Fordham University
  • New York City, NY, United States
Recent publications
The ability to empathize with another person's inner experience is believed to be a central element of our social interactions. Previous research has focused on cognitive (e.g., theory of mind) and emotional (e.g., emotional contagion) empathy, and less on behavioral factors (i.e., the ability to respond empathically). Recent studies suggest that the Default Mode Network (DMN) mediates individual variability in distinct empathy-related behaviors. However, little is known about DMN activity during actual empathic responses, understood in this study as the ability to communicate our understanding of the others’ experience back to them. This study used an empathy response paradigm with 28 participants (22-37 years old) to analyze the relationship between the quality of empathic responses to 14 empathy-eliciting vignettes and patterns of attenuation in the DMN. Overall, the results suggest that high levels of empathic response, are associated with sustained activation of the DMN when compared with lower levels of empathy. Our results demonstrate that the DMN becomes increasingly involved in empathy-related behavior, as our level of commitment to the other's experience increases. This study represents a first attempt to understand the relation between the capacity for responding in a supportive way to others’ needs and the intra-individual variability of the pattern of the DMN attenuation. Here we underline the critical role that the DMN plays in high-level social cognitive processes and corroborate the DMN role in different psychiatric disorders associated with a lack of empathy.
Background Lyme disease is a serious infectious disease having a restricted worldwide distribution for which there is no vaccine available for human use. Objective This study was designed to determine common reactive antigens involved in Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb) infection that are recognized in mammalian sera that may be useful for vaccine development. Methods Blood samples were collected from patients with documented Lyme disease, and from rabbits and mice experimentally infected with either tick-transmitted or culture-grown Borrelia burgdorferi. All samples were then processed for sera. For performing the Western blots, sonicated Bb organisms (whole cell lysates) and protein ladders were separated by protein gel electrophoresis. Immune reactivities of the electrophoresed proteins with the serum samples were then probed with anti-HRP IgG reagent. Results Rabbit, mouse and human sera consistently reacted with the 41 kDa band of Bb which corresponded to the flagellin protein – the major protein component of this organism’s periplasmic flagella, also known as axial filaments or fibrils. Various other Bb antigens of wide molecular weight ranges were also recognized by rabbit and human sera, and less frequently with mouse sera. Conclusion The strong immune response to the 41 kDa flagellin protein by the different mammalian species suggests the utility of a possible vaccine targeting this protein, although other proteins may also be appropriate, for preventing Lyme disease following a bite from an infected tick.
In this paper, we deal with the problem of similarity search about crowdedness for participatory-sensing buses for urban transportation. Similarity search is usually applied for measuring similarities in heterogeneous information networks. However, many models implement similarity search in a global setting, without taking object attributes into consideration. OCP, a novel OLAP-based crowdedness perception, is an attribute-enriched and meta-path-based model with machine learning to capture similarity based on the object connectivity, visibility and features. A set of common crowdedness attribute dimensions are defined across different types of objects, which can be obtained from the participatory passenger’s sensor data through deep-neural-network-based posture recognition. Accordingly, an object can be described as a series of node vectors from different dimensions. In such framework, OLAP is applied in analysing multiple resolutions and improving efficiency of similarity search. In addition, our data sources are based on participatory-sensing instead of using vehicle GPS systems. As more data be collected through participatory-sensing, more accurate crowdedness for a bus can be estimated. The experiment results further demonstrate the efficiency of our analytical approaches.
Journalism, at the core, is the presentation of news through media. The content of news has not changed much over the last century—politicians, wars, crime, and sports dominate past and present headlines. Yet, the ways in which journalists both gather and disseminate information have been turned on their head. Gone are the days of editors assigning stories to writers, who then research, inquire, and write what they found. Today’s journalists are coding, programming, running analytics, and developing apps. These “news nerds” are working in jobs at the intersection of traditional journalist positions and technologically-intensive positions that were once largely separate. Their titles and jobs might differ, but one thing is common: they are using technology differently and the institutionalized view of a professional journalist has changed. Understanding the reasons for that turn, its mechanics, timing, and impact are the goals of this book. News Nerds explores how technological, economic, and societal changes are impacting the institutionalized profession of journalism. Allie Kosterich draws on a mixed-method research design combining interviews with professional journalists, textual analysis of trade press, and social network analysis of journalist career histories. Taken together, these data reveal the ways in which the institution of the profession of journalism is evolving to incorporate new technological skillsets and new routines of production. In telling these stories and sharing these findings, she directly confronts what happens when new skillsets and new ways of understanding and producing news start to collide with the old routines of journalism.
Background Extensive health disparities exist for American Indian groups throughout the United States. Although insurance status is linked to important healthcare outcomes, this topic has infrequently been explored for American Indian tribes. For state-recognized tribes, who do not receive healthcare services through the Indian Health Service, this topic has yet to be explored. The purpose of this study is to explore how having limited access to health insurance (being uninsured or under-insured) impact American Indian women's healthcare experiences?. Methods In partnership with a community advisory board, this study used a qualitative description approach to conduct thirty-one semi-structured life-course interviews with American Indian women who are members of a state-recognized tribe in the Gulf Coast (United States) to explore their Western healthcare experiences. Interview were conducted at community centers, participant homes, and other locations identified by participants. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and findings were analyzed in NVivo using conventional content analysis. Findings were presented at tribal council meetings and to participants for member checking. Results Themes identified by participants included: (a) lack of insurance as a barrier to healthcare; (b) pre-paying for childbirth when uninsured; and (c) access to public health insurance coverage. Twenty-four women mentioned the role or importance of insurance in discussing their healthcare experiences, which was referenced a total of 59 times. Conclusion These findings begin to fill an important gap in the literature about the health insurance experiences of American Indian tribal members. Not having insurance was an important concern for participants, particularly for elderly and pregnant tribal members. Not having insurance also kept tribal members from seeking healthcare services, and from getting needed prescriptions. In addition to promoting knowledge about, and expanding insurance options and enrollment, increased sovereignty and resources for state-recognized tribes is needed to address the health disparities experienced by American Indian groups.
In the present study, we examined bidirectional associations between two components of teachers' burnout (personal accomplishment and emotional exhaustion) and classroom relational climate (closeness and conflict) across two time points within an academic year. Participants included 330 elementary school teachers (third and fourth grade) and 5081 students in a large, urban city in the northeastern United States. Students were primarily Hispanic/Latino (66%) or Black/African American (22%), and most were from low-income households. Forty-seven percent of teachers were White, 25% Black, and 31% identified as Hispanic/Latino. Two modeling approaches were used for preliminary detection of bidirectional relations among burnout and classroom relational climate. First, a crossed-lagged panel model showed a clear pattern from earlier relational climate to later burnout; closeness and conflict at Time 1 predicted personal accomplishment at Time 2, and conflict at Time 1 predicted emotional exhaustion at Time 2. No evidence was found for earlier burnout predicting later relational climate. Second, a set of latent change score models indicated that increases in closeness from Time 1 to Time 2 were associated with decreases in emotional exhaustion across the academic year. Together, findings provide preliminary evidence for associations from classroom relational climate to teacher burnout, but not the other way around. Implications of these findings for teachers and school psychologists are discussed.
Little research examined the decision-making preferences of older, racially and ethnically diverse minority patients with untreated depression. The study’s aims were to identify decision-making preferences and the characteristics associated with a more active preference in the decision-making process for general medical and depression treatment decisions. We assessed the preferred involvement in making general medical and depression treatment decisions of 201 older primary care patients with untreated depression. Linear regressions examined the association of sociodemographic and clinical characteristics with decision-making preference for both decision types. Majority of patients preferred shared decision-making for general medical and depression treatments. Female gender was associated with a preference for active decision-making for depression treatment. For this sample older depressed patients preferred sharing the decision-making responsibilities with physicians. To improve communication and the initiation and adherence to mental health care, physicians must consider older, minority patients’ preferences for involvement in the decision-making process.
