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Masters Degrees (Clinical Psychology)

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    Exploring young people’s constructions of domestic violence as portrayed in the media.
    (2022) Mtshali, Zandile Penelope.; Collings, Steven John.
    Domestic violence (DV) is a severe problem experienced mostly by women and girls locally and on other continents. Existing literature on DV has predominantly focused on quantitative analysis and the adult population. There is a paucity of research concerning young people’s views, understandings, and experiences of DV. Therefore, this study aimed to map and comprehensively analyze studies that examined how young people view, understand, and construct domestic violence to uncover existing evidence in the field and establish areas for future research. This study was exploratory and expanded knowledge of existing literature about young people’s narratives about DV. The theoretical framework navigating this study was the ecological systems theory to achieve an interdisciplinary perspective. The present study was a qualitative research study that utilized Arksey and O’Malley’s (2005) scoping review method. The search strategy for this scoping review entailed three electronic databases, PubMed, Google scholar, and dissertations from SABINET online. The search period was from 2011 to 2021. Eligible studies were screened independently by the researcher. Extracts of young people’s narratives from primary qualitative studies were employed. Data were extracted and then analyzed using descriptive statistics in table form and thematic content analysis to categorize research results into themes. The data charting included tables from articles that met the inclusion criteria. Charting involved synthesizing and interpreting data according to key issues in a table form. Six studies met the inclusion criteria. Three prominent themes were developed: (1) Constructions of violence, (2) Normalization of violence, and (3) Young people’s agency, coping, and resistance strategies. Broadly, the findings of the present study illustrated that a deficit of understanding DV in young people is related to numerous issues, namely: low age, inadequate knowledge, growing up in a low-socioeconomic environment, normalization of violence by family and society, socially constructed gender norms and inaccurate media depictions. As a result, young people reported being scared to disclose the abuse to family and society and perceive it as a private matter. The findings of this study suggested an essential narrative behind the difficulties of intervening for young women who are victims of DV. However, numerous constructive implications may be helpful for young people, their families, and the health professionals working with them.
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    A scoping review of gender-based violence interventions and programmes targeted at South African men.
    (2022) Mavasa, Themba Fotrick.; Mntambo, Ntokozo.
    Background: The phenomenon of gender-based violence is a global concern (Tappis, Freeman, Glass & Doocy, 2016). Neither women nor men are immune to gender-based violence (GBV); however, the findings from different studies have found that women are more susceptible to GBV perpetrated against them by men (Peate, 2019; Radzilani-Makatu & Chauke, 2019). South African men play a vital role in perpetuating gender-based violence. Therefore, due to their role as perpetrators or potential perpetrators of gender-based violence, intervention measures targeting them should be prioritized (Navindhra & Nadvi, 2013). Aim: The focus of this study review was on interventions and programmes targeting South African men as a key means for addressing gender-based violence (GBV) against women in South Africa. The aim was to address the following question: “What was the available evidence of interventions and programmes targeting men as a key strategy for the prevention of gender-based violence against women in the South African context?” South Africa has been grappling with GBV for many years. New laws and programmes have been developed since 1994 – yet the scourge seems to worsen (Department of Higher Education and Training, 2019). Despite multiple interventions and research papers conducted on gender-based violence, it was unclear or at least unknown how men were included in these interventions (Tappis et al., 2016). Methods: To 'unlock' these interventions and programmes targeting men, the researcher utilised a scoping review approach. This study looked at 25 studies that included a total of 7 084 participants. Results: Men's participation in gender-based violence interventions had been reviewed extensively and it appeared to have significantly reduced gender-based violence (Gibbs, Dunkle,Mhlongo, Chirwa, Hatcher, Christofides & Jewkes, 2020). The findings indicate that interventions had many positive impacts on participants (Graaff & Heinecken, 2017). Conclusion: Even though the interventions produced positive impact, however, the impact of interventions appeared to be more behavioural than attitudinal, affecting specific 'problematic' behaviours rather than changing men's attitudes regarding gender inequality in general (Graaff & Heinecken, 2017). Some studies argued that this was because men had not rejected their patriarchal power, had difficulty adopting gender-equitable behaviour, as well as sustaining positive change, especially when their emotions were high (Treves-Kagan, Maman, Khoza, MacPhail, Peacock, Twine, Kahn, Lippman & Pettifor, 2020; Graaff & Heinecken, 2017).
