Psychotherapy, clinical, counseling and health psychology

[24 abstracts]

1. Meta analysis of the research conducted in the field of some obstetric risk factors for postpartum depression in Iran within 1995-2005  
Bahadoran P., Ehsanpoor S., Abedi A., Shokrani S.
First author's affiliation: Isfahan University of Medical Science, Isfahan, Iran

Mood disorders including postpartum depression are among the most important mental health disorders in postpartum period. There are numerous independent studies conducted in Iranian scientific and research centers but their meta analytic evaluation can yield practical and precise result. This is a meta analytic research using Hunter and Schmiedt approach. The subjects comprised 11 research projects and dissertations conducted in Iran within 1995-2005 based on a standard check list. The researches based on methodological parameters entered the study. The check list validity and reliability were respectively confirmed by content validity and consistency index. After summarizing the results, the effect size was calculated and combined based on meta-analysis approach and then commented according to Cohen chart. According to the calculated effect size, the finding of this research for postpartum depression revealed two factors with low association (pariety, type of delivery) and one factor with almost moderate association (unwanted pregnancy) with postpartum depression. The results are indicating importance of the detection and prevention of unwanted pregnancy by educating the spouses, family and health team staffs for an efficient step in women's health promotion.

2. Back to life, back to the origins -Thoughts and experiences about The Focusing method   
Bencze E.
University of Pécs, PHD School in Psychology, Pécs, Hungary

In the beginning of our lives we organise our experiences about the world, about our relations and even about ourselves through body felts and body impressions. Our self is organised through the relative persistence and unity of the body in space and in time, as well as through the body felts (posture, condition of the muscles, skin - the so called skin-ego, smell, flavour, sound). The development of the infant later opens new self-senses and organising powers for the todler that will operate and form together continuously with the first sense of an emergent self by Stern. Focusing is a kind of relaxation technique grew out by Gendlin. The aim of focusing is to pay attention to the felt senses of the body and the images, words, smells, memories or sounds that adjunct to them. Our deeper and wiser self („the body”) that knows the background and the relations of our problems, and even the specific, individual and creative, therefore effective solutions of them. In my presentation I would like to point out the connection between the methodological elements of focusing (trance-like state, glaze, clearing a space, felt sense, handle, resonating, mirroring) and the early, preverbal development through the narrative analyses of interviews that were made by university students (n=50) who had participated in focusing groups.

3. Investigating risky sexual behaviour – A mission (im)possible?  
Brajović T., Brunner E.
First author's affiliation: Department of Psychology, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Although the number of adolescent pregnancies has declined since the 2000 in Slovenia, and condoms are used relatively frequently (Pinter et. al., 2006), investigating adolescent risky sexual behaviour (RSB) still appears to be necessary. Most of the studies being conducted so far have been oriented only towards limited aspects of RSB (e.g. intentions, attitudes), although this behaviour appears to be associated with various factors such as characteristics of the individual (specific emotions before/during/after the sexual intercourse with a partner), of the developmental stage (e.g. personal fable) and social interactions with others (e.g. negotiating safer sex). Developing an inventory for measuring RSB of adolescents is afflicted with some difficulties: operationalizing domains of RSB; forming items of high content validity which are going to include behaviours and situations in which (risky) sexual behaviour of adolescents occurs; application of qualitative and/or quantitative methods and theories essential for explaining RSB. The lack of definitions of RSB in the literature also makes it difficult to form such an instrument. Based on the knowledge presented on the poster, a questionnaire of RSB for adolescents was developed. It is going to be used in a research focusing on the connection between RSB and psychological characteristics of adolescents. Thus, the poster represents the announcement of a future research of RSB which is going to have some theoretical as well as some practical implications - for example designing contemporary programmes for adolescent health promotion.

