Clinical Psychology

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    (جامعة النجاح الوطنية, 2022-09-29) Agbaria, Hadeel
    Background: Depression is of the most significant obesity- related psychological disorders. Previous studies have found a bi-directional relationship between obesity and depression symptoms among children and adolescents. Most of these studies were conducted in Western countries. Their findings regarding the effects of gender and age on this relationship were inconsistent. This study has examined the relationship between weight and depression symptoms in addition to the effects which gender and age have on depression among Palestinian children and adolescents. Methodology: Data were collected from 90 Palestinian school students aged 9-16. Of these, 30 had normal weight, 30 had over-weight and 30 were obese (defined by CDC curves). About half of the participants were girls, and about half of them had an obese family member. After a school nurse measured their BMI, the participants completed depression, demographic and weight test questionnaires. Results: After data analysis, it was found that over-weight and obese participants exhibited worse depression (of all types) than those with a normal weight but the differences between them were insignificant. The only gender effect found was in the mood and body image scale. Of all obese participants, the girls exhibited worse symptoms than boys. In contrast, only the overweight participants showed a small opposite trend. Regarding age, effects were found only in depression total scale and in inactivity symptoms. In these scales, of all overweight participants, adolescents exhibited worse symptoms than children, while the opposite trend was found among obese participants. Conclusion: These findings showed that over-weight and obese Palestinian children reported suffering from depression and thus interventions should take this into account. In particular, it seems that over-weight boys or adolescents need more direct help/ intervention to lose weight while obese girls or children who feel more helpless about their weight need more medical and emotional support. Keywords: Depression; over-weight; obesity; body-image; weight-stigma; adolescents; collective culture; gender-roles.
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    Validation of the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scale in Arabic Language within a Palestinian Context
    (جامعة النجاح الوطنية, 2019-06-16) Abd El Qadir, Ciwar
    Today there is an emerging need for psychological assessment instruments which can be used within and across cultures and countries. The purpose of this investigation was to determine whether an Arabic version of the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scale–II (VABS-II) can be employed to measure adaptive behaviors of children in the Palestinian context. This was a non-experimental study design with a convenient sample looking at the correlation of the scores on the two tests domains; VABS-II and Portage scale domains. Two samples of participants were analyzed; a convenient sample was compiled with a total of 56 male and female children (ages 2-9) including a group of high-risk children who were referred to a local multi service center for neuro-developmental concerns (N = 26). The control group consisted of children attending a local private elementary school in northern West Bank territories (N = 30). Results showed that in the five developmental domains tested (Cognition, Communication, Socialization, Motor Skills, and Independent Living Skills) there were significant differences in some domains among the control group. Slight differences x were noted in the areas of cognition and motor skills for some sub-groups possibly related to differences in the scope of tasks utilized in each test. However, there were no significant differences among the high-risk group. The implication of these findings is that the Arabic version of VABS-II is an appropriate scale for assessing adaptive and maladaptive behaviors in a Palestinian context as it meets the standard of previously validated measures while adding scales of interest not available in the Portage, including an overall Adaptive Behavior Scale, a Maladaptive Behavior Scale, standardized T-Scores, and comprehensive full age standardized scales for ages birth to 90. Further investigation needs to be explored to assess the VABS-II efficiency in older and younger populations not included in this study
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    Experience of Palestinian Children During COVID 19 Pandemic Lockdown: A Descriptive Phenomenological Study
    (جامعة النجاح الوطنية, 2021-09-29) Ayoub, Haneen
    The global COVID-19 pandemic is currently one of the most important worldwide issues that is of international concern. The breakout of the disease that began in China has continued to spread to other regions and countries, Palestine included. Palestine has been in a state of emergency since March 2020 with strict policies of lockdown and home confinement implemented gradually. Students have been at home since the beginning of this emergency status. Little attention is devoted to the psychological impact of the pandemic and its measures on populations especially children. The surge of information, anxiety, panic, restlessness and uncertainty surrounding these circumstances, loss of contact with friends and school as well as changes in the daily routine leaves children vulnerable to psychological difficulties. Several studies conducted worldwide during the pandemic reflected symptoms of depression, anxiety, behavioral and emotional difficulties. The aim of this study is to explore and understand the lived experiences of Palestinian children under lockdown due to the COVID-19. The approach of the study is qualitative that results in comprehensive information regarding the psychological impact of this situation on children. The results of the study showed several themes of awareness, feelings of depression and anxiety, frustrations at loss of normalcy and change of routine, as well as feelings of uncertainty. The current Palestinian context also offers a perspective into the perception of risk in regards to Palestinian children. The results also provide paradoxical findings including not only negative impact but also positive impact of the lockdown in terms of family relationships and and quality time. Palestinian children and adolescent much like their peers worldwide experienced a negative psychological impact during the pandemic lockdown and probably continue to do so as the pandemic is still ongoing. The uncertainty and loss of ability to predict and plan are thought to be the riskiest one of all. Special attention should be dedicated to the psychological well-being of children and adolescent during this period and in the aftermath of the pandemic.