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    Exploring the experiences of foreign nationals living and working in Durban, South Africa.
    (2021) Okumu, Sarah Adhiambo.; Mtwentula-Ndlovu, Ntombekhaya Antoinette.
    Globalization has led to increased international mobility, with many people living and working outside their countries of origin. Migration is an extremely complex process that has social, and psychological implications on the individuals or groups undergoing the process. The success of expatriates, that is migrants sent typically by a multinational organization to work in another country, has previously been measured by their organizational outcomes and completion of their assignment. Some losses and damage that result from expatriate failure include: loss of business and productivity, damage to relationships with other employees or customers, as well as the financial and emotional and psychological costs borne by the expatriate and their family. Understanding an individual’s experiences during an expatriate assignment can facilitate positive adjustment and increase coping strategies as they work and live away from their home country. Research on expatriates shows the main factors that influence adjustment or contribute to stress are the new culture in the work and social settings, family adjustment in the new country, distance from home and lack of preparation. The aim of this study was to investigate the experiences of expatriates and any coping mechanisms used to adjustment living and working in Durban. This current work followed a qualitative approach, conducting semi-structured interviews with 10 participants. The findings of the present study were generally consistent with previous similar studies. Expatriates reported that factors that made their adjustment challenging, and caused stress, included distance from their home country, family adjustment, uncertainty, and cultural differences. Support systems, previous expatriate experience and personally seeking diverse experiences facilitated adjustment. Unique contributions included how the challenging process of visa application negatively affected adjustment and expatriate’s experiences in Durban. The outcomes of this study may contribute towards developing interventions or programs that adequately prepare expatriates and increase the level of psychological support made available to them and their families.
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    Mental health literacy and its impact on educational achievement among University of KwaZulu-Natal students residing in residence.
    (2023) Ngubane, Khumbuzile Yvonne.; Mtwentula-Ndlovu, Ntombekhaya Antoinette.
    The study aimed to explore mental health literacy and its impact on educational achievement among University of KwaZulu-Natal students residing in the University’s residences. Despite the paucity of study in this area, notably in South Africa, the continent has seen an increase in mental health issues, even in higher education. Substance abuse, suicide, injury to others, and poor academic achievement are the major outcomes of mental ill health. The study focused on students residing at university campus. Due to the limited coverage of the subject on the African continent in general and South Africa in particular, the study used a qualitative research approach and an exploratory research design. The researcher used the purposive sampling method to pick a sample of 14 participants. Semi-structured interviews constituted the data collection method, as they were capable of profoundly demonstrating a link between mental health and academic excellence. The findings revealed poor levels of mental health literacy among the participants, which is a significant factor in determining this perceived link. Academic work-related pressure reportedly induced mental health concerns, while mental health issues were found to be the cause of poor academic performance. Mental health literacy constituted a critical element in the enhancement of help-seeking behaviour, timely accessing treatments, reducing stigma, and, most significantly, having the ability to assist others. Furthermore, the findings and reviewed literature depict students living in the University residences as vulnerable to mental health challenges. This owed to the contrasting home and school environments, adjustment issues, financial constraints, a lack of residence-based social support, and incompatible roommates. The study made several recommendations, including the need to raise mental health literacy from primary school to tertiary education institutions and to use infographics about mental health illnesses, such as the one created by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), to eliminate stigma, motivate help-seeking behaviour, and eliminate suicide ideation and related consequences.
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    Mental health and traditional healing: an exploration of UKZN students’ perceptions of using traditional healing methods to achieve mental health.
    (2022) Ngcobo, Nontobeko Rejoice.; Hlengwa, Wellington Mthokozisi.
