients receiving care within EIS. Cannabis use, particularly "continued use," was associated with poorer symptomatic and functional outcome during the FEP. The results highlight the need for effective and early intervention for cannabis use in FEP.
    • The changing workplace

      Begum, P.; Cleaver, S.; Doyle, N.; Maskell, J.; De Mascia, S.; Royle, K.; Marsh, T.; Clements, Andrew James; Kinman, Gail; McDowall, Almuth (British Psychological Society, 2017-11-01)
      Six contributions consider how the pace of economic, technological, social and environmental change requires a re-evaluation of how we work now and in the future.
    • Climbing out of the valley

      Penn-Jones, Catrin Pedder (British Psychological Society, 2019-02-28)
      Catrin Pedder Jones on challenges facing PhD students.
    • Couple attachment and relationship duration in psychotherapy patients: exploring a new methodology of assessment

      Sochos, Antigonos (Taylor and Francis, 2013-10-25)
      The couple relationship is an essential source of support for individuals undergoing psychological treatment and the aim of this study was to apply a new methodology in assessing the quality of such support. A theoretically informed thematic analysis of interview transcripts was conducted, triangulated by quantitative data. Twenty-one brief psychotherapy outpatients were interviewed on their couple relationships before they embarked on cognitive analytic therapy. Patients suffered from a variety of psychological difficulties, including anxiety, depression and personality disorder. Thematic analysis captured empirically eight components of couple attachment as proposed by theory. Thematic analysis also suggested that these components defined four overarching relationship themes, indicating different types of relational difficulties experienced by the patients. Triangulation with quantitative data suggested that relationship themes were unrelated to severity and type of patient pathology but were associated with the duration of the relationship. A stage theory of couple attachment formation may provide a useful framework for understanding the findings. © 2013 © 2013 Taylor & Francis.
    • Cultural modifications of cognitive behavioural treatment of social anxiety among culturally diverse clients: a systematic literature review

      Jankowska, Maja; University of Bedfordshire (Cambridge University Press, 2019-01-09)
      The aim of this study was to conduct a systematic literature review to ascertain whether cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for social anxiety disorder (SAD) can be successfully used in non-Western contexts and demonstrate sufficient effectiveness. This area is largely under-researched with conflicting evidence presented in quantitative studies, with virtually no qualitative studies published. This review utilized realist review methodology and focused on qualitative case studies presented by clinicians. A systematic search of EBSCO HOST, The Cochrane Library Database, Google, Google Scholar and reference mining, using various combinations of terms relating to: (1) CBT, (2) social anxiety and (3) cultural diversity were employed. Seven case studies of cultural adaptations of CBT treatment for culturally diverse SAD sufferers were included. The treatment outcomes were generally promising in all cases (reporting significant decrease of SAD symptoms, maintained over time) and the success of therapy was often attributed to culturally specific modifications introduced. CBT can be an acceptable and effective treatment for culturally diverse SAD sufferers with ‘modest’ modifications, without major diversions from the original CBT models and protocols, but this finding must be treated with caution and more methodologically rigorous research (qualitative and quantitative) is needed to more fully understand what works, for whom and in what circumstances.