Action-Oriented Research
Research that generates knowledge through participatory university/community partnerships in the hope of bringing about social change.
Active-constructive responding
Demonstrating sincere interest and enthusiasm for the good news of another person.
Focuses on interactions between persons and their environments to better understand why behavior that is effective in one setting may not be useful in others.
The fact that after people first react to good or bad events, sometimes in a strong way, their feelings and reactions tend to dampen down over time and they return toward their original level of subjective well-being.
In health, it is the ability of a patient to maintain a health behavior prescribed by a physician. This might include taking medication as prescribed, exercising more, or eating less high-fat food.
To take in and raise a child of other parents legally as one’s own.
An emotional process; includes moods, subjective feelings, and discrete emotions.
Age in place
The trend toward making accommodations to ensure that aging people can stay in their homes and live independently.
A drug that increases or enhances a neurotransmitter’s effect.
A sort of anxiety disorder distinguished by feelings that a place is uncomfortable or may be unsafe because it is significantly open or crowded.
A core personality trait that includes such dispositional characteristics as being sympathetic, generous, forgiving, and helpful, and behavioral tendencies toward harmonious social relations and likeability.
A motivation for helping that has the improvement of another’s welfare as its ultimate goal, with no expectation of any benefits for the helper.
Two almond-shaped structures located in the medial temporal lobes of the brain.
The bias to be affected by an initial anchor, even if the anchor is arbitrary, and to insufficiently adjust our judgments away from that anchor.
Anecdotal evidence
A piece of biased evidence, usually drawn from personal experience, used to support a conclusion that may or may not be correct.
Loss of interest or pleasure in activities one previously found enjoyable or rewarding.
A drug that blocks a neurotransmitter’s effect.
A mood state characterized by negative affect, muscle tension, and physical arousal in which a person apprehensively anticipates future danger or misfortune.
Attachment style that involves suppressing one’s own feelings and desires, and a difficulty depending on others.
Attachment style that is self-critical, insecure, and fearful of rejection.
Arousal: cost–reward model
An egoistic theory proposed by Piliavin et al. (1981) that claims that seeing a person in need leads to the arousal of unpleasant feelings, and observers are motivated to eliminate that aversive state, often by helping the victim. A cost–reward analysis may lead observers to react in ways other than offering direct assistance, including indirect help, reinterpretation of the situation, or fleeing the scene.
Attachment theory
Theory that describes the enduring patterns of relationships from birth to death.
Attributional style
The tendency by which a person infers the cause or meaning of behaviors or events.
Authoritarian parenting
Parenting style that is high is demandingness and low in support.
Authoritative parenting
A parenting style that is high in demandingness and high in support.
Behavioral medicine
A field similar to health psychology that integrates psychological factors (e.g., emotion, behavior, cognition, and social factors) in the treatment of disease. This applied field includes clinical areas of study, such as occupational therapy, hypnosis, rehabilitation or medicine, and preventative medicine.
The systematic and predictable mistakes that influence the judgment of even very talented human beings.
The process by which physiological signals, not normally available to human perception, are transformed into easy-to-understand graphs or numbers. Individuals can then use this information to try to change bodily functioning (e.g., lower blood pressure, reduce muscle tension).
Biological vulnerability
A specific genetic and neurobiological factor that might predispose someone to develop anxiety disorders.
Biomedical Model of Health
A reductionist model that posits that ill health is a result of a deviation from normal function, which is explained by the presence of pathogens, injury, or genetic abnormality.
Biopsychosocial Model of Health
An approach to studying health and human function that posits the importance of biological, psychological, and social (or environmental) processes.
Blended family
A family consisting of an adult couple and their children from previous relationships.
Blood Alcohol Content (BAC)
Blood Alcohol Content (BAC): a measure of the percentage of alcohol found in a person’s blood. This measure is typically the standard used to determine the extent to which a person is intoxicated, as in the case of being too impaired to drive a vehicle.
Boomerang generation
Term used to describe young adults, primarily between the ages of 25 and 34, who return home after previously living on their own.
“Bottom-up” or external causes of happiness
Situational factors outside the person that influence his or her subjective well-being, such as good and bad events and circumstances such as health and wealth.
Bounded awareness
The systematic ways in which we fail to notice obvious and important information that is available to us.
Bounded ethicality
The systematic ways in which our ethics are limited in ways we are not even aware of ourselves.
