Picard, Delphine; Zarhbouch, Benaissa
A leftward spatial bias in drawing placement was demonstrated by Heller (1991) using the draw-a-person test with right-handed American children. No such bias was observed in left-handed children who are assumed to be less lateralised than their right-handed peers. According to Heller the leftward spatial bias is primarily a reflection of the right hemisphere specialisation for spatial processing. However, an alternative explanation in terms of directional trends may be put forward. In the present study we first confirm Heller's findings of a handedness effect on drawing placement using the draw-a-tree task with a large sample of right- and left-handed French children aged 5-15 years (Exp. 1). We then provide evidence that a similar leftward bias occurs in right-handed Moroccan children aged 7-11 years with opposite script directionality and opposite preferred drawing movement directions (i.e., right-to-left directional trends) to the those of right-handed French children (Exp. 2). Taken together these findings suggest that directionality trends arising from learned cultural habits and motor preferences play little role in determining spatial bias in the centring of a single object drawn on a page. Rather there may be a cerebral origin for drawing single objects slightly on the left side of the graphic space.
Hunt, Edmund R; O'Shea-Wheller, Thomas; Albery, Gregory F; Bridger, Tamsyn H; Gumn, Mike; Franks, Nigel R
Behavioural lateralization in invertebrates is an important field of study because it may provide insights into the early origins of lateralization seen in a diversity of organisms. Here, we present evidence for a leftward turning bias in Temnothorax albipennis ants exploring nest cavities and in branching mazes, where the bias is initially obscured by thigmotaxis (wall-following) behaviour. Forward travel with a consistent turning bias in either direction is an effective nest exploration method, and a simple decision-making heuristic to employ when faced with multiple directional choices. Replication of the same bias at the colony level would also reduce individual predation risk through aggregation effects, and may lead to a faster attainment of a quorum threshold for nest migration. We suggest the turning bias may be the result of an evolutionary interplay between vision, exploration and migration factors, promoted by the ants' eusociality.
Longo, Matthew R.; Lourenco, S.F.; Francisco, A.
Increasing evidence suggests that common mechanisms underlie the direction of attention in physical space and numerical space, along the mental number line. The small leftward bias (pseudoneglect) found on paper-and-pencil line bisection is also observed when participants ‘bisect’ number pairs, estimating (without calculating) the number midway between two others. Here we investigated the effect of stimulus motion on attention in numerical space. A two-frame apparent motion paradigm manipulat...
Chillemi, Gaetana; Formica, Caterina; Salatino, Adriana; Calamuneri, Alessandro; Girlanda, Paolo; Morgante, Francesca; Milardi, Demetrio; Terranova, Carmen; Cacciola, Alberto; Quartarone, Angelo; Ricci, Raffaella
There is increasing evidence of non-motor, sensory symptoms, mainly involving the spatial domain, in cervical dystonia (CD). These manifestations are likely driven by dysfunctional overactivity of the parietal cortex during the execution of a sensory task. Few studies also suggest the possibility that visuospatial attention might be specifically affected in patients with CD. Therefore, we asked whether non-motor manifestations in CD might also comprise impairment of higher level visuospatial processing. To this end, we investigated visuospatial attention in 23 CD patients and 12 matched healthy controls (for age, gender, education, and ocular dominance). The patients were identified according to the dystonia pattern type (laterocollis vs. torticollis). Overall, participants were right-handers, and the majority of them was right-eye dominant. Visuospatial attention was assessed using a line bisection task. Participants were asked to bisect horizontal lines, using their right or left hand. Participants bisected more to the left of true center when using their left hand to perform the task than when using their right hand. However, overall, torticollis patients produced a significantly greater leftward deviation than controls. These data are consistent with preliminary findings suggesting the presence of biased spatial attention in patients with idiopathic cervical dystonia. The presence of an attentional bias in patients with torticollis seem to indicate that alterations of attentional circuits might be implicated in the pathophysiology of this type of CD. (JINS, 2018, 24, 23-32).
Longo, Matthew R; Lourenco, Stella F; Francisco, Alex
Increasing evidence suggests that common mechanisms underlie the direction of attention in physical space and numerical space, along the mental number line. The small leftward bias (pseudoneglect) found on paper-and-pencil line bisection is also observed when participants 'bisect' number pairs, estimating (without calculating) the number midway between two others. Here we investigated the effect of stimulus motion on attention in numerical space. A two-frame apparent motion paradigm manipulating stimulus size was used to produce the impression that pairs of numbers were approaching (size increase from first to second frame), receding (size decrease), or not moving (no size change). The magnitude of pseudoneglect increased for approaching numbers, even when the final stimulus size was held constant. This result is consistent with previous findings that pseudoneglect in numerical space (as in physical space) increases as stimuli are brought closer to the participant. It also suggests that the perception of stimulus motion modulates attention over the mental number line and provides further support for a connection between the neural representations of physical space and number. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Lowe, Robyn; Menzies, Ross; Packman, Ann; O'Brian, Sue; Jones, Mark; Onslow, Mark
Many adults who stutter presenting for speech treatment experience social anxiety disorder. The presence of mental health disorders in adults who stutter has been implicated in a failure to maintain speech treatment benefits. Contemporary theories of social anxiety disorder propose that the condition is maintained by negative cognitions and information processing biases. Consistent with cognitive theories, the probe detection task has shown that social anxiety is associated with an attentional bias to avoid social information. This information processing bias is suggested to be involved in maintaining anxiety. Evidence is emerging for information processing biases being involved with stuttering. This study investigated information processing in adults who stutter using the probe detection task. Information processing biases have been implicated in anxiety maintenance in social anxiety disorder and therefore may have implications for the assessment and treatment of stuttering. It was hypothesized that stuttering participants compared with control participants would display an attentional bias to avoid attending to social information. Twenty-three adults who stutter and 23 controls completed a probe detection task in which they were presented with pairs of photographs: a face displaying an emotional expression-positive, negative or neutral-and an everyday household object. All participants were subjected to a mild social threat induction being told they would speak to a small group of people on completion of the task. The stuttering group scored significantly higher than controls for trait anxiety, but did not differ from controls on measures of social anxiety. Non-socially anxious adults who stutter did not display an attentional bias to avoid looking at photographs of faces relative to everyday objects. Higher scores on trait anxiety were positively correlated with attention towards photographs of negative faces. Attentional biases as assessed by the probe
Marissen, Marlies A. E.; Franken, Ingmar H. A.; Waters, Andrew J.; Blanken, Peter; van den Brink, Wim; Hendriks, Vincent M.
AIMS: Previous studies have shown that abstinent heroin addicts exhibit an attentional bias to heroin-related stimuli. It has been suggested that attentional bias may represent a vulnerability to relapse into drug use. In the present study, the predictive value of pre-treatment attentional bias on
Hutchison, Jennifer; Thomas, Nicole A; Elias, Lorin
It has been reliably shown that light is assumed to come from above. There is also some suggestion that light from the left might be preferred. Leftward lighting biases have been observed across various mediums such as paintings, portraits, photographs, and advertisements. As advertisements are used to persuade the public to purchase products, it was of interest to better understand whether leftward lighting would influence future intention to purchase. Participants gave preference ratings for pairs of advertisements with opposing lighting directions. Attitude towards the advertisement and the brand as well as future purchase intention was then rated. Overall, participants indicated that they preferred advertisements with leftward lighting and were more likely to purchase these products in the future than when the same products were lit from the right. Findings are consistent with previously observed leftward lighting biases and suggest that advertisements with a leftward lighting bias might be more effective.
A series of primarily laboratory-based studies found attention bias modification in socially anxious participants to lead to reduced anxiety. It is argued that the failure to replicate the positive results of attention bias modification in the study of Carlbring et al. may be due to reasons other
Hartikainen, Kaisa M; Ogawa, Keith H; Knight, Robert T
We examined the role of orbitofrontal (OF) cortex in regulating emotion-attention interaction and the balance between involuntary and voluntary attention allocation. We studied patients with OF lesion applying reaction time (RT) and event-related potential (ERP) measures in a lateralized visual discrimination task with novel task-irrelevant affective pictures (unpleasant, pleasant, or neutral) preceding a neutral target. This allowed for comparing the effects of automatic attention allocation to emotional versus neutral stimuli on subsequent voluntary attention allocation to target stimuli. N2-P3a and N2-P3b ERP components served as measures of involuntary and voluntary attention allocation correspondingly. Enhanced N2-P3a amplitudes to emotional distractors and reduced N2-P3b amplitudes to targets preceded by emotional distractors were observed in healthy subjects, suggesting automatic emotional orienting interfered with subsequent voluntary orienting. OF patients showed an opposite pattern with tendency towards reduced N2-P3a responses to emotional distractors, suggesting impaired automatic orienting to emotional stimuli due to orbitofrontal damage. Enhanced N2-P3b responses to targets preceded by any affective distractor were observed in OF patients, suggesting bias towards voluntary target-related attention allocation due to orbitofrontal lesion. Behavioral evidence indicated that left visual field (LVF) attention performance was modulated by emotional stimuli. Specifically, OF patients responded faster to LVF targets subsequent to pleasant emotional distractors. We suggest that damage to the orbitofrontal circuitry leads to dysbalance between voluntary and involuntary attention allocation in the context of affective distractors with predisposition to posterior target-related processing over frontal novelty and affect-related processing. Furthermore, we suggest that orbitofrontal influence on emotion-attention interaction is valence and hemisphere dependent.
Chau, Sarah A; Chung, Jonathan; Herrmann, Nathan; Eizenman, Moshe; Lanctôt, Krista L
Apathy, one of the most prevalent neuropsychiatric symptoms in Alzheimer's disease (AD), can be difficult to assess as cognition deteriorates. There is a need for more objective assessments that do not rely on patient insight, communicative capacities, or caregiver observation. We measured visual scanning behavior, using an eye-tracker, to explore attentional bias in the presence of competing stimuli to assess apathy in AD patients. Mild-to-moderate AD patients (Standardized Mini-Mental Status Examination, sMMSE >10) were assessed for apathy (Neuropsychiatric Inventory [NPI] apathy, Apathy Evaluation Scale [AES]). Participants were presented with 16 slides, each containing 4 images of different emotional themes (2 neutral, 1 social, 1 dysphoric). The duration of time spent, and fixation frequency on images were measured. Of the 36 AD patients (14 females, age = 78.2±7.8, sMMSE = 22.4±3.5) included, 17 had significant apathy (based on NPI apathy ≥4) and 19 did not. These groups had comparable age and sMMSE. Repeated-measures analysis of covariance models, controlling for total NPI, showed group (apathetic versus non-apathetic) by image (social versus dysphoric) interactions for duration (F(1,32) = 4.31, p = 0.046) and fixation frequency (F(1,32) = 11.34, p = 0.002). Apathetic patients demonstrated reduced duration and fixation frequency on social images compared with non-apathetic patients. Additionally, linear regression models suggest that more severe apathy predicted decreasing fixation frequency on social images (R2 = 0.26, Adjusted R2 = 0.19, F(3,32) = 3.65, p = 0.023). These results suggest that diminished attentional bias toward social-themed stimuli is a marker of apathy in AD. Measurements of visual scanning behavior may have the potential to predict and monitor treatment response in apathy.
Li, Kuei-An; Yeh, Su-Ling
The human visual system can estimate mean size of a set of items effectively; however, little is known about whether information on each visual field contributes equally to the mean size estimation. In this study, we examined whether a left-side bias (LSB)-perceptual judgment tends to depend more heavily on left visual field's inputs-affects mean size estimation. Participants were instructed to estimate the mean size of 16 spots. In half of the trials, the mean size of the spots on the left side was larger than that on the right side (the left-larger condition) and vice versa (the right-larger condition). Our results illustrated an LSB: A larger estimated mean size was found in the left-larger condition than in the right-larger condition (Experiment 1), and the LSB vanished when participants' attention was effectively cued to the right side (Experiment 2b). Furthermore, the magnitude of LSB increased with stimulus-onset asynchrony (SOA), when spots on the left side were presented earlier than the right side. In contrast, the LSB vanished and then induced a reversed effect with SOA when spots on the right side were presented earlier (Experiment 3). This study offers the first piece of evidence suggesting that LSB does have a significant influence on mean size estimation of a group of items, which is induced by a leftward attentional bias that enhances the prior entry effect on the left side.
Beard, Courtney; Amir, Nader
Cognitive models suggest that attention processes maintain sexual dysfunction. However, few published studies have examined attention bias, and even fewer have studied female participants with sexual dysfunction. Using the Female Sexual Function Index, the authors classified undergraduates as experiencing sexual dysfunction (n = 28) or not (n = 28). The authors assessed whether participants showed attention bias for sexual words using a modified dot-probe task. As expected, female participants with sexual dysfunction showed an attention bias to sexual words, whereas control participants did not. The authors discuss implications for models of sexual dysfunction and clinical intervention.
Beevers, Christopher G.; Clasen, Peter C.; Enock, Philip M.; Schnyer, David M.
Cognitive theories of depression posit that selective attention for negative information contributes to the maintenance of depression. The current study experimentally tested this idea by randomly assigning adults with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) to four weeks of computer-based attention bias modification designed to reduce negative attention bias or four weeks of placebo attention training. Findings indicate that compared to placebo training, attention bias modification reduced negative attention bias and increased resting-state connectivity within a neural circuit (i.e., middle frontal gyrus and dorsal anterior cingulate cortex) that supports control over emotional information. Further, pre- to post-training change in negative attention bias was significantly correlated with depression symptom change only in the active training condition. Exploratory analyses indicated that pre- to post-training changes in resting state connectivity within a circuit associated with sustained attention to visual information (i.e., precuenus and middle frontal gyrus) contributed to symptom improvement in the placebo condition. Importantly, depression symptoms did not change differentially between the training groups—overall, a 40% decrease in symptoms was observed across attention training conditions. Findings suggest that negative attention bias is associated with the maintenance of depression; however, general attentional control may also maintain depression symptoms, as evidenced by resting state connectivity and depression symptom improvement in the placebo training condition. PMID:25894440
Wang, Sheng; Zhao, Yan; Chen, Sijuan; Lin, Guiping; Sun, Peng; Wang, Tinghuai
Background Emotion-related attentional bias is implicated in the aetiology and maintenance of anxiety disorders. Electroencephalogram (EEG) biofeedback can obviously improve the anxiety disorders and reduce stress level, and can also enhance attention performance in healthy subjects. The present study examined the effects and mechanisms of EEG biofeedback training on the attentional bias of high trait anxiety (HTA) individuals toward negative stimuli. Results Event-related potentials were rec...
Roberts, Ross; Turnbull, Oliver H
Although the effects of lateral biases in visual attention ("pseudoneglect") have been examined in real-world settings, this phenomenon has yet to be considered within the realm of sporting performance. In the present study, we investigated the effects of pseudoneglect on putting errors in golf. Novice golfers (n = 30) performed 90 putting trials followed by a series of pseudoneglect tasks: requiring participants to bisect lines manually and with a biomechanical bisection tool. All pseudoneglect measures were performed with both the left and right hands. Results demonstrated a leftward bias for all the pseudoneglect tasks, and a rightward bias for putting error. Moreover, the results revealed that individuals who bisected lines to the left on the Bisection Tool (the typical class of pseudoneglect error for humans) with the left hand (the hand that typically produces the greatest pseudoneglect bias) displayed significantly smaller rightward putting errors. Moreover, these individuals also holed more putts. No other pseudoneglect tasks were shown to impact on putting performance. Our findings suggest that lateralized attentional biases have a significant effect on sport performance; they appear to influence a wide range of precision-based sports (e.g. shooting, archery). Findings are also discussed in terms of the processes that are likely to be involved in this effect.
This is a poster from the BPS Psychobiology Section Annual Scientific Meeting (2015). It explains my third year dissertation project investigating attentional bias, smoking habits, and smoking motives in nicotine dependent and non-dependent smokers.
De Voogd, E L; Wiers, R W; Prins, P J M; Salemink, E
An attentional bias for negative information plays an important role in the development and maintenance of (social) anxiety and depression, which are highly prevalent in adolescence. Attention Bias Modification (ABM) might be an interesting tool in the prevention of emotional disorders. The current study investigated whether visual search ABM might affect attentional bias and emotional functioning in adolescents. A visual search task was used as a training paradigm; participants (n = 16 adolescents, aged 13-16) had to repeatedly identify the only smiling face in a 4 × 4 matrix of negative emotional faces, while participants in the control condition (n = 16) were randomly allocated to one of three placebo training versions. An assessment version of the task was developed to directly test whether attentional bias changed due to the training. Self-reported anxiety and depressive symptoms and self-esteem were measured pre- and post-training. After two sessions of training, the ABM group showed a significant decrease in attentional bias for negative information and self-reported social phobia, while the control group did not. There were no effects of training on depressive mood or self-esteem. No correlation between attentional bias and social phobia was found, which raises questions about the validity of the attentional bias assessment task. Also, the small sample size precludes strong conclusions. Visual search ABM might be beneficial in changing attentional bias and social phobia in adolescents, but further research with larger sample sizes and longer follow-up is needed. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Vujanovic, Anka A.; Wardle, Margaret C.; Liu, Shijing; Dias, Nadeeka R.; Lane, Scott D.
ABSTRACT There has been modest examination of attentional bias in individuals with cannabis use disorders. Clinical implications of this work are directly relevant to better informing extant evidence-based treatment for substance use disorders (e.g., relapse prevention) and/or developing novel interventions. The overarching aim of this investigation was to examine a novel attentional bias task in adults with cannabis use disorders. Participants were comprised of 25 adults (8 women: M age = 31...
Glauert, Rebecca; Rhodes, Gillian; Fink, Bernhard; Grammer, Karl
Evidence for attentional biases to weight- and shape-related information in women with eating concerns is inconclusive. We investigated whether body dissatisfaction is associated with an attentional bias toward thin bodies using a modified dot probe task. In three studies, we found that undergraduate females were faster to discriminate the direction of an arrow cue when it appeared in the location previously occupied by a thin than a fat body. This attentional bias toward thin bodies was found using extreme stimuli (thin and fat bodies) presented for 500 ms (Experiment 1), extreme stimuli presented for 150 ms (Experiment 2), and less extreme stimuli that were equated for perceived extremity, presented for 150 ms (Experiment 3). When the stimuli were equated on perceptual extremity, the more dissatisfied a woman was with her body, and the larger her own BMI, the less of an attentional bias she showed toward thin bodies. Our results indicate that women have an attentional bias to thin bodies, which appears to be automatic. Contrary to prediction, this bias was weaker in women with greater BMI and body dissatisfaction. This result offers no support for the view that selective attention to thin bodies is causally related to body dissatisfaction.
Nelson, Brady D; Jackson, Felicia; Amir, Nader; Hajcak, Greg
The error-related negativity (ERN) is an electrophysiological response to errors. Individual differences in the ERN have been posited to reflect sensitivity to threat and linked with risk for anxiety disorders. Attention bias modification is a promising computerized intervention that has been shown to decrease threat biases and anxiety symptoms. In the present study, we examined the impact of a single session of attention bias modification, relative to a control task, on the neural correlates of response monitoring, including the ERN, correct response negativity (CRN), and their difference (i.e., the ERN - CRN or ΔERN). The final sample included 60 participants who first completed a flanker task to elicit the ERN and CRN, and were then randomly assigned to attention bias modification (n=30) or a control task (n=30). After completing the attention bias modification or control task, participants completed the same flanker task to again elicit the ERN and CRN. Among participants who completed attention bias modification training, the ERN, CRN, and ΔERN decreased from the pre- to post-training assessment. In contrast, in participants who completed the control task, the CRN, ERN, and ΔERN did not differ between the pre- and post-training assessment. The presents study suggests that a single session of attention bias modification reduces neural correlates of response monitoring, including error-related brain activity. These results also support attention bias modification as a potential mechanistic-based intervention for the prevention and treatment of anxiety pathology. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available One of the main problems of the drug abusers is drug related attention bias, which causes craving, and as a result drive the drug abusers to take narcotics. Methadone is used as a maintenance treatment for drug abusers. The purpose of this study is evaluation of the effect of Methadone maintenance therapy (MMT on selective attention and drug related attention bias. This study investigated drug cue-related attention bias and selective attention in 16 methadone-maintained patients before and 45 days after methadone therapy period. Stroop color-word test and addiction Stroop test were used as measurement methods. Results show less reaction time and higher accuracy in Color-Word Stroop Test after MMT and less delay for addict related word in addiction Stroop test. It is concluded that methadone can improve selective attention capability and reduce drug related attention bias.
Full Text Available New indices, calculated on data from the widely used Dot Probe Task, were recently proposed to capture variability in biased attention allocation. We observed that it remains unclear which data pattern is meant to be indicative of dynamic bias and thus to be captured by these indices. Moreover, we hypothesized that the new indices are sensitive to SD differences at the response time (RT level in the absence of bias.Randomly generated datasets were analyzed to assess properties of the Attention Bias Variability (ABV and Trial Level Bias Score (TL-BS indices. Sensitivity to creating differences in 1 RT standard deviation, 2 mean RT, and 3 bias magnitude were assessed. In addition, two possible definitions of dynamic attention bias were explored by creating differences in 4 frequency of bias switching, and 5 bias magnitude in the presence of constant switching.ABV and TL-BS indices were found highly sensitive to increasing SD at the response time level, insensitive to increasing bias, linearly sensitive to increasing bias magnitude in the presence of bias switches, and non-linearly sensitive to increasing the frequency of bias switches. The ABV index was also found responsive to increasing mean response times in the absence of bias.Recently proposed DPT derived variability indices cannot uncouple measurement error from bias variability. Significant group differences may be observed even if there is no bias present in any individual dataset. This renders the new indices in their current form unfit for empirical purposes. Our discussion focuses on fostering debate and ideas for new research to validate the potentially very important notion of biased attention being dynamic.
Tata, P R; Leibowitz, J A; Prunty, M J; Cameron, M; Pickering, A D
To date, studies of information processing in anxiety disorders have suggested that the latter are characterised by vigilance for threatening stimuli, possibly specific to personally relevant threat content. The present study represents an attempt to establish whether patients suffering from Obsessional Compulsive Disorder (OCD), generally classified as an anxiety disorder, show a similar cognitive bias. Thus, a replication of MacLeod, Mathews and Tata's (1986) study [Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 95, 15-20] is reported, employing modified materials of direct concern to the OCD subjects i.e. Contamination-related words. The results did indeed reveal content specific vigilance, whereby the OCD group were more vigilant for contamination content than mood-matched High Trait Anxious (HTA) controls, but the reverse was true for Social Anxiety words. Additionally, while a general threat interference effect was identified for both OCD and HTA subjects this was not content specific. A second experiment employing Low Trait Anxious subjects revealed no vigilance for threat nor any threat interference in this sample. The clinical implications and possible mechanism underlying these results are discussed.
Ginting, H.; Näring, G.W.B.; Becker, E.S.
This study examined whether in an emotional Stroop task, individuals with coronary heart disease (CHD) would show greater attention towards the threatening words related to their disease than healthy persons, and if such an attentional bias is associated with anxiety. An emotional Stroop task with
Luo, Xijia; Ikani, Nessa; Barth, Anja; Rengers, Lea; Becker, Eni; Rinck, Mike
Attention Bias Modification (ABM) is used to manipulate attention biases in anxiety disorders. It has been successful in reducing attention biases and anxious symptoms in social anxiety and generalized anxiety, but not yet in specific fears and phobias. We designed a new version of the dot-probe training task, aiming to train fearful participants' attention away from or towards pictures of threatening stimuli. Moreover, we studied whether the training also affected participants' avoidance behavior and their physical arousal upon being confronted with a real threat object. In Experiment 1, students with fear of spiders were trained. We found that the attention manipulation was successful, but the training failed to affect behavior or arousal. In Experiment 2, the same procedure was used on snake-fearful students. Again, attention was trained in the expected directions. Moreover, participants whose attention had been trained away from snakes showed lower physiological arousal upon being confronted with a real snake. The study involved healthy students with normal distribution of the fear of spider/snake. Future research with clinical sample could help with determining the generalizability of the current findings. The effect of ABM on specific phobia is still in question. The finding in the present study suggested the possibility to alter attentional bias with a dot-probe task with general positive stimuli and this training could even affect the behavior while encountering a real threat. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Morales, Santiago; Fu, Xiaoxue; Pérez-Edgar, Koraly E
There is growing interest regarding the impact of affect-biased attention on psychopathology. However, most of the research to date lacks a developmental approach. In the present review, we examine the role affect-biased attention plays in shaping socioemotional trajectories within a developmental neuroscience framework. We propose that affect-biased attention, particularly if stable and entrenched, acts as a developmental tether that helps sustain early socioemotional and behavioral profiles over time, placing some individuals on maladaptive developmental trajectories. Although most of the evidence is found in the anxiety literature, we suggest that these relations may operate across multiple domains of interest, including positive affect, externalizing behaviors, drug use, and eating behaviors. We also review the general mechanisms and neural correlates of affect-biased attention, as well as the current evidence for the co-development of attention and affect. Based on the reviewed literature, we propose a model that may help us better understand the nuances of affect-biased attention across development. The model may serve as a strong foundation for ongoing attempts to identify neurocognitive mechanisms and intervene with individuals at risk. Finally, we discuss open issues for future research that may help bridge existing gaps in the literature. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Morales, Santiago; Fu, Xiaoxue; Pérez-Edgar, Koraly E.
There is growing interest regarding the impact of affect-biased attention on psychopathology. However, most of the research to date lacks a developmental approach. In the present review, we examine the role affect-biased attention plays in shaping socioemotional trajectories within a developmental neuroscience framework. We propose that affect-biased attention, particularly if stable and entrenched, acts as a developmental tether that helps sustain early socioemotional and behavioral profiles over time, placing some individuals on maladaptive developmental trajectories. Although most of the evidence is found in the anxiety literature, we suggest that these relations may operate across multiple domains of interest, including positive affect, externalizing behaviors, drug use, and eating behaviors. We also review the general mechanisms and neural correlates of affect-biased attention, as well as the current evidence for the co-development of attention and affect. Based on the reviewed literature, we propose a model that may help us better understand the nuances of affect-biased attention across development. The model may serve as a strong foundation for ongoing attempts to identify neurocognitive mechanisms and intervene with individuals at risk. Finally, we discuss open issues for future research that may help bridge existing gaps in the literature. PMID:27606972
Michał J. Wójcik
Full Text Available The implicit self-recognition process may take place already in the pre-attentive stages of perception. After a silent stimulus has captured attention, it is passed on to the attentive stage where it can affect decision making and responding. Numerous studies show that the presence of self-referential information affects almost every cognitive level. These effects may share a common and fundamental basis in an attentional mechanism, conceptualized as attentional bias: the exaggerated deployment of attentional resources to a salient stimulus. A gold standard in attentional bias research is the dot-probe paradigm. In this task, a prominent stimulus (cue and a neutral stimulus are presented in different spatial locations, followed by the presentation of a target. In the current study we aimed at investigating whether the self-face captures, holds and biases attention when presented as a task-irrelevant stimulus. In two dot-probe experiments coupled with the event-related potential (ERP technique we analyzed the following relevant ERPs components: N2pc and SPCN which reflect attentional shifts and the maintenance of attention, respectively. An inter-stimulus interval separating face-cues and probes (800 ms was introduced only in the first experiment. In line with our predictions, in Experiment 1 the self-face elicited the N2pc and the SPCN component. In Experiment 2 in addition to N2pc, an attentional bias was observed. Our results indicate that unintentional self-face processing disables the top-down control setting to filter out distractors, thus leading to the engagement of attentional resources and visual short-term memory.
Full Text Available Social anxiety disorder (SAD and attentional bias are theoretically connected in cognitive behavioral therapeutic models. In fact, there is an emerging field focusing on modifying attentional bias as a stand-alone treatment. However, it is unclear to what degree these attentional biases are present before commencing treatment. The purpose of this study was to measure pre-treatment attentional bias in 153 participants diagnosed with SAD using a home-based Internet version of the dot-probe paradigm. Results showed no significant correlation for attentional bias (towards or away from negative words or faces and the self-rated version of the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (LSAS-SR. However, two positive correlations were found for the secondary measures Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7 (GAD-7 and Patient Health Questionnaire 9 (PHQ-9. These indicated that those with elevated levels of anxiety and depression had a higher bias towards negative faces in neutral–negative and positive–negative valence combinations, respectively. The unreliability of the dot-probe paradigm and home-based Internet delivery are discussed to explain the lack of correlations between LSAS-SR and attentional bias. Changes to the dot-probe task are suggested that could improve reliability.
Schofield, Casey A; Inhoff, Albrecht W; Coles, Meredith E
Theoretical models of social phobia implicate preferential attention to social threat in the maintenance of anxiety symptoms, though there has been limited work characterizing the nature of these biases over time. The current study utilized eye-movement data to examine the time-course of visual attention over 1500ms trials of a probe detection task. Nineteen participants with a primary diagnosis of social phobia based on DSM-IV criteria and 20 non-clinical controls completed this task with angry, fearful, and happy face trials. Overt visual attention to the emotional and neutral faces was measured in 50ms segments across the trial. Over time, participants with social phobia attend less to emotional faces and specifically less to happy faces compared to controls. Further, attention to emotional relative to neutral expressions did not vary notably by emotion for participants with social phobia, but control participants showed a pattern after 1000ms in which over time they preferentially attended to happy expressions and avoided negative expressions. Findings highlight the importance of considering attention biases to positive stimuli as well as the pattern of attention between groups. These results suggest that attention "bias" in social phobia may be driven by a relative lack of the biases seen in non-anxious participants. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Domaradzka, Ewa; Bielecki, Maksymilian
Numerous studies have shown that biases in visual attention might be evoked by affective and personally relevant stimuli, for example addiction-related objects. Despite the fact that addiction is often linked to specific products and systematic purchase behaviors, no studies focused directly on the existence of bias evoked by brands. Smokers are characterized by high levels of brand loyalty and everyday contact with cigarette packaging. Using the incentive-salience mechanism as a theoretical framework, we hypothesized that this group might exhibit a bias toward the preferred cigarette brand. In our study, a group of smokers ( N = 40) performed a dot probe task while their eye movements were recorded. In every trial a pair of pictures was presented - each of them showed a single cigarette pack. The visual properties of stimuli were carefully controlled, so branding information was the key factor affecting subjects' reactions. For each participant, we compared gaze behavior related to the preferred vs. other brands. The analyses revealed no attentional bias in the early, orienting phase of the stimulus processing and strong differences in maintenance and disengagement. Participants spent more time looking at the preferred cigarettes and saccades starting at the preferred brand location had longer latencies. In sum, our data shows that attentional bias toward brands might be found in situations not involving choice or decision making. These results provide important insights into the mechanisms of formation and maintenance of attentional biases to stimuli of personal relevance and might serve as a first step toward developing new attitude measurement techniques.
Reichert, Elizabeth; Segal, Caroline; Flannery-Schroeder, Ellen
Individuals with previous histories of trauma are at increased risk for subsequent victimization and the development of posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, and anxiety disorders. Attentional biases to threat-related stimuli are thought to impact one's ability to recognize future risk in his or her environment and may explain high rates of revictimization. Although the literature has identified three possible types of attentional biases among victims of trauma (i.e., interference, facilitation, and avoidance), findings are mixed. The current study examined attentional biases to threats among a sample of men and women with no, some, and multiple incident interpersonal and non-interpersonal trauma histories. It was hypothesized that those with multiple incident interpersonal trauma histories would demonstrate an interference effect (i.e., slower response times to threat-related words). Participants (N = 309) were 18- to 29-year-old college students. Self-report measures assessed trauma history, posttraumatic stress, and other psychological sequelae. Attentional biases were assessed using a dot probe computer task. Contrary to hypotheses, no significant differences in response times in the presence of threat-related words or neutral words were found among groups. Results suggest that multiple traumatized individuals do not exhibit attentional bias to threats compared to individuals with some or no trauma.
Ciccarelli, Maria; Nigro, Giovanna; Griffiths, Mark D; Cosenza, Marina; D'Olimpio, Francesca
From a cognitive perspective, attentional biases are deemed as factors responsible in the onset and development of gambling disorder. However, knowledge relating to attentional processes in gambling is scarce and studies to date have reported contrasting results. Moreover, no study has ever examined which component and what type of bias are involved in attentional bias in gambling. In the present study, 108 Italian participants, equally divided into problem and non-problem gamblers, were administered a modified Posner Task, an attentional paradigm in which - through the manipulation of stimuli presentation time - it is possible to measure both initial orienting and maintenance of attention. In addition to the experimental task, participants completed self-report measures involving (i) craving (Gambling Craving Scale), (ii) depression, anxiety and stress (Depression Anxiety Stress Scale) and (iii) emotional dysregulation (Difficulties in Emotion Regulation Scale). Analyses revealed facilitation in detecting gambling-related stimuli at the encoding level in problem gamblers but not in non-problem gamblers. Compared to non-problem gamblers, problem gamblers also reported higher levels of craving, emotional dysregulation, and negative mood states. Furthermore, all measures correlated with the gambling severity. The use of indirect measure of attentional bias could be less accurate compared to direct measures. The facilitation in detecting gambling-related stimuli in problem gamblers and the correlation between subjective craving and facilitation bias suggests that attentional bias could not be due to a conditioning process but that motivational factors such as craving could induce addicted-related seeking-behaviors. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Cha, Christine; Najmi, Sadia; Park, Jennifer; Finn, Christine; Nock, Matthew K.
