Tusculum College Participates In Southeastern Psychological Association Conference

Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Tusculum College students and faculty participating in the annual Southeastern Psychological Association Conference included from left, Theo Oing, Jade Bussell, Melinda Franklin, Thomas Bitner, Taira Peters, Dr. Stephen Nettelhorst, Dr. Brian Pope, Robert Arrowood and Dr. Bill Garris.
Tusculum College students and faculty participating in the annual Southeastern Psychological Association Conference included from left, Theo Oing, Jade Bussell, Melinda Franklin, Thomas Bitner, Taira Peters, Dr. Stephen Nettelhorst, Dr. Brian Pope, Robert Arrowood and Dr. Bill Garris.

Theo Oing, a senior student from Chattanooga, participated with other students and faculty members of the Tusculum College psychology department in the Southeastern Psychological Association’s 60th annual Conference in Nashville.

Other participating students were Thomas Bitner; a junior from Chuckey; Taira Peters, a junior from Rogersville; Melinda Franklin, a senior from Concord, N.C.; Jade Bussell, a senior from Harrogate, and Robert Arrowood, a senior from Erwin. Faculty included Dr. Brian Pope, professor of psychology; Dr. Bill Garris, associate professor of psychology, and Dr. Stephen Nettelhorst, associate professor of psychology.

Tusculum students and faculty presented five posters based upon original research conducted during the 2013-2014 year. The topics they researched and shared included Mr. Bitner, Dr. Pope, Peters and Dr. Tom Harlow’s work on the relationship between stereotype threat, positive emotions and athletic performance.  Dr. Harlow is associate professor of psychology at Tusculum College.

According to their research, the expectation was the stereotype threat “your group does poorly on this task” would impair athletic performance.   

A second project by Mr. Oing, Dr. Pope, Ms. Franklin and Lawson considered the effect of ego depletion on videogame performance. 

The research reported that the expectation was that as people experienced a frustrating situation, their performance on a videogame task would decrease.   

Dr. Nettelhorst presented two studies pertaining to consumer psychology. The first examined how individuals use customer reviews and ratings to evaluate products on online marketplaces such as Amazon.com. The second investigated whether individuals' decisions to skip an advertisement on online streaming sites (e.g. Hulu.com, YouTube.com, etc.) were influenced by factors such as the actor’s attractiveness and the viewer’s choice to view or not view the ad. 

Mr. Arrowood and Dr. Garris explored how thinking about one’s own death might influence his or her sexual interest.

The theory and prior research predicted that contemplating death would increase an interest in sex, similar to the intense romantic feelings one might feel before being called off to war. However, there was a mild dampening of sexual interest, which could be attributed to the religious values the subjects may have that were elevated when the subjects thought about “meeting their maker.” 

“This conference is always an important experience for our students because of the opportunities for professional growth and networking within the discipline,” said Dr. Pope. 

While Mr. Arrowood, Ms. Franklin, Ms. Bussell and Dr. Garris did not find results that supported their theory, a number of other researchers at the conference said they had also experienced a failure to replicate in the same research area, which led to engaging conversations and networking about common interests.  

Dr. Pope said that the psychology department strongly encourages its students to pursue research. He added, that by conducting research, students develop skills in data collection and data analysis that will help them not only in graduate school but also in their chosen professions. 



University Hosts Award-Winning Author Janisse Ray

Award-winning author, naturalist, and activist Janisse Ray will give a talk on the UTC campus about heirloom seeds, agrodiversity and the future of food. The event is scheduled for Thursday at 7 p.m. in the Raccoon Mountain Room of the UTC University Center. This program is presented by the Tennessee Valley chapter of Wild Ones and UTC Department of Biological and Environmental ... (click for more)

Dalton State Program Gives Non Students Chance To Further Their Education

Lynda Shenefield had an idea for a book.  But she needed help. Shenefield had no idea how to get her book published.  Then she saw a news release about an epublishing course offered at Dalton State, and thought that would be the perfect opportunity to learn what she needed to know.  At 63, Ms. Shenefield didn’t want to go through the process of enrolling as a student ... (click for more)

EPB Says It Did Not Overbill The City; Says City Got $685,877 Break

EPB officials said Tuesday that an exhaustive audit of its street light contract with the city showed that it did not overbill the city. Instead, it said it found that the city was underbilled $685,877. EPB said it only goes back one year on errors so the amount owed by the city would be $178,314. Officials said that would be discussed with the city. Stan Sewell, the city's ... (click for more)

Citizens To Comment Next Tuesday On Sound Control Ordinance That Allows Higher Sound Around Downtown Clubs

Citizens will be allowed to comment next Tuesday on a new Sound Control Ordinance that allows higher sound from nightclubs in a downtown Controlled Sound Boundary. Track 29 behind the Chattanooga Choo Choo, that has drawn the wrath of some nearby Southside residents, is within the boundary, which goes along the river on the north and west, to around Erlanger Hospital on the ... (click for more)

I'm Number One In A Round About Way

Roundabouts have been popping up all over Chattanooga over the past few years and for the most part have been successful.  Unfortunately there are some who just don’t get it as I have found out the hard way.    My latest instance was last week when a young woman on her cell phone almost t-boned me as she flew into the roundabout without yielding.  A near miss ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Judge Philyaw Is The Best

Tomorrow morning there will be a special gathering at the Hamilton County Juvenile Court that will prove to our community that we have perhaps the most innovative juvenile judge in America. Shortly after Rob Philyaw was hand-picked by our Hamilton County Commissioners to fill the remainder of Suzanne Bailey’s term 15 months ago, he found that truancy was a big problem in our schools. ... (click for more)