    Mental illness has been documented as one of the global phenomena that impacts many people across the country. The perceptions of mental illness and the effective treatment methods are influenced by many factors such as perceived causes, culture, attitudes, experiences, and policies that are put in place within the health care systems (Choudhry, Mani, & Khan, 2016; Eaton & Louw, 2000; Gopalkrishnan, 2018). South Africa, as a multi-cultural context embraces multiple perspectives in which mental illness can be treated. Existing treatment modalities such as psychotherapy and traditional healing continue being accessible for patients who suffer from mental illness. The Eurocentric methods of treatment such as Psychotherapy and the medical model have been reported as treatment modalities that lack the understanding of an African person living inclusive of external and supernatural forces believed to play a role in maintaining physical and spiritual well-being. Afrocentric models such as traditional healing methods have been identified as a useful treatment modality (World Health Organization, 2010). In South Africa, traditional healers are mostly consulted by people who preserve their cultural beliefs and practices as methods of achieving physical, spiritual, and mental health. The inclusion for people who rely on traditional healing was introduced lawfully under the Traditional Healers Act (Act No. 22 of 2007). The implementation of the Traditional Healers Act (Act No. 22 of 2007) in the health care system declares approval of traditional treatments and proposes an outline to protect individuals who use the services.The study aimed to explore the perceptions of UKZN students regarding mental illness and traditional healing as a treatment modality. The aim was to understand the different factors that influence their perceptions, taking into consideration the ecological systems theory that elaborates on the environmental context individuals participate in. The theory further pertains the attitudes, beliefs, and values people hold which consequently influence their perception. This study undertook a qualitative research approach that aided to understand and explore participants’ feelings, perceptions, beliefs, and attitudes. A semi-structured interview schedule was prepared and was used as a guideline to conduct interviews. The study found that at each level of the ecological system, there are processes that take place which influences an individual participating in the context. These systems lie on three levels of the ecological system, namely, the microsystem that entails the family structure, the processes between the individual and the school, as well as social groups such as friends and neighbourhoods (Bronfenbrenner, 1979). The exosystem and the mesosystem indicative of social interactions, and from the macrosystem represented by the university context and its policy structures (Harkonen, 2007). The findings reveal that culture is a common factor that influences how students perceive mental illness as aspects of culture tie into beliefs and standard behaviour and practices intended to achieve good health. It further revealed that students rely on their beliefs, attitudes, social norms of the structures they participate in, that grant them necessary health options and thus utilize resources that align with these beliefs.
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    Psychometric assessments used as screening tools for complex post-traumatic stress disorder: a scoping review.
    (2023) Striglia, Nina Ann.; Valjee, Sachet Rabindranath.
    Introduction: The International Classification of Diseases version 11 (ICD-11) saw the inclusion of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and a newly conceptualized addition of Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD) as an independent diagnosis. Recent literature supports the inclusion and distinction of CPTSD. However, with the development of new psychological constructs, contemporary psychometric instruments are required to assess such novel constructs. This study aims to synthesise and map studies that examine various psychometric instruments used as screening tools for CPTSD. Methods and Analysis: A scoping review was conducted to “scope” the breadth of the available literature within this research topic. This was achieved by providing an overview and map of available literature published on various online databases. The data underwent intensive screening processes using the PRISMA-ScR flow diagram in accordance with the chosen inclusion and exclusion criteria. Identified databases were searched, and a total of 15 studies were eligible for final review. Results and Discussion: The data yielded from the searches were charted in table format and summarised by: Author(s) and Year and Validation Study and synthesised into a comprehensive report. Gaps and trends evident in the literature base were identified and analysed thematically to provide a narrative interpretation of existing literature. Studies that investigated and assessed various screening assessments for CPTSD were categorised in relation to four overarching themes: construct validity of ICD-11 PTSD and CPTSD, evidence of existing psychometric measures used to screen for CPTSD, the measures’ psychometric properties, the prevalence of PTSD/CPTSD and severe psychopathology, and study design. Conclusion and Recommendations: Four specific themes emerged in relation to the evidence of various screening assessments for CPTSD. Future research could aim to incorporate qualitative studies that serve to understand the lived experiences of individuals diagnosed with complex trauma disorders, particularly in developing and under-resourced contexts. Further research could drive potential opportunities to develop culturally sensitive standardised measures to reduce and remediate generalisability issues.
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    Exploring child welfare social workers’ experiences and perception of working in rural under-resourced agencies in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa.
    (2023) Dyoda, Zintle.; Makhaba, Vukani Luvuyo.