A long-standing challenge for scientific and clinical work on suicidal behavior is that people often are motivated to deny or conceal suicidal thoughts. We proposed that people considering suicide would possess an objectively measurable attentional bias toward suicide-related stimuli, and that this bias would predict future suicidal behavior. Participants were 124 adults presenting to a psychiatric emergency department who were administered a modified emotional Stroop task and followed for si...
Wang, Sheng; Zhao, Yan; Chen, Sijuan; Lin, Guiping; Sun, Peng; Wang, Tinghuai
Emotion-related attentional bias is implicated in the aetiology and maintenance of anxiety disorders. Electroencephalogram (EEG) biofeedback can obviously improve the anxiety disorders and reduce stress level, and can also enhance attention performance in healthy subjects. The present study examined the effects and mechanisms of EEG biofeedback training on the attentional bias of high trait anxiety (HTA) individuals toward negative stimuli. Event-related potentials were recorded while HTA (n=24) and nonanxious (n=21) individuals performed the color-word emotional Stroop task. During the emotional Stroop task, HTA participants showed longer reaction times and P300 latencies induced by negative words, compared to nonanxious participants.The EEG biofeedback significantly decreased the trait anxiety inventory score and reaction time in naming the color of negative words in the HTA group. P300 latencies evoked by negative stimuli in the EEG biofeedback group were significantly reduced after the alpha training, while no significant changes were observed in the sham biofeedback group after the intervention. The prolonged P300 latency is associated with attentional bias to negative stimuli in the HTA group. EEG biofeedback training demonstrated a significant improvement of negative emotional attentional bias in HTA individuals, which may be due to the normalization of P300 latency.
Cousijn, J.; Watson, P.; Koenders, L.; Vingerhoets, W. A. M.; Goudriaan, A. E.; Wiers, R. W.
One of the characteristics of people suffering from addictive behaviors is the tendency to be distracted by drug cues. This attentional bias for drug cues is thought to lead to increased craving and drug use, and may draw individuals into a vicious cycle of drug addiction. In the current study we
Rune Aune Mentzoni
Full Text Available The use of nicotine in the form of "snus" is substantial and increasing in some geographic areas, in particular among young people. It has previously been suggested that addictions may operate through a mechanism of attentional bias, in which stimuli representative of the dependent substance increase in salience, thus increasing the addictive behavior. However, this hypothesis has not been tested for the case of snus. The current experiment used a modified Stroop task and a dot-probe task to investigate whether 40 snus users show an attentional bias towards snus-relevant stimuli, compared to 40 non-snus users. There were no significant differences between the two groups on reaction times or accuracy on either Stroop or dot-probe task, thus failing to show an attentional bias towards snus-relevant stimuli for snus users. This could imply that other mechanisms may contribute to maintenance of snus use than for other addictions. However, this is the first experimental study investigating attentional bias in snus users, and more research is warranted.
Lapointe, Marie-Laure B; Blanchette, Isabelle; Duclos, Mélanie; Langlois, Frédéric; Provencher, Martin D; Tremblay, Sébastien
Cognitive effects of anxiety have been amply documented. Anxiety has been linked with an attentional bias toward threat, distractibility, and reductions in short-term memory (STM) capacity. These three functions have rarely been investigated jointly and permeability may account for some of the effects documented. In this experiment, we examine these three cognitive functions using one verbal and one visuospatial task. In the irrelevant speech paradigm, participants had to remember strings of letters while irrelevant neutral or threatening speech was presented. In the visuospatial sandwich paradigm, participants were asked to remember sequences of visuospatial targets sometimes presented within irrelevant distracters. We examined the links between state anxiety, worry, and indices of attentional bias toward threat, distractibility from neutral stimuli, and STM capacity. Results show that state anxiety was uniquely linked with impairments in STM while worry was more particularly related to distractibility, independently from permeability between the different cognitive functions. Attentional bias toward threat was linked with variance common to both anxiety and worry. An examination of clinical and non-clinical subgroups suggests that subjective threat perception and attentional bias toward threat are features that are particularly characteristic of clinical levels of anxiety. Our findings confirm the important links between anxiety and basic cognitive functions.
Zimmermann, Jacqueline F.; Moscovitch, Morris; Alain, Claude
Long-term memory (LTM) has been shown to bias attention to a previously learned visual target location. Here, we examined whether memory-predicted spatial location can facilitate the detection of a faint pure tone target embedded in real world audio clips (e.g., soundtrack of a restaurant). During an initial familiarization task, participants…
Puliafico, Anthony C.; Kendall, Philip C.
The research literature suggests that children and adolescents suffering from anxiety disorders experience cognitive distortions that magnify their perceived level of threat in the environment. Of these distortions, an attentional bias toward threat-related information has received the most theoretical and empirical consideration. A large volume…
Judah, Matt R; Grant, DeMond M; Lechner, William V; Mills, Adam C
The vigilance-avoidance hypothesis suggests that socially anxious individuals attempt to detect signs that they are being evaluated (vigilance) and subsequently direct attention away from such stimuli (avoidance). Although extensive evidence supports vigilance, data concerning subsequent avoidance is equivocal. Drawing from models of attention, the current study hypothesised that working memory load moderates late attentional bias in social anxiety such that avoidance occurs if working memory load is low, and difficulty disengaging attention occurs if working memory load is high. Forty-one undergraduates (19 socially anxious; 22 non-anxious controls) completed a dot-probe task with emotional (happy and disgust) and neutral facial expressions and a concurrent n-back task. Results supported the hypothesis such that socially anxious subjects demonstrated avoidance of disgust faces when working memory load was absent, but had difficulty disengaging attention during high working memory load. Theoretical implications and directions for future research are discussed.
Nakashima, Ryoichi; Kumada, Takatsune
This study proposed and verified a new hypothesis on the relationship between gaze direction and visual attention: attentional bias by default gaze direction based on eye-head coordination. We conducted a target identification task in which visual stimuli appeared briefly to the left and right of a fixation cross. In Experiment 1, the direction of the participant's head (aligned with the body) was manipulated to the left, front, or right relative to a central fixation point. In Experiment 2, head direction was manipulated to the left, front, or right relative to the body direction. This manipulation was based on results showing that bias of eye position distribution was highly correlated with head direction. In both experiments, accuracy was greater when the target appeared at a position where the eyes would potentially be directed. Consequently, eye-head coordination influences visual attention. That is, attention can be automatically biased toward the location where the eyes tend to be directed.
Lorenza S Colzato
Full Text Available Homosexuals are believed to have a “sixth sense” for recognizing each other, an ability referred to as gaydar. We considered that being a homosexual might rely on systematic practice of processing relatively specific, local perceptual features, which might lead to a corresponding chronic bias of attentional control. This was tested by comparing male and female homosexuals and heterosexuals--brought up in the same country and culture and matched in terms of race, intelligence, sex, mood, age, personality, religious background, educational style, and socio-economic situation--in their efficiency to process global and local features of hierarchically-constructed visual stimuli. Both homosexuals and heterosexuals showed better performance on global features—the standard global precedence effect. However, this effect was significantly reduced in homosexuals, suggesting a relative preference for detail. Findings are taken to demonstrate chronic, generalized biases in attentional control parameters that reflect the selective reward provided by the respective sexual orientation.
Sylvester, Chad M.; Hudziak, James J.; Gaffrey, Michael S.; Barch, Deanna M.; Luby, Joan L.
Attention biases towards threatening and sad stimuli are associated with pediatric anxiety and depression, respectively. The basic cognitive mechanisms associated with attention biases in youth, however, remain unclear. Here, we tested the hypothesis that threat bias (selective attention for threatening versus neutral stimuli) but not sad bias relies on stimulus-driven attention. We collected measures of stimulus-driven attention, threat bias, sad bias, and current clinical symptoms in youth with a history of an anxiety disorder and/or depression (ANX/DEP; n=40) as well as healthy controls (HC; n=33). Stimulus-driven attention was measured with a non-emotional spatial orienting task, while threat bias and sad bias were measured at a short time interval (150 ms) with a spatial orienting task using emotional faces and at a longer time interval (500 ms) using a dot-probe task. In ANX/DEP but not HC, early attention bias towards threat was negatively correlated with later attention bias to threat, suggesting that early threat vigilance was associated with later threat avoidance. Across all subjects, stimulus-driven orienting was not correlated with early threat bias but was negatively correlated with later threat bias, indicating that rapid stimulus-driven orienting is linked to later threat avoidance. No parallel relationships were detected for sad bias. Current symptoms of depression but not anxiety were related to decreased stimulus-driven attention. Together, these results are consistent with the hypothesis that threat bias but not sad bias relies on stimulus-driven attention. These results inform the design of attention bias modification programs that aim to reverse threat biases and reduce symptoms associated with pediatric anxiety and depression. PMID:25702927
Boll, Sabrina; Bartholomaeus, Marie; Peter, Ulrike; Lupke, Ulrike; Gamer, Matthias
Previous studies of social phobia have reported an increased vigilance to social threat cues but also an avoidance of socially relevant stimuli such as eye gaze. The primary aim of this study was to examine attentional mechanisms relevant for perceiving social cues by means of abnormalities in scanning of facial features in patients with social phobia. In two novel experimental paradigms, patients with social phobia and healthy controls matched on age, gender and education were compared regarding their gazing behavior towards facial cues. The first experiment was an emotion classification paradigm which allowed for differentiating reflexive attentional shifts from sustained attention towards diagnostically relevant facial features. In the second experiment, attentional orienting by gaze direction was assessed in a gaze-cueing paradigm in which non-predictive gaze cues shifted attention towards or away from subsequently presented targets. We found that patients as compared to controls reflexively oriented their attention more frequently towards the eyes of emotional faces in the emotion classification paradigm. This initial hypervigilance for the eye region was observed at very early attentional stages when faces were presented for 150ms, and persisted when facial stimuli were shown for 3s. Moreover, a delayed attentional orienting into the direction of eye gaze was observed in individuals with social phobia suggesting a differential time course of eye gaze processing in patients and controls. Our findings suggest that basic mechanisms of early attentional exploration of social cues are biased in social phobia and might contribute to the development and maintenance of the disorder. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Recently, researchers have investigated the causal nature of attentional bias for threat (AB in the maintenance of anxiety disorders by experimentally manipulating it. They found that training anxious individuals to attend to nonthreat stimuli reduces AB, which, in turn, reduces anxiety. This effect supports the hypothesis that AB can causally impact the maintenance of anxiety. At a fundamental level, however, uncertainty still abounds regarding the nature of the processes that mediate this effect. In the present paper, we propose that two contrasting approaches may be derived from theoretical accounts of AB. According to a first class of models, called the valence-specific bias models, modifying AB requires the modification of valence-specific attentional selectivity. According to a second class of models, called the attention control models, modifying AB requires the modification of attention control, driven by the recruitment of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. We formulate a series of specific predictions, to provide suggestions to trial these two approaches one against the other. This knowledge is critical for understanding the mechanisms of AB in anxiety disorders, which bares important clinical implications.
Carr, Katelyn A; Epstein, Leonard H
Reinforcing efficacy of food, or the relationship between food prices and purchasing, is related to obesity status and energy intake in adults. Determining how to allocate resources for food is a decision making process influenced by executive functions. Attention to appetitive cues, as well as working memory capacity, or the ability to flexibly control attention while mentally retaining information, may be important executive functions involved in food purchasing decisions. In two studies, we examined how attention bias to food and working memory capacity are related to reinforcing efficacy of both high energy-dense and low energy-dense foods. The first study examined 48 women of varying body mass index (BMI) and found that the relationship between attentional processes and reinforcing efficacy was moderated by working memory capacity. Those who avoid food cues and had high working memory capacity had the lowest reinforcing efficacy, as compared to those with low working memory capacity. Study 2 systematically replicated the methods of study 1 with assessment of maintained attention in a sample of 48 overweight/obese adults. Results showed the relationship between maintained attention to food cues and reinforcing efficacy was moderated by working memory capacity. Those with a maintained attention to food and high working memory capacity had higher reinforcing efficacy than low working memory capacity individuals. These studies suggest working memory capacity moderated the relationship between different aspects of attention and food reinforcement. Understanding how decision making process are involved in reinforcing efficacy may help to identify future intervention targets. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Compared to previous studies of competition with participants’ direct involvement, the current study for the first time investigated the influence of competitive outcomes on attentional bias from a perspective of an onlooker. Two simple games were employed: the Rock-Paper-Scissors game (Experiment 1 in which the outcome is based on luck, and Arm-wrestling (Experiment 2, in which the outcome is based on the competitors’ strength. After observing one of these games, participants were asked to judge a stimulus presented on either the winner’s or loser’s side of a screen. Both experiments yielded the same results, indicating that the onlookers made much quicker judgments on stimuli presented on the loser’s side than the winner’s side. This suggests the existence of an attention bias for loser-related information once a competition has ended. Our findings provide a new lens through which the influence of competition results on human cognitive processing can be understood.
Ho, Ming-Chou; Li, Shuo-Heng; Yeh, Su-Ling
Previous research (Zeelenberg, Wagenmakers, & Rotteveel, 2006) revealed that emotionally meaningful words were identified significantly better than neutral words, with no difference between positive and negative words. Since in that study only a single target word was displayed at a time, we hypothesized that the equivalent performances for positive and negative words were due to a lack of competition. To test this, in our Experiment 1, we replicated Zeelenberg and colleagues' finding, using emotion-laden Chinese words and the identical data-limited method, which measured the accuracy of a briefly shown target. We then introduced competition in Experiment 2 by simultaneously presenting two words during the target frame, and found evidence for an early attentional bias to negative words. In Experiment 3, we confirmed that the bias in Experiment 2 was not due to the inevitable repetition of stimuli. Taken together, these results support our hypothesis that, in the presence of competition, negative words receive attentional priority and consequently have enhanced perceptual representations.
Full Text Available We conducted a human fear conditioning experiment in which three different color cues were followed by an aversive electric shock on 0, 50, and 100% of the trials, and thus induced low (L, partial (P, and high (H shock expectancy, respectively. The cues differed with respect to the strength of their shock association (L < P < H and the uncertainty of their prediction (L < P > H. During conditioning we measured pupil dilation and ocular fixations to index differences in the attentional processing of the cues. After conditioning, the shock-associated colors were introduced as irrelevant distracters during visual search for a shape target while shocks were no longer administered and we analyzed the cues’ potential to capture and hold overt attention automatically. Our findings suggest that fear conditioning creates an automatic attention bias for the conditioned cues that depends on their correlation with the aversive outcome. This bias was exclusively linked to the strength of the cues’ shock association for the early attentional processing of cues in the visual periphery, but additionally was influenced by the uncertainty of the shock prediction after participants fixated on the cues. These findings are in accord with attentional learning theories that formalize how associative learning shapes automatic attention.
Schoenmakers, T.M.; Bruin, de M.; Lux, I.F.M.; Goertz, A.G.; Kerkhof, van D.H.A.T.; Wiers, R.W.
A new training to decrease attentional bias (attentional bias modification training, ABM) was tested in a randomized controlled experimental study with alcohol-dependent patients as an addition to cognitive behavioral therapy. In alcohol dependence, attentional bias has been associated with severity
Smith, Evelyn; Treffiletti, Agatha; Bailey, Phoebe E; Moustafa, Ahmed A
This study modified food attentional biases via computerized attentional bias modification training and examined the effects on food intake. Overweight women were randomly allocated to (1) direct attention away from food ("attentional-training"), (2) direct attention at random to food or neutral ("placebo"), or (3) no training ("control"). Individuals then completed a taste test. Those in the attentional-training consumed on average 600 kJ less of total food compared to the placebo. Those in the attentional-training had a reduction in food attentional bias compared to the placebo group, when controlling for executive function. Attentional-training seems to reduce high-calorie intake in overweight women.
Tanya R Berry
Full Text Available Differences in perceptions of susceptibility, seriousness, and fear of heart disease and breast cancer were examined and related to attentional bias for disease-related words among Canadian women of various ethnic ancestry. Women ( n = 831 completed an online survey, and 503, among them, also completed an attentional bias task. Perceived seriousness of breast cancer predicted attentional bias for breast cancer in women of South Asian ancestry. Lifestyle behaviors were related to breast cancer attentional bias in women with British ancestry. Understanding relationships between modifiable risk factors, disease risk perceptions, and attentional biases among different ethnic groups can help create targeted promotional campaigns.