Bounded rationality
Model of human behavior that suggests that humans try to make rational decisions but are bounded due to cognitive limitations.
Bounded self-interest
The systematic and predictable ways in which we care about the outcomes of others.
Bounded willpower
The tendency to place greater weight on present concerns rather than future concerns.
Bystander intervention
The phenomenon whereby people intervene to help others in need even if the other is a complete stranger and the intervention puts the helper at risk.
Seeking out someone else with whom to share your good news.
In research, the determination that one variable causes—is responsible for—an effect.
Related to whether we say one variable is causing changes in the other variable, versus other variables that may be related to these two variables.
Character strength
A positive trait or quality deemed to be morally good and is valued for itself as well as for promoting individual and collective well-being.
Child abuse
Injury, death, or emotional harm to a child caused by a parent or caregiver, either intentionally or unintentionally.
Term used to describe people who purposefully choose not to have children.
Term used to describe people who would like to have children but are unable to conceive.
Chronic disease
A health condition that persists over time, typically for periods longer than three months (e.g., HIV, asthma, diabetes).
Chronic stress
Discrete or related problematic events and conditions which persist over time and result in prolonged activation of the biological and/or psychological stress response (e.g., unemployment, ongoing health difficulties, marital discord).
Circadian Rhythm
Circadian Rhythm: The physiological sleep-wake cycle. It is influenced by exposure to sunlight as well as daily schedule and activity. Biologically, it includes changes in body temperature, blood pressure and blood sugar.
Arrangement where two unmarried adults live together.
Within attachment theory, the gaining of insight into and reconciling one’s childhood experiences.
Community Psychology
A field that goes beyond an individual focus and integrates social, cultural, economic, political, and environmental influences to promote system level, second order change.
Community-Based Participatory Research
Research that involves power sharing between researchers and the community members as issues for action are defined and change interventions launched.
Conditioned response
A learned reaction following classical conditioning, or the process by which an event that automatically elicits a response is repeatedly paired with another neutral stimulus (conditioned stimulus), resulting in the ability of the neutral stimulus to elicit the same response on its own.
A trusted person with whom secrets and vulnerabilities can be shared.
Confidence interval
An interval of plausible values for a population parameter; the interval of values within the margin of error of a statistic.
Factors that undermine the ability to draw causal inferences from an experiment.
A personality trait consisting of self-control, orderliness, industriousness, and traditionalism.
Consciousness: the awareness or deliberate perception of a stimulus
Feeling like you have the power to change your environment or behavior if you need or want to.
Measures the association between two variables, or how they go together.
In statistics, the measure of relatedness of two or more variables.
A measure of the association between two variables, or how they go together.
Cost–benefit analysis
A decision-making process that compares the cost of an action or thing against the expected benefit to help determine the best course of action.
Cues: a stimulus that has a particular significance to the perceiver (e.g., a sight or a sound that has special relevance to the person who saw or heard it)
Cultural display rules
These are rules that are learned early in life that specify the management and modification of emotional expressions according to social circumstances. Cultural display rules can work in a number of different ways. For example, they can require individuals to express emotions “as is” (i.e., as they feel them), to exaggerate their expressions to show more than what is actually felt, to tone down their expressions to show less than what is actually felt, to conceal their feelings by expressing something else, or to show nothing at all.
Daily hassles
Irritations in daily life that are not necessarily traumatic, but that cause difficulties and repeated stress.
Data (also called observations)
In research, information systematically collected for analysis and interpretation.
Deductive reasoning
A form of reasoning in which a given premise determines the interpretation of specific observations (e.g., All birds have feathers; since a duck is a bird, it has feathers).
Dependent variable
The variable the researcher measures but does not manipulate in an experiment.
Depressants: a class of drugs that slow down the body’s physiological and mental processes.
Diffusion of responsibility
When deciding whether to help a person in need, knowing that there are others who could also provide assistance relieves bystanders of some measure of personal responsibility, reducing the likelihood that bystanders will intervene.
Dissociation: the heightened focus on one stimulus or thought such that many other things around you are ignored; a disconnect between one’s awareness of their environment and the one object the person is focusing on
In statistics, the relative frequency that a particular value occurs for each possible value of a given variable.
The pattern of variation in data.