    Background: The Social Work child welfare system is a rewarding field which is also complex and challenging. Agencies in rural based settings are tormented by increased levels of occupational stress, secondary traumatic stress, burnout, and compassion fatigue. Social workers in these agencies experience continuous transformation in service delivery and resources, as well as working conditions. Aim: This study sought to explore the experiences and perception of social workers in rural based child welfare agencies. The intended motive was to establish an understanding of the experiences of child welfare social workers in rural under-resourced agencies. Methods: The study utilised a qualitative approach, which enables a comprehensive description of the participants‟ feelings, experiences, and perceptions of working in under-resourced agencies. The sample was drawn from the population of three agencies in Mnquma Local Municipality in the Eastern Cape. The municipality falls in the B category and consolidates the towns and rural areas of Butterworth, Centane and Ngqamakhwe. The Municipality is generally rural in nature and relies on social grants. A total of eight child welfare social workers were recruited for this study. Data was collected through semi-structured interviews that were audio-recorded. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data from the transcribed interviews. Results: The results were examined in light of empirical evidence from related literature and the Maslach‟s Multidimensional Theory of Burnout. Seven themes were obtained from the data: (1) Childhood Related Personal Experience, (2) Agency-Based Perception of Burnout, (3) Occupational Stress, (4) Nature of the Working Conditions in Rural-Based Agencies, (5) Inadequate Support for Agency Child Welfare Social Workers, (6) Staff Turnover Rates in Rural Under-Resourced Agencies and (7) Varied Ways of Coping with Stress on the Job. The study has revealed that child welfare agencies face various challenges due to conditions of chronic poverty, unemployment, inadequate transportation, geography, and special health care access. The families with children are vulnerable, since they are most negatively affected. Findings: The research findings have revealed that social workers of the child welfare agencies experience burnout and occupational stress due to rural poverty, leading to staff turnover. The study recommended that agencies should give emotional and clinical support to social workers on a regular basis. Also, the importance of wellness and self-care for social workers should be emphasised. Moreover, there is need to prioritise brief crisis interventions for rural social workers, which include critical incident stress debriefings and psychosocial debriefings, as well as trauma risk management strategies built upon to trauma-focused debriefing principles. Recommendations: The study also recommended that the agencies focus on an organisational culture that reflects a bottom-up management approach. Lastly, there should be additional professional oversight in a form of adequate supervision, as well as a shift in terms of managerial style to an approach that is more strengths-based. These possible recommendations address challenges or barriers faced by social workers, in order to improve the quality of their working experience.
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    The experiences of caregiving and the coping strategies of informal caregivers of people with major neurocognitive disorders.
    (2023) Manyathi, Londeka Miranda.; Mfene, Xoli Precious.
    Caregivers of people with major neurocognitive disorders (MNCD) experience considerable burden, which might lead to psychological difficulties. As a result of their caregiving experiences, it is important for caregivers to develop positive coping skills. This study aimed to explore the experiences and coping strategies of informal caregivers of people living with major neurocognitive disorders. Further, this study was conducted to establish if there are any support programmes available for informal caregivers of individuals with severe neurocognitive impairments. A mixed methods research approach was adopted. Nine informal caregivers were sampled through a non-probability purposive technique. Data were collected through semi-structured interviews and psychometric scales on caregiver depression, burden, and coping. Further, data were analysed using reflexive thematic analysis. Psychometric scales were scored and interpreted based on their interpretive manual. The findings suggest that informal caregivers of persons with major neurocognitive disorders endorsed more negative than positive experiences. However, they seemed to cope with the caregiving situation. More active coping strategies, such as acceptance and building resilience, mediate the negative experiences. Informal caregivers reported the availability of respite and psychosocial interventions such as those offered by the Bessie Makatini Foundation. In conclusion, it was recommended that while addressing caregiver needs and creating support interventions, support programs like those conducted by the Bessie Makatini Foundation should consider the various family dynamics.
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    The psychology of Human Immunodeficiency Virus: a systematic review of the affect that Human Immunodeficiency Virus /Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome has on the mental health of children and adolescents.
    (2022) Essop-Mansoor, Waseela.; Nene, Khanyisile.
    Background: Child and adolescent mental health (CAMH) is frequently neglected, although it is estimated that one in every five of them has a mental condition. Viruses like HIV is an example of a potential warning sign that can lead to a child or adolescent developing mental health problems. Method: This paper is a systematic review and narrative synthesis of quantitative studies conducted on HIV/AIDS and mental health in children and adolescents within the last decade (2012-2022). Databases such as Google Scholar, Ebscohost, Springer, Sabinet, GALE Cengage, APA PsycNet, and SAGE Research techniques were searched and a total of 16 empirical studies that examined the affect that a positive HIV diagnosis has on the mental health of youth were considered. Study components were recorded in the form of a matrix table which included: year of publication, authors, title of article, aims of the study, sample, socio-ecological level of influence, key findings as well as identified interventions. Conceptual content analysis was then applied as a method of studying and retrieving meaningful information such as the frequency of key mental health themes and mental health conditions pertaining to CAMH, that emerged in the primary literature, which was summarised in the matrix table. Results: A total of 90 articles were retrieved via an online desktop search and through rigorous screening based on predetermined inclusion and exclusion criteria, only 16 articles deemed eligible for inclusion and further analysis. Conclusion: An HIV positive (HIV+) diagnosis can influence CAMH on an individual-level, family-level, community-level and structural-level. In addition, CAMH can be affected by the cognitive, emotional, and/or behavioural viewpoint. Furthermore, several interventions that were identified on the various levels displayed on the socio-ecological model deem beneficial in enhancing the mental health of HIV+ children and adolescents.