Banca, Paula; Morris, Laurel S; Mitchell, Simon; Harrison, Neil A; Potenza, Marc N; Voon, Valerie
The Internet provides a large source of novel and rewarding stimuli, particularly with respect to sexually explicit materials. Novelty-seeking and cue-conditioning are fundamental processes underlying preference and approach behaviors implicated in disorders of addiction. Here we examine these processes in individuals with compulsive sexual behaviors (CSB), hypothesizing a greater preference for sexual novelty and stimuli conditioned to sexual rewards relative to healthy volunteers. Twenty-two CSB males and forty age-matched male volunteers were tested in two separate behavioral tasks focusing on preferences for novelty and conditioned stimuli. Twenty subjects from each group were also assessed in a third conditioning and extinction task using functional magnetic resonance imaging. CSB was associated with enhanced novelty preference for sexual, as compared to control images, and a generalized preference for cues conditioned to sexual and monetary versus neutral outcomes compared to healthy volunteers. CSB individuals also had greater dorsal cingulate habituation to repeated sexual versus monetary images with the degree of habituation correlating with enhanced preference for sexual novelty. Approach behaviors to sexually conditioned cues dissociable from novelty preference were associated with an early attentional bias to sexual images. This study shows that CSB individuals have a dysfunctional enhanced preference for sexual novelty possibly mediated by greater cingulate habituation along with a generalized enhancement of conditioning to rewards. We further emphasize a dissociable role for cue-conditioning and novelty preference on the early attentional bias for sexual cues. These findings have wider relevance as the Internet provides a broad range of novel and potentially rewarding stimuli. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Goedert, Kelly M; Leblanc, Andrew; Tsai, Sen-Wei; Barrett, Anna M
Proposals that adaptation with left-shifting prisms induces neglect-like symptoms in normal individuals rely on a dissociation between the postadaptation performance of individuals trained with left- versus right-shifting prisms (e.g., Colent, Pisella, & Rossetti, 2000). A potential problem with this evidence is that normal young adults have an a priori leftward bias (e.g., Jewell & McCourt, 2000). In Experiment 1, we compared the line bisection performance of young adults to that of aged adults, who as a group may lack a leftward bias in line bisection. Participants trained with both left- and right-shifting prisms. Consistent with our hypothesis, while young adults demonstrated aftereffects for left, but not right prisms, aged adults demonstrated reliable aftereffects for both prisms. In Experiment 2, we recruited a larger sample of young adults, some of whom were right-biased at baseline. We observed an interaction between baseline bias and prism-shift, consistent with the results of Experiment 1: Left-biased individuals showed a reduced aftereffect when training with right-shifting prisms and right-biased individuals showed a reduced aftereffect when training with left-shifting prisms. These results suggest that previous failures to find generalizable aftereffects with right-shifting prisms may be driven by participants' baseline biases rather than specific effects of the prism itself.
Schmitz, Florian; Naumann, Eva; Trentowska, Monika; Svaldi, Jennifer
The aim of the present study was to investigate an attentional bias toward food stimuli in binge eating disorder (BED). To this end, a BED and a weight-matched control group (CG) completed a clarification task and a spatial cueing paradigm. The clarification task revealed that food stimuli were faster detected than neutral stimuli, and that this difference was more pronounced in BED than in the CG. The spatial cueing paradigm indicated a stimulus engagement effect in the BED group but not in the CG, suggesting that an early locus in stimulus processing contributes to differences between BED patients and obese controls. Both groups experienced difficulty disengaging attention from food stimuli, and this effect was only descriptively larger in the BED group. The effects obtained in both paradigms were found to be correlated with reported severity of BED symptoms. Of note, this relationship was partially mediated by the arousal associated with food stimuli relative to neutral stimuli, as predicted by an account on incentive sensitization. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
McGrath, Daniel S.; Meitner, Amadeus; Sears, Christopher R.
A growing body of research indicates that gamblers develop an attentional bias for gambling-related stimuli. Compared to research on substance use, however, few studies have examined attentional biases in gamblers using eye-gaze tracking, which has many advantages over other measures of attention. In addition, previous studies of attentional biases in gamblers have not directly matched type of gambler with personally-relevant gambling cues. The present study investigated the specificity of at...
Banich Marie T
Full Text Available Abstract Background We examined whether individual differences in hemispheric utilization can interact with the intrinsic attentional biases of the cerebral hemispheres. Evidence suggests that the hemispheres have competing biases to direct attention contralaterally, with the left hemisphere (LH having a stronger bias than the right hemisphere. There is also evidence that individuals have characteristic biases to utilize one hemisphere more than the other for processing information, which can induce a bias to direct attention to contralateral space. We predicted that LH-biased individuals would display a strong rightward attentional bias, which would create difficulty in selectively attending to target stimuli in the left visual field (LVF as compared to right in the performance of a bilateral flanker task. Results Consistent with our hypothesis, flanker interference effects were found on the N2c event-related brain potential and error rate for LH-biased individuals in the Attend-LVF condition. The error rate effect was correlated with the degree of hemispheric utilization bias for the LH-Bias group. Conclusion We conclude that hemispheric utilization bias can enhance a hemisphere's contralateral attentional bias, at least for individuals with a LH utilization bias. Hemispheric utilization bias may play an important and largely unrecognized role in visuospatial attention.
Biggs, Adam T; Brockmole, James R; Witt, Jessica K
The action-specific perception hypothesis (Witt, Current Directions in Psychological Science 20: 201-206, 2011) claims that the environment is represented with respect to potential interactions for objects present within said environment. This investigation sought to extend the hypothesis beyond perceptual mechanisms and assess whether action-specific potential could alter attentional allocation. To do so, we examined a well-replicated attention bias in the weapon focus effect (Loftus, Loftus, & Messo, Law and Human Behaviour 1, 55-62, 1987), which represents the tendency for observers to attend more to weapons than to neutral objects. Our key manipulation altered the anticipated action-specific potential of observers by providing them a firearm while they freely viewed scenes with and without weapons present. We replicated the original weapon focus effect using modern eye tracking and confirmed that the increase in time looking at weapons comes at a cost of less time spent looking at faces. Additionally, observers who held firearms while viewing the various scenes showed a general bias to look at faces over objects, but only if the firearm was in a readily usable position (i.e., pointed at the scenes rather than holstered at one's side). These two effects, weapon focus and the newly found bias to look more at faces when armed, canceled out one another without interacting. This evidence confirms that the action capabilities of the observer alter more than just perceptual mechanisms and that holding a weapon can change attentional priorities. Theoretical and real-world implications are discussed.
Folkvord, F.; Anschutz, D.J.; Buijzen, M.A.
Attentional bias theory suggests that an increased motivation to receive or avoid a rewarding substance elevates automatic selective attention toward cues that are related to that specific substance. Until now, no study has examined attentional bias toward food cues in food advertisements, even
Pool, Eva; Brosch, Tobias; Delplanque, Sylvain; Sander, David
Despite an initial focus on negative threatening stimuli, researchers have more recently expanded the investigation of attentional biases toward positive rewarding stimuli. The present meta-analysis systematically compared attentional bias for positive compared with neutral visual stimuli across 243 studies (N = 9,120 healthy participants) that used different types of attentional paradigms and positive stimuli. Factors were tested that, as postulated by several attentional models derived from theories of emotion, might modulate this bias. Overall, results showed a significant, albeit modest (Hedges' g = .258), attentional bias for positive as compared with neutral stimuli. Moderator analyses revealed that the magnitude of this attentional bias varied as a function of arousal and that this bias was significantly larger when the emotional stimulus was relevant to specific concerns (e.g., hunger) of the participants compared with other positive stimuli that were less relevant to the participants' concerns. Moreover, the moderator analyses showed that attentional bias for positive stimuli was larger in paradigms that measure early, rather than late, attentional processing, suggesting that attentional bias for positive stimuli occurs rapidly and involuntarily. Implications for theories of emotion and attention are discussed. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Heitmann, Janika; van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon; Jong, de Peter
The tendency to attend to and focus on substance-related cues in the environment (i.e., attentional bias) has been found to contribute to the persistence of addiction. This attentional bias can be modified with computerized attentional bias modification (ABM) tasks. Modifying attentional bias might
Gibb, Brandon E.; Benas, Jessica S.; Grassia, Marie; McGeary, John
In this study, we examined the roles of specific cognitive (attentional bias) and genetic ("5-HTTLPR") risk factors in the intergenerational transmission of depression. Focusing first on the link between maternal history of major depressive disorder (MDD) and children's attentional biases, we found that children of mothers with a history…
Mohammadi, S.; Dehghani, M.; Khatibi, A.; Sanderman, Robbert; Hagedoorn, M.
Attentional bias to pain among family caregivers of patients with pain may enhance the detection of pain behaviors in patients. However, both relatively high and low levels of attentional bias may increase disagreement between patients and caregivers in reporting pain behaviors. This study aims to
McGrath, Lauren M.; Oates, Joyce M.; Dai, Yael G.; Dodd, Helen F.; Waxler, Jessica; Clements, Caitlin C.; Weill, Sydney; Hoffnagle, Alison; Anderson, Erin; MacRae, Rebecca; Mullett, Jennifer; McDougle, Christopher J.; Pober, Barbara R.; Smoller, Jordan W.
Individuals with Williams syndrome (WS) often experience significant anxiety. A promising approach to anxiety intervention has emerged from cognitive studies of attention bias to threat. To investigate the utility of this intervention in WS, this study examined attention bias to happy and angry faces in individuals with WS (N = 46). Results showed…
Christiansen, P.; Schoenmakers, T.M.; Field, M.
Recent years have seen an explosion of interest in attentional bias in addiction, particularly its clinical relevance. Specifically, numerous articles claimed to demonstrate either that (1) attentional bias measured in treatment settings could predict subsequent relapse to substance use, or (2)
Li, Xiaoming; Tao, Qian; Fang, Ya; Cheng, Chen; Hao, Yangyang; Qi, Jianjun; Li, Yu; Zhang, Wei; Wang, Ying; Zhang, Xiaochu
The cognitive mechanism underlying the association between individual differences in reward sensitivity and food craving is unknown. The present study explored the mechanism by examining the role of reward sensitivity in attentional bias toward ice cream cues. Forty-nine college students who displayed high level of ice cream craving (HICs) and 46 who displayed low level of ice cream craving (LICs) performed an inattentional blindness (IB) task which was used to assess attentional bias for ice cream. In addition, reward sensitivity and coping style were assessed by the Behavior Inhibition System/Behavior Activation System Scales and Simplified Coping Style Questionnaire. Results showed significant higher identification rate of the critical stimulus in the HICs than LICs, suggesting greater attentional bias for ice cream in the HICs. It was indicated that attentional bias for food cues persisted even under inattentional condition. Furthermore, a significant correlation was found between the attentional bias and reward sensitivity after controlling for coping style, and reward sensitivity predicted attentional bias for food cues. The mediation analyses showed that attentional bias mediated the relationship between reward sensitivity and food craving. Those findings suggest that the association between individual differences in reward sensitivity and food craving may be attributed to attentional bias for food-related cues. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Koster, Ernst H W; Crombez, Geert; Verschuere, Bruno; Van Damme, Stefaan; Wiersema, Jan Roelf
There is a wealth of evidence demonstrating enhanced attention to threat in high trait anxious individuals (HTA) compared with low trait anxious individuals (LTA). In two experiments, we investigated whether this attentional bias is related to facilitated attentional engagement to threat or difficulties dis-engaging attention from threat. HTA and LTA undergraduates performed a modified exogenous cueing task, in which the location of a target was correctly or incorrectly cued by neutral, highly and mildly threatening pictures. Results indicate that at 100 ms picture presentation, HTA individuals more strongly engaged their attention with and showed impaired disengagement from highly threatening pictures than LTA individuals. In addition, HTA individuals showed a stronger tendency to attentional avoidance of threat at the 200 and 500 ms picture presentation. These data provide evidence for differential patterns of anxiety-related biases in attentive processing of threat at early versus later stages of information processing.
Parra, Mario A; Sánchez, Manuel Guillermo; Valencia, Stella; Trujillo, Natalia
Attention is biased towards threat-related stimuli. In three experiments, we investigated the mechanisms, processes, and time course of this processing bias. An emotional flanker task simultaneously presented affective or neutral pictures from the international affective picture system database either as central response-relevant stimuli or surrounding response-uninformative flankers. Participants' response times to central stimuli was measured. The attentional bias was observed when stimuli were presented either for 1500 ms (Experiment 1) or 500 ms (Experiment 2). The threat-related attentional bias held regardless of the stimuli competing for attention even when presentation time was further reduced to 200 ms (Experiment 3). The results indicate that automatic and controlled mechanisms may interact to modulate the orientation of attention to threat. The data presented here shed new light on the mechanisms, processes, and time course of this long investigated by still largely unknown processing bias.
Shechner, Tomer; Britton, Jennifer C.; Pérez-Edgar, Koraly; Bar-Haim, Yair; Ernst, Monique; Fox, Nathan A.; Leibenluft, Ellen; Pine, Daniel S.
Research on attention provides a promising framework for studying anxiety pathophysiology and treatment. The study of attention biases appears particularly pertinent to developmental research, as attention affects learning and has down-stream effects on behavior. This review summarizes recent findings about attention orienting in anxiety, drawing on findings in recent developmental psychopathology and affective neuroscience research. These findings generate specific insights about both development and therapeutics. The review goes beyond a traditional focus on biased processing of threats and considers biased processing of rewards. Building on this work, we then turn to treatment of pediatric anxiety, where manipulation of attention to threat and/or reward may serve a therapeutic role as a component of Attention Bias Modification Therapy. PMID:22170764
van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E; de Jong, Peter J; Ostafin, Brian D; Wiers, Reinout W
This study examined whether attentional bias for alcohol stimuli was associated with alcohol use in young adolescents, and whether the frequently demonstrated relationship between reward sensitivity and adolescent alcohol use would be partly mediated by attentional bias for alcohol cues. In addition, this study investigated the potential moderating role of executive control (EC), and tested whether the relationship between alcohol-related attentional bias and alcohol use was especially present in young adolescents with weak EC. Participants were 86 adolescents (mean age=14.86), who completed a Visual Probe Task (VPT) as an index of attentional bias, a flanker-task based Attention Network Task (ANT) as an index of EC, the sensitivity of punishment and sensitivity of reward questionnaire (SPSRQ) as an index of reward sensitivity, and an alcohol use questionnaire. High reward sensitivity, high alcohol-related attentional bias, and weak EC were all related to alcohol use. The relationship between reward sensitivity and alcohol use was not mediated by alcohol-related attentional bias. As hypothesized, attentional bias was only associated with alcohol use in participants with weak EC. Together, the present findings are consistent with the view that high reward sensitivity and low EC may be considered as risk factors for adolescent alcohol use. The independent contribution of reward sensitivity and attentional bias might suggest that adolescents who are highly reward sensitive and display an attentional bias for alcohol cues are at even higher risk for excessive alcohol use and developing alcohol abuse problems. Future research using a longitudinal approach would allow an examination of these risk factors on subsequent alcohol use. Treatment implications are discussed, including the importance of strengthening EC and reducing the rewarding value of alcohol use. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Gong, Pingyuan; Shen, Guomin; Li, She; Zhang, Guoping; Fang, Hongchao; Lei, Lin; Zhang, Peizhe; Zhang, Fuchang
Studies have revealed that catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and dopaminegic receptor2 (DRD2) modulate human attention bias for palatable food or tobacco. However, the existing evidence about the modulations of COMT and DRD2 on attentional bias for facial expressions was still limited. In the study, 650 college students were genotyped with regard to COMT Val158Met and DRD2 TaqI A polymorphisms, and the attentional bias for facial expressions was assessed using the spatial cueing task. The results indicated that COMT Val158Met underpinned the individual difference in attentional bias for negative emotional expressions (P = 0.03) and the Met carriers showed more engagement bias for negative expressions than the Val/Val homozygote. On the contrary, DRD2 TaqIA underpinned the individual difference in attentional bias for positive expressions (P = 0.003) and individuals with TT genotype showed much more engagement bias for positive expressions than the individuals with CC genotype. Moreover, the two genes exerted significant interactions on the engagements for negative and positive expressions (P = 0.046, P = 0.005). These findings suggest that the individual differences in the attentional bias for emotional expressions are partially underpinned by the genetic polymorphisms in COMT and DRD2. PMID:24312552
Colzato, L.S.; Hooidonk, L.; van den Wildenberg, W.P.M.; Harinck, F.; Hommel, B.
Homosexuals are believed to have a "sixth sense" for recognizing each other, an ability referred to as gaydar. We considered that being a homosexual might rely on systematic practice of processing relatively specific, local perceptual features, which might lead to a corresponding chronic bias of
Fernanda Machado Lopes
Full Text Available Introduction: Attentional bias, the tendency that a person has to drive or maintain attention to a specific class of stimuli, may play an important role in the etiology and persistence of mental disorders. Attentional bias modification has been studied as a form of additional treatment related to automatic processing. Objectives: This systematic literature review compared and discussed methods, evidence of success and potential clinical applications of studies about attentional bias modification (ABM using a visual probe task. Methods: The Web of Knowledge, PubMed and PsycInfo were searched using the keywords attentional bias modification, attentional bias manipulation and attentional bias training. We selected empirical studies about ABM training using a visual probe task written in English and published between 2002 and 2014. Results: Fifty-seven studies met inclusion criteria. Most (78% succeeded in training attention in the predicted direction, and in 71% results were generalized to other measures correlated with the symptoms. Conclusions: ABM has potential clinical utility, but to standardize methods and maximize applicability, future studies should include clinical samples and be based on findings of studies about its effectiveness.
Troller-Renfree, Sonya; McLaughlin, Katie A.; Sheridan, Margaret A.; Nelson, Charles A.; Zeanah, Charles H.; Fox, Nathan A.
Children raised in institutions experience psychosocial deprivation that has detrimental influences on attention and mental health. The current study examined patterns of attention biases in children from institutions who were randomized at approximately 21.6 months to receive either a high-quality foster care intervention or care-as-usual. At age 12, children performed a dot-probe task and indices of attention bias were calculated. Additionally, children completed a social stress paradigm and cortisol reactivity was computed. Children randomized into foster care (N=40) exhibited an attention bias toward positive stimuli but not threat, whereas children who received care-as-usual (N=40) and a never-institutionalized comparison group (N=47) showed no bias. Stability of foster care placement was related to positive bias, while instability of foster care placement was related to threat bias. The magnitude of the positive bias was associated with fewer internalizing problems and better coping mechanisms. Within the foster care group, positive attention bias was related to less blunted cortisol reactivity. PMID:27109625
Troller-Renfree, Sonya; McDermott, Jennifer Martin; Nelson, Charles A; Zeanah, Charles H; Fox, Nathan A
Children raised in institutions experience psychosocial deprivation that can negatively impact attention skills and emotion regulation, which subsequently may influence behavioral regulation and social relationships. The current study examined visual attention biases in 8-year-old children who were part of the Bucharest Early Intervention Project (BEIP). Relations among attention biases and concurrent social outcomes were also investigated. In early childhood, 136 children abandoned at birth or shortly thereafter into institutional care were randomized to receive a high-quality foster care intervention or care-as-usual within the context of the Bucharest Early Intervention Project (BEIP). At 8 years of age, 50 care-as-usual, 55 foster care, and 52 community controls performed a behavioral dot-probe task, and indices of attention biases to threat and positive stimuli were calculated. Concurrent data on social behavior were collected. Children placed into the foster care intervention had a significant attention bias toward positive stimuli, while children who received care-as-usual had a significant bias toward threat. Children in the foster care intervention had a significantly larger positive bias when compared to the care-as-usual group. A positive bias was related to more social engagement, more prosocial behavior, less externalizing disorders, and less emotionally withdrawn behavior. The magnitude of positive bias was predicted by age of placement into foster care among children with a history of institutionalization. An attention bias towards positive stimuli was associated with reduced risk for behavioral problems amongst children who experienced early psychosocial deprivation. Research assessing attention biases in children experiencing early environmental stress may refine our understanding of the mechanisms underlying risk for later psychiatric and social disorders and inform prevention efforts. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Grant, Leigh D; Bowling, Alison C
Problem gambling has been identified as a public health concern in Australia, and a considerable proportion of regular gamblers may be at risk of developing gambling related problems. Attentional bias to salient cues has been observed in substance addictions, and to some extent, in problem gamblers. This bias appears to be indicative of an increase in sensitisation to salient cues as a result of continued reforcement of a related behaviour. To test for an attentional bias to gambling-related stimuli in non-problem gamblers, the relationships between gambling frequency, gambling attitudes and beliefs (GABS-23), and attentional bias were investigated. Participants (N = 38) viewed simultaneous pairs of gambling-related and neutral images and performed a dot probe task, during which their eye-movements were recorded. This enabled both direct and indirect measures of attentional bias to be obtained. Gambling frequency and GABS-23 scores predicted both direct and indirect measures of a bias in the maintenance of attention to gambling cues. No bias in attentional engagement was found. These results suggest that regular gamblers who have not yet developed any related problems show signs of sensitisation to gambling cues and may be at risk of progressing further towards problem gambling.
Broeren, Suzanne; Lester, Kathryn J
Attentional biases are most often framed in a threat relevance framework. Alternatively, it could be that not only threat-related stimuli draw attention but also that preferential attention is drawn to all stimuli that have relevance for an individual. We investigated this stimulus relevance theory in primary school-age children by means of a visual search task. As predicted, children displayed attentional biases toward evolutionary and modern threat-related stimuli, such as spiders and guns, but also toward other relevant, positive stimuli (i.e., cakes, gifts, and happy faces). These results suggest that attentional biases are not specific to threat, but seem to apply to all relevant stimuli, both positive and negative in valence, providing first evidence for the stimulus relevance theory of preferential attention in children. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.
Ramirez, Jason J; Monti, Peter M; Colwill, Ruth M
The effect of alcohol-cue exposure on eliciting craving has been well documented, and numerous theoretical models assert that craving is a clinically significant construct central to the motivation and maintenance of alcohol-seeking behavior. Furthermore, some theories propose a relationship between craving and attention, such that cue-induced increases in craving bias attention toward alcohol cues, which, in turn, perpetuates craving. This study examined the extent to which alcohol cues induce craving and bias attention toward alcohol cues among underage college-student drinkers. We designed within-subject cue-reactivity and visual-probe tasks to assess in vivo alcohol-cue exposure effects on craving and attentional bias on 39 undergraduate college drinkers (ages 18-20). Participants expressed greater subjective craving to drink alcohol following in vivo cue exposure to a commonly consumed beer compared with water exposure. Furthermore, following alcohol-cue exposure, participants exhibited greater attentional biases toward alcohol cues as measured by a visual-probe task. In addition to the cue-exposure effects on craving and attentional bias, within-subject differences in craving across sessions marginally predicted within-subject differences in attentional bias. Implications for both theory and practice are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Rinaldi, Luca; Di Luca, Samuel; Henik, Avishai; Girelli, Luisa
A growing amount of evidence confirms the influence of reading and writing habits on visuospatial processing, although this phenomenon has been so far testified mainly as a lateralized shift of a single behavioral sign (e.g., line bisection), with lack of proof from pure right-to-left readers. The present study contributed to this issue by analyzing multiple attentional and motor indexes in monolingual Italian (i.e., reading from left-to-right), and monolingual (i.e., reading from right-to-left) and bilingual Israeli (i.e., reading from right-to-left in Hebrew but also from left-to-right in English) participants' visuospatial performance. Subjects were administered a computerized standard star cancellation task and a modified version in which English letters and words were replaced by Hebrew ones. Tasks were presented on a graphics tablet, allowing recording of both chronometric and spatial parameters (i.e., measured in (x, y) vector coordinates). Results showed that reading direction modulated the on-line visuomotor performance (i.e., left-to-right vs. right-to-left shifts) from the beginning (i.e., first mark) to the end of the task (i.e., spatial distribution of omissions and subjective epicenter). Additionally, the spatial bias observed in a computerized line bisection task was also related to the participants' habitual reading direction. Overall, the results favor the proposal of an Interactive Account of visuospatial asymmetries, according to which both cultural factors, such as the directional scanning associated with language processing, and biological factors, such as hemispheric specialization, modulate visuospatial processing. Results are discussed in light of recent behavioral and neuroanatomical findings. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
van den Heuvel, Odile A.; Veltman, Dick J.; Groenewegen, Henk J.; Witter, Menno P.; Merkelbach, Jille; Cath, Danielle C.; van Balkom, Anton J. L. M.; van Oppen, Patricia; van Dyck, Richard
CONTEXT: Attentional bias to disease-relevant emotional cues is considered to be pathogenetically relevant in anxiety disorders. OBJECTIVE: To investigate functional neural correlates and disease specificity of attentional bias across different anxiety disorders. DESIGN: A cognitive and emotional
van den Heuvel, O.A.; Veltman, D.J.; Groenewegen, H.J.; Witter, M.P.; Merkelbach, J.; Cath, D.C.; van Balkom, A.J.; van Oppen, P.; van Dyck, R.
Context: Attentional bias to disease-relevant emotional cues is considered to be pathogenetically relevant in anxiety disorders. Objective: To investigate functional neural correlates and disease specificity of attentional bias across different anxiety disorders. Design: A cognitive and emotional
Sass, Sarah M.; Heller, Wendy; Stewart, Jennifer L.; Silton, Rebecca Levin; Edgar, J. Christopher; Fisher, Joscelyn E.; Miller, Gregory A.
Anxiety is characterized by cognitive biases, including attentional bias to emotional (especially threatening) stimuli. Accounts differ on the time course of attention to threat, but the literature generally confounds emotional valence and arousal and overlooks gender effects, both addressed in the present study. Nonpatients high in self-reported anxious apprehension, anxious arousal, or neither completed an emotion-word Stroop task during ERP recording. Hypotheses differentiated time course ...
Amer, Tarek; Gozli, Davood G; Pratt, Jay
We investigated the influence of conceptual processing on visual attention from the standpoint of Theory of Event Coding (TEC). The theory makes two predictions: first, an important factor in determining the influence of event 1 on processing event 2 is whether features of event 1 are bound into a unified representation (i.e., selection or retrieval of event 1). Second, whether processing the two events facilitates or interferes with each other should depend on the extent to which their constituent features overlap. In two experiments, participants performed a visual-attention cueing task, in which the visual target (event 2) was preceded by a relevant or irrelevant explicit (e.g., "UP") or implicit (e.g., "HAPPY") spatial-conceptual cue (event 1). Consistent with TEC, we found relevant explicit cues (which featurally overlap to a greater extent with the target) and implicit cues (which featurally overlap to a lesser extent), respectively, facilitated and interfered with target processing at compatible locations. Irrelevant explicit and implicit cues, on the other hand, both facilitated target processing, presumably because they were less likely selected or retrieved as an integrated and unified event file. We argue that such effects, often described as "attentional cueing", are better accounted for within the event coding framework.
Harris, Kamelia; Spiegelhalder, Kai; Espie, Colin A; MacMahon, Kenneth M A; Woods, Heather Cleland; Kyle, Simon D
Prominent models of insomnia posit that sleep-related attentional bias plays an important role in the development and maintenance of insomnia. Here we conduct the first systematic review of the sleep-related attentional bias construct, indexed through reaction time-based experimental tasks. Literature search identified 13 studies that met pre-defined inclusion/exclusion criteria. Included studies involved between-group comparisons (poor sleepers versus controls), as well as sleep manipulations and correlational investigations with healthy sleepers. For studies involving comparisons between poor sleepers and healthy controls, effect size estimates were computed for task-relevant dependent variables. Six of the nine studies comparing poor sleepers and controls revealed statistically significant group differences in support of a differential sleep-related attentional bias (medium-to-large effect sizes), with flicker, dot-probe and Posner tasks being most sensitive to group effects. Due to the paucity of studies and variability in design and measurement, no conclusions could be reached regarding manipulation or induction of attentional bias in good sleepers. Results from the relatively small number of studies support the presence of sleep-related attentional bias in insomnia; however, its role in the development and/or maintenance of insomnia remains to be elucidated. We set out a research agenda aimed at advancing the understanding of sleep-related attention bias. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Whether Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD is associated with an increased attentional bias to emotive stimuli remains controversial. Additionally, it is unclear whether comorbid depression modulates abnormal emotional processing in OCD. This study examined attentional bias to OC-relevant scenes using a visual search task. Controls, non-depressed and depressed OCD patients searched for their personally selected positive images amongst their negative distractors, and vice versa. Whilst the OCD groups were slower than healthy individuals in rating the images, there were no group differences in the magnitude of negative bias to concern-related scenes. A second experiment employing a common set of images replicated the results on an additional sample of OCD patients. Although there was a larger bias to negative OC-related images without pre-exposure overall, no group differences in attentional bias were observed. However, OCD patients subsequently rated the images more slowly and more negatively, again suggesting post-attentional processing abnormalities. The results argue against a robust attentional bias in OCD patients, regardless of their depression status and speak to generalized difficulties disengaging from negative valence stimuli. Rather, post-attentional processing abnormalities may account for differences in emotional processing in OCD.
Ciccarelli, Maria; Nigro, Giovanna; Griffiths, Mark D; Cosenza, Marina; D'Olimpio, Francesca
Attentional biases have been recognized as factors responsible for the maintenance of gambling problems. To date, no study has ever assessed the attentional biases among problem gamblers that have discontinued gambling (e.g., abstinent gamblers in treatment). The sample consisted of 75 participants comprising three groups: non-problem gamblers, problem gamblers, and abstinent pathological gamblers undergoing treatment. The groups were discriminated using South Oaks Gambling Screen scores, with the exception of the abstinent pathological gamblers that already had a DSM-5 diagnosis for gambling disorder. Participants carried out a modified Posner Task for the assessment of attentional bias for gambling stimuli and completed the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale and the Gambling Craving Scale. Abstinent pathological gamblers showed an avoidance bias in the maintenance of attention, whereas problem gamblers exhibited a facilitation in detecting gambling stimuli. No biases were detected in non-problem gamblers. The results also demonstrated that compared to the other groups, abstinent pathological gamblers showed high emotional stress and problem gamblers reported a higher level of craving. The sample size limits the generalizability of results. The present study demonstrated that attentional biases affect the maintenance and the discontinuation of gambling activities, and that the subjective feeling of craving for gambling may facilitate problem gamblers' attention towards gambling stimuli. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Spatial motor-intentional Aiming bias is a dysfunction in initiation/execution of motor intentional behavior, resulting in hypokinetic and hypometric leftward movements. Aiming bias may contribute to posture, balance and movement problems and uniquely account for disability in post-stroke spatial neglect. Body movement may modify and even worsen Aiming errors, but therapy techniques such as visual scanning training do not take this into account. Here, we evaluated 1 whether instructing neglect patients to move midline body parts improves their ability to explore left space, and 2 whether this has a different impact on different patients. A 68-year-old woman with spatial neglect after a right basal ganglia infarct had difficulty orienting to and identifying left-sided objects. She was prompted with four instructions: look to the left, point with your nose to the left, point with your [right] hand to the left, and stick out your tongue and point it to the left. She oriented leftward dramatically better when pointing with the tongue/nose, than she did when pointing with the hand. We then tested 9 more consecutive patients with spatial neglect using the same instructions. Only four of them made any orienting errors. Only one patient made >50% errors when pointing with the hand, and she did not benefit from pointing with the tongue/nose. We observed that pointing with the tongue could facilitate left-sided orientation in a stroke survivor with spatial neglect. If midline structures are represented more bilaterally, they may be less affected by Aiming bias. Alternatively, moving the body midline may be more permissive for leftward orienting than moving right body parts. We were not able to replicate this effect in another patient; we suspect that the magnitude of this effect may depend upon the degree to which patients have directional akinesia, spatial Where deficits, or cerebellar/frontal cortical lesions. Future research could examine these
Schintu, Selene; Patané, Ivan; Caldano, Michela; Salemme, Romeo; Reilly, Karen T; Pisella, Laure; Farnè, Alessandro
Rightward prismatic adaptation (RPA) can reduce neglect symptoms in patients whereas adaptation to leftward deviating prisms (LPA) can induce neglect-like behavior in healthy subjects. One influential anatomo-functional model of prismatic adaptation (PA) postulates that it inhibits activity of the posterior parietal cortex (PPC) contralateral to the prismatic deviation. By hypo-activating the PPC and thus eventually acting on interhemispheric balance, both LPA and RPA could possibly affect visuospatial perception in healthy subjects, however, such behavioral modulation has seldom been reported after RPA. In the light of recent evidence showing that LPA-induced visuospatial shift need time to develop we hypothesized that RPA might induce significant changes in visuospatial cognition on a longer time scale. We thus assessed the Landmark task, as well as sensorimotor aftereffects, several times over 8 h after a single session of either LPA or RPA. In agreement with previous reports, sensorimotor effects were symmetrical and long-lasting, with both LPA and RPA inducing shifts of comparable amplitudes in the direction opposite to the deviation that lasted up to 8 h. Visuospatial cognition assessed by Landmark performance, was also significantly modulated for up to 8 h, but only after LPA. Interestingly, the timing and direction of this modulation differed according to participants' baseline bias. An initial leftward bias led to a rapid, but short-lasting rightward shift, whereas an initial rightward bias led to a slower-developing and longer-lasting leftward shift. These findings shed new light on a so-far relatively overlooked feature of spatial cognition that may interact with the effect of PA: the state of the visuospatial system prior to PA should be taken into account when attempting to understand and modulate visuospatial cognition in healthy and brain-damaged populations. This highlights the need for refining current models of PA's mechanisms of action
Kemps, Eva; Tiggemann, Marika; Stewart-Davis, Ebony
Two experiments investigated whether attentional bias modification can inoculate people to withstand exposure to real-world appetitive food cues, namely television advertisements for chocolate products. Using a modified dot probe task, undergraduate women were trained to direct their attention toward (attend) or away from (avoid) chocolate pictures. Experiment 1 (N = 178) consisted of one training session; Experiment 2 (N = 161) included 5 weekly sessions. Following training, participants viewed television advertisements of chocolate or control products. They then took part in a so-called taste test as a measure of chocolate consumption. Attentional bias for chocolate was measured before training and after viewing the advertisements, and in Experiment 2 also at 24-h and 1-week follow-up. In Experiment 2, but not Experiment 1, participants in the avoid condition showed a significant reduction in attentional bias for chocolate, regardless of whether they had been exposed to advertisements for chocolate or control products. However, this inoculation effect on attentional bias did not generalise to chocolate intake. Future research involving more extensive attentional re-training may be needed to ascertain whether the inoculation effect on attentional bias can extend to consumption, and thus help people withstand exposure to real-world palatable food cues. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Zoë C Franklin
Full Text Available Attentional biases reflect an individual's selective attention to salient stimuli within their environment, for example an experience of back pain. Eysenck suggests that different personality types show different attentional biases to threatening information. This study is the first to test Eysenck's theory within a chronic back pain population by investigating the attentional biases of four different personality types using a back pain specific dot-probe paradigm. Participants were 70 volunteers (45 female recruited from a back rehabilitation program at an NHS Trust. The four groups were selected on their trait anxiety and defensiveness scores: defensive high-anxious; high-anxious; repressor and non-extreme. Participants completed a dot probe task comprising 20 practice trials and 250 experimental trials. The experimental trials contained 100 threat-neutral pairs, 100 positive-neutral pairs and 50 neutral-neutral image pairings. The threat images were taken from the Photograph Series of Daily Activities (PHODA and the neutral and positive images from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS image bank. The results provided partial support for Eysenck's theory; defensive high-anxious individuals showed an attentional bias for threatening information compared to high-anxious individuals who demonstrated no bias. Repressors showed an avoidant bias to threatening images and an attentional bias to positive stimuli relative to neutral images. The clear difference in responses demonstrated by high-anxious individuals who vary in defensiveness highlight the need for separate investigation of these heterogeneous groups and help to explain the cognitive processes of defensive high-anxious individuals within a pain population. The demonstration of an attentional bias in this group to threatening information could explain why defensive high-anxious individuals are more likely to re-present for treatment.