Objective This cross-sectional study investigates the independent and interactive effects of depression and socioeconomic status (SES) on neurocognition in a diverse sample of people with HIV (PWH). Method The sample of 119 PWH (71% Latinx, 27% female) completed comprehensive neurocognitive and psychosocial evaluations and were separated into two groups: those with a history of depression diagnosis (n = 47) and those without (n = 72). Results The results of regression analyses indicated that lifetime depression was not associated with lower SES nor with worse neurocognitive performance on any neurocognitive outcome. However, a significant main effect of SES was observed on the Hopkins Verbal Learning Test (total), indicating that higher SES was associated with better verbal learning performance (B= .11, SE = .05, p< .02). Lastly, the results revealed an interactive effect of lifetime depression and SES, such that individuals with depression and higher SES performed better on tests of attention/working memory (i.e., WAIS-III Letter-Number Sequencing, B= .08, SE = .04, p< .02; Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test, B= .39, SE = .16, p< .02). Conclusions Depression and SES appear to play an important role in the neurocognitive performance of PWH. Specifically, higher SES appears to have a protective effect on attention/working memory among PWH only if they have co-morbid history of lifetime depression.
Online recruitment via social media for health-related research is increasing. Metrics regarding social media recruitment may increase its use in this field. This study evaluates the feasibility of recruiting individuals with a smoking history through targeted advertising on Facebook for a randomized study focused on lung cancer screening. Individuals completed eligibility questions and were randomized to one of two groups. We analyzed advertisement reach and response patterns, advertisement cost, data integrity and sample representativeness. The advertisement was active for 34 days and resulted in 2111 unique clicks on the survey link. Four hundred thirty-three eligibility entries were collected, and 61 entries were excluded due to failure to correctly answer the data integrity check. Two hundred eighty-two participants met eligibility criteria and were randomized, 191 participants completed questionnaires and 10 entries were subsequently excluded due to a failed attention check. Recruitment utilizing targeted advertising on Facebook is an effective and efficient strategy for health-related research.
Background Approximately half of concussions go undisclosed and therefore undiagnosed. Among diagnosed concussions, 51% to 64% receive delayed medical care. Understanding the influence of undiagnosed concussions and delayed medical care would inform medical and education practices. Purpose To compare postconcussion longitudinal clinical outcomes among (1) individuals with no concussion history, all previous concussions diagnosed, and ≥1 previous concussion undiagnosed, as well as (2) those who have delayed versus immediate symptom onset, symptom reporting, and removal from activity after concussion. Study Design Cohort study; Level of evidence, 2. Methods Participants included 2758 military academy cadets and intercollegiate athletes diagnosed with concussion in the CARE Consortium. We determined (1) each participant’s previous concussion diagnosis status self-reported at baseline (no history, all diagnosed, ≥1 undiagnosed) and (2) whether the participant had delayed or immediate symptom onset, symptom reporting, and removal from activity. We compared symptom severities, cognition, balance, and recovery duration at baseline, 24 to 48 hours, date of asymptomatic status, and date of unrestricted return to activity using tests of parallel profiles. Results The ≥1 undiagnosed concussion group had higher baseline symptom burdens ( P < .001) than the other 2 groups and poorer baseline verbal memory performance ( P = .001) than the all diagnosed group; however, they became asymptomatic and returned to activity sooner than those with no history. Cadets/athletes who delayed symptom reporting had higher symptom burdens 24 to 48 hours after injury (mean ± SE; delayed, 28.8 ± 0.8; immediate, 20.6 ± 0.7), took a median difference of 2 days longer to become asymptomatic, and took 3 days longer to return to activity than those who had immediate symptom reporting. For every 30 minutes of continued participation after injury, days to asymptomatic status increased 8.1% (95% CI, 0.3%-16.4%). Conclusion Clinicians should expect that cadets/athletes who delay reporting concussion symptoms will have acutely higher symptom burdens and take 2 days longer to become asymptomatic. Educational messaging should emphasize the clinical benefits of seeking immediate care for concussion-like symptoms.