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    The financial and psychological cost of raising a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder: a qualitative study.
    (2019) Geldenhuys, Anouska.; Memela, Nonjabulo Cynthia.
    This is a qualitative research project looking at the financial and psychological challenges and needs of parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Raising a child with ASD can be a very challenging and strenuous experience. Families who are raising children with ASD appear to experience an overwhelming amount of stress and consist of many responsibilities whilst not having much support from others, signifying the need to study this phenomenon further. The study involves a sample of biological mothers living in Gauteng who are the primary caregivers of a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder. This study focuses on parents’ lived experiences and their perspectives of the psychological and financial costs of raising a child with this neurodevelopmental condition. The findings of this study correspond with findings from other literature; highlighting the significance of these challenges. Results indicated that parents living with an ASD child experience various psychological challenges such as feelings of grief and fear, physical and emotional exhaustion, disruption to the family’s lifestyle, and tremendous financial strain; influencing their well-being. This study aims to highlight the financial and psychological needs of parents interviewed in this study to create insight and awareness to others living with Autism Spectrum Disorder as well as professionals working with these families.
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    Alexithymia, chronic pain and depression.
    (1993) Choladja, Clair Anye Louise.; Lindegger, Graham Charles.; Lachenicht, Lance Gary.
    Abstract available in PDF.
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    The psychological effects of violence on children: an exploratory study of a sample of black primary school children from the Natal Midlands.
    (1994) Mason, Barbara Lynn.; Killian, Beverley Janet.
    Abstract available in PDF.
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    Assessing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) specific knowledge in educators and identifying demographic predictors pertaining to educators’ knowledge of ADHD within the South African context.
    (2021) Sim, Gina Dionne.; Collings, Steven John.
    Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most researched and controversial of all the childhood-onset disorders. It is also one of the most common disorders, with a high diagnosis rate in South Africa. Research over the last two decades shows a diagnosis prevalence rate of between 5 and 10%, thus making it one of the most commonly occurring disorders affecting South African children and adolescents. Despite its high rate of prevalence, ADHD is a condition that is largely misunderstood amongst parents, educators, and even medical practitioners such as doctors. Research has shown that educators have a basic understanding of ADHD but are not familiar with the more complex details related to its symptoms, treatment and associated features. This raises concern as educators are uniquely placed in the system to perform an instrumental role in the process that leads to ADHD referral and diagnosis. Therefore, this study aimed to measure levels of general knowledge amongst educators in the areas of ADHD associated features, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. It also set out to identify if there were any demographic predictors relating to educators’ level of ADHD knowledge. Knowledge levels were measured using the KADDS Knowledge of Attention Deficit Disorder Scale (KADDS), which is a questionnaire that measures an educator’s level of ADHD knowledge using the categories mentioned above. The KADDS questionnaire was administered along with a demographic questionnaire to 172 educators from primary and secondary schools located in the central Durban area. A demographic questionnaire was also administered to the same sample. Results from this study demonstrated that South African educators based in Durban had an overall level of knowledge rate of 47.14%. The scores obtained during this study fall within the average range of scores obtained from studies using the KADDS instrument, both nationally and internationally. The possible relationship between educators’ level of ADHD knowledge and their demographic characteristics was investigated using correlational analyses. The variable “sex”, which refers to the biological endowment (male/female) was the greatest contributing variable of all the options used in this study. The female sex in this study were found to have greater knowledge of ADHD than their male counterparts. These finding are relevant within the South African context as mental health and the stigma it carries is a barrier to seeking knowledge and being educated on such disorders as ADHD. The findings from this study contribute to the body of knowledge on levels of knowledge among educators in South Africa. Recommendations arising from this study include educators having increased exposure to pre-service and in-service ADHD related training. Educators also require practical experience and exposure to children suffering from ADHD, which will increase their understanding and knowledge of this disorder. Knowledge of self-efficacy as a variable, and its positive association with ADHD knowledge requires further exploration. Finally, it is recommended that further research is conducted on the role that gender plays in terms of the levels of ADHD knowledge among educators.
