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    Geographic, Socio-Demographic and School Type Variation in Adolescent Wellbeing and Mental Health and Links with Academic Competence in the United Arab Emirates
    (Springer Science and Business Media B.V., 2022) Marquez, Jose; Lambert, Louise; Cutts, Megan
    Interest in adolescents’ wellbeing and mental health is growing worldwide, but little research in this area has been conducted in certain world regions and countries such as the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Geographic, socio-demographic and school type differences in adolescent wellbeing and mental health are commonly observed in the field, and the UAE is a diverse country where these types of differences have been found for other outcomes (notably, academic). Yet, no prior national study has explored these differences in terms of wellbeing and mental health in the nation. We address this gap by investigating differences across emirates, gender, socio-economic status, immigrant status, school sector and school curriculum for overall life satisfaction, positive affect, negative affect, meaning and purpose in life, and internalizing difficulties. We use linear regression to analyse cross-sectional data from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) study from 2015 and 2018. We find substantial geographic, socio-demographic and school type differences in levels (2018) of wellbeing and mental health -which vary across distinct domains- and declines (2015–2018) of wellbeing. Better wellbeing and mental health are observed in the northern emirates and among boys. Better wellbeing and poorer mental health are observed among nationals (compared to expatriates) and in public schools (compared to private schools). Despite presenting the best academic outcomes, British schools present the worst wellbeing and mental health outcomes. However, results show the absence of a trade-off between academic competence and wellbeing and mental health, with evidence of a small positive association with wellbeing. © 2022, The Author(s).
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    Dissociative Identity Disorder and the Law: Guilty or Not Guilty?
    (Frontiers Media S.A., 2022-08-09) Kabene, Stefane M.; Balkir Neftci, Nazli; Papatzikis, Efthymios
    Dissociative identity disorder (DID) is a dissociative disorder that gained a significant rise in the past few decades. There has been less than 50 DID cases recorded between 1922 and 1972, while 20,000 cases are recorded by 1990. Therefore, it becomes of great significant to assess the various concepts related to DID to further understand the disorder. The current review has a goal of understanding whether an individual suffering from DID is legally responsible for the committed crime, and whether or not he or she can be considered competent to stand trial. These two questions are to be raised in understanding DID, by first shedding a light on the nature of the disorder and second by examining the past legal case examples. Despite the very nature of the disorder is characterized by dissociative amnesia and the fact that the host personality may have limited or no contact with the alters, there is no consensus within the legal system whether the DID patients should be responsible for their actions. Further to that, courts generally deny the insanity claims for DID suffering patients. In conclusion, more studies in the field are suggested to incorporate primary data into research, as the extensive reliance on secondary data forces us to believe the conclusions that were previously made, and no opportunity to verify those conclusions is present. Copyright © 2022 Kabene, Balkir Neftci and Papatzikis.
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    The effects of positive psychology interventions in Arab countries: A systematic review
    (John Wiley and Sons Inc., 2022) Basurrah, Asma A.; Di Blasi, Zelda; Lambert, Louise; Murphy, Mike; Warren, Meg A.; Setti, Annalisa; Al-Haj Baddar, Mohammed; Shrestha, Topaz
    While there is evidence for the effects of positive psychology interventions (PPIs) in the Western world, we know little about their effects on Arab cultures. This review aimed to assess the effects of PPIs on well-being and mental health across Arab countries. Systematic searches of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and quasi-experimental studies investigating PPIs in Arabia were conducted in six English and Arabic databases from the inception of positive psychology in 1998 to 28 February 2022. The quality of the studies was assessed using the Cochrane risk-of-bias tools. The protocol was published in the BMJ Open. Forty-four studies from 10 Arab countries (n = 3598 participants) were included. Of these, 12 were RCTs and 32 were quasi-experimental. The studies mainly focused on adults (73%) and healthy populations (86%). PPIs included mindfulness, positive thinking, strengths, hope, optimism, self-compassion, positive traits, and multiple PPIs. Nearly all studies (91%) mentioned cultural adaptation; however, little detail was given. This is the first review in Arabia. PPIs appear to be effective for promoting well-being and reducing mental health issues. However, there were some risks of bias concerns. Future research should include younger and clinical populations, using larger samples and providing more details about adaptation. © 2022 The Authors. Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of International Association of Applied Psychology.
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    Validation study of a wellbeing scale (SPANE) in the Arab Gulf region: A multicountry study
    (Public Library of Science, 2022-05) Yaaqeib, Saad; Lambert, Louise; Hadjisolomou, Stavros; Al-Fazari, Manal; Selim, Heyla; Haque, Amber
    The Scale of Positive and Negative Experience (SPANE) is an emerging wellbeing scale to measure the frequency of positive and negative emotions. This study explores the psychometric properties of SPANE on a sample from the Arab Gulf region. The Arab Gulf region shares cultural elements with the broader Muslim and Arab world, but maintains distinct features that warrants validation studies for psychological instruments. There were 1393 participants from Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait and other Arab Gulf countries. The factorial structure of SPANE was examined using a principal axis factor analysis, followed up with a confirmatory factor analysis. The convergent validity was examined by correlating SPANE with the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS). The findings confirmed a two-factor structure of SPANE, and demonstrated adequate psychometric properties and convergent validity. In conclusion, this study indicates that SPANE shows sufficient validity for use as a measure of wellbeing in the Arab Gulf region. © 2022 Yaaqeib et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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    The PISA performance gap between national and expatriate students in the United Arab Emirates
    (SAGE Publications Ltd, 2022-04) Marquez, Jose; Lambert, Louise; Ridge, Natasha Y; Walker, Stuart
    In most education systems, students with an immigrant background perform worse academically than do native students. However, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) differences emerge in the opposite direction and the national-expatriate gap in academic performance is equivalent to almost three years of schooling. This gap is a concern in the UAE, where national students mainly attend public schools while expatriates mostly attend private schools. In this study, to investigate the performance gap between national and expatriate students we estimate group differences and conduct linear regression analysis using data from the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment. Results show that the gap varies by emirate and country of origin, and is greater among boys, better-off students and those attending private schools. Between 33% and 47% of this gap is explained by school type, whether public or private. We offer recommendations for the UAE that may also be useful for other high expatriate recruiting nations in development; however, in a country characterized by 85% expatriates and a maturing education policy, challenges remain. © The Author(s) 2022.