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  • Table of Content
       , Volume 44 Issue 2 Previous Issue    Next Issue
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    Audiovisual Temporal Recalibration: The Combined and Separate Effect of Adapted Space and Object
    YUAN Xiang-Yong,HUANG Xi-Ting,BI Cui-Hua,YUAN Hong
    . 2012, 44 (2): 143-153 .  
    Abstract   PDF (394KB) ( 1492 )
    Previous researches have revealed that temporal recalibration arises from perceptual change rather than cognitive shift. And such a PSS(the point of subjective simultaneity) shift might coincide with changes in perceptual latency of a certain modality. Given the rich and variable environments we live in, multisensory events might not always appear in the central field as considerable experiments have done. There is no doubt that they could simultaneously or successively appear in the lateral space. If the participants were repeatedly exposed to asynchrony audiovisual pairs presented in lateral space (left or right), will the aftereffects only be expected in the adapted space?
    A recent study has shown that temporal recalibration was spatial-specific (Hanson, Roach, Heron, & McGraw, 2008), but can certain audio-visual(abbreviated to AV) object play some roles in temporal recalibration? Now we found a new way to test the combined effect of adapted space and object, and to separate the two individual effects. To the end, two experiments were designed. Each experiment was comprised of an exposed and a test phase. In the exposed phase of the first experiment, certain asynchrony audiovisual stimulus pairs were repeatedly displayed in the left or right space with a fixation in the screen center on which participants were required to freeze their eyes throughout the whole experiment. While in the test phase, we presented the adapted AV pairs in the adapted space but novel AV pairs in the opposite space. In the second experiment, the procedure was the same with the first one except that we put the adapted AV pairs in the opposite space and the novel ones in the adapted space. Through these two experiments, we first aim to replicate the spatial-specific findings when adapted AV pairs (object) recurred in the adapted space, then to explore whether the separate effect of adapted object and adapted space would induce temporal recalibration as well.
    In Experiment 1, after repeated exposure to 240 trials with constant temporal lag in a block, either with auditory stimulus leading 128ms or visual stimulus leading 128ms, the participants shifted their PSS towards the leading modality, only in the adapted space. In Experiment 2, if the temporal recalibration were restricted to the combined effect of adapted space and object, there would be no observed PSS shifts. But violating such inference, the participants still showed significant PSS shifts in the adapted AV pairs and approaching-significant PSS shifts in the adapted space, although the magnitude was no so great as in Experiment 1.
    Comparing the results of the two experiments, we concluded that when adapted object kept its position across the exposed and test phase, audiovisual temporal recalibration showed as specific, in other words, aftereffects only exists in the adapted space or adapted object; but when separating the effect of space and object, temporal recalibration was neither spatial- nor object-specific. That is to say if the adapted stimulus pairs changes its location after exposure, wherever it stops, aftereffects would be subsequently induced in that new space, while in the adapted space aftereffects stills remains although novel object replaced the adapted one. The outcome of temporal recalibration then ought to be characterized as the separate effect of adapted space and adapted object, or the combined effect of both.
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    Concreteness Effects of Emotional Noun Words: Evidences from ERP
    WANG Zhen-Hong,YAO Zhao
    . 2012, 44 (2): 154-165.  
    Abstract   PDF (489KB) ( 2168 )
    In recent years, the relationship between emotion and language has gradually become the focus in language studies. It was reported that concrete words were processed faster and more accurate than abstract words while emotional words possessed similar processing advantage in comparison with neutral words, which termed as concreteness effect and emotion effect, respectively. Moreover, both effects are associated with N400 and LPC: while N400 effect represented semantic activation, LPC might result from mental imagery activation. Despite of the similarity in their effects, emotionality and concreteness of words are still different factors that might affect semantic processing. Therefore, how the two factors influence semantic processing and whether the two factors interacted with each other in word processing remains an open question. To deal with these problems, event-related potentials were recorded in two experiments in which subjects were asked to perform lexical decision task and affective rating task while they were visually presenting concrete and abstract word with neutral, positive and negative emotionality.
