Author

Kaylee Brown

Date Approved

2017

Degree Type

Open Access Senior Honors Thesis

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Natalie Dove

Second Advisor

Dr. Carol Freedman-Doan

Abstract

This study is a three-part survey that examines how loss can be experienced differently based on one's generation and the way a message about loss is framed. More specifically, participants of all ages read a mock article that framed loss experiences positively or negatively, and then participants answered questions regarding their own loss experiences. It was hypothesized that, due to generational variance, older vs. younger individuals may deal with loss quite differently and, as such, may react to the positively and negatively framed loss articles as a function of their ages. As hypothesized, significant relationships among article type and age group were found with regard to participants' coping habits. Younger individuals (ages 18-34) reported more positive coping behaviors after viewing the negatively framed article, but middle aged individuals (ages 35-51) reported more positive coping behaviors after viewing the positively framed article. Overall the oldest population (ages 52-75) reported the most positive coping. The results of this study have tangible clinical implications because professionals may impact clients' perceptions of loss positively based upon the framing of their messages, which ultimately may have an impact on that client's grief journey and their overall view of professional services.

Included in

Psychology Commons

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