4. Depressive, anxiety and stress symptoms among young people from three European countries and correlations between psychological distress and rumination, procrastination, perfectionism and coping  [presentation, pdf, 1767 kB]
Ederer Fick E. M., Essau C., O’Callaghan J., Bokszczanin A., Sasagawa S.
First author's affiliation: University of Graz, Department of Education, Special Education Unit, Graz, Austria

Psychological distress such as depression, anxiety and stress among young people represents a major health concern. This study compared depressive, anxiety and stress symptoms and their correlates in British, Austrian, and Polish undergraduate students (N = 1,176, Mean age = 22.9 years). The participants completed a set of self-report questionnaires which were used to measure psychological distress (Depression, anxiety, and stress scale DASS; Lovibond & Lovibond, 1995), rumination (Rumination subscale of the perfectionism inventory; Hill et al., 2004), procrastination (Decisional procrastination scale; Mann 1982), perfectionism (Frost multidimensional perfectionism scale FMPS; Frost et al., 1993), and coping strategies (Ways of coping checklist questionnaire WOCC; Folkman & Lazaruz, 1984). The cohort from the Austria reported significantly lower levels of psychological distress than students from Poland or from the United Kingdom. The highest level of psychological distress was found in Poland. Females compared to males reported significantly higher scores on psychological distress as a whole, and particularly on the stress symptoms. No significant main effects were found for age groups on the DASS and on any of its subscales. In all countries, DASS total correlated significantly positive with rumination, procrastination, emotion-focused coping, and on the different dimensions of perfectionism (concern over mistakes, parental expectations, parental criticism, doubts about actions). In each country, rumination was a significant predictor of psychological distress. On the background of these results clinical implications in the development of prevention and intervention programmes to address psychological distress among students in the university settings will be discussed.

5. Content analytic study of future time perspective in a clinical setting: Integration and continuity related to different levels of functioning  
Garami V., Jakabos H.
First author's affiliation: University of Pécs, Pécs, Hungary

Current research is aimed to study an important aspect of psychological time experience and future time perspective through content analytic method with implications to further use in clinical psychodiagnostics. Kurt Lewin defines time perspective as a basic component in human thinking and development. Thinking about the past and the future is strongly related to the sense of continuity, therefore the construction of identity. The sense of unity and integration in a personality is helped by cognitive processes of anticipating things into the future, planning, setting goals, etc. Future time perspective shows the level of a person’s reality testing, not only related to the sense of integration and continuity, but in recognizing the role of personal action in achieved outcomes, a disposition to make internal causal attributions. In the present study the subjects are psychiatry patients. The hypothesis of the study is that the content analytic coding of future time perspective – which is strongly related to effective self-regulation, cognitive control, and adequate sense of reality – shows definite differences between diagnostic groups determined by the level of the structural integration of the personality. The diagnosis is assessed according to the aspects of OPD-2 structural interview, with special emphasis on level of structural integration of the personality. The OPD-2 differentiates between four levels of personality integration (well integrated, medium, low, disintegrated). Besides the half-structured clinical interview, subjects are asked to write their „Future Autobiography”, which means they have to pretend looking back on their life from a point 20 years later. Content analytic method is used to code the various aspects of future time perspective, for example: preparation and planning, goal setting, internal causal attributions. Analysing different patterns of future time perspective could help in gaining aspects to the differential diagnosis of the structural level of functioning of the personality.

6. School-to-work-transition in the emerging adulthood  
Horvath T.
Eotvos Lorand University Faculty of Education and Psychology, Budapest, Hungary

The vocational guidance is a well researched area of the psychology. At the same time the beginning of the young adult career is more neglected theme. If we want to see the whole career process, we have to pay attention to the difficulty or 'crisis' of the beginning of working life. From the complex social and economic context it can be seen how important role transitions, future expectations, job experiences and outside factors like education and economy systems are in the forming of working career. I would like to analyse these variables trough a new phenomenon, called 'quarterlife crisis'. This psychological concept respects to young, graduate adults, who want to start their adult life and who are seeking or beginning a job and it is connected to unrealistic expectations, deficient knowledge of working market, social pressure of financial well being and the responsibility of making long-term decisions about their life. These variables can lead to strong anxiety, feeling of insecurity and impotence or depression. It could be presumed that the marks of the crisis – if this is an existing concept – must appear among university students in their last semester because they are standing in the door of real, working life. According to the results of previous surveys among senior students these conditions do not lead necessarily to a crisis, but it was proved that this period can be very hard and full of insecurity. In this presentation I try to place the concept in the sociology and the psychology literature and find an answer to the question whether QC brings a new approach to these fields or not.

