Positive Psychology and Second Language Motivation: Empirically Validating a Model of Positive L2 Self
Committee memberBeglar, David J.
Elwood, James Andrew
DepartmentTeaching & Learning
Foreign Language Education
Positive L2 Self
Permanent link to this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12613/3158
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractPositive psychology is rapidly developing as a field in psychology. Many constructs associated with positive psychology have been developed but relationships have not been demonstrated to second language (L2) learning or L2 learning motivation. The main purpose of this study was to explore empirically some core constructs of positive psychology and L2 learning motivation by testing a structural model of the causal relationships among levels of self-concept, and L2 proficiency. In order to do that, it was first necessary to validate measurable components of each of the levels. The self-concept constructs were: a global positive self-concept, a domain-specific positive L2 self, and L2 skill specific self-efficacy. The various self-constructs were organized into finer levels of specificity, from the global to L2 domain to L2 domain skills. A structural model was created from three latent variables that were in turn created from measured variables at each level of specificity. For the latent positive self-concept the measured variables consisted of flourishing, hope, and curiosity. For the latent variable of positive L2 self the measured variables consisted of an interested-in-L2 self, passion-for-L2-learning self, and L2 mastery goal orientation. For the latent motivational variable of L2 self-efficacy the measured variables were L2 speaking self-efficacy, L2 listening self-efficacy, and L2 reading self-efficacy. The measured variables were based on adapted or newly created self-reports. To demonstrate that the model holds beyond self-reports, objective L2 proficiency measures were also modeled with the latent variables of positive self-concept and positive L2 self. To demonstrate the generalizability of the self-model with L2 proficiency, a cross-validation study was done with two different objective measures of L2 proficiency, TOEIC and TOEIC Bridge. The results for the study were all positive for the creation of composite variables and fit to causal models. Latent variables were created for a composite positive self-concept, a composite positive L2 self, and a composite L2 motivation variable. The positive self-concept and positive L2 self also fit a model that included an objective measure of L2 proficiency. Finally, structural equation modeling confirmed causal relationships among positive self-concept, positive L2 self with both L2 motivation and with L2 proficiency. This study showed how constructs from the rapidly expanding field of positive psychology can be integrated with second language motivation. This study showed one way positive psychology can be applied to second language learning and suggests that positive psychology might invigorate future L2 motivation studies.
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RESPONSES TO POSITIVE AFFECT: AN EXAMINATION OF POSITIVE RUMINATION AND DAMPENINGAlloy, Lauren B.; Johnson, Kareem; Heimberg, Richard G.; Weisberg, Robert W.; Kendall, Philip C.; Fauber, Robert L. (Temple University. Libraries, 2008)Recently, Feldman, Joorman, and Johnson (in press) proposed that differences in the ways individuals respond to positive affect (PA) might impact the length and intensity of PA episodes, perhaps leading to changes in long-term mental and physical health. Feldman et al. (in press) suggested that "positive rumination," repetitive positive self- and symptom-focused responses to positive mood, should enhance PA, whereas "dampening" responses should diminish PA. The Response to Positive Affect Scale (RPA; Feldman et al., in press) was created to measure these constructs. Preliminary research has found that measures of positive rumination and dampening help predict mania and depression symptoms. The current study examined the convergent and predictive criterion validity, and reliability of the constructs of positive rumination and dampening through a combination cross-sectional, experimental, and naturalistic follow-up design. Temple University undergraduates (Phase I N = 1,281, Phase II N = 181, Phase III N = 154) participated in a three-phase study. In Phase I, participants completed the RPA along with a series of positive and negative health and cognition measures. In Phase II, participants were randomly assigned to one of three mood induction groups (negative, neutral, or positive) and completed a series of affect reports over time. One month later, Phase II participants were asked to report on their affect, physical health, mental health, and intervening life events during Phase III. As expected, positive rumination and dampening demonstrated convergent and divergent validity. However, the predictive criterion validity results were mixed, with the constructs predicting some, but not all, responses to mood inductions. The naturalistic follow-up demonstrated that positive rumination interacted with positive life events to predict hypothesized changes in psychological health, but not physical health. The test-retest reliability of the RPA was not acceptable for a trait measure. These results suggest that positive rumination and dampening are important constructs involved in both mental health and illness. Future research should consider alternative strategies for measuring responses to PA, including more realistic experimental paradigms.