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    Exploring trainee psychologist's self-care practices at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
    (2021) Nkosi, Thobile Goodness.; Mtwentula-Ndlovu, Ntombekhaya Antoniette.
    Self-care is a crucial culture that mental health practitioners need to embrace to promote their overall well-being. The application of self-care among trainee psychologists is foundational in establishing sustainable wellness and professional development for health professionals. Trainee psychologists are expected to deal with the global impact of the burden of mental health, while they manoeuvre their own professional development. The training process alone is marked with multifaceted cases that require prominent levels of alertness, critical thinking and self-awareness. Such skills are often affected by, stress, burnout and an imbalanced personal, and professional life. This may result in professional impairment. The primary purpose of this study was to explore and describe experiences of trainee psychologists’ level of engagement in self-care practices, to promote their mental health care. In conducting this study, a qualitative research approach was adopted. To gain a rich insight on the participants’ experiences; a semi-structured interview guide was used to interview Seven University of Kwa-Zulu Natal trainees who were enrolled in a master’s clinical psychology programme. Data collected for this study were interpreted and analysed using the Health Belief Model as a conceptual framework. Findings from this study demonstrated that trainees, in the programme, experienced challenges that included poor completion of the research component, poor supervision alliance, detrimental power dynamics, difficulties in transitioning from coursework to internship, and difficulties in balancing professional life and personal life. These challenges, negatively impact the trainees’ mental health. However, adopted self-care strategies such as exercise, personal therapy, socialising and spirituality, contributed positively to their mental health. Support was the widely preferred coping skill adopted by trainees. The findings suggest that educating trainees about self-care practices can be a vital part of helping trainees to establish a sustainable mental wellness culture.
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    Type A behaviour pattern and coronary heart disease in the South African Indian population.
    (1991) Barry, Timothy Aiden Bose.; Wassenaar, Douglas Richard.
    Abstract available in PDF.
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    Church leaders' understandings of how Christian beliefs inform mental illness identification and remediation in effected members: a scoping review.
    (2021) Nhlumayo, Lethukuthula Nkanyiso.; Valjee, Sachet Rabindranath.
    Introduction: Christianity is the world’s leading religion with an estimated 2.3 billion followers, with evidence of influence both in the developing world and amongst developed nations throughout the globe. Literature has demonstrated that church clergy across varying contexts and communities serve the function of mental health gatekeepers and are often the first access point for their community, particularly among people living in low socio-economic settings without adequate access to professional mental health services.However, some issues raised by previous studies were that certain Christian beliefs have been linked with promoting stigma, internalized shame and delayed help-seeking. This study aims to synthesize and map past research that investigated church leader’s representation of how Christian beliefs inform mental illness identification and remediation (referral pathways) in vulnerable church members. Method and Analysis: A scoping review was performed to gain an overview of the available evidence from literature concerning this topic. The data was screened using the PRISMA-ScR flow diagram according to the inclusion and exclusion criteria. Relevant databases were sourced for literature and a total of 11 studies were eligible for final review. Results and Discussion: Data from the literature was synthesized in table format according to: Author(s) and Year, Study Title, Aims and Objectives, Operational Definition of Concepts, Methodology, and Results. Thematic analysis was used on the data to describe the existing literature and gaps in narrative format. Four themes were identified from the data; 1) Clergy’s conceptualisation of mental illness, 2) Role of Clergy in remediation/intervention regarding suspected cases of mental health issues (referral pathways) 3) Impact of socio-cultural context, 4) Reviewed Study’s Recommendation. These themes were found to be prominent dynamics among studies that investigated clergy’s representation and treatment of mental illness. Conclusion and Recommendations: Four overarching themes were identified among studies that investigated church clergy’s representation and remediation pathways of mental illness for vulnerable church members. Future research should focus on researching the usefulness of clergy and mental health practitioner collaborations in mental health treatment, which can benefit vulnerable church members.
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    An exploration of university students’ views on intimate femicide in South Africa.
    (2021) Ngubane, Nokubonga.; Frizelle, Kerry Lyn.
