Scholarly article on topic 'Relation among quality of image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in college students'

Relation among quality of image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in college students Academic research paper on "Psychology"

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Abstract of research paper on Psychology, author of scientific article — Ali Akbar Haddadi Koohsar, Bagher Ghobary Bonab

Abstract Since in college students are exposed to the variety of stressors that impact their psychological functioning, determining factors associated with psychological health of these individuals is an important research endeavour. The aim of the current research was to investigate the relationship between image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in college students. To accomplish the stated goal 233 in college students were selected by means of proportional sampling procedure. The Image of God Inventory (IOG, Lawrence, 1997) and Scales of Somatization and Phobic Anxiety in Symptom Checklist90-R (SCL-90R, Deragotis et al., 1973) were administered on them. Analysis of data revealed that the magnitude of somatization and phobic anxiety can be predicted from the quality of images of God college students. Moreover, data revealed that college students who had a positive image of God were lower in somatization and phobic anxiety than in college students who had a negative image of God. Authors concluded that positive image of God were associated with lower somatization and phobic anxiety in college students. Theoretical implication and practical application of these findings are discussed in the original paper.

Academic research paper on topic "Relation among quality of image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in college students"

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Social and Behavioral Sciences

Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 29 (2011) 218 - 222 —

International Conference on Education and Educational Psychology (ICEEPSY 2011)

Relation among quality of image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in college students

Ali Akbar Haddadi Koohsar, M.A.a, Bagher Ghobary Bonab, Ph.D.b,*

aUniversity of Tehran, Faculty of Psychology&Education, Ale Ahmad Ave, Tehran, P.O.Box.14155-6456, Iran bUniversity of Tehran, Faculty of Psychology&Education, Ale Ahmad Ave, Tehran, P.O.Box.14155-6456, Iran

Received date here; revised date here; accepted date here

Abstract

Since in college students are exposed to the variety of stressors that impact their psychological functioning, determining factors associated with psychological health of these individuals is an important research endeavour. The aim of the current research was to investigate the relationship between image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in college students. To accomplish the stated goal 233 in college students were selected by means of proportional sampling procedure. The Image of God Inventory (IOG, Lawrence, 1997) and Scales of Somatization and Phobic Anxiety in Symptom Checklist90-R (SCL-90R, Deragotis et al., 1973) were administered on them. Analysis of data revealed that the magnitude of somatization and phobic anxiety can be predicted from the quality of images of God college students. Moreover, data revealed that college students who had a positive image of God were lower in somatization and phobic anxiety than in college students who had a negative image of God. Authors concluded that positive image of God were associated with lower somatization and phobic anxiety in college students. Theoretical implication and practical application of these findings are discussed in the original paper. © 2011 Published byElsevier Ltd.Selectionand/orpeer-reviewunder responsibilityof DrZaferBekirogullari.

Keywords: Image of God, Somatization, Phobic Anxiety, College Students, Iran;

1. Introduction

Relation between psychological disorders and image of God has been investigated in numerous studies. Bowman and associates (1987) have studied image of God in women with a multiple personality disorders. They found that these individuals had conflicting and inconsistent image of God. Exline, yali, and Sanderson (2000) have discovered that individuals with depressive moods had a negative image of God. Schapp- jonker and colleagues (2002) have discovered that individuals with a borderline personality, Paranoid ideation and obsessive compulsive behaviours had negative image of God. Individuals with paranoid ideation, schizoid individuals, had a cold, distant, and unsupportive image of God in their minds. Individuals with an avoidant personality disorders, dependent, and obsessive - compulsive disorders had a punitive image of God.

* Corresponding author. Tel.: +98-912-695-6577; fax: +98-21-882-54734

E-mail address: yamola280@yahoo.com (A.A Haddadi Koohsar), bghobari@ut.ac.ir(B.Ghobary Bonab).

1877-0428 © 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd. Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of Dr Zafer Bekirogullari. doi:10.1016/j.sbspro.2011.11.227

Ali Akbar HaddadiKoohsar and BagherGhobaryBonab / Procedia - Social ami BeluivioralSciencesH (2011) 218 - 222

Braam and colleagues (2008a) in their study discovered that feeling dissatisfied with God was associated with despair, and depression, in adults. In this research negative image of God (believing in a punitive God) was strongly associated with feeling guilty and having psychiatric symptoms.

Furthermore, data indicated that neuroticism was associated with fearfulness from God, anxiety and dissatisfaction of Him, while the better adjustment was associated with the supporting figure of God ( Braam and colleagues, 2008b).

