Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Degree

Master of Science

Program

Psychology

Supervisor

Dr. Richard W.J. Neufeld

Abstract

Quantifying the processes of coping is one way to make the concept both descriptive and testable. Decisional Control (DC) is a formal, mathematically-specified, normative model which prescribes that an individual faced with a variety of alternatives in a stressing situation will attempt to minimize objective and perceived threat of an adverse event inherent within their choices. In this study, a game-theoretic probability mixture model created for DC was evaluated using established indexes of model fit to empirical decision and choice data. Sources of empirical departure from the fully normative model predictions, notably individual and group cognitive mapping of choice linked threat, were investigated in part through the use of psychometrical profiling of individual differences. Results of a repeated measures ANOVA showed that individualized mappings of subjective threat significantly improved model fit over that of the consensual and objective mappings. Additionally, psychometric profiling did not identify notable trends in model operation.


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