    Results showed that concrete emotional words were processed faster and more accurate than abstract emotional words across emotion type and under both task conditions. Moreover, concrete emotional words elicited an enlarged N400 and decreased LPC than abstract emotional words under both task conditions, although the concreteness effect on LPC reached significant level only under implicit emotional task. In addition, the concreteness effect on N400 under implicit emotional task was modulated by emotionality, as indicated that neutral concrete words elicited enhanced N400 than neutral abstract words, whereas no significant N400 effects were found for either positive or negative words. These results suggested that emotionality and concreteness of words could affect each other in semantic processing stage when the emotionality was implicitly processed, implying that emotionality of words might provide sufficient context and thus facilitate the semantic activation in words processing.
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    The Proficient Chinese-English Bilinguals’Mechanism of Language Switching in Phrase Level
    ZHANG Ji-Jia,WANG Yue
    . 2012, 44 (2): 166-178.  
    Abstract   PDF (367KB) ( 1208 )
    Code-switching has attracted much attention from researchers with different perspectives. It has widely accepted that when bilinguals switch from one language to another, there is generally a transient cost to performance, namely the so-called switching cost. Switching cost is the main aspect when we explore the essence of the language switching mechanism. The recent study focused on where these costs arise from. The costs could be caused by different mechanisms. It may arise as a result of processes within the bilingual lexicon and/or because of processes outside the lexicon associated with task performance. Although the investigator have done a lot of researches with different experimental paradigms and materials, non-controversial conclusion has not been arrived.
    Until now, most conclusions were driven from lexical level or sub-lexical level and most researches was involved by two alphabetic characters and their orthographic specificity. If we select some language units (phrases or sentences)as experimental materials which are involved with grammatical pattern and/or syntax, this will help us to ascertain the source of switching cost in language representation system more than in lexicon or mental dictionary. For phrases, we mean prepositional phrases and noun phrases which represent spatial orientation and quantity separately. This study focused on ideogram characters such as Mandarin characters and phrase level to explore the mechanism of language switching with proficient Chinese-English bilinguals in picture naming task.
    29 undergraduates or post-graduates whose major are English participated in two experiments. They were asked to name the picture in either Chinese or English as fast and accurately as possible according to different background color in two experiments. The material of experiment 1 was prepositional phrases. The material of experiment 2 consisted two kinds of noun phrases, either having quantifier or not. All the participants were tested individually on computers. Reaction times for correct responses and error rates were analyzed by subject and item variance.
    The results showed that for the proficient Chinese-English bilinguals, the reaction time was shorter and the error rates were lower in non-switch condition. Typical language switching cost was found in both experiments. Furthermore, proficient bilinguals showed shorter naming latencies with their weaker language (English) than with their dominant language (Chinese) in switch condition. However, the switching costs of phrase with quantifier were not significantly different from that of phrase without quantifier. This means that the grammatical pattern and/or syntax did affect the processing of language switching but did not affect the switching cost.
    It is claimed that in phrase level, even the proficient bilinguals choose the mechanism of inhibition control to complete the process of word. Therefore, the asymmetry of switching costs appeared without surprise. As language information did not affect the language switching cost in phrase lexical level, we can conclude that the switching cost does not come from the word - recognition system itself but is caused by processes outside the lexicon associated with task performance.
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    Tests of the Integrative Model and Priority Heuristic Model from the Point of View of Choice Process: Evidence from an Eye-tracking Study
    WANG Zuo-Jun,LI Shu
    . 2012, 44 (2): 179-198.  
    Abstract   PDF (714KB) ( 1149 )
    Theories intended to describe decision making under risk and uncertainty can be divided into integrative models and heuristic models, according to their theoretical basis. The integrative model implies that individuals integrate outcomes and probabilities in a compensatory way and select the option with the highest weighted sum. The heuristic model, in contrast, assumes that people do not integrate these kinds of information but rely on a repertoire of simple decision strategies, called heuristics, to make inferences, choices, estimations, and other decisions.
    The present paper tested the integrative model and the priority heuristic model from the point of view of choice process by using an eye-tracking system. The results show that the decision time and information acquisition pattern differ when participants make choices according to their own rules as opposed to making choices according to the imposed EV/PH rule. Specifically, the decision time did not decrease with the increased difference between the CPT values in the self-rule condition, as it did in the imposed EV rule condition. Process measures further indicated that individuals did not rely on deliberate or automatic calculations of weighted sums because attribute-based transitions were observed more frequently than option-based transitions in the self-rule condition. Furthermore, crossed transitions occurred more frequently when the two choices were cross-presented than when they were not. These results conflict with the prediction of the integrative model.
