Wrapping Up with only Minor Hiccups: Part Four

Hello Charles Center blog patrons! As my time spent researching this summer comes to a close, I am grateful to have this space to reflect on all that I’ve learned, and all the ways that I’ve grown this summer. I am so grateful to the Charles Center for allowing me to truly embrace my passion for mental health and gender differences. This opportunity is definitely a rarity, even in the realm of academia. It has been such an honor to seize this fortune every single day.

Nothing prepared me for the vast amount of experience I would gain over the past three months. Not only was I able to hone my literature review and abstract writing skills, but I also became well-versed in SPSS-Syntax coding, demographic data entry, and physiological data analysis. This summer, I have completed a literature review of anxiety disorders, gender differences in mental health, and physiological responsivity to stress. My pages of notes have allowed me to craft an outline of an abstract and introductory paragraphs for a paper in the future. Along with this writing, I have taught myself how to write and execute code in SPSS-Syntax in order to analyze the complex levels of data that I have regarding vulnerability for depression and anxiety disorders. Additionally, I spent many hours logging valuable participant information into a computerized database, and also compiling a step-by-step instructions guide for how to analyze electrodermal data.

I am so proud of the work I’ve already been able to accomplish, but I’m not done yet! The data analyses and interpretations have just begun. My hypotheses stem from the specific ways in which I will handle the electrodermal activity. For example, I think that women will show higher vulnerability for Generalized Anxiety Disorder and equal levels of Social Anxiety as men. That being said, I predict that women will show lower levels of mean skin conductance. This is due to the phenomenon of habituation- because women’s bodies are used to feeling consistently anxious, they will be less physiologically responsive.

While this is my last blog post of summer 2017, it is most definitely not my last jaunt in the overlap of mental illness and gender differences. Again, I am so grateful for the Charles Center for the incredible opportunities I have been rewarded this summer!


  1. Your time sounds very well-spent. It has been an honor to engage with you academically and socially this summer. I have some questions for your future research, though. How much have you been able to statistically observe this summer? I’m not sure whether the participant-logging has concerned data you are using or just your professor’s data. If it’s your data, I’d love to hear more about the statistical processes you’ve been able to learn how to do/trends you’ve observed in SPSS. I’ve been learning how to use Python this summer. We are both riders on the rollercoaster that is amateur coding – I know my attempts at writing coherent code have only produced fruit after hours and hours of work. I’m excited to hear more about what exactly you learned how to do in SPSS and to revel in our newfound coding knowledge together.