Rijsdijk, F. V.; Riese, H.; Tops, M.; Snieder, H.; Brouwer, W. H.; Smid, H. G. O. M.; Ormel, J.
Background. Prior research on the nature of the vulnerability of neuroticism to psychopathology suggests biases in information processing towards emotional rather than neutral information. It is unclear to what extent this relationship can be explained by genetic or environmental factors. Method.
LeMoult, Joelle; Joormann, Jutta
Cognitive biases play an important role in the onset and maintenance of Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). Few studies, however, have examined the role of comorbid Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) in the processing of emotional material. In addition, little is known about the relation among different cognitive biases. In the current study, 73 participants (54.79% female) completed an emotion face dot-probe task followed by a recognition memory test. Compared to participants with SAD, participants with comorbid SAD and MDD oriented away from supraliminally presented angry faces. Subsequently, SAD participants with and without comorbidity recognized fewer angry faces than non-disordered controls. Furthermore, attention biases for subliminally presented stimuli predicted recognition accuracy only for comorbid participants. These results suggest that the presence of comorbid MDD affects attentional orienting in SAD participants. In addition, it highlights the interconnectedness of attention and memory biases for comorbid participants. PMID:23087492
May, Tamara; Cornish, Kim; Rinehart, Nicole J.
Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have high levels of anxiety. It is unclear whether they exhibit threat-related attentional biases commensurate with anxiety disorders as manifest in non-ASD populations, such as facilitated attention toward, and difficulties disengaging engaging from, threatening stimuli. Ninety children, 45 cognitively…
Passamonti, L.; Luijten, M.; Ziauddeen, H.; Coyle-Gilchrist, I.T.S.; Rittman, T.; Brain, S.A.E.; Regenthal, R.; Franken, I.H.A.; Sahakian, B.J.; Bullmore, E.T.; Robbins, T.W.; Ersche, K.D.
Rationale: Biased attention towards drug-related cues and reduced inhibitory control over the regulation of drug-intake characterize drug addiction. The noradrenaline system has been critically implicated in both attentional and response inhibitory processes and is directly affected by drugs such as
Passamonti, L. (Luca); M. Luijten (Maartje); Ziauddeen, H.; I. Coyle-Gilchrist (Ian); Rittman, T.; Brain, S.A.E.; Regenthal, R.; I.H.A. Franken (Ingmar); Sahakian, B.J.; Bullmore, E.T.; Robbins, T.W.; Ersche, K.D.
textabstractRationale: Biased attention towards drug-related cues and reduced inhibitory control over the regulation of drug-intake characterize drug addiction. The noradrenaline system has been critically implicated in both attentional and response inhibitory processes and is directly affected by
Brosschot, J.F.; de Ruiter, C.; Kindt, M.
Hypothesized that repressors (Ss high in defensiveness with low trait anxiety) would show cognitive avoidance of threatening information in an attention deployment task, but an attentional bias for the same information in an emotional interference task, while Ss high in anxiety would show a
Full Text Available Attentional biases toward threat (ABTs have been described in high anxious individuals and in clinical samples whereas they have been rarely reported in non-clinical samples (Bar-Haim et al., 2007; Cisler and Koster, 2010. Three kinds of ABTs have been identified (facilitation, difficulty of disengagement and avoidance but their mechanisms and time courses are still unclear. This study aimed to understand ABTs mechanisms and timing in low (LTA and high (HTA anxious individuals. In particular, in an exogenous cueing task we used threatening or neutral stimuli as peripheral cues with three presentation times (100, 200 or 500 ms. The main results showed that HTA individuals have an attentional facilitation bias at 100 ms (likely automatic in nature whereas LTA individuals show attentional avoidance and difficulty to disengage from threatening stimuli at 200 ms (likely related to a strategic processing. Such findings demonstrate that threat biases attention with specific mechanisms and time courses, and that anxiety levels modulate attention allocation.
Sagliano, Laura; Trojano, Luigi; Amoriello, Katja; Migliozzi, Michela; D'Olimpio, Francesca
Attentional biases toward threats (ABTs) have been described in high anxious individuals and in clinical samples whereas they have been rarely reported in non-clinical samples (Bar-Haim et al., 2007; Cisler and Koster, 2010). Three kinds of ABTs have been identified (facilitation, difficulty of disengagement, and avoidance) but their mechanisms and time courses are still unclear. This study aimed to understand ABTs mechanisms and timing in low trait anxiety (LTA) and high trait anxiety (HTA) anxious individuals. In particular, in an exogenous cueing task we used threatening or neutral stimuli as peripheral cues with three presentation times (100, 200, or 500 ms). The main results showed that HTA individuals have an attentional facilitation bias at 100 ms (likely automatic in nature) whereas LTA individuals show attentional avoidance and difficulty to disengage from threatening stimuli at 200 ms (likely related to a strategic processing). Such findings demonstrate that threat biases attention with specific mechanisms and time courses, and that anxiety levels modulate attention allocation.
Daniel S McGrath
Full Text Available A growing body of research indicates that gamblers develop an attentional bias for gambling-related stimuli. Compared to research on substance use, however, few studies have examined attentional biases in gamblers using eye-gaze tracking, which has many advantages over other measures of attention. In addition, previous studies of attentional biases in gamblers have not directly matched type of gambler with personally-relevant gambling cues. The present study investigated the specificity of attentional biases for individual types of gambling using an eye-gaze tracking paradigm. Three groups of participants (poker players, video lottery terminal/slot machine players, and non-gambling controls took part in one test session in which they viewed 25 sets of four images (poker, VLTs/slot machines, bingo, and board games. Participants' eye fixations were recorded throughout each 8-second presentation of the four images. The results indicated that, as predicted, the two gambling groups preferentially attended to their primary form of gambling, whereas control participants attended to board games more than gambling images. The findings have clinical implications for the treatment of individuals with gambling disorder. Understanding the importance of personally-salient gambling cues will inform the development of effective attentional bias modification treatments for problem gamblers.
McGrath, Daniel S; Meitner, Amadeus; Sears, Christopher R
A growing body of research indicates that gamblers develop an attentional bias for gambling-related stimuli. Compared to research on substance use, however, few studies have examined attentional biases in gamblers using eye-gaze tracking, which has many advantages over other measures of attention. In addition, previous studies of attentional biases in gamblers have not directly matched type of gambler with personally-relevant gambling cues. The present study investigated the specificity of attentional biases for individual types of gambling using an eye-gaze tracking paradigm. Three groups of participants (poker players, video lottery terminal/slot machine players, and non-gambling controls) took part in one test session in which they viewed 25 sets of four images (poker, VLTs/slot machines, bingo, and board games). Participants' eye fixations were recorded throughout each 8-second presentation of the four images. The results indicated that, as predicted, the two gambling groups preferentially attended to their primary form of gambling, whereas control participants attended to board games more than gambling images. The findings have clinical implications for the treatment of individuals with gambling disorder. Understanding the importance of personally-salient gambling cues will inform the development of effective attentional bias modification treatments for problem gamblers.
Full Text Available Cancer patients with hematopoietic tumors exhibit particularly high rates of anxiety disorders and depression, and often develop negative affect. In addition, psychological problems experienced by cancer patients impair their quality of life. When cancer patients feel anxious, they tend to direct their attention toward stimuli associated with threat in the surrounding environment. If attentional bias occurs in patients with hematopoietic tumors, who are at particular risk of developing negative affect, resolution of the bias could be useful in alleviating their anxiety. The current study examined the association between attentional bias and negative affect in patients with hematopoietic tumors and tested the hypothesis that negative affect would be more severe in those who exhibited greater attentional bias. Twenty-seven patients with hematopoietic tumors participated in the study. Reaction time (RT was measured as the time between the presentation of the threatening and neutral images, and the subject's button press to indicate choice (neutral expressions. Eight combinations of "threatening" expressions with high emotional valence and "neutral" expressions with low emotional valence were presented. The images used to measure attentional bias were taken from the Japanese Female Facial Expression Database and had been rated as expressive of anger, sadness, or neutrality, with predetermined emotional valence. Psychological testing was performed with the Profile of Mood States (POMS. To examine the association between attentional bias and negative affect, we calculated Spearman's rank correlation coefficients for RTs and POMS. Subjects' mean RT was 882.9 (SD = 100.9 ms, and 19 of the 27 subjects exhibited slower RTs relative to healthy individuals. RT was significantly positively correlated with Tension-Anxiety (r = .679, p < .01 and Fatigue (r = .585, p < .01 subscale scores. The results of the study suggested that attentional bias toward
Pishnamazi, Morteza; Tafakhori, Abbas; Loloee, Sogol; Modabbernia, Amirhossein; Aghamollaii, Vajiheh; Bahrami, Bahador; Winston, Joel S
The amygdala is believed to play a major role in orienting attention towards threat-related stimuli. However, behavioral studies on amygdala-damaged patients have given inconsistent results-variously reporting decreased, persisted, and increased attention towards threat. Here we aimed to characterize the impact of developmental amygdala damage on emotion perception and the nature and time-course of spatial attentional bias towards fearful faces. We investigated SF, a 14-year-old with selective bilateral amygdala damage due to Urbach-Wiethe disease (UWD), and ten healthy controls. Participants completed a fear sensitivity questionnaire, facial expression classification task, and dot-probe task with fearful or neutral faces for spatial cueing. Three cue durations were used to assess the time-course of attentional bias. SF expressed significantly lower fear sensitivity, and showed a selective impairment in classifying fearful facial expressions. Despite this impairment in fear recognition, very brief (100 msec) fearful cues could orient SF's spatial attention. In healthy controls, the attentional bias emerged later and persisted longer. SF's attentional bias was due solely to facilitated engagement to fear, while controls showed the typical phenomenon of difficulty in disengaging from fear. Our study is the first to demonstrate the separable effects of amygdala damage on engagement and disengagement of spatial attention. The findings indicate that multiple mechanisms contribute in biasing attention towards fear, which vary in their timing and dependence on amygdala integrity. It seems that the amygdala is not essential for rapid attention to emotion, but probably has a role in assessment of biological relevance. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Jang, Seon-Kyeong; Park, Seon-Cheol; Lee, Seung-Hwan; Cho, Yang Seok; Choi, Kee-Hong
This study assessed bias in selective attention to facial emotions in negative symptoms of schizophrenia and its influence on subsequent memory for facial emotions. Thirty people with schizophrenia who had high and low levels of negative symptoms (n = 15, respectively) and 21 healthy controls completed a visual probe detection task investigating selective attention bias (happy, sad, and angry faces randomly presented for 50, 500, or 1000 ms). A yes/no incidental facial memory task was then completed. Attention bias scores and recognition errors were calculated. Those with high negative symptoms exhibited reduced attention to emotional faces relative to neutral faces; those with low negative symptoms showed the opposite pattern when faces were presented for 500 ms regardless of the valence. Compared to healthy controls, those with high negative symptoms made more errors for happy faces in the memory task. Reduced attention to emotional faces in the probe detection task was significantly associated with less pleasure and motivation and more recognition errors for happy faces in schizophrenia group only. Attention bias away from emotional information relatively early in the attentional process and associated diminished positive memory may relate to pathological mechanisms for negative symptoms.
Briggs-Gowan, Margaret J.; Pollak, Seth D.; Grasso, Damion; Voss, Joel; Mian, Nicholas D.; Zobel, Elvira; McCarthy, Kimberly J.; Wakschlag, Lauren S.; Pine, Daniel S.
Background Attention bias towards threat is associated with anxiety in older youth and adults and has been linked with violence exposure. Attention bias may moderate the relationship between violence exposure and anxiety in young children. Capitalizing on measurement advances, the current study examines these relationships at a younger age than previously possible. Methods Young children (mean age 4.7, ±0.8) from a cross-sectional sample oversampled for violence exposure (N = 218) completed the dot-probe task to assess their attention biases. Observed fear/anxiety was characterized with a novel observational paradigm, the Anxiety Diagnostic Observation Schedule. Mother-reported symptoms were assessed with the Preschool-Age Psychiatric Assessment and Trauma Symptom Checklist for Young Children. Violence exposure was characterized with dimensional scores reflecting probability of membership in two classes derived via latent class analysis from the Conflict Tactics Scales: Abuse and Harsh Parenting. Results Family violence predicted greater child anxiety and trauma symptoms. Attention bias moderated the relationship between violence and anxiety. Conclusions Attention bias towards threat may strengthen the effects of family violence on the development of anxiety, with potentially cascading effects across childhood. Such associations may be most readily detected when using observational measures of childhood anxiety. PMID:26716142
Rozenman, Michelle; Amir, Nader; Weersing, V Robin
This preliminary investigation sought to examine basic interpretive biases, as assessed via performance-based means, in the context of anxious symptomatology, attention, and negative cognition in children and adolescents. At a single assessment, 26 youths diagnosed with primary separation anxiety, social phobia, or generalized anxiety disorder completed performance-based assessments of interpretation and attention. Youths and parents also completed diagnostic interviews and youths completed a measure of negative self-statements. Components of interpretation (threat-valence judgments and speed of responding) were examined, and interpretation was explored as a correlate of youth anxiety, attention bias, and negative self-statements. Results found percentage of negative interpretations endorsed as the strongest predictor of anxiety symptoms; this index was also correlated with attention bias. Slower rejection of benign interpretations was also associated with youth-reported negative self-statements.This initial investigation provides support for a relationship between interpretation bias and anxiety and preliminary evidence for a relationship between attention and interpretation biases. Continued research dismantling the stages of basic cognition within the chain of information processing may provide a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying anxiety disorders in youths and lead to continued development and refinement of cognitive interventions. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Mana R. Ehlers
Full Text Available Emotionally arousing events are typically better remembered than mundane ones, in part because emotionally relevant aspects of our environment are prioritized in attention. Such biased attentional tuning is itself the result of associative processes through which we learn affective and motivational relevance of cues. We propose that the locus coeruleus-noradrenaline (LC-NA system plays an important role in the genesis of attentional biases through associative learning processes as well as their maintenance. We further propose that individual differences in and disruptions of the LC-NA system underlie the development of maladaptive biases linked to psychopathology. We provide support for the proposed role of the LC-NA system by first reviewing work on attentional biases in development and its link to psychopathology in relation to alterations and individual differences in NA availability. We focus on pharmacological manipulations to demonstrate the effect of a disrupted system as well as the ADRA2b polymorphism as a tool to investigate naturally occurring differences in NA availability. We next review associative learning processes that—modulated by the LC-NA system—result in such implicit attentional biases. Further, we demonstrate how NA may influence aversive and appetitive conditioning linked to anxiety disorders as well as addiction and depression.