    Brandstätter et al. (2006) claimed that the priority heuristic could not only provide superior predictions of the output of a choice process but could also account for information acquisition. The information, Brandstätter suggested, should be considered in the order of minimum outcome, probability of minimum outcome, and maximum outcome. Although the measure of decision time supported the PH in the present study, process measures contrasted with the PH. More attention (dwelling time, fixation count and transitions) was paid to the maximum outcome than to the minimum outcome in “one-step” decision problems, and more attention (dwelling time, fixation count and transitions) was paid to the probability of maximum outcome than to the probability of minimum outcome in “three-step” decision problems. These results conflict with the prediction of the priority heuristic.
    In sum, neither the integrative model nor the priority heuristic could account for the data that we observed on choice process. This study encourages the use of process-oriented models and data in decision research rather than simply assessing the predictions of as-if models.
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    Relations among Parental Meta-Emotion Philosophy, Parental Emotion Expressivity, and Children’s Social Competence
    LIANG Zong-Bao,ZHANG Guang-Zhen,CHEN Hui-Chang,ZHANG Ping
    . 2012, 44 (2): 199-210.  
    Abstract   PDF (417KB) ( 3317 )
    Parental meta-emotion philosophy refers to parents’ feelings and behaviors toward their own and their children’s emotions. It reflects parental beliefs about emotion socialization. Research has indicated that maternal positive meta-emotion philosophy (e.g. emotion coaching) is associated with children’s emotional competence, social competence and that maternal negative meta-emotion philosophy (etc. emotion dismissing) is related with children’s behavior problem. However, little research has been conducted on paternal meta-emotion philosophy. Moreover, there is inadequate research on parental emotion noninvolvement and emotion dysfunction. It has been suggested that children’s competence may be a mediator of the relations between parental emotion socialization belief or goal and children’s social outcomes. It is also reasonable to argue that parents’ beliefs or goals about emotion may also affect their own emotion-related behavior and emotion expressivity. As such, parental emotion expressivity may play a mediated role in relations between parental emotion-related beliefs and children’s social competence.
    The current study explored relations among parental meta-emotion philosophy, emotion expressivity, and children’s social competence. We hypothesized that parental emotion expressivity would mediate the relations between parental meta-emotion philosophy and children’s social competence. Three hundred and forty one children aged 3-5 years and their parents participated in the study. Child social competence was assessed using the Early School Behavior Rating Scale reported by mothers. Fathers and mothers reported their own emotion expressivity using the Self-Expressiveness in the Family Questionnaire and meta-emotion philosophy using the Parental Meta-Emotion Philosophy Scale.
    Multiple regression analyses and path analyses revealed the following results. First, paternal emotion coaching philosophy was positively associated with children’s social competence, and paternal emotion dysfunction philosophy was negatively associated with children’s social competence. Paternal positive expressivity was positively associated with children’s social competence whereas paternal negative emotional expressivity was negatively associated with children’s social competence. Paternal positive and negative emotion expressivity mediated relations between paternal emotion coaching and children’s social competence. In addition, paternal negative emotion expressivity mediated relations between paternal emotion dysfunction and children’s social competence. Second, maternal emotion coaching philosophy was positively associated with children’s social competence, and maternal emotion dysfunctional philosophy was negatively associated with children’s social competence. Further, maternal positive emotional expressivity was positively associated with children’s social competence, but negative emotional expressivity was not associated with children’s social competence. The relation between maternal emotion coaching and children’s social competence was mediated by maternal emotion expressivity. These results indicated that parental emotion-related beliefs or goals not only were directly associated with children’s social competence, but also had indirect effects on children’s social competence through emotion-related reflection and behavior.
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    The Effects of Parenting Styles and Temperament on Adolescent Aggression: Examining Unique, Differential, and Mediation Effects
    LI Dong-Ping,ZHANG Wei,LI Dan-Li,WANG Yan-Hui,ZHEN Shuang-Ju
    . 2012, 44 (2): 211-225.  