    Most of the research regarding views on intimate femicide has been conducted abroad, while views concerning the phenomena have not been researched extensively in South Africa. The aim of this qualitative study was therefore to explore university students’ views of intimate femicide in the South Africa context It explored, firstly, the student’s views on the reasons for the occurrence of intimate femicide, secondly, their views on howIPVincidences are portrayed in the media and, thirdly, their views on the appropriateness of existing interventions at addressing the scourge. The study analysed transcriptions of semi-structured interviews conducted with 11 students from a university in South Africa. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data through the lens of ecological theory. The participants identified an array of intersecting factors at different levels of influence that they believe are driving femicide in South Africa. For example, participants felt that intrapersonal emotions like ‘jealousy’ and emotional dependence played a part in femicide. ‘Participants identified parenting practices and the witnessing of childhood violence (a mesosystemic factor) as contributing towards the formation of hegemonic masculine identities, which they viewed as playing a role in femicide. The participants were critical of the tendency for the media (an exosystemic factor) to adopt a ‘sensationalist’ reporting style and disproportionately cover femicides committed by high-profiled individuals, which ultimately does little to educate the public on the issue. The participants viewed protection orders (a macrosystemic factor) as a mere, ‘piece of paper’, leaving women vulnerable to femicide. In sum, the participants proposed (in keeping with the ecological framework) that intimate femicide is a social issue that requires interventions at the individual, interpersonal, community, cultural, political, and institutional levels. Overall, this study concluded that students are aware that various factors at various levels of influence are driving femicide and that these insights might have been partly mediated by their studies. It also found that students are an active audience of media representations of femicide. Lastly, students pointed to the need for multi-level interventions to address femicide. The findings provide insight into media representations of intimate femicide and how journalistic accounts can be adjusted to encourage advocacy. The study also multi-systemic interventions that could contribute to addressing this phenomenon.
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    Exploring the perceived preparedness of clinical and counselling psychology students for the newly acquired roles as intern psychologists.
    (2021) Ngubane, Mbalenhle Felicia.; Sliep, Yvonne.
    Background: The training of clinical and counselling psychologists in South Africa has continuously received research attention as it is arguably rich in diversity and presents with the nuances of contextual factors influencing the training and wellbeing of trainee psychologists. South African psychology is inherently embedded in the politics of apartheid ideology and colonial oppression, marginalisation, elitism, unequal power relations and social control (Macleod & Howell, 2013. Consequently, the traditional training model has also been under scrutiny to ascertain its efficacy, given the contextually diverse challenges clients present for psychotherapy. The overall objective of the study is to identify the influential factors that contribute to the trainee psychologists’ perceived preparedness for their newly acquired professional roles. Methodology: The study explored the perceived preparedness of clinical and counselling trainee psychologists for their professional roles, using a qualitative research approach. The qualitative approach allowed the researcher to uncover the underlying trainee psychologists’ subjective experiences of the master’s training programme and the perceived impact on their professional competence. The researcher conducted five one-on-one in-depth interviews with intern psychologists who were enrolled at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. The accumulative data was categorised into codes using the stepwise thematic analysis method. Themes were consolidated with the help of the ecological systems model, adopted as a methodological framework, characterised by an integrated, holistic approach that is relevant when exploring subjective experiences. The ecological systems theory gave insight to the exploration of contextual factors that have an impact on students’ personal and professional development. Findings: The emergent findings of the study indicate that most participants reportedly experienced the professional training as being stressful, identifying concurrent academic, clinical, and therapeutic demands deeply entrenched in the training process. Moreover, trainees as illustrated in the findings, constantly put themselves under significant pressure to perform well despite not sharing their challenges with other trainees in the programme. Over the years, the increasing demands of the training have evidently become the fibre of the development of psychologists. The interviewing process provided participants the opportunity to retrospectively reflect on the nuances of their training experiences, which positively contributed to building their emotional and intellectual insight pertaining the technical and soft skills acquired in the first year of training.
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    Snatched for sex: a qualitative systematic review exploring the most prevalent beliefs and attitudes about human trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation in Africa.
    (2022) Kweyama, Nontobeko Thandeka.; Collings, Steven John.