7. Stress, appraisal and coping in nursing home residents relocated to hospitals: Outline of a research project in progress   
Janig H., Kada O.
First author's affiliation: Alps-Adriatic University of Klagenfurt, Klagenfurt, Austria

Nursing home residents are frequently relocated to hospitals; a substantial proportion of these hospitalizations is potentially preventable (Grabowski et al., 2008). For Europe there is a lack of data in this area (Ramroth et al., 2006). A hospital stay itself can lead to functional decline in the elderly (Creditor, 1993) and hospitalization adds a change in environment and habits and a dependence on others (Bruchon-Schweitzer et al., 1995). Terms like ‘relocation stress’ or ‘transfer shock’ indicate the assumed negative consequences associated with relocation and hospitalization (Castle, 2001; Manion & Rantz, 1995). Many empirical work was done on mortality and morbidity in the elderly following relocation (Castle, 2001), but little is known about the stress process during such experiences. According to Lazarus and Folkman (1984) appraisal and coping are essential components of the stress process. Self-constructed items and open-ended questions are used to assess the stressors experienced by hospitalized nursing home residents as well as primary appraisal (threat, harm/loss, and challenge), secondary appraisal and the employed coping strategies. Perceived stress is measured by the German version of the Perceived stress questionnaire (PSQ; Fliege et al., 2001). The Sense of coherence (SOC; Antonovsky, 1997) – a protective factor regarding stress – is assessed using the SOC-L9 (Singer & Brähler, 2007). Lazarus (2000) points out the importance of multiple assessments in order to be able to capture changes in the stress experience as the situation proceeds. Hence, in the present study subjects are interviewed shortly after admission (t1) and after a few days of familiarization (t2). Additionally, in a second step, the documentations of a Carinthian hospital are analysed to describe the frequency of patient transfers from nursing homes to hospitals as well as patient characteristics and the proportion of potentially avoidable transportations.

8. Confirmatory factor analysis of the Hungarian version of Ego resiliency scale  
Jarai R.
University of Pécs, Pécs, Hungary

According to Letzring, Block and Funder (2004) ego resiliency (ER) refers to the dynamic capacity to contextually modify one's level of ego-control in response to situational affordances. In our pilot study we established the Hungarian version of Leztring's 15 item-self report Ego resiliency scale. In a confirmatory factor analytic procedure we calculated the goodness of fit measures and reliability scores of Ego resiliency scale. We used the original one factor scale structure for the analysis. The statistics are based on a sample of 300 subjects. The various fit measures indicate a valid and reliable Ego resiliency scale for Hungarian studies in the field of health and sport psychology.

9. The stigma of mental illness: A mixed methods study in a rural area of Austria.  
Jenull B., Salem I., Brunner E.
First author's affiliation: Alps-Adria University, Klagenfurt, Klagenfurt, Austria

Psychiatric reforms have reduced the number and length of in-patient treatment and improved community services for persons with mental illness. In order to provide mental health care in best possible proximity to their homes, transparency of offered services and rapid access to mobile social services are needed. We combined qualitative and quantitative methods to reach comprehensive and practically relevant findings from the perspectives of the user group, their family members and the mental health care professionals (Creswell & Plano Clark, 2007). The user group and their family members (n = 83) were surveyed regarding their individual situation, current strains, experienced stigmatisation and level of social support. Furthermore, we interviewed experts in the community service (N = 44). Results show that an essential amount of mental health care is delivered by primary care physicians. As far as networking and training needs are concerned, the experts showed significant differences in opinions. Whilst staff of mobile services and social facilities located serious flaws, general practitioners did not see any need for action. Beside difficulties in accessibility and low availability of mental health care services in the rural area, all three target groups considered the taboo topic of stigmatisation as one of the main problems in the district. People with mental disorders are less likely to receive necessary care due to the reported low acceptance and tolerance.