Schaap- Jonker and associates (2002), discovered that there was an association between negative image of God with somatilization and phobic anxiety. In this study there was a significant negative relation between image of God, and global index of symptom severity in symptom checklist inventory (r = -0.395). Investigators also concluded that image of psychiatric patients in compare to normal people were more negative. These findings indicated that there was a significant association between mental health and image of God.

Individuals with a positive image of God were less anxious, and lower in hostility. Individuals with a negative image of God (i.e. perceiving God punitive) were more anxious, and were higher in their aggression toward others. These findings were repeatedly reported by Schaap- Jonker and associates (2008). Bradshaw and associates (2008) reported that a positive image of God inversely related to variety of psychological symptoms; among these symptoms they mentioned obsessive-compulsive behaviours that were higher in individuals with a negative image of God.

Flannelly and associates (2010) also investigated the relation between psychological disorders and image of God in the adult populations. They concluded that individuals with a positive image of God (i.e. individuals who perceive God closer to themselves who forgives their shortcomings) were lower in psychological symptoms and distresses. These researchers also found that in these individuals' obsessive-compulsive behaviours were lower, than others.

Newton and McIntosh (2010), who explored the relation between image of God and style of coping in parents of exceptional children, reported that positive image of God in these individuals were associated with more effective coping styles. Individuals with a positive image of God evaluated situations more positively.

Relation between mental health indexes and image of God has been reported by investigators repeatedly. Benson and spilka (1973) studied the relation between the quality of image of God and self- esteem in 128 students who were attending to catholic schools and concluded that students' self esteem was associated with their positive image of God. Their self-esteem was associated with their positive image of God. Moreover, individuals who had a negative image of God, their self- esteem was lower. Kirkpatrick (2005) has studied the relation between image of God and mental health, and discovered that positive image of God was associated with a higher mental health status. Kirkpatrick and shaver (1992) demonstrated that positive image of God was associated with life satisfaction, reduction in anxiety and depression, as well as amelioration of physical symptoms (Davis et al, 2003).

Mc Elroy and colleagues (1999) have discovered the association between image of God, depression, and mental health in the adult population. In this study individuals with a positive image of God were lower in depression and higher in mental health (Jahnson & Eastburg, 1992). Tisdale and associates (1997) have demonstrated that treatment of depression enhances personal adjustment of individuals, and increases the positive image of God as well.

Although research findings show that quality of image of God is related to individuals personal characteristics and their mental health status, most of these investigations have been conducted in the United States and European countries. Since people in Iran are different from Americans and European countries in terms of their cultural and religious backgrounds investigating the relation of these constructs in individuals who live in Iran is necessary. This study fills the existing gap in this area.

2. Method

S.l. Paatisipacts

Population in the current study was consisted of 233 college students in Tehran and Iran Medical Sciences Universities. A proportional sampling procedure was utilized in this study and 233 college students between 18-25 years were selected. 53% of the participants were female, and 47% of them were male, 89% were single, 64% were shia Muslim. In this study 56% were residing in Tehran (the capital city), and 26% were from other major cities. After preparation of assessment devices, questionnaires were administered on college students by a trained research

Ali AkbarHaddadí Koohsar arolBayhrrGhobary Bcmab/Procedía - Social and Behavioral Sciences29 (2011) 218 - 222

assistant. Permission of instructors was sought to distribute questionnaires at the end of their chasses. All instructors that we contacted had good cooperation. In general 233 individuals completed the questionnaires.

2.2. Moaouroo

2.2.C. Bamatizatiaa aad aOaOiv aaxioty Bealoo af Bymptam Checklist - 92R (BCL-92R, Doragatio ot al., C973).

This symptom checklist is consisted of 90 items in which each item requires responding in degree of symptom intensity (from 1-5) in which he/ she have experienced during the past week. This scale-consisted of nine subscale (dimensions) including somatization, obsessive-compulsive disorders, interpersonal sensitivity, depression, anxiety, hostility, phobic anxiety, paranoid ideation, and psychoticism. In order to calculate the internal consistency of the scale cronbach alpha coefficient has been used, and the results indicated that internal consistency for all subscales were at a satisfactory level. The maximum alpha coefficient was 0.90 for depression, and the minimum value was for psychoticism (á = 0.77). Stability coefficient that was computed for test-retest reliability in the interval of one week was between 0.87 and 0.90. In Iran, we obtained Cronbach alphas values for every dimensions (SCL90-R) and total of .88, .87, .81, .90, .90, .81, .76, .77, .82, and 97 for somatization, obsessive-compulsive disorders, interpersonal sensitivity, depression, anxiety, hostility, phobic anxiety, paranoid ideation, psychoticism, and full symptom checklist respectively (Ghobari Bonab & Haddadi Koohsar, 2011).