Drastically disrupting daily routines, the global pandemic of COVID-19 has posed critical mental health threats to adolescents and young adults worldwide. Many of the extant empirical findings, however, have focused on individuals’ psychological adjustment during the initial phase of the pandemic. It is less clear how COVID-19 stressful experiences impact young people’s daily lives in the post-pandemic “new normal.” Drawing on 7-day diary reports, the present study fills this gap by examining: (1) how daily perceived stress impacted daily emotional adjustment; and (2) the moderating effects of COVID-19 stressful experiences on these associations among 582 Chinese young adults (Mage = 18.12, SD = .65; 69% females). Results indicated that higher levels of both trait (i.e., average levels) and state (i.e., daily fluctuations) perceived stress were associated with greater negative and anxious moods, and that prior pandemic-related experiences exacerbated the adverse impact of both trait and state perceived stress on daily moods. Specifically, young adults reporting greater COVID-19 stressful experiences demonstrated poorer emotional adjustment (i.e., lower levels of positive mood and higher levels of negative mood) on days when they had more fluctuations in perceived stress; the aggravating impact was stronger when the average levels of perceived stress were higher. By illuminating the moderating effects of COVID-19 stressful experiences, this study contributes to the limited, but burgeoning, research examining the prolonged impact of the COVID-19 health crisis on daily emotional adjustment in post-pandemic life.
This essay reads the aunties on the peripheries of Hanif Kureishi and Stephen Frear’s film, My Beautiful Laundrette (1985), as minor figures, enacting a methodological turn to the seemingly insignificant in analyses of South Asian culture and sexuality. I ask why the aunties’ desire feels so impossible, especially in a film centred on a Pakistani protagonist’s queer utopia. Both ubiquitous and precluded from a complexity of desire, representations of the Pakistani aunty suffer from a deficit of imagination. Aunties tend to be shown as middle-aged women who surveil and police their kin and have a neutered or absent sexuality, as the film’s paradigmatic figuration of the aunty exemplifies. This article argues that such creative constraint derives from the construction of female sexuality as deviance in South Asia, and then tries to look beyond these constraints. While asking what a more capacious imagining of the aunty and her desires might make possible, I offer parameters for reading sexuality in Pakistan and its diasporas by foregrounding deprivation of pleasure and choice.
In the United States and Canada, the adult disability community numbers 27 percent and 16 percent to 33 percent of the population, respectively (Statistics Canada, 2017; Varadaraj et al., 2019). Despite decades of advocacy, Disabled people continue to experience ableism—such as inaccessibility, stigma, and exclusion—in all realms of social work (Slayter & Johnson, 2022). In this Commentary, we use a mix of identity-first disability language and person-first disability language. In keeping with the guidelines of the American Psychological Association (APA) guidelines, we acknowledge that different members of the disability community may have different choices about how they wish to be referred to; APA (n.d.) offers a discussion on the subject. Additionally, when we speak of “Disability culture,” it is inclusive of neurodivergence, chronic illness, chronic pain, mental illness, madness, and so forth. As Disabled social work professionals and accomplices, we call on our nondisabled colleagues to develop their Disability cultural competence and to make inclusion and antiableism priorities in our field.
Posttraumatic growth is a process and an outcome found in the struggle with highly stressful events. In this process, survivors of trauma recognize important positive personal transformations, yielding five types of changes: a greater appreciation of life, a sense of personal strength, better relationships with others, new possibilities in life, and/or spiritual change. Expert companions can help to facilitate this process.
The extent to which organizations are able to improve their performance depends on more than their internal characteristics, improvement depends on the relationship between the organization and the many other groups, organizations and institutions in the surrounding environment. By strategically managing their relationship with these other entities, leaders of organizations like schools can get access to information, resources and expertize and develop networks of connections that help them create coherent approaches to improvement that advance their organizational goals. In this article, we provide an introduction and overview to this critical topic by discussing the theoretical background that helps to explain why managing demands is so important for organizational development; outlining some key strategies leaders of schools, districts, and other educational organizations can use to manage external demands; and sharing a series of examples to explain the role that managing demands can play in school improvement efforts at the school, municipal, and district level.
