College of Arts & Sciences

Date of Award

Spring 5-2008

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

James Olson, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Spencer K. Thompson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Linda Montgomery, Ph.D.

Abstract

The present study explored facial affect recognition, discipline and self-efficacy correlates, predicted using the Social Cognitive Theory framework. A sample of undergraduate students (N—114) from The University of Texas of the Permian Basin, were surveyed on parental style, discipline, self-efficacy, and then tested for facial affect recognition. The results indicated that participants reporting more corporal punishment scored lower on facial affect than those reporting less corporal punishment (p < .05). No significance was found for corporal punishment and self-efficacy (p > .05). The parental style of the father emerged as a significant predictor for the relationship between corporal punishment and facial affect recognition (p < .05). Results appear to support the idea that the social environment parents, especially fathers, create via discipline may hinder ability to interpret emotion. One important implication of this study is that paternal influence may be more vital to emotional detection development than previously considered.

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