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Laura Preciado

2008 Research

Abstract: Is Reaching Happiness Possible Through Material Means?

Mentor: Dr. Jonathan Anderson, Department of Psychology

The acquisition of happiness has long been a lingering interest held in the public mind and recently psychology has brought it back to the forefront. The purpose of the current study is to discover why individuals attempt to purchase their happiness despite their knowledge of where they have previously encountered it. The study also examined why individuals believe that certain experiences or material purchases bring more happiness to them, compared to other individuals. This phenomenon is explained through an illumination of the self-serving bias. Responses given by approximately 170 Eastern Washington University students were included and analyzed through a 3 X 2 between subjects factorial design. Our hypothesis was that individuals rating for themselves, both for the now and a year-from-now time conditions, would give higher ratings to predicted happiness than those rating for others. Our findings suggest that individuals believe that others are more materialistic than they are and that individuals believe that others would experience a higher happiness change due to the material or experiential benefit. The results of the current study refute past research done based on the self-serving bias and materialism.

2007 Research

Abstract: Very Mild Dementia and Memory Monitoring in Episodic Memory

Mentor: Dr. Jonathan Anderson, Department of Psychology

 Forgetfulness in individuals in the early stages of dementia has been of interest to experimental and applied scientists alike. One process that is important in memory functioning is the ability for individuals to have accurate knowledge of their memory. However, few studies have investigated meta-memory for individuals in the early stages of dementia. The purpose of this study is to investigate memory self-monitoring in individuals during the early stages of dementia. Confidence levels and feeling-of-knowing ratings were used to assess retrospective and prospective memory self- monitoring. 20 participants with very mild dementia were compared to 20 controls matched on age, education, and sex. Results revealed that compared to controls, individuals in the early stages of dementia demonstrated intact retrospective memory monitoring abilities, but poorer prospective memory monitoring abilities.


12th Annual EWU Student Research and Creative Works Symposium: May 20, 2009

WPA Portland: April 22-26, 2009

17th Annual McNair Conference and Graduate School Fair Delavan, WI: Oct 31 Nov 2, 2008

16th Annual McNair Conference and Graduate Fair, WI, Nov. 2007

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