10. Relations between dental fear in 8- to 10-year-old children and in their parents  
Kovács E., Kerekes Z., Szanto I.
First author's affiliation: University of Pécs, Institute of Behavioral Sciences, Pécs, Hungary

Authors investigated dental fear in groups of children from two primary schools in Hungary. Among 8 to 10 years old children’s (N = 67) dental fear was measured with "Children's Dental Fear Survey". The participants parents' dental fear was examined with "Dental Fear Survey", together with their social background, education level, and marital status. To compare the two groups they characterized the parents' effect on the children’s dental fear. In this population the effect of parents' dental fear did not show influence on the children's dental fear. This fact was not affected neither by social background nor the children's DMF index. The results were comparable with the preceding studies. It seems that unpleasant dental experiences in childhood affect subsequently developed dental fear, and that common fear is positively correlated to the dental fear. In order to find the exact age, when the dental fear first develops, similar studies should be conducted on other age groups. The results of this and similar studies help us form efficient prevention techniques, which enable us to identify the risk groups and help them with available therapeutic treatment.

11. Assessment of mental health services in Slovenia with The European service mapping schedule  
Kurbos M., Šprah L.
First author's affiliation: Sociomedical Institute at SRC SASA, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Mental health is becoming one of the priorities for the European health care policies due to a high lifetime prevalence of mental disorders. Cost-benefit studies on mental health facilities are needed to improve planning and efficacious resource use. The European service mapping schedule (ESMS) is so far the only standardized and internationally applicable instrument for description and classification of mental health services and for measuring the intensity of service use. The aim of our study was to examine availability and utilization of mental health services in the Slovene regions by using the ESMS methodology. Slovenian translation of the ESMS was used for mapping services in Slovene statistical regions. All services meeting inclusion criteria were invited to participate in the study. A reference person from every service provided information about service features mostly by telephone. 280 mental health services fulfilled the ESMS. Marked differences between regions were noticed in patterns of service provision and utilization. In contrast with the scarcity of mental health services in the Zasavska region, the Central-Slovenian region offered the most diverse and abundant choice of services of all statistical regions. According to the service characteristics, day and structured activity services rarely offered work or work-related activities but provided other structured activities or social contact. Out-patient and community services were mainly medium intensity non-mobile services. Not all service types described in the ESMS were found in Slovenia. The Central-Slovenian region is comparable in certain aspects of service availability and diversity to the Northern European regions, while the other Slovenian regions are more similar to the Southern European regions. All in all, the ESMS appears to be useful for description and comparison of mental health services within and between several European regions and countries, including Slovenia.

12. Students’ Sense of coherence - A promising concept?  
Maier M., Brunner E.
First author's affiliation: University of Klagenfurt, Klagenfurt, Austria

The Sense of coherence (SoC) is one of the central concepts of Antonovsky’s salutogenesis (Antonovsky, 1997). It can be seen as a global orientation (with the aspects of meaningfulness, comprehensibility and manageability) that determines how confident a person is in the predictability of events, how one evaluates resources to deal with these events and the gain of meeting challenges. To measure the Sense of coherence of academic and administrative staff at universities, Gräser (2003) constructed the U-SoC-scale which is adapted for students in the present study. Our Students’ Sense of coherence scale (S-SoC scale) was handed out, along with sociodemographic items and the short version of the WHO Quality of life questionnaire (WHOQOL-BREF; Angermeyer, Kilian & Matschinger, 2000), to 191 students at the University of Klagenfurt (82% female). The first aim was to assess the S-SoC’s postulated structural model’s goodness-of-fit. It turned out to be sufficient and indicated some possibilities for the refinement of the instrument. Having confirmed this, we could continue with scores derived from the S-SoC scale and relate the surveyed constructs to each other. A multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) with all five WHOQOL-BREF subdomains as outcomes and gender and the S-SoC’s subscales Manageability and Meaningfulness as independent variables showed significant relations between these constructs. Male respondents feel better globally and physically whereas women claim to have better social relationships. Results from the present study indicate that the students’ Sense of coherence has a considerable impact on people’s subjectively perceived well-being. These findings can be utilized in the manifold programs for health-promotion at universities to make these places a comprehensible, meaningful and manageable environment for students.

