We investigated the relationships between the sense of acceptance by a communication partner and the degree of familiarity with that partner, and the effects of university students’ and older adults’ personalities on the strength of their relationships. The participants played the Settoku Nattoku game, the persuasive game. After each session, the persuader rated their familiarity with the persuaded partner and the degree to which they felt that the partner accepted them. The results of Hierarchical Linear Modeling indicated that familiarity with the partner was positively related to the sense of acceptance in university students. This relationship was stronger among people with typical East Asian psychological tendencies, including high interdependence. Older adults had a higher sense of acceptance than university students, whereas familiarity with the partner was not related to their sense of acceptance. Moreover, the sense of acceptance was higher among older adults who preferred a firm yes or no. These results suggest that Japanese elderly who were free of cultural norms had a high sense of acceptance, regardless of who their communication partners were.
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the incidence of serious social mental health problems such as depression. Changes to the way we work, such as telework, are potential factors for mental health problems. This study’s aim was to investigate the relationship between difficulties adjusting to new work styles and depression among job workers during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. We conducted a web-questionnaire survey of 919 Japanese workers (May 2020) using the snowball sampling method. A hierarchical logistic regression analysis using a dependent variable (depression), an independent variable (difficulty in work practices), and adjustment variables (gender, age, working practices, and coping) found that those who had difficulty “communicating with boss, colleagues, and subordinates” and “switching on and off” were more likely to be depressed. This study shows that there was a relationship between difficulty in work practices and depression during the pandemic. Given this study’s limitations, it is hoped that the influence of region and occupation on depression will be examined by recruiting a wide range of participants in the future.
This is the first study investigating the determinants of mental health among Japanese firefighters with the COVID-19 outbreak. Firefighters who respond to emergency calls and administer emergency medical treatment face numerous serious threats to their mental health because of the spread of COVID-19. These threats range from significant infection risks to changes in daily operations. We conducted an online questionnaire survey with Japanese firefighters (n = 2,748, valid responses = 2,204) who also served as ambulance workers during the second COVID-19 wave in August 2020. The questionnaires inquired about personal and occupational demographics, occupational stress resulting from COVID-19, social support, germ aversion using a subscale of the Perceived Vulnerability to Disease (PVD) scale, and the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). The results indicated that the burdens of infection prevention, anxiety about infection and furloughs, interpersonal conflicts related to COVID-19, reduced social support, and germ aversion were associated with deterioration of mental health. Measures for maintaining the mental health of firefighters are discussed based on these results.
The purpose of this study was to develop the Japanese version of the Revised Unmitigated Communion Scale (J-RUCS) and examine its reliability and validity. Participants included 423 Japanese university students. The confirmatory factor analysis indicated that J-RUCS had two error covariances; however, it did not indicate a unidimensional structure. As for reliability, adequate internal consistency and test-retest reliability were confirmed. Regarding validity, there were positive associations between J-RUCS and affiliation, empathic concern, negative communion, self-devaluative view adjectives, preoccupied attachment style, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Additionally, J-RUCS scores were negatively correlated with self-assertion and self-esteem. These results, which are consistent with previous studies, showed the validity of the J-RUCS.
This study aimed to develop a Japanese version of the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) using Psychology Experiment Building Language based on the English version. Additionally, we tested the equivalence of these versions using a biological equivalence test. We randomly assigned 63 undergraduate and graduate students from several Japanese universities to our parallel design experiment. We evaluated equivalence by determining differences between the logs of the number of cards chosen from the advantageous decks in the Japanese and English versions in five blocks. We defined an equivalence margin as ± 30% (log (0.70 = -0.36, log (1/0.70) = 0.36, for log-transformation). All two-sided 90% family-wise confidence intervals in the five blocks were within the equivalence margin. Our results confirmed the equivalence of the Japanese and English versions of the IGT. The Japanese version can be used with the compiled executables and source code without charge. Future comparative studies should evaluate the IGT on Japanese samples or between samples from Japan and other countries.
Perimetric complexity, which is a simple metric of character (letter) complexity defined by an image’s area and peripheral length, has been widely used, especially in alphabetic orthographies. We examined whether perimetric complexity is also a valid index for Japanese kana characters (hiragana and katakana) by comparing it with subjective complexity. We obtained evaluations of subjective complexities from Japanese and English speakers and calculated the mean of each character for each type of speaker for character-based analyses. The analyses revealed three main findings: (a) Perimetric complexity was highly correlated with subjective complexity (rs > .85), and its correlation was higher than that between the subjective complexity and other measures for character complexity (i.e., stroke count). (b) The perimetric complexities were highly correlated across different typefaces, except for significantly different typefaces. (c) Subjective complexity was highly correlated between Japanese and English speakers. These findings suggest that perimetric complexity can also be used as an index for Japanese kana character complexity.
The purpose of this research was to develop a Japanese short version of the Inventory of Interpersonal Problems (IIP) and examine its reliability and validity. In Study 1, we developed a short version of the IIP using item response theory (IRT). The results indicated sufficient measurement accuracy for the short version compared to the original IIP and an existing short version (IIP-32). Specifically, the short version had better measurement accuracy for participants with higher levels of interpersonal problems. Similar to previous research, confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated the factor structure and circumplex structure. In Study 2, we examined the reliability and validity of the short version. The results revealed good internal consistency and test-retest reliability. Furthermore, the short version correlated with depression, state anxiety, eating disorder tendency, psychological symptoms, self-esteem, and personality. Finally, the application of the short version in counseling situations is discussed.
The present study investigates the relation between social skills and indicators of school adjustment: school satisfaction, self-esteem, depression, and aggression. A total of 284 students (boys = 145, girls = 139) participated in a questionnaire survey. The results of correlation analysis and Zou’s test revealed that (a) hairyo skills, which consist of compassion for others and maintaining relationships with peers, were negatively correlated with aggression; and (b) kakawari skills, which consist of assertion and developing relationships with peers, were positively correlated with school satisfaction and self-esteem, and negatively correlated with depression. These outcomes show significant result indicating that contents of social skills should be considered when trying to understand school adjustment problems and conducting social skills training.