Early adversity
Single or multiple acute or chronic stressful events, which may be biological or psychological in nature (e.g., poverty, abuse, childhood illness or injury), occurring during childhood and resulting in a biological and/or psychological stress response.
Understanding the relationships between people and their social environments (e.g., families, groups, communities, and societies).
Ecological Perspective
A consideration of individual, group, community, and ecological contextual factors when examining phenomena of interest.
Ego depletion
The state of diminished willpower or low energy associated with having exerted self-regulation.
A motivation for helping that has the improvement of the helper’s own circumstances as its primary goal.
Elder abuse
Any form of mistreatment that results in harm to an elder person, often caused by his/her adult child.
Emotion-focused coping
Coping strategy aimed at reducing the negative emotions associated with a stressful event.
Empathic concern
According to Batson’s empathy–altruism hypothesis, observers who empathize with a person in need (that is, put themselves in the shoes of the victim and imagine how that person feels) will experience empathic concern and have an altruistic motivation for helping.
Empathy–altruism model
An altruistic theory proposed by Batson (2011) that claims that people who put themselves in the shoes of a victim and imagining how the victim feel will experience empathic concern that evokes an altruistic motivation for helping.
Concerned with observation and/or the ability to verify a claim.
Empirical methods
Approaches to inquiry that are tied to actual measurement and observation.
Empty Nest
Feelings of sadness and loneliness that parents may feel when their adult children leave the home for the first time.
Formal agreement to get married.
A protein produced by a living organism that allows or helps a chemical reaction to occur.
Enzyme induction
Process through which a drug can enhance the production of an enzyme.
Professional guidelines that offer researchers a template for making decisions that protect research participants from potential harm and that help steer scientists away from conflicts of interest or other situations that might compromise the integrity of their research.
Euphoria: an intense feeling of pleasure, excitement or happiness.
Experimenter expectations
When the experimenter’s expectations influence the outcome of a study.
External cues
Stimuli in the outside world that serve as triggers for anxiety or as reminders of past traumatic events.
Objective information about the world.
In science, the ability of a claim to be tested and—possibly—refuted; a defining feature of science.
Family of orientation
The family one is born into.
Family of procreation
The family one creates, usually through marriage.
Family systems theory
Theory that says a person cannot be understood on their own, but as a member of a unit.
Fight or flight response
A biological reaction to alarming stressors that prepares the body to resist or escape a threat.
First-Order Change
Involves minor changes that lead to small, short-term improvements by focusing exclusively on the individuals.
Sudden, intense re-experiencing of a previous event, usually trauma-related.
Flexible Correction Model
Flexible Correction Model: the ability for people to correct or change their beliefs and evaluations if they believe these judgments have been biased (e.g., if someone realizes they only thought their day was great because it was sunny, they may revise their evaluation of the day to account for this “biasing” influence of the weather)
To live optimally psychologically, relationally, and spiritually.
The letting go of negative thoughts, feelings, and behaviors toward an offender.
Foster care
Care provided by alternative families to children whose families of orientation cannot adequately care for them; often arranged through the government or a social service agency.
The bias to be systematically affected by the way in which information is presented, while holding the objective information constant.
Functional distance
The frequency with which we cross paths with others.
General Adaptation Syndrome
A three-phase model of stress, which includes a mobilization of physiological resources phase, a coping phase, and an exhaustion phase (i.e., when an organism fails to cope with the stress adequately and depletes its resources).
Related to whether the results from the sample can be generalized to a larger population.
In research, the degree to which one can extend conclusions drawn from the findings of a study to other groups or situations not included in the study.
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
Excessive worry about everyday things that is at a level that is out of proportion to the specific causes of worry.
Inflated self-esteem or an exaggerated sense of self-importance and self-worth (e.g., believing one has special powers or superior abilities).
A feeling of appreciation or thankfulness in response to receiving a benefit.
Hallucinogens: substances that, when ingested, alter a person’s perceptions, often by creating hallucinations that are not real or distorting their perceptions of time.
The popular word for subjective well-being. Scientists sometimes avoid using this term because it can refer to different things, such as feeling good, being satisfied, or even the causes of high subjective well-being.
A state of well-being characterized by relative permanence, by dominantly agreeable emotion ranging in value from mere contentment to deep and intense joy in living, and by a natural desire for its continuation.
According to the World Health Organization, it is a complete state of physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
The complete state of physical, mental, and social well-being—not just the absence of disease or infirmity.