Christiansen, Paul; Schoenmakers, Tim M; Field, Matt
Recent years have seen an explosion of interest in attentional bias in addiction, particularly its clinical relevance. Specifically, numerous articles claimed to demonstrate either that (1) attentional bias measured in treatment settings could predict subsequent relapse to substance use, or (2) direct modification of attentional bias reduced substance use and improved treatment outcomes. In this paper, we critically evaluate empirical studies that investigated these issues. We show that the evidence regarding both of these claims is decidedly mixed, and that many of the studies that appear to yield positive findings have serious methodological and statistical limitations. We contend that the available literature suggests that attentional bias for drug cues fluctuates within individuals because it is an output of the underlying motivational state at that moment in time, but there is no convincing evidence that it exerts a causal influence on substance use. Future research should make use of experience sampling methodology to characterise the clinical significance of fluctuations in attentional bias over time. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Preciado, Daniel; Munneke, Jaap; Theeuwes, Jan
Attentional selection depends on the interaction between exogenous (stimulus-driven), endogenous (goal-driven), and selection history (experience-driven) factors. While endogenous and exogenous biases have been widely investigated, less is known about their interplay with value-driven attention. The present study investigated the interaction between reward-history and goal-driven biases on perceptual sensitivity (d') and response time (RT) in a modified cueing paradigm presenting two coloured cues, followed by sinusoidal gratings. Participants responded to the orientation of one of these gratings. In Experiment 1, one cue signalled reward availability but was otherwise task irrelevant. In Experiment 2, the same cue signalled reward, and indicated the target's most likely location at the opposite side of the display. This design introduced a conflict between reward-driven biases attracting attention and goal-driven biases directing it away. Attentional effects were examined comparing trials in which cue and target appeared at the same versus opposite locations. Two interstimulus interval (ISI) levels were used to probe the time course of attentional effects. Experiment 1 showed performance benefits at the location of the reward-signalling cue and costs at the opposite for both ISIs, indicating value-driven capture. Experiment 2 showed performance benefits only for the long ISI when the target was at the opposite to the reward-associated cue. At the short ISI, only performance costs were observed. These results reveal the time course of these biases, indicating that reward-driven effects influence attention early but can be overcome later by goal-driven control. This suggests that reward-driven biases are integrated as attentional priorities, just as exogenous and endogenous factors.
Doolan, K J; Breslin, G; Hanna, D; Gallagher, A M
The incentive sensitisation model of obesity suggests that modification of the dopaminergic associated reward systems in the brain may result in increased awareness of food-related visual cues present in the current food environment. Having a heightened awareness of these visual food cues may impact on food choices and eating behaviours with those being most aware of or demonstrating greater attention to food-related stimuli potentially being at greater risk of overeating and subsequent weight gain. To date, research related to attentional responses to visual food cues has been both limited and conflicting. Such inconsistent findings may in part be explained by the use of different methodological approaches to measure attentional bias and the impact of other factors such as hunger levels, energy density of visual food cues and individual eating style traits that may influence visual attention to food-related cues outside of weight status alone. This review examines the various methodologies employed to measure attentional bias with a particular focus on the role that attentional processing of food-related visual cues may have in obesity. Based on the findings of this review, it appears that it may be too early to clarify the role visual attention to food-related cues may have in obesity. Results however highlight the importance of considering the most appropriate methodology to use when measuring attentional bias and the characteristics of the study populations targeted while interpreting results to date and in designing future studies.
Gulley, Lauren D; Oppenheimer, Caroline W; Hankin, Benjamin L
Theories of affective learning suggest that early experiences contribute to emotional disorders by influencing the development of processing biases for negative emotional stimuli. Although studies have shown that physically abused children preferentially attend to angry faces, it is unclear whether youth exposed to more typical aspects of negative parenting exhibit the same type of bias. The current studies extend previous research by linking observed negative parenting styles (e.g., authoritarian) and behaviors (e.g., criticism and negative affect) to attention bias for angry faces in both a psychiatrically enriched (ages 11-17 years; N = 60) and a general community (ages 9-15 years; N = 75) sample of youth. In addition, the association between observed negative parenting (e.g., authoritarian style and negative affect) and youth social anxiety was mediated by attention bias for angry faces in the general community sample. Overall, findings provide preliminary support for theories of affective learning and risk for psychopathology among youth.
Veenstra, Esther M; de Jong, Peter J
A striking feature of the restricting subtype of anorexia nervosa (AN) is that these patients are extremely successful in restricting their food intake. Possibly, they are highly efficient in avoiding attentional engagement of food cues, thereby preventing more elaborate processing of food cues and thus subsequent craving. This study examined whether patients diagnosed with restrictive eating disorders ('restricting AN-like patients'; N=88) indeed show stronger attentional avoidance of visual food stimuli than healthy controls (N=76). Attentional engagement and disengagement were assessed by means of a pictorial exogenous cueing task, and (food and neutral) pictures were presented for 300, 500, or 1000 ms. In the 500 ms condition, both restricting AN-like patients and healthy controls demonstrated attentional avoidance of high-fat food as indexed by a negative cue-validity effect and impaired attentional engagement with high-fat food, whereas no evidence was found for facilitated disengagement from high-fat food. Within the group of restricting AN-like patients, patients with relatively severe eating pathology showed relatively strong attentional engagement with low-fat food. There was no evidence for attentional bias in the 300 and 1000 ms condition. The pattern of findings indicate that attentional avoidance of high-fat food is a common phenomenon that may become counterproductive in restricting AN-like patients, as it could facilitate their restricted food intake. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Kuckertz, Jennie M; Amir, Nader
Attention bias modification (ABM) was introduced over a decade ago as a computerized method of manipulating attentional bias and has been followed by intense interest in applying ABM for clinical purposes. While meta-analyses support ABM as a method of modifying attentional biases and reducing anxiety symptoms, there have been notable discrepancies in findings published within the last several years. In this review, we comment on recent research that may help explain some of the inconsistencies across ABM studies. More relevant to the future of ABM research, we highlight areas in which continuing research is needed. We suggest that ABM appears to be a promising treatment for anxiety disorders, but relative to other interventions, ABM is in its infancy. Thus, research is needed in order to improve ABM as a clinical treatment and advance the psychological science of ABM.
Reynolds, Gemma; Field, Andy P; Askew, Chris
Research with children has shown that vicarious learning can result in changes to 2 of Lang's (1968) 3 anxiety response systems: subjective report and behavioral avoidance. The current study extended this research by exploring the effect of vicarious learning on physiological responses (Lang's final response system) and attentional bias. The study used Askew and Field's (2007) vicarious learning procedure and demonstrated fear-related increases in children's cognitive, behavioral, and physiological responses. Cognitive and behavioral changes were retested 1 week and 1 month later, and remained elevated. In addition, a visual search task demonstrated that fear-related vicarious learning creates an attentional bias for novel animals, which is moderated by increases in fear beliefs during learning. The findings demonstrate that vicarious learning leads to lasting changes in all 3 of Lang's anxiety response systems and is sufficient to create attentional bias to threat in children. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.
Schmidt, Ricarda; Lüthold, Patrick; Kittel, Rebekka; Tetzlaff, Anne; Hilbert, Anja
Evidence suggests that adults with binge-eating disorder (BED) are prone of having their attention interfered by food cues, and that food-related attentional biases are associated with calorie intake and eating disorder psychopathology. For adolescents with BED experimental evidence on attentional processing of food cues is lacking. Using eye-tracking and a visual search task, the present study examined visual orienting and disengagement processes of food in youth with BED. Eye-movement data and reaction times were recorded in 25 adolescents (12-20 years) with BED and 25 controls (CG) individually matched for sex, age, body mass index, and socio-economic status. During a free exploration paradigm, the BED group showed a greater gaze duration bias for food images than the CG. Groups did not differ in gaze direction biases. In a visual search task, the BED group showed a greater detection bias for food targets than the CG. Group differences were more pronounced for personally attractive than unattractive food images. Regarding clinical associations, only in the BED group the gaze duration bias for food was associated with increased hunger and lower body mass index, and the detection bias for food targets was associated with greater reward sensitivity. The study provided first evidence of an attentional bias to food in adolescents with BED. However, more research is needed for further specifying disengagement and orienting processes in adolescent BED, including overt and covert attention, and their prospective associations with binge-eating behaviors and associated psychopathology. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
De Voogd, E.L.; Wiers, R.W.; Salemink, E.
Anxiety and depression, which are highly prevalent in adolescence, are both characterized by a negative attentional bias. As Attentional Bias Modification (ABM) can reduce such a bias, and might also affect emotional reactivity, it could be a promising early intervention. However, a growing number
Amir, Nader; Kuckertz, Jennie M; Strege, Marlene V
An attentional bias toward threat may be one mechanism underlying clinical anxiety. Attention bias modification (ABM) aims to reduce symptoms of anxiety disorders by directly modifying this deficit. However, existing ABM training programs have not consistently modified attentional bias and may not reflect optimal learning needs of participants (i.e., lack of explicit instruction, training goal unclear to participants, lack of feedback, non-adaptive, inability to differentiate or target different components of attentional bias). In the current study, we introduce a new adaptive ABM program (AABM) and test its feasibility in individuals with social anxiety disorder. We report task characteristics and preliminary evidence that this task consistently modifies attentional bias and that changes in attentional bias (but not number of trials) correlate with the level of symptom reduction. These results suggest that AABM may be a targeted method for the next generation of studies examining the utility of attention training.
Daisy J Mechelmans
Full Text Available Compulsive sexual behaviour (CSB is relatively common and has been associated with significant distress and psychosocial impairments. CSB has been conceptualized as either an impulse control disorder or a non-substance 'behavioural' addiction. Substance use disorders are commonly associated with attentional biases to drug cues which are believed to reflect processes of incentive salience. Here we assess male CSB subjects compared to age-matched male healthy controls using a dot probe task to assess attentional bias to sexually explicit cues. We show that compared to healthy volunteers, CSB subjects have enhanced attentional bias to explicit cues but not neutral cues particularly for early stimuli latency. Our findings suggest enhanced attentional bias to explicit cues possibly related to an early orienting attentional response. This finding dovetails with our recent observation that sexually explicit videos were associated with greater activity in a neural network similar to that observed in drug-cue-reactivity studies. Greater desire or wanting rather than liking was further associated with activity in this neural network. These studies together provide support for an incentive motivation theory of addiction underlying the aberrant response towards sexual cues in CSB.
Kagerer, Sabine; Wehrum, Sina; Klucken, Tim; Walter, Bertram; Vaitl, Dieter; Stark, Rudolf
We investigated the impact of sexual stimuli and the influence of sexual motivation on the performance in a dot-probe task and a line-orientation task in a large sample of males and females. All pictures (neutral, erotic) were rated on the dimensions of valence, arousal, disgust, and sexual arousal. Additionally, questionnaires measuring sexual interest/desire/motivation were employed. The ratings of the sexual stimuli point to a successful picture selection because sexual arousal did not differ between the sexes. The stimuli were equally arousing for men and women. Higher scores in the employed questionnaires measuring sexual interest/desire/motivation led to higher sexual arousal ratings of the sex pictures. Attentional bias towards sex pictures was observed in both experimental tasks. The attentional biases measured by the dot-probe and the line-orientation task were moderately intercorrelated suggesting attentional bias as a possible marker for a sex-attention trait. Finally, only the sexual sensation seeking score correlated with the attentional biases of the two tasks. Future research is needed to increase the predictive power of these indirect measures of sexual interest.
Mechelmans, Daisy J; Irvine, Michael; Banca, Paula; Porter, Laura; Mitchell, Simon; Mole, Tom B; Lapa, Tatyana R; Harrison, Neil A; Potenza, Marc N; Voon, Valerie
Compulsive sexual behaviour (CSB) is relatively common and has been associated with significant distress and psychosocial impairments. CSB has been conceptualized as either an impulse control disorder or a non-substance 'behavioural' addiction. Substance use disorders are commonly associated with attentional biases to drug cues which are believed to reflect processes of incentive salience. Here we assess male CSB subjects compared to age-matched male healthy controls using a dot probe task to assess attentional bias to sexually explicit cues. We show that compared to healthy volunteers, CSB subjects have enhanced attentional bias to explicit cues but not neutral cues particularly for early stimuli latency. Our findings suggest enhanced attentional bias to explicit cues possibly related to an early orienting attentional response. This finding dovetails with our recent observation that sexually explicit videos were associated with greater activity in a neural network similar to that observed in drug-cue-reactivity studies. Greater desire or wanting rather than liking was further associated with activity in this neural network. These studies together provide support for an incentive motivation theory of addiction underlying the aberrant response towards sexual cues in CSB.
Thai, Nhi; Taber-Thomas, Bradley C; Pérez-Edgar, Koraly E
Behavioral inhibition (BI) is a biologically-based temperament characterized by vigilance toward threat. Over time, many children with BI increasingly fear social circumstances and display maladaptive social behavior. BI is also one of the strongest individual risk factors for developing social anxiety disorder. Although research has established a link between BI and anxiety, its causal mechanism remains unclear. Attention biases may underlie this relation. The current study examined neural markers of the BI-attention-anxiety link in children ages 9-12 years (N=99, Mean=9.97, SD=0.97). ERP measures were collected as children completed an attention-bias (dot-probe) task with neutral and angry faces. P2 and N2 amplitudes were associated with social anxiety and attention bias, respectively. Specifically, augmented P2 was related to decreased symptoms of social anxiety and moderated the relation between BI and social anxiety, suggesting that increasing attention mobilization may serve as a compensatory mechanism that attenuates social anxiety in individuals with high BI. The BI by N2 interaction found that larger N2 related to threat avoidance with increasing levels of BI, consistent with over-controlled socio-emotional functioning. Lastly, children without BI (BN) showed an augmented P1 to probes replacing angry faces, suggesting maintenance of attentional resources in threat-related contexts. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Skinner, Ian W; Hübscher, Markus; Moseley, G Lorimer; Lee, Hopin; Wand, Benedict M; Traeger, Adrian C; Gustin, Sylvia M; McAuley, James H
Eyetracking is commonly used to investigate attentional bias. Although some studies have investigated the internal consistency of eyetracking, data are scarce on the test-retest reliability and agreement of eyetracking to investigate attentional bias. This study reports the test-retest reliability, measurement error, and internal consistency of 12 commonly used outcome measures thought to reflect the different components of attentional bias: overall attention, early attention, and late attention. Healthy participants completed a preferential-looking eyetracking task that involved the presentation of threatening (sensory words, general threat words, and affective words) and nonthreatening words. We used intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) to measure test-retest reliability (ICC > .70 indicates adequate reliability). The ICCs(2, 1) ranged from -.31 to .71. Reliability varied according to the outcome measure and threat word category. Sensory words had a lower mean ICC (.08) than either affective words (.32) or general threat words (.29). A longer exposure time was associated with higher test-retest reliability. All of the outcome measures, except second-run dwell time, demonstrated low measurement error ( .93). Recommendations are discussed for improving the reliability of eyetracking tasks in future research.
van Duijvenbode, N; Didden, R; Korzilius, H P L M; Engels, R C M E
Problematic drinkers favour the processing of alcohol-related stimuli at the cost of other stimuli and also find it difficult to disengage their attention from these stimuli. This is indicative of an attentional bias towards alcohol. The goal of this study was to examine this bias in problematic drinkers with and without mild to borderline intellectual disability (MBID) using both eye tracking methodology and behavioural data (i.e. reaction time (RT) data). Participants (N = 133) were divided into four groups based on (estimated) full scale intelligence quotient (IQ) and severity of alcohol use-related problems. The severity of substance use-related problems was assessed with the Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT). The visual dot probe task was used to measure the attentional bias. We analysed both eye tracking data and behavioural data (i.e. RT data) of the visual dot probe task. Problematic drinkers were not more likely than light drinkers to direct their attention towards pictures of alcoholic beverages, did not look at these pictures longer than light drinkers and did also not respond faster than light drinkers to probes replacing pictures of alcoholic beverages. However, the strength of the attentional bias varied profusely. Taking the large variability in the strength of the attentional bias and the poor psychometric qualities of the measures into consideration, it is concluded that the use of these measures for clinical purposes is discouraged. © 2016 MENCAP and International Association of the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Mayer, Andrew R; Wilcox, Claire E; Dodd, Andrew B; Klimaj, Stefan D; Dekonenko, Charlene J; Claus, Eric D; Bogenschutz, Michael
Attentional bias (i.e., differences in reaction time between drug and neutral cues) has been associated with a variety of drug-use behaviors (e.g., craving, abstinence). Reduction of bias may ultimately reduce use. The current study examined whether attentional bias modification therapy (ABMT) reduced the frequency of drug use behaviors in individuals with cocaine use disorder (CUD). Participants (n = 37) were randomly assigned to ABMT or control therapy, which systematically varied how frequently probes replaced neutral (ABMT = 100%; control therapy = 50%) relative to drug stimuli. Each intervention included 5 training sessions comprising a total of 2640 trials over 4 weeks. Clinical assessments occurred at baseline, post-intervention, 2 weeks and 3 months posttreatment. There were no baseline differences between groups on drug-use behaviors or other clinical measures. Contrary to predictions, both groups exhibited slower rather than faster reaction times for cocaine stimuli (p = 0.005) at baseline, with no relationship between bias and baseline measures of drug-use behavior. ABMT was not more effective than our control therapy at reducing attentional bias, reducing craving or changing other drug use behaviors. Current results suggest additional replication studies are needed to assess ABMT's efficacy in reducing drug-use behaviors in CUD.