    Abstract   PDF (459KB) ( 4911 )
    Youth aggression is a worldwide public health problem. Understanding the antecedents of aggression is the precursor of any successful prevention and intervention. A large body of literature shows that parenting styles and temperament are closely related to aggressive behaviors in adolescence. However, our understanding of the association among these variables is limited in several ways. First, there is a paucity of research that examines the unique effects of parenting styles and temperament on aggression. Second, work is needed that distinguishes different forms of aggression (i.e., direct vs. indirect aggression) and examines the similarity of and differences among the antecedents of these behaviors. Third, the existing research is not clear about the underlying mechanisms in the relationship between parenting styles, temperament, and aggressive behaviors.
    The purpose of the present study is to investigate: 1) the unique and differential associations of parenting styles and temperament with direct and indirect aggression in adolescence; 2) whether adolescents’ normative beliefs about aggression mediates the relationship between parenting styles or temperament, and direct and indirect aggression.
    Participants were 660 middle school students (mean age = 14.14 years, 364 females) recruited from a southern province in mainland China. In school, participants completed Parenting Styles and Dimensions Questionnaire, Early Adolescent Temperament Questionnaire (Revised Version, Short Form), and Aggressive Beliefs and Behaviors in Adolescence Scale.
    Multiple and multivariate regression analyses showed that (a) parenting styles (authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive) were not significantly associated with direct aggression, while temperamental characteristics (effortful control, anger/frustration, and sensation seeking) were uniquely associated with direct aggression. In contrast, parenting styles and temperament were both uniquely associated with indirect aggression. (b) Parenting styles were more strongly related to indirect aggression than to direct aggression. However, temperamental characteristics (anger/frustration and sensation seeking) were more strongly related to direct aggression than to indirect aggression. (c) Normative beliefs about direct aggression mediated the association between temperament and aggressive behaviors, while normative beliefs about indirect aggression mediated the association between parenting styles and temperament, and aggressive behaviors.
    In conclusion, parenting styles are to some extent specifically related to indirect aggression, whereas temperamental characteristics are specifically related to direct aggression. Normative beliefs about aggression are important mediators in the relationship between parenting styles, temperament, and aggression in adolescence.
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    Changes in Mental Health of Members of the Chinese Army (1990~2007):A Cross-Temporal Meta-Analysis
    YI Xin-Fa,ZHAO Qian,CAI Shu-Shan
    . 2012, 44 (2): 226-236.  
    Abstract   PDF (506KB) ( 1669 )
    Many studies have been conducted to measure the mental health status of members of the Chinese Army. However, empirical research on the topic has yielded few consistent results. Some studies have found that Chinese Army members have poor mental health status, and others provide evidence that soldiers’ mental health is positive. The main issue we addressed in this study was the development of the mental health of Chinese Army members over the past two decades. This time period is significant because it has been a relatively peaceful time for China, and soldiers during this period are increasingly products of the single-child family policies. Are there significant differences on mental health between soldiers from single-child families and multiple-child families? We also explored differences in the mental health of soldiers from urban and rural areas and soldiers with different levels of education.
    Typically, traditional meta-analysis methods are used to examine the effect size of homogenous studies on a specific topic. But there are typically large variances in effect sizes in studies published across a number of years, an issue which has not been ideally resolved in the field of psychology. The cross-temporal meta-analysis method used in this study was developed by Twenge and introduced into China by Xin. This method was applied to examine the changing process of certain psychological factors, such as mental health, coping style, learning anxiety, and self-esteem.
    Cross-temporal meta-analysis was applied to examine the changes in mental health of members of the Chinese Army from 1990 to 2007. Ninety-four published studies of mental health of members of the Chinese Army (N = 108,736) were included. In these studies, the Symptom Checklist 90 (SCL-90) was used to assess the mental health of the soldiers. The means and SDs of nine dimensions of SCL-90 during 18 years were gathered and compared.
