I submit this research proposal to the YC 121 New Eden capsuleer writing contest.
Note: a version of this text where links to references publicly available have been included can be found here. I apologize for the inconvenience. This forum system does not allow for a new user to post more than two outgoing links and this is my first time on this medium.
Early-life traumatic experiences as predictor of capsule compatibility
Sky Seolec (Sb.), PhD
Floseswin Circle of Clone Psychology
Republic University, Floseswin, Metropolis
The capsuleer/clone combined technology developed two decades ago has significantly changed space travel, business and combat (1). It is well understood that capsule compatibility is a relatively rare human trait (initially considered below 0.5% but with the development of alpha clones now estimated by some researches as high as up to 10% of population (2)) and that it depends on both inherited and acquired physiological and psychological traits (3). The exact genes and environmental factors leading to capsule compatibility are a topic of extensive research, but exact mechanisms are still largely unknown, and drop-out rates of capsuleer training remain extraordinarily high (up to 86 % of those initially tested as suitable candidates (4)).
Psychologically traumatic events can cause significant changes in an individual’s brain (5), and while many such changes are considered harmful, some could conceivably be beneficial to capsule compatibility. Such potentially compatibility-enhancing effects include altered cortisol responses to further stress (5), weaker attachment to kin groups (6), and decreased tendency to wait before risky decisions (7). Effects of traumatic experiences on cognition (5) could also explain the observation that while capsuleer IQ is generally high, their verbal output is not on par of the majority of adult population (8).
Our preliminary studies on subsets of the capsuleer population suggest that prevalence of psychological trauma - such as early life in slavery, being the victim of or witnessing violence, experiencing extreme helplessness, or losing kin or other significant support groups - is common among capsuleers, and that it often predates entry to the capsuleer training program (9). Some researchers have suggested that this is particularly common among independent capsuleers (as opposed to those of tribal or national fleets) (10).
However, comprehensive data on capsuleer candidates and graduated capsuleers is difficult to obtain (11). Data collection is not designed for research purposes, and recorded data is sparse and often classified. Informed consent for research purposes is lacking, especially for data during the early years of capsuleer programs. Longitudinal datasets that could conclusively prove cause and effect are in practice nonexistent.
Our hypothesis is that while it is clear that capsuleer training and capsuleer life in itself can constitute potentially traumatizing events and that some selection during the training program and in branching to military and civilian capsuleers is inevitable, a major reason for the observed phenomenon of increased prevalence of life-time psychological trauma among capsuleer populations is due to changes in brain organization and function caused by such experiences that render individuals more suitable for the unique experiences of capsuleers.
If this hypothesis is true, then 1) graduated capsuleers will have more life-time psychological trauma experiences than tribe/age-equivalent general populations, predating their entry to the program, 2) these experiences will be enriched into the capsuleer population either at candidate selection or by dropping-out during training, or both, 3) capsuleer candidates will differ from age/tribe matched general population on key measurements of cognitive/spiritual ability and brain-state, and 4) both the life-time prevalence of trauma and the aforementioned differences will correlate significantly with likelihood of graduation.
Alternative explanation for observations includes the possibility that individuals with these traits are simply more likely to apply for capsuleer training. In such a case, we would observe differences in experiences and cognitive/spiritual/brain-state measurements between applicants and general population, and consequently candidates/graduates and general population, but these differences would not predict outcome of training.
Materials and methods
A population of individuals applying to Capsuleer training programs at the Republic University and Republic Military School in YC122 will be recruited for this study. All individuals applying during a certain period (tbd) of time will be offered the chance to participate. On entering the study, the participant will answer a short survey of past trauma experiences. Background information will be gathered from enrollment forms. For those accepted into the program, Sudilgeir/Buwi standardized tests of cognitive/spiritual ability (12), the Tribe-adjusted Test for Physiological Performance (13), and Erim/Zainou Brain-state Scans (14) will be obtained periodically during the training. Candidates will also give regular blood tests to monitor the stress hormone levels. Accepted individuals will be followed until either graduation or termination of studies. Those individuals not selected for training will participate in a clinical study upon rejection to determine these same measurement values once. Pjasnari-Fjalur-Chaki Causal Modeling will be used as the statistical method of choice for analysis of the data obtained.
Significance of this research
A more in-depth understanding of life-time experiences that render an individual capsule-compatible could greatly enhance recruitment processes and early training, with significant resource benefits for recruiting institutes. Should traumatic events play a role in predicting capsule-compatibility, it also has implications for training methods, which would need to be adjusted to be best suitable for the unique needs and strengths of a population with high rates of exposure to adverse events.
(1) Miryaryan. Tribes and trade in the Empyrean age. Mithuris Law & Commerce. YC116. (Sb.)
(2) Olilgi et al. Recent Advances in Clone Brain States, a Review. J Cult Br Impl Tech. YC118 Aug 31. (Sb.)
(3) Sudilgeir et al. Predictors of Capsuleer Compatibility: Current Knowledge and Future Directions. Conference of the Circle for Promotion of Capsuleer Mental Health, YC116 Jun. (Vh.)
(4) Eydjar et al. The Effects of Tribal Background on Retention traits of Capsuleer Training Programs. J Cult Br Impl Tech. YC116 Dec 18.(Sb.)
(5) Bremner J et al. Traumatic Stress: Effects on the Brain. Dialogues Clin Neurosci. YC108 Dec; 8(4): 445–461. (Vh.)
(6) Breidenstine. Attachment and Trauma in Early Childhood: A Review. Journal of Child & Adolescent Trauma. YC113 Dec, Volume 4, Issue 4, pp 274–290. (Sb.)
(7) Birn et al. Early childhood stress exposure, reward pathways, and adult decision making. Proc Natl Acad Sci. YC119 Dec 19; 114(51): 13549–13554. (Kr.)
(8) Eydjar Annartil (Sb.), PhD (Psychology), Republic Fleet Research Circle for Improvement of Capsuleer Training, pers. comm. YC119.
(9) Seolec et al. Prevalence of Childhood Trauma among Republic University Capsuleer Candidates. Psych Clone Infom. YC120 Apr 22. (Sb.)
(10) Eydjar et al. Cognitive and Spiritual Differences Between Independent and Fleet Capsuleers upon Graduation. Psych Clone Infom. YC121 Dec 10. (Sb.)
(11) Seolec et al. Challenges and Opportunities in Infomorph Psychology. PhD Thesis, YC119, Department of Psychology, Republic University, Floseswin, Metropolis. (Sb.)
(12) Sudilgeir and Buwi. Test and Standardized Values for Cognitive and Spiritual Abilities in Adult Minmatar Populations. YC97, updated manual Sudilgeir Circle of Metacognitive Analysis YC121. (Vh.)
(13) Gaudja et al. Test-retest Reliability of Physical Tests in Standard Training Use. Reports of the Republic Military School. YC89. (Br.)
(14) Erim et al. Method for Simultaneous Capture of Brain Morphology and Current Mental State. Zainou Init Imag. YC102. (Kr.)
(15) Pjasnari et al. Extraction of Causal Certainties from Complex Follow-up Data. Rydd J Adv Stat. YC121 Feb 24. (Sb.)