Health behavior
Any behavior that is related to health—either good or bad.
Health behaviors
Behaviors that are associated with better health. Examples include exercising, not smoking, and wearing a seat belt while in a vehicle.
A component of the prosocial personality orientation; describes individuals who have been helpful in the past and, because they believe they can be effective with the help they give, are more likely to be helpful in the future.
Prosocial acts that typically involve situations in which one person is in need and another provides the necessary assistance to eliminate the other’s need.
Partnering with someone who is unlike you in a meaningful way.
cognitive (or thinking) strategies that simplify decision making by using mental short-cuts
Partnering with someone who is like you in a meaningful way.
An experience or trait with cognitive, behavioral, and emotional components. It often includes cynical thoughts, feelings of emotion, and aggressive behavior.
Having an accurate view of self—not too high or low—and a realistic appraisal of one’s strengths and weaknesses, especially in relation to other people.
Excessive daytime sleepiness, including difficulty staying awake or napping, or prolonged sleep episodes.
Hypnosis: the state of consciousness whereby a person is highly responsive to the suggestions of another; this state usually involves a dissociation with one’s environment and an intense focus on a single stimulus, which is usually accompanied by a sense of relaxation
Hypnotherapy: The use of hypnotic techniques such as relaxation and suggestion to help engineer desirable change such as lower pain or quitting smoking.
A brain structure located below the thalamus and above the brain stem.
A logical idea that can be tested.
A tentative explanation that is subject to testing.
Implicit Associations Test
Implicit Associations Test (IAT): A computer reaction time test that measures a person’s automatic associations with concepts. For instance, the IAT could be used to measure how quickly a person makes positive or negative evaluations of members of various ethnic groups.
Independent variable
The variable the researcher manipulates and controls in an experiment.
Individualistic Perspective
A focus on the individual where the influence of larger environmental or societal factors is ignored.
To draw general conclusions from specific observations.
Inductive reasoning
A form of reasoning in which a general conclusion is inferred from a set of observations (e.g., noting that “the driver in that car was texting; he just cut me off then ran a red light!” (a specific observation), which leads to the general conclusion that texting while driving is dangerous).
Because everything is connected, changing one aspect of an environment will have many ripple effects.
Internal bodily or somatic cues
Physical sensations that serve as triggers for anxiety or as reminders of past traumatic events.
Interoceptive avoidance
Avoidance of situations or activities that produce sensations of physical arousal similar to those occurring during a panic attack or intense fear response.
This refers to the relationship or interaction between two or more individuals in a group. Thus, the interpersonal functions of emotion refer to the effects of one’s emotion on others, or to the relationship between oneself and others.
Intimate partner violence
Physical, sexual, or psychological abuse inflicted by a partner.
This refers to what occurs within oneself. Thus, the intrapersonal functions of emotion refer to the effects of emotion to individuals that occur physically inside their bodies and psychologically inside their minds.
Jet Lag
Jet Lag: The state of being fatigued and/or having difficulty adjusting to a new time zone after traveling a long distance (across multiple time zones).
Joint family
A family comprised of at least three generations living together. Joint families often include many members of the extended family.
Kin selection
According to evolutionary psychology, the favoritism shown for helping our blood relatives, with the goals of increasing the likelihood that some portion of our DNA will be passed on to future generations.
Learned helplessness
The belief, as someone who is abused, that one has no control over his or her situation.
Levels of analysis
In science, there are complementary understandings and explanations of phenomena.
Levels of Analysis
Complementary frameworks for analyzing and understanding a phenomenon.
Life domains
Various domains of life, such as finances and job.
Life satisfaction
A person reflects on their life and judges to what degree it is going well, by whatever standards that person thinks are most important for a good life.
Life satisfaction
The degree to which one is satisfied with one’s life overall.
Longitudinal study
A study that follows the same group of individuals over time.
Being cunning, strategic, or exploitative in one’s relationships. Named after Machiavelli, who outlined this way of relating in his book, The Prince.
Margin of error
The expected amount of random variation in a statistic; often defined for 95% confidence level.
Marriage market
The process through which prospective spouses compare assets and liabilities of available partners and choose the best available mate.
Melatonin: A hormone associated with increased drowsiness and sleep.
Mere-exposure effect
The notion that people like people/places/things merely because they are familiar with them.
Breakdown of substances.
Mind–body connection
The idea that our emotions and thoughts can affect how our body functions.
Mindfulness: a state of heightened focus on the thoughts passing through one’s head, as well as a more controlled evaluation of those thoughts (e.g., do you reject or support the thoughts you’re having?)
Mixed-Methods Research
Thoughtful combining of qualitative and quantitative data collection methods.
Modern family
A family based on commitment, caring, and close emotional ties.
Keeping track of a target behavior that is to be regulated.
Multigenerational homes
Homes with more than one adult generation.
A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), a need for admiration, and lack of empathy.
Negative feelings
Undesirable and unpleasant feelings that people tend to avoid if they can. Moods and emotions such as depression, anger, and worry are examples.
Negative state relief model
An egoistic theory proposed by Cialdini et al. (1982) that claims that people have learned through socialization that helping can serve as a secondary reinforcement that will relieve negative moods such as sadness.
Failure to care for someone properly.
The study of the nervous system.
A chemical substance produced by a neuron that is used for communication between neurons.
Nuclear families
A core family unit comprised of only the parents and children.
Nucleus accumbens
A region of the basal forebrain located in front of the preoptic region.
Null-hypothesis significance testing (NHST)
In statistics, a test created to determine the chances that an alternative hypothesis would produce a result as extreme as the one observed if the null hypothesis were actually true.
Being free of personal bias.
Objective social variables
Targets of research interest that are factual and not subject to personal opinions or feelings.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
A disorder characterized by the desire to engage in certain behaviors excessively or compulsively in hopes of reducing anxiety. Behaviors include things such as cleaning, repeatedly opening and closing doors, hoarding, and obsessing over certain thoughts.
Operational definitions
How researchers specifically measure a concept.
The process of defining a concept so that it can be measured. In psychology, this often happens by identifying related concepts or behaviors that can be more easily measured.
Optimal level
The level that is the most favorable for an outcome.
Orbital frontal cortex
A region of the frontal lobes of the brain above the eye sockets.
Being excluded and ignored by others.
Other-oriented empathy
A component of the prosocial personality orientation; describes individuals who have a strong sense of social responsibility, empathize with and feel emotionally tied to those in need, understand the problems the victim is experiencing, and have a heightened sense of moral obligations to be helpful.
The bias to have greater confidence in your judgment than is warranted based on a rational assessment.
Panic disorder (PD)
A condition marked by regular strong panic attacks, and which may include significant levels of worry about future attacks.
A numerical result summarizing a population (e.g., mean, proportion).
Participant demand
When participants behave in a way that they think the experimenter wants them to behave.
Perceived social support
A person’s perception that others are there to help them in times of need.
Periaqueductal gray
The gray matter in the midbrain near the cerebral aqueduct.
Permissive parenting
Parenting that is low in demandingness and high in support.
Personal distress
According to Batson’s empathy–altruism hypothesis, observers who take a detached view of a person in need will experience feelings of being “worried” and “upset” and will have an egoistic motivation for helping to relieve that distress.
The action of a drug through the body, including absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion.
Physical abuse
The use of intentional physical force to cause harm.
Placebo effect
When receiving special treatment or something new affects human behavior.
Pluralistic ignorance
Relying on the actions of others to define an ambiguous need situation and to then erroneously conclude that no help or intervention is necessary.
The use of many medications.
A larger collection of individuals that we would like to generalize our results to.
In research, all the people belonging to a particular group (e.g., the population of left handed people).
Positive feelings
Desirable and pleasant feelings. Moods and emotions such as enjoyment and love are examples.
Positive psychology
The science of human flourishing. Positive Psychology is an applied science with an emphasis on real world intervention.
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
A sense of intense fear, triggered by memories of a past traumatic event, that another traumatic event might occur. PTSD may include feelings of isolation and emotional numbing.
Preoptic region
A part of the anterior hypothalamus.
The focus on actions that stop problems before they happen by engaging in environmental change.
Priming: the activation of certain thoughts or feelings that make them easier to think of and act upon
A measure of the degree of certainty of the occurrence of an event.
Probability values
In statistics, the established threshold for determining whether a given value occurs by chance.
Problem-focused coping
A set of coping strategies aimed at improving or changing stressful situations.
Thoughts, actions, and feelings that are directed towards others and which are positive in nature.