    Results and conclusions showed that: (1) Mental health of members of the Chinese Army steadily improved between 1990 and 2007; (2) During those 18 years, the Interpersonal Sensitivity factor of SCL-90 of Chinese Army members changed most significantly, and the least significantly changed factor was Somatization; (3) Chinese Army members showed evidence of fewest problems on the Photic Anxiety factor, in contrast to the consistent problems indicated by scores on the Obsessive-Compulsive and Interpersonal Sensitivity scales; (4) Chinese Army members from single-child families (N = 1,944) showed significant lower evidence of positive mental health than soldiers from multiple child families (N = 2,649); (5) The mental health of soldiers from non-agricultural backgrounds (N = 7,808) was less positive than that of soldiers from agricultural household (N = 11,459); (6) Chinese Army members with senior high school education level (N = 10,189) had less positive mental health than those with junior high school (N = 8,407) or university education (N = 863).
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    Climate for Innovation, Creative Efficacy and Team Innovation: The Moderating Role of Team Leadership
    SUI Yang,CHEN Yun-Yun,WANG Hui
    . 2012, 44 (2): 237-248.  
    Abstract   PDF (434KB) ( 2131 )
    Organizational climates are defined as a set of shared perceptions regarding the policies, practices, and procedures that an organization rewards, supports, and expects. Organizational climates exert an important influence on organizations and employees who work in them. In recent years, climate researchers have switched their focus from global to facet-specific climates. This study defines climate for innovation (or support for innovation) as the innovation aspect of the work group climate, which reflects shared perceptions among group members regarding their work environment that is creativity-/ innovation-relevant. Previous studies have found that climate for innovation is significantly related to team innovation. However, the research on the relationship between climate and innovation at the team level is still lacking, especially in the Chinese context. Moreover, previous research has not answered the following questions: what is the psychological mechanism that channels the impact of climate for innovation on team innovation? What is the role of team leader in this relationship? This study aims to address the two questions by examining the mediating effect of team creative efficacy and the moderating role of team leader’s behaviors of leading innovation.
    Data were collected from a high-tech company in China. Teamwork is popular in this company. A team leader is assigned to each team and this leader acts not only as the job coordinator but also as a coworker of team members. We randomly selected 90 R&D teams from a list of 380 teams provided by the HR department, and finally got a sample of 51 teams with average team size of 3.6. We used hierarchical regression and bootstrap method with the aid of SPSS macro developed by Preacher and Hayes (2008) to test our hypotheses.
    With team innovation as the dependent variable, the results showed that the regression coefficients of climate for innovation on both team creative efficacy and team innovation were significantly positive. After adding leader’s leading innovation behavior and its interaction term with team creative efficacy, the regression coefficient on team innovation of the interaction term was significant. The moderating pattern showed that the relationship between team creative efficacy and team innovation becomes stronger as leaders’ leading innovation behavior growing from low to high. In addition, the mediating test with bootstrap method displayed that team creative efficacy acts as the mediator between climate for innovation and team innovation. Furthermore, conditional indirect effect test also showed that the mediating effect of team creative efficacy on the climate for innovation-team innovation linkage is significant only when the level of leader’s leading innovation behavior is high. All hypotheses were supported.
    Findings of this study shed light on the innovation process at the team level. First, this research extends social cognitive theory to the work group level by revealing the mediating effect of team creative efficacy on the climate for innovation-team innovation relationship. This result adds to our understanding of the mechanisms through which climate for innovation influences team innovation. Future research should investigate additional mediators, such as team members’ external social networks. Second, the result of the positive relationship between climate for innovation and team innovation in the Chinese sample confirms the findings obtained from Western world and enriches the climate and innovation literature. Finally, the catalyst role of team leadership implies that innovation-supportive leadership can strengthen the effect of team creative efficacy on team innovation and the indirect effect of climate for innovation on team innovation.
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    A Polytomous Extension of Rule Space Method Based on Graded Response Model
    TIAN Wei,XIN Tao
    . 2012, 44 (2): 249-262.  
    Abstract   PDF (562KB) ( 827 )
    Polytomous item has become an important item type in many large scale educational assessments. However, cognitive diagnostic models are initially proposed for dichotomous data, which limits the application and development of the Cognitive Diagnostic Assessment (CDA). For example, the rule space methodology (RSM) is still limited to the dichtomous item. The article thus extended the dichotomous RSM to that of polytomous item based on Graded Response Model, focusing on the definition and formula of ideal item-response pattern (IRP) and caution index in the polytomous item case.