    Despite the growing body of literature detailing the beliefs and attitudes with regard to human trafficking stimulated by sexual exploitation, there are knowledge gaps that require a systematic review and meta-analysis of this discourse. Arguably, human trafficking poses human rights violation challenges in contemporary times and most countries worldwide are grappling with it in one way or another. Human trafficking has catastrophic consequences in most developing countries in Africa, which serve as origins, destinations, or transit for citizens being transported to distant lands where they are subjected to enslavement through labour or transactional sexual exploitation. Apparently, the topic is still shrouded in clandestineness owing to under-research and very little effort aimed at curbing the scourge. Feminist Theory was adopted as the conceptual framework. This study is typically a desk top research; hence, no human subjects participated in it. The systematic review was conducted in accordance with the protocol recommended by the Campbell Collaboration (2001), one of the most widely used and recognized protocols for systematic reviews applicable in Social Sciences. The primary sources of data for this review were studies and articles published between 2000 and 2021. Data generated from qualifying studies were meta-analysed and therefore disseminated into distinctive themes. This study systematically reviewed the most prevalent perceptions around human trafficking specifically motivated by sexual exploitation. A systematic review of the most dominant beliefs and attitudes regarding human trafficking for sexual exploitation and the meta-analysis of the findings, can potentially influence future practice and recommend areas for prospective research, and most importantly, the study findings can raise awareness regarding this human rights scourge. The findings of this study attest to the fact that the most prevalent beliefs and attitudes regarding the trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation in Africa include: (1) lack of a secure socio-economic status, (2) the victims of human trafficking are to blame for their victimisation, (3) women and children are the only victims of human trafficking, (4) demand propels the trafficking of women and children, (5) the statistics depicting the victims of human trafficking for sexual reasons are understated in African countries, (6) the victims of human trafficking are not easily traceable, (7) Africa serves both as a source and destination of trafficked women and children, (8) transit countries do not play a role in human trafficking, and (9) finally, law enforcement is at its lowest ebb in African countries. The findings indicated that human trafficking for sexual exploitation is induced by poverty. The study found that women and children fall victim to human trafficking as they try to escape from poverty. Consequently, socio-political insecurity predisposes women and girls to human trafficking. In addition, the study found that human trafficking is mainly motivated by sexual exploitation; although men can also be subject to trafficking, women and girls are the main targets, as the fundamental reason underpinning human trafficking is embedded in transactional sex and prostitution. Lastly, the study concludes that most researchers misrepresent African countries as they often paint Africa ‘black’ regarding the continent’s role in human trafficking. Researchers tend to portray Africa as a ‘dark’ continent grappling with intractable trafficking challenges. The recommendations include the need for governments and international organizations to encourage and support formalized cooperation and coordination of institutions and relevant stakeholders to end human trafficking in Africa. Most importantly, the scantiness of knowledge on sex-trafficking demands that African states redirect their energies towards curtailing the trafficking of women and children. Human trafficking is a scourge that requires responses that reflect respect for human rights, including the best interests of children.
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    The application of African psychology to the South African clinical context: a scoping review.
    (2021) Kayat, Brandon George.; Cartwright, Duncan James.
    This scoping review identifies research on the existing applications of African Psychology to the clinical context in South Africa. This scoping review endorsed the methodology of Arksey and O’Malley (2005) in terms of their six stages of conducting a scoping review. These were identified as the identification of the research question, the identification of literature relevant to this question, the selection of studies through a thorough inclusion and exclusion of sources, the charting of the data, the collection, summarising and reporting of the data and the conducting of a consultation exercise; these were applied accordingly, resulting in 76 sources that were analysed to identify the existing applications, relevant concepts and significant challenges facing African Psychology. Pre-existing applications were observed to include implicit or explicit applications or extensions from African Psychology, adaptations to mainstream models, and the development of unique models endorsing concepts specific to African Psychology (such as uBuntu therapy and Swa Moya), and the collaboration of psychologists with traditional healers, participatory action research, community psychology as well as initiatives in the training of psychologists were also evident. Concepts such as uBuntu, Badimo, uMvelinqanqi, traditional healers and rituals had the highest prevalence in sources embracing African Psychology. In terms of the challenges, multiple definitions and conceptualisations of African Psychology present problems for the standardisation of any particular African Psychology model or framework. Secondly, there exists several epistemological and ontological differences between African and mainstream psychology. This creates a concern for the empirical testing of proposed African Psychology applications in terms of their effectiveness as well as their standardisation. The study found that there remain large gaps in the application of African Psychology to the clinical context, despite the growing interest in African Psychology in South Africa.