Leigh Ann Vaughn's Research Team Presents Research at Undergraduate-Graduate Student Conference
On April 18, 2009, students from Leigh Ann Vaughn's research team presented two posters about their research at the annual Northeast Sigma Xi Conference in Oswego, NY. Kathryn Childs, Ellen Gagne, Shamika Jackson, Elizabeth June, Madeline Lormand, Karine Russell, Gregory Spirer, Stephanie Swan and Leigh Ann Vaughn co-authored the posters, which were about research the team completed in fall, 2008.
One poster, titled "Values Affirmation and Emotional Engagement with the 2008 Presidential Election," showed that affirming a personally-important value enhanced positive, other-connected feelings like love and thereby enhanced emotional engagement with the election. The other, titled, "Predictors of Subjective Social Status at School among College Students," showed that college students' subjective social status at school relates to the subjective social status of their families, the personality trait of extraversion, and - most strongly - to a subjective sense of having done well at fulfilling one's goals (ideals, duties, and obligations). Affirming a personally important value should help people transcend themselves and engage with events in the world. Consistent with this hypothesis, we found that college students randomly assigned to write about why their top (lowest)-ranked value was (could be) important and meaningful to them (to someone else) forecasted stronger emotional reactions to their preferred versus the other candidate winning the 2008 presidential election.
Sigma Xi is a scientific honor society. This conference draws graduate and undergraduate student presenters from natural sciences, social sciences, and engineering.