    In this paper, the IRP, defined as the number of attributes in an item that could be correctly responded by examinees without slippage or guessing, can be obtained by matrix multiplication. The degree of aberrant response, which indicated higher ratio score on hard items and lower ratio score on easy items, was described by the caution index, .The expectation of f(V) was zero, its variance was , and it was orthogonal to the ability of q at a given level of ability.
    In the simulation study, Monte-Carlo experiment was used to test the classification accuracy under 4(attribute hierarchy)×4(slippage probability) conditions, indicated by four indexes, the pattern ratio, marginal ratio, sensitivity and specificity. Under each of 16 situations, the IRP was firstly ranked by raw score in ascending order, and the distribution of IRP in the population was made to approximate a normal distribution. A sample of 5000 observed response patterns was generated from the ideal item-response patterns, by randomly adding slips to each component of the ideal item- response patterns. For example, in order to generate 2% random errors, a random number was produced from the distribution of U(0,1). For each item, if the random number was less than 0.01, and its ideal item score was not zero, then 1 was subtracted from it, otherwise 1 was added; if random number was higher than 0.99, and its ideal item score was not full, then the 1 was added to it, otherwise 1 was subtracted. MULTILOG 7.03 was applied to estimate the item and person parameters.
    The results showed that: (1) the caution index for the polytomous item was constructed properly, and it could be interpreted with semantic meaning; the caution index for the dichotomous item was a special case for that of polytomous item; (2) the accuracy of classification under each of 4 hierarchy structures decreased as the slippage probability increased; (3) the classification accuracy associated with the linear and convergent hierarchy was obviously better than that of the divergent and unstructured hierarchy. (4) The distribution of the dots mapped from the ideal item-response patterns has an effect on the classification accuracy, that is, the overlap of the dots could reduce the classification accuracy rate.
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    When Should We Use Testlet Model? A Comparison Study of Bayesian Testlet Random-Effects Model and Standard 2-PL Bayesian Model
    LIU Yue,LIU Hong-Yun
    . 2012, 44 (2): 263-275.  
    Abstract   PDF (553KB) ( 1039 )
    A testlet is comprised of a group of multiple choice items based on a common stimuli. When a testlet is used, the traditional item response models may not be appropriate due to the violation of the assumption of local independence (LI). A variety of new models have been proposed to analyze response data sets for testlets. Among them, the Bayesian random effects model proposed by Bradlow, Wainer and Wang (1999) is one of the most promising. However, in many situations it is not clear to practitioners whether the traditional IRT methods should still be used instead of a newly proposed testlet model.
    The objective of the current study is to investigate the effects of model selection in various situations. In simulation 1, simulated response data sets were generated under three simulation factors, which were: testlet variance (0, 0.5, 1, 2); testlet size (2, 5, 10); and test length (20, 40, 60). For each simulation condition, the test structure was determined by fixing the number of examinees as I =2000, and the percentage of testlet items in a test as 50%. Under each condition, 30 replications were generated. Both two-parameter Bayesian testlet random effect model and standard two-parameter Bayesian model were fitted to every dataset using MCMC method. The computer program SCORIGHT was used to conduct all the analysis across different conditions.
    Two models were compared corresponding to seven criteria: bias, mean absolute error, root mean square error, correlation between estimated and true values, 95% posterior interval width, 95% coverage probability. These indexes were computed for all parameters separately.
    Simulation 2 compared the two models under two factors: the proportion of independent items (1/3, 1/2, 2/3); test length (20, 30, 40, 60). The data generation, analyze process and criteria mimicked those of simulation 1.
    The results showed that: (1) The accuracy of the estimation of all parameters under 2-PL Bayesian testlet random-effect model remained stable with varying levels of testlet effect and testlet size. However, the estimate errors of all the parameters under 2-PL Bayesian model increased dramatically as the testlet effect and testlet size became larger. Besides, using Bayesian testlet random-effect model, the error for every parameter was always less than that for 2-PL Bayesian model. It was especially necessary to choose 2-PL Bayesian testlet random-effects model when testlet variance and testlet size were large. (2) Even though, the accuracy of estimation of item parameters in Bayesian testlet random-effect model wasn’t affected by test length, the accuracy of ability parameter was. Moreover, as the test got shorter, the errors of all parameters under 2-PL Bayesian model increased dramatically. In all, under short test conditions, even if there was large testlet effect, Bayesian testlet random-effect model couldn’t work well, meanwhile, if items were all independent, using Bayesian testlet random-effect model would result in much worse ability estimations than 2-PL Bayesian model. (3) When the proportion of independent items was large, and the test length was larger than 20 items, the estimations of two models didn’t show significant differences.