13. Depression and anxiety in correlation to purpose of life and quality of life in Slovenian HIV-infected patients  [presentation, ppt, 1763 kB]
Oblak T., Pasarič A., Ručna V., Matičič M., Škodlar B.
First author's affiliation: Medical Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has improved the life expectancy of HIV-infected patients. Attention has moved to managing mental disorders and quality of life (abbr. QOL). The most prevalent mental disorders in HIV-infected patients are anxiety and depression which are correlated to low purpose of life. We studied prevalence of depression and anxiety, level of purpose of life and QOL in Slovenian HIV/aids patients and their relationship. We hypothesized that depression, anxiety, low purpose of life and low QOL are importantly present in this population. Study enrolled 162 HIV-infected patients followed at the Clinics for infectious diseases and febrile illnesses of University Medical Centre of Ljubljana. For assessment of depression and anxiety we used Hospitaly anxiety and depression scale (HADS). WHOQOL-HIV BREF was used for assessing quality of life and Purpose in life (PIL) was used for assessing purpose of life. Questionnaire was answered by 111 patients (68.5 %). Depression was present in 24 (21.6 %) and anxiety in 36 patients (32.4 %). Patients expressed moderate quality of life and moderate purpose of life. Sucidial ideations were present in 24 (22 %) cases, low purpose of life in 29 (26.1 %) and low QOL in 13 patients (11.7 %). Depression and anxiety were positively correlated (p < 0.01). Both were negatively correlated to low purpose of life (p < 0.01). Purpose of life and QOL correlated negatively with some antiretroviral treatment (abacavir, stavudine and nelfinavir [p < 0.05]). Depression, anxiety, low purpose of life and low QOL are present among HIV-infected patients in Slovenia. The questionnaires HADS and WHOQOL-HIV BREF are suitable to be used in everyday clinical practice to screen for depression, anxiety and low QOL among patients with HIV/aids and we highly recommend their introduction in Slovenia.

14. Effects of self efficiency training  
Pejić B., Lazić G., Žutić Milinković G.
First author's affiliation: National Employment Service of Serbia, Belgrade, Serbia

Self Efficiency Training is a group counselling programme targeted at long-term unemployed persons or persons at risk of long-term unemployment. The objective of this training is to increase the motivation for active job search through self-confidence and efficiency building, development of perception of personal responsibility, more intense and persistent job search, psychological support and preparation for participation in other active employment measures. The elementary model is based on the theory of planned behaviour (Ajzen, 1985). According to this theory, the most significant indicators for predicting one's behaviour are: intention to behave in a certain manner and perceived control of behaviour. The intention is formed through positive attitudes, subjective norms and perceived behaviour control. The purpose of this paper is to define the extent to which Self Efficiency Training can influence motivation, i.e. intention of unemployed persons to actively and persistently look for a job. This research was carried out on a sample of 300 unemployed persons of different gender, age, education level, work experience and duration of unemployment. The polled filled in three questionnaires (before and after the training) related to their attitudes towards job search and efficiency in job search (Vinokur & Caplan, 1987). The results showed that training has a positive impact on participants: increased self-confidence in job search, reduced anxiety as to the number of attempts and failure, increased capacity to solve problems and focus on employment, stronger functional beliefs and weaker dysfunctional beliefs, increased capacity to assess their own efficiency in job search. The results lead to the conclusion that Self Efficiency Training has a positive impact on unemployed persons, their motivation, self-confidence, tolerance of frustration and personal responsibility in job search.

15. Self-esteem changes in the course of eating disorders therapeutic programme  
Postuvan V., Hromc A.
First author's affiliation: Svetovalnica PU, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Many researches and clinical examples indicate a significant correlation between low self-esteem and eating disorders. The aim of our study was to test the changes in self-esteem in girls with eating disorders before and after the enrolment in the therapeutic programme. We applied a four dimensional self-esteem scale in the first and last week of an intensive year-long intervention. There were only female participants, aged between 17 and 27 years, involved in the study. The results at the first testing confirm previous findings that girls with eating disorders have a significantly lower self-esteem compared to the provided test population norms. On the contrary, the second testing revealed a significantly higher self-esteem in the same sample. Accordingly, the pre-post intervention changes showed a significant improvement of self-esteem in girls with eating disorders in the course of therapeutic programme. This improvement is congruent with other positive outcomes of the intervention programme, above all with the successful treatment of eating disorder.

