Date of Award

2001

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Kral, M.

Keywords

Psychology, Social.

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

Two of the main approaches to understanding suicide are the sociological and the psychological. The former explains suicide as a consequence of social factors; the latter explains suicide as a consequence of individual factors. Through an examination of both social (i.e., participants' exposure to the suicidal ideas and behaviour of others) and individual (i.e., participants' own attitudes and experience with suicide) factors this study is one attempt to bridge these two approaches. A tripartite model of attitudes towards suicide was proposed, comprised of cognitive, affective, and conative components. A sample of 602 university students rated their attitudes towards suicide on three scales (Suicide Opinion Questionnaire; Domino, Moore, Westlake, & Gibson, 1982; Multi-Dimensional Suicide Attitude Scales and Vignettes; Stillion, 1992; Suicide Attitude Questionnaire; Diekstra & Kerkhof, 1989) as well as their past experience with suicide. Several findings were indicated. First, five factors were found to underlie suicide attitudes: Cognitive Aspects, Suicide Intent, Sympathy, Likelihood of Suicide (Others), and Likelihood of Suicide (Closest). Second, support was found for the tripartite attitudinal model. Third, having either other-experience (social) or self-experience (individual) with suicide was found to be predictive of one's attitudes towards suicide. Fourth, new data on the prevalence of specific types of suicidality are provided, reinforcing the conclusion that suicidal ideation and behaviour are very common among university students. Overall, the data support the proposition of a new classificatory system for suicidal behaviour.Dept. of Psychology. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis2001 .W35. Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 62-10, Section: B, page: 4845. Adviser: Michael Kral. Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 2001.

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