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    Evaluation of Five Developmental Factors among Palestine Early Childhood Using Portage Developmental Screening Tool
    (جامعة النجاح الوطنية, 2021-10-03) Darwazeh, Farah
    The current study explored the range of acquisition of developmental milestones in 1622 kindergarten age children in Palestine age using an internationally standardized and locally validated scale (Portage Developmental Screening Tool) and how social factors (parents education, salary, place of residence, etc.) affected overall functioning. The sample consisted of 1608 child, were excluded166 child screening tool, so that the sample consisted of 1456 child, 43.4% female and 56.6% male children between the ages of 3 and 8 years of age all attending a kindergarten or first grade class in the included schools. According to the findings, at least 12% of the children indicated a clinical developmental delay indicated by a two-year delay in any one scale or over a two-year delay in two or over scales. In the areas of cognitive functioning, independent life skills, and physical skills, 70% to 78% of children scored below their normative biological age. In the areas of communication and social skills 57% of childrenscored below their normative developmental age. In addition, all children evaluated were in fact, attending early education programsaddressing developmental goals and academic preparation (which the majority of Palestinian children are not). Physical education (which included coordination, balance, and other basic life skills) was the area of highest delay with approximately 78% of children (scoring below age norms. Examining demographic mitigating factors, the finding demonstrated a protective effect of maternal education. Consequently, neither father’s education level nor poverty level had any effect. Income level and consanguinity (relatedness of biological parents) as well as loss of oxygen during the birth process were noted as risk factors for normal development. This research clearly defines the critical need for immediate action, if children are unable to fulfill their social and developmental potential; it harms not only their individual future, but also the societies in which they live. In recognition of that reality, it is the collective responsibility of governments, families, and all health partners in development to ensure that every individual who begins life in every corner of the world has access to family care, education, health services and nutrition including in Palestine.
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    (جامعة النجاح الوطنية, 2022-03-24) Sultan, Sujoud
    The study aims were to evaluate the efficiency of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) in alleviating symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and improving perceived self-efficacy among abused children. This study employed the experimental approach. The sample of study consisted of (30) children (aged 10-15), diagnosed with PTSD currently treated at a local mental health clinic. Study instruments included a PTSD scale (CPSS – SR – 5) that measures PSTD in children and a scale of perceived self-efficacy in children (Self-Efficacy Formative Questionnaire). The sample was randomly divided into two groups; an experimental group treated with Therapeutic Program based on CBT (n = 15), and a control group (n = 15). The results of the study revealed statistically significant positive effects of CBT in reducing PTSD related symptoms and improved perceived self-efficacy among abused children. The results of the study suggest that CBT is effective in treating children with PTSD and improving self-efficacy. The study recommended the necessity of paying attention to cognitive behavioral therapy and integrating it into various therapeutic areas, and developing more cognitive behavioral therapy programs to treat additional psychological disorders among children.