Stigmatization of Mental Illness
Professor Hinshaw’s research group is conducting several studies that examine the relationship between stigmatization and mental illness:
Prejudice, Discrimination, and Mental Illness Labels
Graduate Student Researcher: Andres Martinez
This project seeks to shed light on the rejection and exclusion of individuals bearing mental illness labels. In addition, we seek to understand barriers to treatment seeking and treatment compliance. Our goal is to use findings from our lab to inform the development of stigma-reduction interventions and public policy decisions. This project is co-advised by Professors Stephen P. Hinshaw (Clinical Science) and Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton (Social-Personality). Taking a multimethod approach to assessment, we use survey measures, response-latency tasks, and, in future studies, endocrine measures.
The Effects of Mental Illness Stigma on Ethnic Differences in Help-Seeking Attitudes and Behaviors
Graduate Student Researcher: Fred Loya
Large discrepancies exist in the rates of mental health service utilization for Caucasian and ethnic minority populations, even after the effects of several known factors contributing to service utilization (e.g., socio-economic status) have been considered. This study seeks to better understand how differential attitudes towards mental illness generally, and its stigmatization specifically, contribute to help-seeking attitudes and behaviors for majority and minority populations. Additionally, because stigma is such a multi-faceted concept, we are interested in examining which features of stigma and its manifestation (e.g., desire for social distance vs. the stereotype of dangerousness) specifically underlie this discrepancy. The goal of this project is to help inform and develop interventions to promote rates of treatment seeking in populations that historically have underutilized services.
Parent Socialization and Mental Illness Stigma
Graduate Student Researcher: Mario J. Aceves
The developmental origins of negative attitudes towards individuals with
mental illness have received very little empirical attention. Yet, an understanding of factors that contribute to a child's attitudes towards mental illness is necessary if we are ever to prevent public stigma at a young age. This project, which is co-advised by Professors Stephen Hinshaw and Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton, seeks to determine how parenting influences child attitudes towards mental illness. Working with mothers and children of various ages, we integrate biological and psychological measures to determine how socialization practices, media exposure, and stress ultimately influence how children acquire their understanding and attitudes towards mental illness.
This study currently is recruiting parents of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade children to participate in this research. Interested parents should contact Mario Aceves at (510) 643-0373, or firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information regarding how to participate.