16. Reciprocal burnout model (RBM): Interconnectedness of interpersonal and intrapersonal factors  [presentation, pps, 323 kB]
Pšeničny A.
Inštitut za razvoj človeških virov, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Most of researchers tend to link the burnout syndrome and environmental stress (interpersonal causes). Even though Freudenberger, who introduced the term burnout in 1976, thought that the burnout is a condition, that folows the preoccupation as a narcissistic need for omnipotence, reaserchers only recently focus their attention on personal characteristics of people that are experiencing burnout (intrapersonal causes). Reciprocal burnout model (RBM) links both causes. It shows why only a portion of people in same circumstances suffer from burnout syndrome. It states that personal characteristics are one of the main causes why people suffering from burnout syndrome enroll in nonreciprocal personal and professional relations and shows the role that the socialization process plays in development of these characteristics. The RMB explains the psychodynamic background of performance based self esteem (uncohesive) and four types of psychodynamic mechanisms that can lead to workoholism, which is the main symptom of burnout syndrom. The core of RBM consists in one's attitude towards his or her basic needs' fulfillment, personal system of values and correlation between fulfillment of basic needs (energy accumulation) and burning out process (energy consumption). RBM is a foundation for differentiation between burnout syndrom and smilar mental disorders and for understanding of the underlying dynamics that lead to burnout syndrom. It is also the fundament for appropriate chioce of psychotherapeutic modality for people experiencing burning out and burnout. RBM is also opening series of questions, like connection between personal traits, life satisfaction and personal values, and burnout syndrome risk behavior, as well as influence of whole life circumstances on burning out process.

17. The impact of individual's self acceptance on unemployment  [presentation, pdf, 509 kB]
Raad Z., Farahani H.
First author's affiliation: Islamic Azad University, Tehran Medicine, Department of Psychology, Tehran, Iran

Self acceptance reflects to an individual’s satisfaction involving self-understanding and awareness of one’s strength and weakness resulting in self help on creation and happiness and self improvement. The aim of this research was characterizing the relation between self acceptance and unemployment among persons with the age ranging from 20 to 30 years. A self acceptance question list using Likert spectrum was designed with 100 questions. Then the content validity and content formality of the self acceptance were obtained and its reliability was calculated with the assumption of Cronbach’s alpha=0.8. The prepared question list was filled by 400 persons with well defined job condition living in north, south, east and west of Tehran in Iran. Our results illustrated that the self acceptance has a direct impact on job condition meaning. To analyze the job opportunities in the society, considering the concept of self acceptance is vital to have a clearer picture.

18. Children mental health follow-up in youth communities of the SOS-Children’s Village  [presentation, ppt, 242 kB]
Rajhvajn Bulat L., Branica V.
First author's affiliation: Department of Social Work, Faculty of Law, Zagreb, Croatia

Mental health of children is influenced by the social environment and subject to different stresses that are more intensive in children who are growing up in some form of public care. The SOS-Children’s Village in Croatia is one of such forms of placing children under public care. A part of the results obtained from a comprehensive 5 year long research on behavior and feelings of children in public care will be presented. This research covered a total of 493 children placed in children's homes, 112 in foster homes and 187 in alternative forms of care (Nuevo Futuro and SOS-Children's Village). Results of 57 children and youth examinees from the youth communities of the SOS-Children's Village Croatia who participated in test and retest parts of the research (between a 5 year interval). The average age of children in the first measurement was 13 and 18 at the second. A total of 23 boys and 34 girls were interviewed. Two identical instruments were used as indicators of children's mental health: Youth self-report ( Achenbach,1991) filled by children and youth and the Child behavior check-list (Achenbach, 1991) filled by educators. The results have shown that the test-retest correlations on most sub-scales of mental health of children are statistically relevant, but this relevance ranges from low to middle. Also, the comparison of results obtained in 2003 with those obtained in 2008 show that educators evaluate that mental health of boys at the retest point has improved. In self-evaluation girls give evidence of their increasing externalization of problems (show a more delinquent and aggressive behavior). These results have additional weight as girls also stated that they feel more everyday stress than 5 years ago, and boys and girls both state that they feel less social support than before. At the end of the presentation, the measurement of mental health from different sources will be discussed, since results have shown that the evaluation of identical indicators of mental health by children and by educators have relatively low correlation (ranges from 0.02 to 0.37).

