Stephanie E. Hall (author), Richard Bradshaw (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Bill Acton (third reader), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
The purpose of this project was to develop assessment and treatment protocols for clinical research on performance-specific Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). The treatments used were Observed and Experiential Integration (OEI; a trauma-root-focused therapy), and Breathing, Relaxation, Autogenics, Imagery, and grouNding (BRAIN; a trauma-symptom-focused therapy). Similarities between trauma and anxiety symptoms suggest a traumatic cause of SAD. Both trauma-root-focused and trauma-symptom-focused treatments resulted in improvements in: (a) narrow-spectrum symptoms of speaker confidence and public speaking behaviour. In response to trauma-root-focused treatment: (a) broad-spectrum symptoms of general anxiety and depression improved, and (b) psychophysiological reactivity to past traumatic social experiences was reduced. Diverse types of measurements (self-report, behaviour sampling, and psychophysiological measures) will be helpful for understanding (a) broad-spectrum, (b) narrow- spectrum, and (c) psychophysiological symptoms. Results of descriptive analyses supported the existence of traumatic origins of performance-specific SAD.
The connections and tensions between siblings may impact the development and well-being that children with ASD and their typically developing (TD) siblings experience. Parenting style and parental stress are two factors that impact a caregiver's ability to effectively foster positive relationships. Finally, the interplay between sibling relationships, caregiver characteristics, sibling involvement in intervention, and success in ASD intervention is of interest. Primary caregivers (N = 108) completed an online questionnaire and a hierarchical multiple regression was conducted. Results indicated: 1) Parenting stress explains 12% of the variance found in the warmth and closeness of sibling relationships; 2) Sibling involvement and success in ASD intervention cumulatively contributes to 13.5% of the variance found in the warmth and closeness of sibling relationships; and 3) warmth and closeness uniquely explains 7% of the variance of success in ASD intervention. Limitations, practical implications, and future research direction will be discussed.
Marvin Bravo (author), Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution), Richard Young (external examiner), Marvin McDonald (second reader)
This qualitative study uses the Enhanced Critical Incident Technique (ECIT) to explore incidents fathers report to be helpful or hindering to their parental engagement. Eight fathers were interviewed with 206 reported incidents. From the 206 incidents, 132 were identified as helpful (HE); 47 as hindering (HI); and 27 as wish list (WL) items. All incidents were assigned to one of the following categories (a) positive and negative role models, (b) Mother-Father Relationship (d) Father's Religion/Spirituality (e) Responsibility (f) Attachment (g) Personal Decision (h) Characteristics of Children (I) Reflective Parenting (j) Societal Influence (k) Father's Characteristics, and (l) Extended Family Influence. Fathers also provided 29 recommendations for effective paternal engagement. Research findings indicate major themes of responsibility, engagement, and father-mother dyad as important factors determining paternal involvement. Additionally, participants frequently referred to a confluence of factors impacting their involvement, which they navigate within a myriad of social roles.
B. Tammy Bartel (author), Derrick W. Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Janice W. Nadeau (second reader), Lauren J. Breen (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
This study explored the complex, multifaceted, relational dimensions of grieving in the family unit. Three bereaved families, who had lost a child participated in a family conversation and individual processing interviews. The guiding research question was, “how do bereaved families grieve together and continue a relationship with their deceased child?” Data were collected using the qualitative action-project method (QA-PM). This unique methodology offered a glimpse into how these families engaged with each other in their joint grieving actions. Data analysis was informed by action theory, family systems theory, and an instrumental case study approach. Family grieving processes were identified for each family and commonalities included turning towards their grief, sharing the pain, experiencing both joy and sorrow, participating in mourning events, ongoing rituals and remembrances, recognizing different individual grieving styles, and a shared, enduring connection to their deceased child that connected them to each other. The findings from this study demonstrate the importance of recognizing the interpersonal dimensions of the grieving process, and the family as a resource in this process.
Nathan T Bartz (author), Marvin McDonald (thesis supervisor), Robert Lees (thesis supervisor), Annette Vogt (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
This study examined the viability of a newly piloted implementation model of the FRIENDS for Life anxiety prevention program. In Chilliwack, British Columbia, a collaborative community initiative piloted an implementation model of the FRIENDS for Life program, which involved the inclusion of high school students as chief implementers of the FRIENDS program to local elementary school populations. The purpose of the study was to answer the question of what helps and hinders the implementation of FRIENDS when high school students are the implementers. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with five educators who were asked about their experiences with the FRIENDS program, what helpful and hindering incidents they observed, and to provide a wish list for future improvements. Results suggest that a youth-led FRIENDS implementation model is a viable model of program delivery and worth consideration for future development and refinement.
Kelsey Dawn Schmidt Siemens (author), Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Derrick Klaassen (second reader), Stephanie Martin (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Due to the prevalence of sexual shame among Christian women, this study was designed to better understand the lived experiences of sexual shame resilience and embodiment. Five young, married women were selected for inclusion based on their immersion in Christian culture during adolescence and for their experiences of working through sexual shame. In order to understand the meaning of these women’s experiences, a hermeneutic phenomenological method was employed. Through participant’s narratives, four categories of themes emerged (religious messaging around sexuality, experiences of sexual shame, healing experiences, and experiences of embodied sexuality). When participants were able to work through their sexual shame, they were able to embrace and find freedom in their sexuality. This study’s findings are consistent with Brown’s (2006) Shame Resilience Theory. The clinical implications of these findings are discussed in terms of the need to provide appropriate support for women struggling with sexual shame.