Positive, Active, Older But Youthful Women & 'FitDance:' Uplifting Motivation and Adherence in Community Dance ExerciseSachs, Michael L.; Schifter, Catherine; Butcher-Poffley, Lois A.; Park, Gloria H. M. (Temple University. Libraries, 2015)ABSTRACT This qualitative research study investigated active, older, but youthful, women and their participation in a community exercise program, FitDance. This dance-fitness fitness program began in 1991, in cooperation with the New Jersey Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Community Alliance, with a goal of lowering alcoholism and addiction in senior adults. FitDance has been shown to actively contribute to members’ and their families’ health and well-being by providing effective aerobic dance-exercise training, enjoyment, and community. FitDance was found to improve mental and physical health. FitDance framed older adulthood as a time of potential, wisdom, and growth, (Ranzijn, 2002) beyond decrements. FitDance study participants demonstrated high program adherence levels, with some members training for over 15 years, and two, for over 20 years. This study investigated the value of the FitDance program qualities, including PEEPS: Positive, Enjoyable, Exercise Practice Strengths, and what made participants stay active, engaged, and satisfied with this appreciative group exercise program over time (Cooperrider & Fry, 2013). This study revealed how FitDance has had a positive impact on participants, families, communities, and society. This research considered how this program’s attributes, including priming flow (Csikszentmihalyi, 1997), can be generalized to allow other groups, across domains, to achieve similar positive social-emotional results. This study’s threefold purposes were, first, to present eight active, vibrant, functionally fit, women, ages 71-81, who FitDance, and who are positive role models of motivation, program adherence (training twice weekly from between 5-19 years), and self- determination (Deci & Ryan, 2002). The second purpose was to look at the FitDance model, and how it uplifted mental and physical wellness. The mental health benefits were an important factor emphasized by both participants and their children; efforts to sustain and preserve cognitive and mental health were highly valued. The third purpose examined how FitDance has built a positive community through a social fitness model. The social fitness aspect, combining an enjoyable atmosphere in a professional setting, was deemed an important contributor to motivation and adherence. Participants unanimously revealed that the FitDance program was a place where people felt welcomed, positively engaged, challenged, sincerely praised, and connected to fellow participants. Adult children who were surveyed about their mother’s activity, fitness level, and experience in FitDance substantiated their mother’s general vibrancy and her program satisfaction. The stated goals of the FitDance program were to promote vibrant aging, social connections, and well-being by increasing motivation and adherence in community exercise. These goals were realized. Community group dance-exercise programming has the potential to move masses of people toward health and thriving; this is especially important in gerontological terms, impacting fiscal, and especially quality of life measures. Similar to Aristotle’s investigation of virtue, and views about living the good life (Aristotle/Sachs, 2002), PEEPS: positive enjoyable, exercise practices harnessing strengths, matter. With PEEPS, FitDance offers health and healing against the epidemic of inactivity (Blair, 2009, Sallis, 2009), the age wave (Dychtwald & Flower, 1989), and builds uplifting face-to-face, social capital in a digital world (Putnam, 2000).
The Relationship of Teacher Positivity to Physical and Relational Aggression in the ClassroomRotheram-Fuller, Erin; Fiorello, Catherine A.; DuCette, Joseph P.; Thurman, S. Kenneth; Farley, Frank (Temple University. Libraries, 2010)Researchers have been studying school aggression (often termed bullying) for many years, but it was not until the 1980's that the deleterious effects of school aggression became more apparent. Most of the studies on physical and relational aggression focus upon the experiences of children who perpetrate these actions or who are the victims of this form of aggression. However, few studies have investigated how physical and relational aggression is influenced by the teacher and/or specific classroom environments. To date, there is a scarcity of information available regarding teacher characteristics and attitudes within the classroom and how these specific characteristics are associated with physically and relationally aggressive behavior and the overall climate of the classroom. The purpose of the present study was to examine whether teacher positivity is associated with student levels of physically and relationally aggressive behaviors in the classroom. This study specifically examined the relationship between (1) teacher positivity and student physical and relational aggression, (2) the relationship between classroom climate variables and student physical and relational aggression, and (3) differences in school, teacher, student, and classroom variables (teacher and student gender, student grade, and student ethnicity) based on the level of teacher positivity. Data were collected from 502 male (n=259) and female (n=243) 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students from two large urban elementary schools within the School District of Philadelphia during the 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 school year. In addition to student participants, the third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers (n=18) also participated as part of the focus of a systematic observation tool developed by the lead researcher. Results from the first research question found no significant correlations between teacher positivity and non-compliant acts, the proportion of physically aggressive students or the proportion of relationally aggressive students. However, the proportion of physically aggressive students was significantly positively correlated with the average number of non-compliant acts (r = .603, p = .008). Results from the second research question found that the average number of non-compliant acts and the proportion of physically aggressive students was higher in classrooms where the minority of students was engaged and interested in the classroom activity. Results from the third research question showed only that there were differences between School 1 (m = 0.49, sd = .09) and School 2 (m = .29, sd = .14; t (16) = 3.56, p = .003) when comparing teacher positivity by school. Teacher, student, and classroom variables did not produce significant findings. Post hoc analyses, looking more specifically at the types of redirection and praise which composed the teacher positivity score, found correlations between the average number of noncompliant acts and universal redirections (r = .795, p = .000), the proportion of physically aggressive students and total teacher redirection (r = .479, p = .036), the proportion of physically aggressive students and specific teacher redirections (r = .540, p = .021), and the proportion of relationally aggressive students and teacher redirections (r = .477, p = .045) that occurred during an interruption.