National Research Project 2014-15

Dear Psi Beta advisors,

Below are the instructions for participating in the national research project for 2014-15.

1. AREA OF INVESTIGATION – The study involves the following variables: Self-Regulation, Mindset, Beliefs About Relationships, Stress Coping Strategies, Addiction to Mobile Phones

2. RESEARCH QUESTION – What relationships, if any, exist between Self-Regulation, Mindset, Beliefs About Relationships, Stress Coping Strategies, Addiction to Mobile Phones?

3. HYPOTHESES – Many hypotheses are possible, here are some suggestions:

  • People with a fixed (entity) perspective about significant-other relationships compared to those with a growth (incremental) mindset perspective about significant-other relationships, employ different coping strategies when the relationship is undergoing stress.
  • High self-regulation has a positive correlation with relationship satisfaction.
  • Mobile phone addiction is negatively related to relationship satisfaction.
  • Mobile phone addition is negatively related to self-regulation.
  • Cultural background (individualistic versus collectivist) relates to beliefs about relationships. More specifically, participants having individualistic backgrounds will be more likely to have a destiny belief about romantic relationships, while those with a collectivist cultural background will tend to embrace a growth perspective about romantic relationships.

3. TARGET POPULATION FOR PARTICIPATING PSI BETA CHAPTERS: College students who are 18 years or older.

4. IRB SAFEGUARDS – The Psychology Department’s Institutional Review Board at Irvine Valley College has approved this study. The study satisfies the APA’s research ethical guidelines for proper and safe treatment of human participants.


  • Apply – Each Psi Beta chapter must apply to participate by emailing by January 5th, 2015.
  • Minimum desired number of cases – Each chapter must submit complete data from at least 30 participants.
  • Data collection time frame for Psi Beta – The data collection period is now until February 28, 2015.
  • Institutional Review Board clearance – IRB clearance is needed for a chapter’s “full participation” in this study. While the IRB at Irvine Valley college has approved the study, participating chapters may need to acquire local IRB approval. Here are chapter options regarding IRB clearance:
    • For full participation by your chapter (i.e., recruiting 30 or more participants, and the right to present the findings at a regional or national conference) – acquire the approval of your local IRB.
    • Because this study doesn’t gather sensitive information, your IRB may find it exempt from full review, thereby expediting the IRB review process at your college.
    • For partial participation by your chapter (i.e., only your Psi Beta chapter members serve as participants and/or you have no plans to present the findings at a regional or national conference) you need not acquire local IRB approval.

6. RESEARCH CONSULTANT – We are very grateful to the following individual who has agreed to serve as a research consultant for this project: Professor Michael Cassens, Psi Beta faculty sponsor at Irvine Valley College. We are also indebted to Jennifer Uhlman who chairs the Psi Beta Research Committee at Irvine Valley College and the students who serve on Jennifer’s committee.


a. Request to participate – The Psi Beta chapter’s primary advisor should email Psi Beta’s Executive Director ( and request to participate by January 5th, 2015.

b. Downloads

c. Measures – The following measures are included in this year’s assessment questionnaire:

– The PUMP Scale – A mobile phone addition scale (Merlo, Stone, & Bibbey, 2013)
– The Mindset Scale – Carol Dweck’s intelligence and personality mindset scales (Dweck, 2006)
– The COPE Inventory – A stress coping scale (Carver, 2013)
– Relationship Beliefs Inventory – (Eidelson & Epstein, 1982)
– Romantic Belief Scale – (Sprecher & Metts, 1989)
– The Self-Control Scale – A measure of self-regulation (DeWall, 2014)

d. Search the literature – Use the following as “seed” articles and books for locating additional articles on the hypothesis you plan to investigate. The Knee (1998)  article below is essential reading.

Your starting references are…

Baumeister, R., & Vohs, K. (2011). Handbook of self-regulation: Research, theory, and applications (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.

Baumeister, R. F., Gailliot, M., Dewall, C. N., & Oaten, M. (2006). Self-regulation and personality: How interventions increase regulatory success, and how depletion moderates the effects of traits on
behavior. Journal of Personality, 74(6), 1773-1802

Carver, C. S. (2013). COPE Inventory. Measurement instrument database for the social sciences. Retrieved from on October 25, 2014.

DeWall, N. (2014). Self-Control (unpublished instrument), University of Kentucky.

Dweck, C. S. (2006). Mindset the new psychology of success: How we can learn to fulfill our potential. New York: Random House Inc.

Eidelson, R. J., & Epstein, N. (1982). Cognition and relationship maladjustment: Development of a measurement of dysfunctional relationship beliefs. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 50, 715-720.

Gestsodottir, S., Bowers, E., von Eye, A., Napolitano, C., & Lerner, R. (2010). Intentional self-regulation in middle adolescence: The emerging role of loss-based selection in positive youth development.
Journal of Youth Adolescence, 39, 764-782. doi: 10.1007/s10964-010-9537-2

Knee, C. R. (1998) Implicit theories of relationships: Assessment and prediction of romantic relationship initiation, copies, and longevity. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74(2), 360-370.

Lee, K. C., & Perry, S. D. (2004). Student instant message use in a ubiquitous computing environment: Effects of deficient self-regulation. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 48(3), 399-420.

Merlo, L. J., Stone, A. M., & Bibbey, A. (2013). Measuring problematic mobile phone use: Development and preliminary psychometric properties of the PUMP scale. Journal of Addiction. Retreived
from on October, 25, 2014.

Schunk, D. H., & Zimmerman, B. J. (1997). Social origins of self-regulatory competence. Educational Psychologist, 32(4), 195.

Sprecher, S., & Metts, S. (1989). Development of the ‘Romantic Beliefs Scale’ and examination of the effects of gender and gender-role orientation. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 6,

e. Recruit participants – You should sample the population of students 18 and older at your college. The data collection period  for Psi Beta chapters will be from now until February 28, 2015.

f. Online data submission portalHave your participants use this link to log on to the Psi Beta research site and enter their responses. Note: If the link doesn’t work, cut and paste the following URL into your browser window and hit the “Enter” key.

g. Capture participant informationIf you are giving your participants an incentive to participate (e.g., extra-credit, a chance in a drawing, etc.) be sure to devise a method to obtain their names and contact information. The online questionnaire does not capture personal information such as names and email addresses.
h. Research files from the national data file – After March 5, 2015 the data file will be made available to participating Psi Beta chapters. Request these from


i. Analyze the data – Local chapters are expected to conduct their own data analysis. Analyze your data using procedures covered in introductory level statistics courses. Use appropriate statistics to determine response frequencies, averages, and standard deviations. Basic inferential statistics (e.g, correlations, t-tests, and ANOVA) can be used to test your hypotheses. Many hypotheses can be explored.

j. Write and present your findings – Follow the reporting guidelines as in the textbook of your college’s research methods course. If your psychology department doesn’t offer research methods, obtain a copy of a textbook written for an introductory psychology research methods course (e.g., Cozby, 2004). Use your research findings to prepare a research poster to present at a local, regional, or national psychology conference.  The Western Psychological Association conference offers a Psi Beta poster session. The annual meeting of the American Psychological Association also offers a Psi Beta poster session. Psi Beta members can enter their research poster into the annual Psi Beta student research paper competition. Your chapter can also host a research mini-conference – invite a keynote speaker on psychological research (from your own teaching staff or from a local university), then have a student poster session, followed by refreshments.

Jerry Rudmann, Ph.D.
Executive Director
Psi Beta