Neeta Sai (author), Dr. Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Dr. Mihaela Launeanu (second reader), Dr. Keren Epstein-Gilboa (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Women’s experiences of childbirth are understood primarily in terms of role change and physical or cognitive impacts. This study adopted a holistic, embodied perspective to explore how women’s childbirth experiences shape their embodied sense of self. Six women’s childbirth experiences were analysed using Gilligan’s (1982) Listening Guide method, adapted by integrating Längle’s (1993) Existential Analysis framework of the Four Fundamental Motivations. The analysis uncovered women’s voices of fulfillment and suffering as dynamic interplay suggesting that positive birth experience led to positive embodied sense of self while negative birth experience (e.g., disrupted embodiment) led to negative sense of self. These findings indicate that childbirth and motherhood can empower women to grow and be strong even in spite of possible traumatic or negative birth experience. This study has important implications for promoting a holistic understanding of the role of women’s subjective experiences of childbirth in shaping their embodied sense of self.
Marnie C Venema (author), Derrick W Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Janelle L Kwee (second reader), Richard A Young (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
This study explored relational grieving in community through examining how community members grieve with bereaved parents after the death of a child. Three bereaved parent couples and their community members were interviewed together using the qualitative action-project method (QA-PM) to examine their shared grieving actions. Data was analyzed through top-down and bottom-up processes to understand the shared intentions of their grieving actions together. The findings of this research elicited thick descriptions of relational grieving at a community level. Four main assertions of how communities grieve with bereaved parents emerged including: (a) selflessly offering emotional and practical support, (b) engaging in and honouring vulnerability, (c) holding the complexity of grieving, and (d) fostering remembrance of the deceased child together. The novel descriptions of relational grieving in community contributed to the growing area of relational bereavement research. The theoretical, empirical, and clinical implications of this study were discussed.
Benjamin J Bentum (author), Derrick W Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Janelle Kwee (second reader), Terry Lynn Gall (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
In this study community relational grief was researched by addressing how community members reciprocally interacted during bereavement. A focussed ethnography was used to address the research question which was, how does a religious community grieve the deaths of members together? Data analysis used the constant comparative method and was presented back to the community in a performance ethnography for confirmation and further data collection. The result was a contextually situated description of how this community grieved the deaths of community members. The four main themes were that community members: (a) shared a desire to care for the bereaved, (b) assessed relational proximity to the bereaved and the deceased to inform action according to role expectations, (c) grieved together, being impacted and impacting each other reciprocally, and (d) grieved, and interacted, according to their own unique characteristics and experiences. Implications for bereavement theory, research and practice were discussed.
Carlee E Lewis (author), Janelle L Kwee (thesis supervisor), Marvin J McDonald (second reader), Joanne Crandall (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
In this study, the efficacy of Lifespan Integration therapy (LI) for addressing attachment processes with adopted children in middle childhood was investigated. A Hermeneutic Single Case Efficacy Design (Elliott, 2002, 2015) was used to gather quantitative and qualitative data from an adoptive parent-child dyad who were experiencing LI for the first time. A 12-year-old male received bi-weekly LI therapy sessions, and data was collected throughout the therapy process. The adoptive mother was used as a resource in facilitating a more secure attachment. Client change and the contribution of LI to client change were adjudicated by experts who concluded that change occurred and was due to LI. Changes in internal attachment processes and the attachment bond between the parent and child of this dyad were observed. This case provides evidence that attachment disruptions can be repaired in middle childhood and that attachment processes can be targets in interventions beyond early childhood.
Sharon M Macfarlane (author), Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Jose Domene (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Research findings support the presence of psycho-social challenges for third culture kids (TCKs) given their characteristic lifestyle. Structured as a self-experimentation Hermeneutic Single-Case Efficacy Design (auto-HSCED), I investigated the use of Lifespan Integration (LI) therapy in addressing ego identity fragmentation as conceptualized through an Eriksonian and neo-Eriksonian model. This project sought to answer: Can LI be efficacious in addressing ego identity fragmentation in an adult TCK? Initial outcomes did not meet HSCED standards for significance, however, further investigation revealed evidence of decontextualization and reductionist therapy formulations and analysis processes. These were remediated through intersectional analysis with the use of metasynthetic principles which enabled a re-interpretation of results within a broader intersectional framework. The subsequent proposed refinement of study conclusions argued that outcomes met the threshold for significance and for demonstrating LI efficacy in producing client ego identity change. This project also provided a first-hand account of my therapeutic journey.
Giselle Tranquilla (author), Robert Lees (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Faith Auton-Cuff (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Multisystemic Therapy (MST) has been established as an effective treatment approach to working with at-risk youth. The Intensive Family Therapy Project followed the basic tenets of MST and adapted them to a rural community setting in British Columbia. The Project was designed to work with young offenders and their families in addressing delinquent behavior from a holistic perspective. This study used the Critical Incident Technique to examine what clients found helpful and unhelpful about the treatment program. Nine interviews were conducted involving six families. Data from the interviews was classified into seven categories, 26 subcategories. Results indicate participants found involvement in the project was more helpful than hindering, as indicated by the higher rate of positive incidents. Clients' voices identified Intensive Family Therapy as a valuable treatment approach and results indicate the potential for adapted forms of MST to be applicable, relevant and effective in working with these families.