Date of Award

Summer 8-2015

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Counseling and Psychological Services

First Advisor

Dr. Gregory L Brack

Second Advisor

Dr. Brian Dew

Third Advisor

Dr. Catharina Chang

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Sandrine Bosshardt

Abstract

The purpose of this dissertation was to explore the role of mindfulness as a resilience resource in depressed and trauma exposed college students (Thompson, Arnkoff, & Glass, 2011). Chapter one reviews current literature that is relevant to the role of mindfulness in resilience and focuses on depression as an outcome. Further, chapter two details the research study. The study proposed and tested a model in which resilience and mindfulness predict trauma symptoms and depressive symptoms and mindfulness mediates the relationship between resilience and trauma and depression symptomology. A total of 529 college students were recruited at a large urban university. They were asked to complete a demographics questionnaire followed by an assessment of their trauma exposure using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.; DSM–5; American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Participants were then be asked to complete the Five Factor Mindfulness Questionnaire (Baer, 2003), the Connor Davidson Resilience Scale (Connor & Davidson, 2003), the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression scale (Radloff, 1977), and the Trauma Symptom Checklist (Briere & Runtz, 1989). To assess how well resilience and mindfulness predict depression and trauma symptomology in trauma exposed individuals vs. individuals who did not endorse trauma exposure, separate hierarchical regression analyses were completed based on trauma exposure and outcome variable. The results showed that while mindfulness significantly predicted trauma symptoms and depressive symptoms in trauma exposed college students as well as students with no trauma exposure, resilience did not significantly predict the outcome variables. Further, to test the mediational effects of mindfulness on the relationship between resilience and the outcome variables for the trauma exposed and non-trauma exposed college students, the Preacher and Hayes (2008) bootstrapping approach was utilized by performing the analysis using the macro PROCESS. The results indicated that mindfulness mediated the relationship between resilience and trauma symptoms as well as resilience and depressive symptoms in both trauma-exposed and non-trauma exposed college students. Limitations were discussed and implications for practitioners and future research were provided.

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