    In conclusion, 2-PL Bayesian testlet random-effect model is more general. Using the more complex testlet model when items are all independent, will lead almost the same accuracy of the parameter estimations as using the 2-PL Bayesian model. It is better to choose 2-PL Bayesian testlet random-effect model when testlet variance, testlet size, and test length are large. However, when test length is short, even the Bayesian testlet random- effects model couldn’t provide accurate estimations of parameters when local dependence happened. So it is important to make sure the test was comprised of enough items before applying a testlet model. We also give some suggestions for practitioners. In the test construction period, first it is better for items to be independent, if not, shorter testlets and larger proportion of independent items should be included. While in the test analysis period, local dependence should be detected first. If evidence shows that there is dependence structure, then an appropriate model should be chosen to avoid estimation errors.
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    Image Thinking: The Cultural-Psychological Underpinning of Chinese Patients’ Somatic Propensity
    LV Xiao-Kang,WANG Xin-Jian
    . 2012, 44 (2): 276-284.  
    Abstract   PDF (409KB) ( 1585 )
    Under a cultural psychological perspective, the high somatization report rate among Chinese clients is a reasonable phenomenon that has long and deep cultural roots. In lack of the cultural knowledge that underpinned the cultural-psychological structure of a particular nation, one would find it hard to understand the diverse dimensions of a medical phenomenon. The disputes concerning somatization provide a typical case that we could recognize the paradox and limitation of modern medicine and find alternate accounts.
    Image thinking is the prototype of traditional Chinese thoughts. Differing form the western logic thinking, it is an anthropomorphic, analogous thinking paradigm that reveres the notion of Tian Ren He Yi, the self-evident harmonic corresponding relations between the structure, physiological functions, pathological changes of the human body as microcosm and the change of the nature environments and social world as a macrocosm. All existing elements in the world are supposed to be orderly interconnected via the force of Yin, Yang, and Five Elements. The disorder of natural and social forces is considered as the final cause of human disease and the ultimate source of all disasters and unhappiness. Human body is part of the interconnected world and thus is subject to disturbance from all possible natural and social forces. It is not only a biological body, but also reflects one’s thoughts, emotions, and other psychological aspects. Human diseases, therefore, cannot be distinguished as physical diseases or psychological diseases, since they are interchangeable and almost occur simultaneously.
    Traditional Chinese Medicine also employs image thinking to explain, diagnose and cure diseases. According to the classic TCM theory, internal organs are centers of all psychological and physiological functions and emotions are regarded as important etiological factors of mental and physical illness. However, once physiological functions are disturbed, the logical methods of treatment become physiological or pharmacological interventions, together with certain psychological interventions. Though psychological interventions mainly serve as supplementary treatments, it is clear that body and mind are always treated together in the categorization and treatment of diseases, which is a distinct feature of TCM.
    A typical TCM practitioner is thus a physiological doctor and a psychotherapist simultaneously. He or she is suppose to listen to a patient’s chief complaint carefully and examine the patient’s symptom with a holistic view by asking the patient’s living habits, diet, stress, sexual life, etc. A doctor is supposed to speculate the real factors underlying the apparent symptoms through looking, listening, asking, and touching, and the patient should be assigned with a customized treatment both pharmaceutically or psychologically. A practitioner that only detect and treat the bodily symptoms are usually referred as inferior doctors, while eminent doctors always know it is the unbalance status of Yin and Yang that cause any disease in any form and employ their medical knowledge to solve the problem and then restore the body to its normal balanced condition.
    The long prevalence of TCM in Chinese society has demonstrated the strength of image thinking. It encourages patients to freely talk about their illness, either in physical or psychological way. Both the patients and doctors have the consensus that the categorization of physical or psychological diseases itself is not important, and it is the doctor’s liability to detect the real causes of patients’ symptoms, which may be attributed to biological, social, or psychological factors. The patient’s main complaint of disease is thus a culturally specified behavior that may differ significantly among different cultures.
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