19. Relationship of stammering and the language competence (English and Urdu)  [short paper, doc, 87 kB]
Sajjad S.
Comsats Institute Of Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan, Islamabad, Pakistan

The research was conducted to find out the relationship between Language Competency and Stammering. A pilot study was conducted in which Urdu version of Test of Language Competence (TLC) was administered to speech disabled and normal group. In the second phase, both groups (N = 34, age range 18-28 years, males, education: O levels to Graduate Level) were given both English and Urdu version of TLC. Results showed that stammering people performed significantly poorly on TLC as compared to normal group. On the basis of this study it is seen that language competency is less in speech disabled group.

20. Efficiency in typical 'male' and typical 'female' tasks during menstrual cycle  
Šimić N., Manenica I., Pupić-bakrač A., Peričić M.
First author's affiliation: University of Zadar, Zadar, Croatia

Various studies have shown the best efficiency in typical 'female' tasks during late follicular phase (Hassman et al., 2000) or in the midluteal phase (Hampson, 1990), and in typical 'male' tasks during menstrual phase. The top efficiency in the first case corresponded to the highest level of estrogen and progesterone, while in the latter, these levels were at the lowest. The aim of this investigation was to try to associate efficiency in typical male and typical female tasks to hormone levels during the menstrual cycle. Twenty female students (18 to 21 years), with regular menstrual cycle of 28 days, took part in this study. As typical female task used was the O' Connor dexterimeter, and male task was a mental rotation task. Subjects performed the tasks during menstrual, late follicular and midluteal phase. Spielberger’s State Anxiety Questionnaire was administered before the tasks in each phase. After completion of the task, the subjects had to assess its difficulty on Borg's scale. The results showed the best performance in both tasks in the midluteal phase, which is characterised by a high level of estrogen and progesterone. The differences between the results in the late follicular and midluteal phase suggest that estrogen level was responsible for differences in the performance. The progesterone level seemed to be responsible for a lower anxiety in the midluteal phase, which may have indirectly improved the efficiency in mental rotation tasks. The anxiety level, together with task difficulty assessments, was the highest in menstrual and the lowest in midluteal phase.

21. Coping strategies and health-related quality of life in children with type 1 diabetes  
Vulić Prtorić A., Jović M., Padelin P., Baraban D., Grubić M., Brnović I.
First author's affiliation: University of Zadar, Zadar, Croatia

We examined the differences between two groups of subjects (children with diabetes type 1 in pediatric care and healthy controls) in seven different aspects of coping strategies (problem solving, expressing feelings, avoidance, distraction, social support- friends, social support – family, cognitive restructuring). The sample consisted of 199 schoolchildren: 47 patients with diabetes type 1 as a primary complaint and 152 healthy children and adolescents in control group. Coping strategies were measured with SUO - The Coping strategies inventory for children and adolescents. SUO is the self-assessment instrument that measures the frequency of coping strategies in response to stressful events. Children’s health problems were rated with PedsQL 4.0 (Pediatric quality of life inventory - Generic score scale) and with the PedsQL Diabetes module. PedsQL Generic core scales encompass 4 aspects of health-related quality of life: physical functioning, emotional functioning, social functioning and school functioning. The PedsQL Diabetes module encompasses five scales: diabetes symptoms, treatment barriers, treatment adherence, worry and communication. Significant differences were found in four of seven coping strategies compared with healthy controls: problem solving, support from friend and family, distraction and cognitive restructuring were more common in children with diabetes. Significant gender differences were found in four coping strategies: avoidance, social support from family, expressing feelings and distraction. In all cases girls scored higher than boys. Significant correlations were found between coping strategies and different aspects of health-related quality of life in children with diabetes: expressing feelings, avoidance, and social support from friends were negatively correlated with physical and social functioning. The findings of the present study suggest that child psychologists and clinicians treating children suffering diabetes should address coping strategies related to the health-related problems.