2.2.2. TOo Imago af aad Iavoatary (IOa, Lawyoavo, C997).

The image of God inventory was used to measure individual's quality of image of God. This inventory has 72 items and six factors: influence, providence, presence, challenge, acceptance, and benevolence. This inventory measures individual's images of God on a Likert type scale. The alpha coefficient for each scale was 0.92, 0.92, 0.94, 0.86, 0.90, and 0.91 respectively. In Iran, we obtained Cronbach alphas values for every subscale (IOG) of .80, .41, .88, .51, .81, and 82 for influence, providence, presence, challenge, acceptance, and benevolence respectively (Ghobari Bonab & Haddadi Koohsar, 2009).

3. Results

The results have been presented in the following tables:

Table 1. Matrix of correlation between "image of God" with somatization and phobic anxiety

_in college students_

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

1. SCL-90R- Somatization -

2. SCL-90R- Phobic Anxiety 0.53**

3. IOG-Influence -0.03

4. IOG-Providence 0.07

5. IOG-Presence 0.04

6. IOG-Challenge 0.06

7. IOG-Acceptance -0.11*

8. IOG-Benevolence_-0.10

** P < 0.01 * P < 0.05

Table 1 Shows that image of God is associated with somatization. Individuals believed on an accepting image of God, were lower in somatization, and had a higher health status.

Table 2. Multiple regression analysis method to predict somatization and phobic anxiety from image of God

in college students

Variables 2 F p R C1TR R

Dependent Predictor R R F P B SEB P

SCL90-R- Acceptance 0.21 0.05 1.84 0.09 -0.32* 0.13 -0.22

Somatization

SCL90-R- Acceptance 0.16 0.03 0.98 0.44 -0.13* 0.06 -0.19 Phobic anxiety_

**P < 0/01 * P <0/05

0.08 -

0.05 0.67**

0.04 0.81**

0.01 0.56**

-0.06 0.57**

0.06 0.60**

0.72** -

0.54** 0.68**

0.45** 0.66**

0.45** 0.72**

0.40** -0.64** 0.62**

Ali AkbaA HaddadiKoohsar and BaghobGyobataBoPao / draceSia - Sacial and BohavioralSeiencesH (2011) 218 - 222

As indicated in table 2 only acceptance was significant predictors of somatization (R2=5 %) and phobic anxiety (R2=3 %). In other words somatization and phobic anxiety of students with positive image of God were lower than other students.. Inspecting beta analysis shows that image of God can positively predicts magnitude of somatization and phobic anxiety in students, while positive image of God were negatively associated with somatization and phobic anxiety.

4. Discussion

Current study investigated the relation between image of God with somatization and phobic anxiety in the college students. Investigators with utilization of image of God inventory (Lawrence, 1997) and somatization and phobic anxiety scales of symptom checklist- 90R (Deragotis et al,1973) conducted this study on college students. Multiple regression analysis showed that magnitude of somatization and phobic anxiety can be predicted by their images of God. Students who had a positive and accepting image of God were lower in somatization and phobic anxiety disorders. Since the origin of somatization and phobic anxiety relates to individuals' anxiety, finding these results was not far from expectation (Kirkpatrick, 2005).

Schaap-Jonker and associates (2002) demonstrated that image of God in individuals was associated with personality characteristics of individuals with a borderline and avoidant personality. Paranoid ideation and obsessive- compulsive disorders often hold a negative image of God. The result of the study showed that to the extent that individuals' psychological distress becomes intense, their image of God become more negative. These studies show that individuals' psychological and health status including obsessive - compulsive behaviours are closely related to their quality of image of God. These findings are consistent with the results of the current study. Flannelly and associates (2010) have investigated the relation between obsessive compulsive disorders and image of God and concluded that individuals with a positive image of God (i.e. believing in supporting and forgiving God who is available for individuals in times of distress) were lower in obsessive -compulsive behaviours.

Review of literature show that magnitude of somatization and phobic anxiety are associated with negative images of God. Current study has implications for prevention, and interventions of psychological problems in individuals. Planning to improve individuals' image of God yields to improvement in their health status.

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