Prosocial behavior
Social behavior that benefits another person.
Prosocial personality orientation
A measure of individual differences that identifies two sets of personality characteristics (other-oriented empathy, helpfulness) that are highly correlated with prosocial behavior.
Physical nearness.
Beliefs or practices that are presented as being scientific, or which are mistaken for being scientific, but which are not scientific (e.g., astrology, the use of celestial bodies to make predictions about human behaviors, and which presents itself as founded in astronomy, the actual scientific study of celestial objects. Astrology is a pseudoscience unable to be falsified, whereas astronomy is a legitimate scientific discipline).
Psychoactive drugs
A drug that changes mood or the way someone feels.
Psychological abuse
Aggressive behavior intended to control a partner.
Psychological vulnerabilities
Influences that our early experiences have on how we view the world.
Psychomotor agitation
Increased motor activity associated with restlessness, including physical actions (e.g., fidgeting, pacing, feet tapping, handwringing).
Psychomotor retardation
A slowing of physical activities in which routine activities (e.g., eating, brushing teeth) are performed in an unusually slow manner.
A field of study examining the relationship among psychology, brain function, and immune function.
A pattern of antisocial behavior characterized by an inability to empathize, egocentricity, and a desire to use relationships as tools for personal gain.
Psychosomatic medicine
An interdisciplinary field of study that focuses on how biological, psychological, and social processes contribute to physiological changes in the body and health over time.
Psychotropic drug
A drug that changes mood or emotion, usually used when talking about drugs prescribed for various mental conditions (depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, etc.).
The probability of observing a particular outcome in a sample, or more extreme, under a conjecture about the larger population or process.
Qualitative Methods
Methods involving collecting data that typically consists of words that provide comprehensive descriptions of participants’ experiences.
Quantitative Methods
Methods involving collecting data in the form of numbers using standardized measures in an attempt to produce generalizable findings.
Quasi-experimental design
An experiment that does not require random assignment to conditions.
Random assignment
Using a probability-based method to divide a sample into treatment groups.
Random assignment
Assigning participants to receive different conditions of an experiment by chance.
Random sampling
Using a probability-based method to select a subset of individuals for the sample from the population.
Received social support
The actual act of receiving support (e.g., informational, functional).
Reciprocal altruism
According to evolutionary psychology, a genetic predisposition for people to help those who have previously helped them.
Reinforced response
Following the process of operant conditioning, the strengthening of a response following either the delivery of a desired consequence (positive reinforcement) or escape from an aversive consequence.
Relationship bank account
An account you hold with every person in which a positive deposit or a negative withdrawal can be made during every interaction you have with the person.
In research, the degree to which a sample is a typical example of the population from which it is drawn.
The ability to “bounce back” from negative situations (e.g., illness, stress) to normal functioning or to simply not show poor outcomes in the face of adversity. In some cases, resilience may lead to better functioning following the negative experience (e.g., post-traumatic growth).
SAD performance only
Social anxiety disorder which is limited to certain situations that the sufferer perceives as requiring some type of performance.
The collection of individuals on which we collect data.
In research, a number of people selected from a population to serve as an example of that population.
Sandwich generation
Generation of people responsible for taking care of their own children as well as their aging parents.
Scientific theory
An explanation for observed phenomena that is empirically well-supported, consistent, and fruitful (predictive).
Second shift
Term used to describe the unpaid work a parent, usually a mother, does in the home in terms of housekeeping and childrearing.
Second-Order Change
Involves initiating more structural, long-term, and sustainable transformational changes.
Secure attachments
Attachment style that involves being comfortable with depending on your partner and having your partner depend on you.
The belief that one can perform adequately in a specific situation.
Self-expansion model
Seeking to increase one’s capacity often through an intimate relationship.
The process of altering one’s responses, including thoughts, feelings, impulses, actions, and task performance.
Sexual abuse
The act of forcing a partner to take part in a sex act against his or her will.
The act of avoiding or ignoring a person, and withholding all social interaction for a period of time. Shunning generally occurs as a punishment and is temporary.
Single parent family
An individual parent raising a child or children.
Social and cultural
Society refers to a system of relationships between individuals and groups of individuals; culture refers to the meaning and information afforded to that system that is transmitted across generations. Thus, the social and cultural functions of emotion refer to the effects that emotions have on the functioning and maintenance of societies and cultures.