Background & Hypothesis Psychotic disorders are inequitably distributed by race in the United States, although it is not known whether this is due to assessment biases or inequitable distributions of risk factors. Psychotic experiences are subclinical hallucinations and delusions used to study the etiology of psychosis, which are based on self-report and therefore not subject to potential clinician biases. In this study, we test whether the prevalence of psychotic experiences (PE) varies by race and if this variance is explained by socioenvironmental risk factors. Study Design Data on demographics, PE, and socioenvironmental risk factors were collected through the National Survey of Poly-victimization and Mental Health, a national probability sample of US young adults. Logistic regression analyses were used to determine whether PE prevalence varied by race/ethnicity and, if so, whether this was attenuated with inclusion of indicators of income, education, urban/rural living, discrimination, and trauma exposure. Study Results Black and Hispanic respondents reported PE at significantly greater rates than White or “other” ethnoracial groups, with hallucinations more commonly reported by Hispanic respondents. PE were significantly associated with police violence exposure, discrimination, adverse childhood experiences, and educational attainment. These factors statistically explained ethnoracial differences in the likelihood of overall PE occurrence and of nearly all PE subtypes. Conclusions Previously observed racial differences in psychosis extend beyond clinical schizophrenia, and therefore, are unlikely to be explained entirely by clinician biases. Instead, racial disparities in PE appear to be driven by features of structural racism, trauma, and discrimination.
Current models suggest health anxiety as a fundamental variable associated with fear and anxiety related to COVID-19. The investigation was carried out in separate two studies on the Iranian population. The first study aims to test the COVID- 19 Anxiety Inventory (N=202). The findings indicate a two-factor structure of the scale. Participants (N=1638) completed the online survey anonymously in the second study, including the COVID-19 Anxiety Inventory, Short Health Anxiety Inventory, The Intolerance of Uncertainty Scale, Anxiety Sensitivity Index-3, Body Vigilance Scale, Depression Anxiety Stress Scales 21, and Contamination Cognitions Scale. Results showed that health anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, and body vigilance would significantly contribute to fears of contracting COVID-19. Moreover, the findings support a central role of intolerance of uncertainty in predicting COVID-19 anxiety. The study results provided both theoretical and practical implications for understanding psychosocial predictors during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Introduction/Objective There is a current pathologist shortage in the United States (US) exacerbated by both a retiring population of aging pathologists and limited medical student exposure to formal pathology and clinical laboratory medicine training. This is supported by data from the National Residency Match Program (NRMP) between 2000 to 2019, which shows a “40% decrease in the number of American medical school graduates applying to pathology residency programs”. This limited exposure to pathology has led to a shortage of other lab professionals, too, and has affected more than just medical students. Both undergraduates and high school students have little access to literature discussing the perceptions of pathology professions, which impacts their abilities to consider pathology as a possible future career. Understanding these recent trends, Pathology Outreach Program (POP) was established in 2018 to determine current US high school students' perceptions of pathology and raise awareness towards the importance of careers in lab medicine via interactive PowerPoint sessions. Methods/Case Report Before sessions, an online Google Forms (“pre-course”) survey was distributed which students could voluntarily and anonymously complete. Results (if a Case Study enter NA) From February 2018 to May 2022, 162 high school students completed the pre- course survey (n=162) in Chicagoland and Michigan Schools. Although 130 students (80.2%) stated they were inclined towards a career in medicine/healthcare and 112 students (69.1%) had admitted to being aware of the pathology field, only 18 students (11.1%) stated “Yes” when asked if they understood the roles of pathologists. Furthermore, 127 students (78.4%) reported they were uninformed to the career pathways of a pathologist or pathology-related professional, and 142 (87.7%) reported not ever meeting a pathologist before. Conclusion This data suggests inadequate current US high school student accessibility to pathology professions and supports the continual need for pathology outreach initiatives like POP in increasing pathology exposure to high school students.
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Subha Mani
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