Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, Ph.D

Professor: Chong Ho (Alex) Yu

Research Interests: Cross-cultural comparison of US and Asian students

Research Teams & Openings:

Research Information: Many American authors expressed their concern that US competitiveness in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is losing ground, as manifested by international comparisons, such as Trends in International Mathematics and

Science Study (TIMSS) and Program for International Student Assessment (PISA). According to TIMSS 2007 science assessment, the top four performers at Grade 4 were Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Japan (South Korea did not participate in Grade 4 assessment). At Grade 8, Singapore, Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea had the highest average achievement. Different theories had been proposed in an attempt to explain why Asian students excel in academics. The objective of this project is to develop plausible theories, actionable items and practical implications that are applicable to the US cultural contexts.

Contact Person:

Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, cyu@apu.edu

Additional Team Members: Dr. Frances Wu

Time Commitment: 1 year

Research Interests: Examining belief instinct

Research Teams & Openings:

Research Information: Cognitive psychologist Jesse Bering, the principal investigator of “Explaining religion” project based in Oxford University, asserted that our belief instinct is a result of maladaptive illusion. In Bering’s view, the belief that life has a purpose and things happen by design is beneficial to our psychological well-being, and therefore we impose a sense of purpose on random events. While this assertion seems to be logical, empirical evidence is lacking and its theoretical foundation (evolutionary psychology) is problematic. The objective of this project is to examine the efficacy of the theory of explaining religion through the lens of cognitive psychology and evolutionary psychology.

Contact Person:

Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, cyu@apu.edu

Additional Team Members: Dr. Juanita Cole, Dr. William Whitey

Time Commitment:

Research Interests: Christian Sexual Behaviors in a Pluralistic and Postmodern world

Research Teams & Openings:

Research Information: The Christian approach to counseling and education on human sexuality is often criticized by secular scholars as repressive and dogmatic. Statistical figures in the US, such as the high pre-marital pregnancy and abortion rates, are often cited as evidence of the failure of the Christianity-based abstinence-only programs. From the eras of modernity to postmodernity, the secular approach is embraced as a liberating force that relieves people from unnecessary guilt and paves the way to an open, pluralistic society. The objective of this study is to review both secular and the Christian approaches to sexuality, and to investigate whether Christian faith makes a difference in college student sexual behaviors using a sample collected in a Southwestern Christian university.

Contact Person:

Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, cyu@apu.edu

Additional Team Members: Karine Setyan, Hannah Lee

Time Commitment:

Research Interests: An investigation of the assimilation effect, the contrast effect, and autocorrelation in within-subject experimentation

Research Teams & Openings:

Research Information: Compared with experiments in engineering and other fields, psychological experiments are considered “nosier” due to the presence of human factors. The assimilation effect and the contrast effect are two well-known carry-over effects that could bias participants’ judgments when they are asked to rate their experiences after receiving multiple treatments or stimuli in a within-subject experiment. Specifically, the assimilation effect might happen due to a positive correlation between the present and the previous experiences, while the contrast effect might produce a bias as a result of a negative correlation between the two. Findings from numerous studies conducted in experimental psychology, social psychology, political science, and consumer research on these two contradictory effects are too diverse to form a consensus. The objective of this study is to examine whether autocorrelation plays a more important role in sequential ratings than the contrast and assimilation effects.

Contact Person:

Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, cyu@apu.edu

Additional Team Members: Karine Setyan

Time Commitment:

Research Interests: Why do college students give up Christianity? A mixed-method approach

Research Teams & Openings:

Research Information: With decreased attendance in churches and further lack of engagement in Christianity, this study explored, through a mixed methods approach, evidence that suggested reasons for disengagement and de-conversion from Christianity among college age (early adults) students. Past research had involved longitudinal and cross sectional studies beginning from adolescence and spanning into middle adulthood, illustrating reasons that may predict or cause this loss of faith. Various results stemmed largely from parental influence, longer reliance on parents and guardians into adulthood, and experiential trauma. Other associations had made using personality assessments conducive to religion. Cultural and political influences were also found to have a significant effect. According to these studies, it is not a single factor that contributes to de-conversion or disengagement, but a plethora of reasons. However, prior research on this phenomenon lacks a holistic view. To rectify this situation the research team employed a concurrent triangulation design, which integrated both quantitative and qualitative methodologies.

Contact Person:

Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, cyu@apu.edu

Additional Team Members: Karine Setyan

Time Commitment: