Identifying the Core Content of Military Identity for Psychological Understanding

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Name: Laurie Migliore

Rank: Lt Col

Organization: The Geneva Foundation

Performance Site: David Grant USAF Medical Center

Year Published: 2018

Abstract Status:

Abstract

Study Objective: To validate findings from a pilot Military Identity (MI) study utilizing a self-schema model to determine core cognitive contents of MIs and to explore relationships between MI and psychological wellbeing (PWB).Specific Aims:AIM 1 - Describe the core cognitive content of MI in active duty service members (ADSM).AIM 2 - Examine the effect of MI on information processing response times.AIM 3 - Explore the relationship between MI and self-perceived psychological well-being scores.Design: A descriptive cross-sectional mixed methods content analysis and a four-group information processing paradigm will be utilized to investigate a stratified sample of ADSMs across Joint Services (25% sample from each Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine).Rationale: Psychological health (PH) disorders continue to consume the largest number of hospitalized bed days and are in the top 10 diagnoses for medical appointment utilization in ADSMs. Cognitive therapies (CT) are the evidence-based therapies of choice and most effective; however, little is known about the cognitive contents of MI and the potential for identifying specific cognitive vulnerabilities and resources common in ADSMs.Methods: Military adapted Zajonc card sort methods will be used to explore identity content through Open-Ended and Closed-Ended Identity Attribute Tasks in addition to a demographic questionnaire, Inclusion of Ingroup in Self Scale, and Ryff’s PWB scales, as well as a four-block design, 60 attribute, MI information processing RT task. All measures will be collected via computerized software program developed by Harvard Project Implicit.Military Nursing Relevance: ADSMs reside in a culture of shared military ideology, doctrine habituated by military training, daily operations, missions, and deployments. Many of these events, ideologies, and beliefs are self-defining, relevant to an individual’s identity, and chronically reside in memory. We propose that these memories are stored as cognitive structures termed military self-schemas which comprise MI and influence attitudes, perceptions, behaviors, PH outcomes, and resilience. Nurses are positioned to deliver patient centered care in all environments. Understanding the role of identity in PH can inform the development of new clinical strategies for CTs commonly used in treatment of military PH conditions.