22. Identity and communication of the elders  
Zaletel M., Kovačev A.
First author's affiliation: Health Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Aging of the population is a growing problem of the contemporary developed societies, to which Slovenia also belongs. Therefore the problem of the elderly people's quality of life and the problem of their care are getting more and more important, since the elders need more social and health services. The aim of the present study was to research two decisive aspects of the self-experience and the behaviour of elderly people, which by now have not been given sufficient attention. These aspects are their identity and their communication. The research concentrated on the elders, who live in the homes for aged people. Communication research was particularly directed to those, whose verbal expression is severely restricted because of the old age degenerative processes. Therefore the non-verbal expressions which were registered by a »check list« were analysed. The identity research was concentrated on three types of identity: individual, social and collective identity. Since this research included self-governed responding to the questionnaire, the subject's verbal comprehension had to be sufficient. The research results proved that important(statistically significant differences) exist among members of both sexes and different age groups in their verbal and non-verbal expression. Important differences also exist among different employees, who care for them in the homes for aged people. Some important differences in individual and collective identity of the elders were also discovered.

23. High blood pressure representations in hypertensive adolescents: Structure and relations with personality and adherence  [presentation, ppt, 180 kB]
Žugelj U., Zupančič M., Kenda R., Komidar L.
First author's affiliation: Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia

The aim of the study is to examine whether there are differences among hypertensive adolescents in the way they conceptualize their illness. Further we wish to explore how these conceptualizations relate to medical regimen adherence and personality. Hypertension is a chronic illness usually affecting adult and elderly population but can also affect adolescents. If not properly treated or controlled, it can result in severe health complications (i.e. heart disease, damage of organs). Another issue of importance is that hypertension is usually asymptomatic disease thus posing a great challenge to the patient adherence. The relation can be indirectly influenced by personality. The participants are 100 adolescents with diagnosed essential hypertension (age 14 - 24 years) and the study is currently under progress. The Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire (Broadbent et al., 2006), modified MOS Adherence Questionnaire (Di Mateo, 1993) and The Inventory of Child Individual Differences (ICID, Halverson et al., 2003) are employed. A mediating role of illness representations in predicting adherence on the basis of personality traits was proposed. The fit of this model will be examined at the mid-level trait level and at the robust (the Big Five) level. Possible implications of our findings will be discussed.

24. The Transtheoretical model of change – Processes of change profiles within psychiatrical population  
Žuljević D., Gavrilov Jerković V.
First author's affiliation: Faculty of Philosophy, Novi Sad, Serbia

The processes of change represent hidden or obvious activities and experiences which people use or rely on in attempts to change their problematic behaviour. They were conceptualised as one of two key dimensions of Transtheoretical model of change (Prochaska et al. 1992). Metatheoretical analyses performed by TTM authors showed that over 400 different psychotherapeutical interventions could be summarized to 10 basic processes of change. By these authors patients use them more or less, depending on the fact at which stage of change they are. This research was conducted in attempt to discover if there was a difference in specific use of processes of change related to diagnosis of psychiatrical patients. The aim was to determine whether there was a difference in usage of change processes among patients with different diagnoses and also to determine which processes were dominantly used. The usage was measured by Processes of change questionaire PCQ-2001 (by Gavrilov-Jerković) completed by 221 patients diagnosed as neurosis, psychosis and personality disorder. Cluster analysis showed 6 clusters of patients with similar profile of processes usage. Analysis of variance showed a significant diferrence between them (F=2,78; p=0,019). By crosstabulating dignosis and cluster-membership variables we gained the following results: psychotic patients are mostly members of General low processes usage cluster and cluster defined by Relying on emotions, social support and psychotropic medications. Patients from neurotic spectrum were distributed between 4 clusters. Precontemplation cluster was defined by higher usage of passive processes. Contemplation cluster was defined by higher nondiscriminant usage of all processes. Action cluster was defined by low usage of medication process and high usage of all processes. The Maintenance cluster was defined by high usage of all processes except medication, and the highest usage of active and reorganizing processes. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings will be discussed.