Social anxiety disorder (SAD)
A condition marked by acute fear of social situations which lead to worry and diminished day to day functioning.
Social integration
Active engagement and participation in a broad range of social relationships.
Social integration
The size of your social network, or number of social roles (e.g., son, sister, student, employee, team member).
Social Justice
Involves the fair distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges that provide equal opportunities for education, health care, work, and housing.
Social Justice Orientation
Engaging in research and action with consideration of achieving the fair distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges that provide equal opportunities for education, health care, work, and housing.
Social referencing
This refers to the process whereby individuals look for information from others to clarify a situation, and then use that information to act. Thus, individuals will often use the emotional expressions of others as a source of information to make decisions about their own behavior.
Social support
A social network’s provision of psychological and material resources that benefit an individual.
Social support
The perception or actuality that we have a social network that can help us in times of need and provide us with a variety of useful resources (e.g., advice, love, money).
Social zeitgeber
Zeitgeber is German for “time giver.” Social zeitgebers are environmental cues, such as meal times and interactions with other people, that entrain biological rhythms and thus sleep-wake cycle regularity.
Socioeconomic status (SES)
A person’s economic and social position based on income, education, and occupation.
Specific vulnerabilities
How our experiences lead us to focus and channel our anxiety.
Ideas about how things should (or should not) be.
A numerical result computed from a sample (e.g., mean, proportion).
Statistical significance
A result is statistically significant if it is unlikely to arise by chance alone.
A family formed, after divorce or widowhood, through remarriage.
Stimulants: a class of drugs that speed up the body’s physiological and mental processes.
A pattern of physical and psychological responses in an organism after it perceives a threatening event that disturbs its homeostasis and taxes its abilities to cope with the event.
An event or stimulus that induces feelings of stress.
Stria terminalis
A band of fibers that runs along the top surface of the thalamus.
Subjective social variables
Targets of research interest that are not necessarily factual but are related to personal opinions or feelings
Subjective well-being
The scientific term used to describe how people experience the quality of their lives in terms of life satisfaction and emotional judgments of positive and negative affect.
Subjective well-being
The name that scientists give to happiness—thinking and feeling that our lives are going very well.
Subjective well-being scales
Self-report surveys or questionnaires in which participants indicate their levels of subjective well-being, by responding to items with a number that indicates how well off they feel.
Suicidal ideation
Recurring thoughts about suicide, including considering or planning for suicide, or preoccupation with suicide.
Support support network
The people who care about and support a person.
The tiny space separating neurons.
System 1
Our intuitive decision-making system, which is typically fast, automatic, effortless, implicit, and emotional.
System 2
Our more deliberative decision-making system, which is slower, conscious, effortful, explicit, and logical.
Systematic observation
The careful observation of the natural world with the aim of better understanding it. Observations provide the basic data that allow scientists to track, tally, or otherwise organize information about the natural world.
A structure in the midline of the brain located between the midbrain and the cerebral cortex.
Groups of closely related phenomena or observations.
Thought-action fusion
The tendency to overestimate the relationship between a thought and an action, such that one mistakenly believes a “bad” thought is the equivalent of a “bad” action.
“Top-down” or internal causes of happiness
The person’s outlook and habitual response tendencies that influence their happiness—for example, their temperament or optimistic outlook on life.
Traditional family
Two or more people related by blood, marriage, and—occasionally-- by adoption.
Trance States
Trance: a state of consciousness characterized by the experience of “out-of-body possession,” or an acute dissociation between one’s self and the current, physical environment surrounding them.
Two-parent family
A family consisting of two parents—typical both of the biological parents-- and their children.
Type A Behavior
Type A behavior is characterized by impatience, competitiveness, neuroticism, hostility, and anger.
Type B Behavior
Type B behavior reflects the absence of Type A characteristics and is represented by less competitive, aggressive, and hostile behavior patterns.
Type I error
In statistics, the error of rejecting the null hypothesis when it is true.
Type II error
In statistics, the error of failing to reject the null hypothesis when it is false.
Uninvolved parenting
Parenting that is low in demandingness and low in support.
Belief about the way things should be.
Visual cortex
The part of the brain that processes visual information, located in the back of the brain.
Working models
An understanding of how relationships operate; viewing oneself as worthy of love and others as trustworthy.