Oosterhoff, Benjamin; Shook, Natalie J; Ford, Cameron
Considerable evidence suggests that political liberals and conservatives vary in the way they process and respond to valenced (i.e., negative versus positive) information, with conservatives generally displaying greater negativity biases than liberals. Less is known about whether liberals and conservatives differentially prioritize certain forms of negative information over others. Across two studies using eye-tracking methodology, we examined differences in visual attention to negative scenes and facial expressions based on self-reported political ideology. In Study 1, scenes rated high in fear, disgust, sadness, and neutrality were presented simultaneously. Greater endorsement of socially conservative political attitudes was associated with less attentional engagement (i.e., lower dwell time) of disgust scenes and more attentional engagement toward neutral scenes. Socially conservative political attitudes were not significantly associated with visual attention to fear or sad scenes. In Study 2, images depicting facial expressions of fear, disgust, sadness, and neutrality were presented simultaneously. Greater endorsement of socially conservative political attitudes was associated with greater attentional engagement with facial expressions depicting disgust and less attentional engagement toward neutral faces. Visual attention to fearful or sad faces was not related to social conservatism. Endorsement of economically conservative political attitudes was not consistently associated with biases in visual attention across both studies. These findings support disease-avoidance models and suggest that social conservatism may be rooted within a greater sensitivity to disgust-related information. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Suárez-Pellicioni, Macarena; Núñez-Peña, Maria Isabel; Colomé, Àngels
Attentional bias toward threatening or emotional information is considered a cognitive marker of anxiety, and it has been described in various clinical and subclinical populations. This study used an emotional Stroop task to investigate whether math anxiety is characterized by an attentional bias toward math-related words. Two previous studies failed to observe such an effect in math-anxious individuals, although the authors acknowledged certain methodological limitations that the present study seeks to avoid. Twenty high math-anxious (HMA) and 20 low math-anxious (LMA) individuals were presented with an emotional Stroop task including math-related and neutral words. Participants in the two groups did not differ in trait anxiety or depression. We found that the HMA group showed slower response times to math-related words than to neutral words, as well as a greater attentional bias (math-related – neutral difference score) than the LMA one, which constitutes the first demonstration of an attentional bias toward math-related words in HMA individuals. PMID:26539137
Becker, Kendra Davis; Fischer, Sarah; Smith, Gregory T; Miller, Joshua D
We tested a theoretical model concerning the role of attentional bias and negative affect in food consumption that offers important advances. We hypothesized that the effects of negative affect manipulations on food consumption vary as a function of trait levels of negative urgency (NU; tendency to act impulsively when distressed), and attentional bias and that the roles of emotional arousal and negative emotional valence differ and should be studied separately. 190 undergraduate women were randomly assigned to either an anger or neutral mood condition. Women in both conditions completed the Food Stroop, in which the presentation of food and neutral words were counterbalanced. After the task, participants were given the opportunity to eat mandarin oranges and/or chocolate candy while the experimenter was out of the room. The type and quantity of food consumed was counted after the participant departed. As hypothesized, the roles of emotional arousal and valence differed and the effect of the induced emotion was moderated by NU. Women high in NU who experienced emotional arousal were more likely to eat candy and consumed more candy than other women. Emotional valence had no effect on candy consumption. Neither increases in emotional arousal or emotional valence influenced attentional bias to food cues. Attentional bias was also unrelated to food consumption. The impact of negative mood inductions on palatable food consumption appears to operate through emotional arousal and not negative emotional valence, and it may operate primarily for women high in NU. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Jonker, Nienke C; Glashouwer, Klaske A; Ostafin, Brian D; van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E; Smink, Frédérique R E; Hoek, Hans W; de Jong, Peter J
More than 80% of obese adolescents will become obese adults, and it is therefore important to enhance insight into characteristics that underlie the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity at a young age. The current study is the first to focus on attentional biases towards rewarding and punishing cues as potentially important factors. Participants were young adolescents (N = 607) who were followed from the age of 13 until the age of 19, and completed a motivational game indexing the attentional bias to general cues of reward and punishment. Additionally, self-reported reward and punishment sensitivity was measured. This study showed that attentional biases to cues that signal reward or punishment and self-reported reward and punishment sensitivity were not related to body mass index or the change in body mass index over six years in adolescents. Thus, attentional bias to cues of reward and cues of punishment, and self-reported reward and punishment sensitivity, do not seem to be crucial factors in the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity in adolescents. Exploratory analyses of the current study suggest that the amount of effort to gain reward and to avoid punishment may play a role in the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity. However, since the effort measure was a construct based on face validity and has not been properly validated, more studies are necessary before firm conclusions can be drawn.
Jonker, Nienke C.; Glashouwer, Klaske A.; Ostafin, Brian D.; van Hemel-ruiter, Madelon E.; Smink, Frédérique R.E.; Hoek, Hans W.; de Jong, Peter J.
More than 80% of obese adolescents will become obese adults, and it is therefore important to enhance insight into characteristics that underlie the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity at a young age. The current study is the first to focus on attentional biases towards rewarding
Kaiser, D.; Jacob, G.A.; Domes, G.; Arntz, A.
Background: In borderline personality disorder (BPD), attentional bias (AB) to emotional stimuli may be a core component in disorder pathogenesis and maintenance. Sampling: 11 emotional Stroop task (EST) studies with 244 BPD patients, 255 nonpatients (NPs) and 95 clinical controls and 4 visual
Glashouwer, Klaske A.; Ostafin, Brian D.; van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E.; Smink, Frédérique R. E.; Hoek, Hans W.; de Jong, Peter J.
More than 80% of obese adolescents will become obese adults, and it is therefore important to enhance insight into characteristics that underlie the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity at a young age. The current study is the first to focus on attentional biases towards rewarding and punishing cues as potentially important factors. Participants were young adolescents (N = 607) who were followed from the age of 13 until the age of 19, and completed a motivational game indexing the attentional bias to general cues of reward and punishment. Additionally, self-reported reward and punishment sensitivity was measured. This study showed that attentional biases to cues that signal reward or punishment and self-reported reward and punishment sensitivity were not related to body mass index or the change in body mass index over six years in adolescents. Thus, attentional bias to cues of reward and cues of punishment, and self-reported reward and punishment sensitivity, do not seem to be crucial factors in the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity in adolescents. Exploratory analyses of the current study suggest that the amount of effort to gain reward and to avoid punishment may play a role in the development and maintenance of overweight and obesity. However, since the effort measure was a construct based on face validity and has not been properly validated, more studies are necessary before firm conclusions can be drawn. PMID:27391017
van Holst, R.J.; Lemmens, J.S.; Valkenburg, P.M.; Peter, J.; Veltman, D.J.; Goudriaan, A.E.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to examine whether behavioral tendencies commonly related to addictive behaviors are also related to problematic computer and video game playing in adolescents. The study of attentional bias and response inhibition, characteristic for addictive disorders, is
Harrison, Neil R.; McCann, Amy
Attentional bias plays an important role in the development and maintenance of alcohol addiction, and has often been measured with a visual probe task, where reaction times are compared for probes replacing either a substance-related cue or a neutral cue. Systematic low-level differences between image classes are a potential cause of low internal…
Watts, Sarah E.; Weems, Carl F.
The purpose of this study was to examine the linkages among selective attention, memory bias, cognitive errors, and anxiety problems by testing a model of the interrelations among these cognitive variables and childhood anxiety disorder symptoms. A community sample of 81 youth (38 females and 43 males) aged 9-17 years and their parents completed…
van Holst, Ruth J.; Lemmens, Jeroen S.; Valkenburg, Patti M.; Peter, Jochen; Veltman, Dick J.; Goudriaan, Anna E.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to examine whether behavioral tendencies commonly related to addictive behaviors are also related to problematic computer and video game playing in adolescents. The study of attentional bias and response inhibition, characteristic for addictive disorders, is
van Holst, R.J.; Lemmens, J.S.; Valkenburg, P.M.; Peter, J.; Veltman, D.J.; Goudriaan, A.E.
Purpose The aim of this study was to examine whether behavioral tendencies commonly related to addictive behaviors are also related to problematic computer and video game playing in adolescents. The study of attentional bias and response inhibition, characteristic for addictive disorders, is
Fleurkens, P.F.T.; Rinck, M.; Minnen, A. van
The present study investigated specificity of attentional biases for trauma-related stimuli using an Emotional Stroop Task. Participants were 14 women suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) who had experienced a sexual trauma and 24 healthy non-traumatized women. They were asked to name
Lindblom, Jallu; Peltola, Mikko J.; Vänskä, Mervi; Hietanen, Jari K.; Laakso, Anu; Tiitinen, Aila; Tulppala, Maija; Punamäki, Raija-Leena
The family environment shapes children's social information processing and emotion regulation. Yet, the long-term effects of early family systems have rarely been studied. This study investigated how family system types predict children's attentional biases toward facial expressions at the age of 10 years. The participants were 79 children from…
Field, Andy P.
Although valenced information about novel animals changes the implicit and explicit fear beliefs of children (Field & Lawson, 2003), how it might lead to anxiety is unknown. One possibility, based on cognitive models of anxiety, is that fear information creates attentional biases similar to those seen in anxiety disorders. Children between 7 and 9…
Forbes, Chad E; Leitner, Jordan B
Stereotype threat, a situational pressure individuals experience when they fear confirming a negative group stereotype, engenders a cascade of physiological stress responses, negative appraisals, and performance monitoring processes that tax working memory resources necessary for optimal performance. Less is known, however, about how stereotype threat biases attentional processing in response to performance feedback, and how such attentional biases may undermine performance. Women received feedback on math problems in stereotype threatening compared to stereotype-neutral contexts while continuous EEG activity was recorded. Findings revealed that stereotype threatened women elicited larger midline P100 ERPs, increased phase locking between anterior cingulate cortex and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (two regions integral for attentional processes), and increased power in left fusiform gyrus in response to negative feedback compared to positive feedback and women in stereotype-neutral contexts. Increased power in left fusiform gyrus in response to negative feedback predicted underperformance on the math task among stereotype threatened women only. Women in stereotype-neutral contexts exhibited the opposite trend. Findings suggest that in stereotype threatening contexts, neural networks integral for attention and working memory are biased toward negative, stereotype confirming feedback at very early speeds of information processing. This bias, in turn, plays a role in undermining performance. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Objective Although research on muscle dysmorphia (MD, a body dysmorphic disorder subtype, has recently increased, the causes and mechanisms underlying this disorder remain unclear. Results from studies examining disorders associated with body image suggest the involvement of self-schema in biasing attention toward specific body information. The present study examined whether individuals at higher risk of MD also display attentional biases toward specific types of body images. Methods The validated Chinese version of the Muscle Appearance Satisfaction Scale was used to distinguish men at higher and lower risk of MD. Sixty-five adult Chinese men at higher (HRMD, n = 33 and lower risk of MD (LRMD, n = 32 performed a visual probe task. Initially, an image of a bodybuilder with either larger or smaller musculature was presented on one side of a central point, with a neutral image of a car exterior presented on the other side along the horizontal plane for 2,000 ms. The paired images were removed, and a visual target (a dot was displayed in the location of one of the previously shown images. Participants were asked to indicate the location of the target, and their eye movements were recorded during the entire visual presentation. Participant reaction time and three eye movement measurements (gaze direction, first saccade latency, and first fixation duration were recorded for use in determining attentional bias. Results The HRMD group revealed biases in orienting and maintaining their attention on images of bodybuilders with larger musculatures. Participants in this group consequently had a shorter reaction time in identifying the target that appeared at the location in which an image of a bodybuilder with a larger musculature had been previously displayed. They also directed their initial gaze more frequently, had shorter saccade latency, and had longer first fixation duration on images of bodybuilders with larger musculatures (all p < .0001
Domaradzka, Ewa; Bielecki, Maksymilian
Numerous studies have shown that biases in visual attention might be evoked by affective and personally relevant stimuli, for example addiction-related objects. Despite the fact that addiction is often linked to specific products and systematic purchase behaviors, no studies focused directly on the existence of bias evoked by brands. Smokers are characterized by high levels of brand loyalty and everyday contact with cigarette packaging. Using the incentive-salience mechanism as a theoretical framework, we hypothesized that this group might exhibit a bias toward the preferred cigarette brand. In our study, a group of smokers (N = 40) performed a dot probe task while their eye movements were recorded. In every trial a pair of pictures was presented – each of them showed a single cigarette pack. The visual properties of stimuli were carefully controlled, so branding information was the key factor affecting subjects’ reactions. For each participant, we compared gaze behavior related to the preferred vs. other brands. The analyses revealed no attentional bias in the early, orienting phase of the stimulus processing and strong differences in maintenance and disengagement. Participants spent more time looking at the preferred cigarettes and saccades starting at the preferred brand location had longer latencies. In sum, our data shows that attentional bias toward brands might be found in situations not involving choice or decision making. These results provide important insights into the mechanisms of formation and maintenance of attentional biases to stimuli of personal relevance and might serve as a first step toward developing new attitude measurement techniques. PMID:28848479
Full Text Available Numerous studies have shown that biases in visual attention might be evoked by affective and personally relevant stimuli, for example addiction-related objects. Despite the fact that addiction is often linked to specific products and systematic purchase behaviors, no studies focused directly on the existence of bias evoked by brands. Smokers are characterized by high levels of brand loyalty and everyday contact with cigarette packaging. Using the incentive-salience mechanism as a theoretical framework, we hypothesized that this group might exhibit a bias toward the preferred cigarette brand. In our study, a group of smokers (N = 40 performed a dot probe task while their eye movements were recorded. In every trial a pair of pictures was presented – each of them showed a single cigarette pack. The visual properties of stimuli were carefully controlled, so branding information was the key factor affecting subjects’ reactions. For each participant, we compared gaze behavior related to the preferred vs. other brands. The analyses revealed no attentional bias in the early, orienting phase of the stimulus processing and strong differences in maintenance and disengagement. Participants spent more time looking at the preferred cigarettes and saccades starting at the preferred brand location had longer latencies. In sum, our data shows that attentional bias toward brands might be found in situations not involving choice or decision making. These results provide important insights into the mechanisms of formation and maintenance of attentional biases to stimuli of personal relevance and might serve as a first step toward developing new attitude measurement techniques.
Full Text Available Aims: Body dissatisfaction has been linked as a direct precursor for life threatening eating disorders such as Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa. Current research indicates that attentional bias may play a key role in the development and maintenance of body dissatisfaction in women due to the constant exposure to media depicted images. Therefore, we conducted an eye-tracking study to investigate whether individuals with high body dissatisfaction show a heightened attentional bias towards images of thin and overweight bodies compared to low body dissatisfied individuals. We also examined whether there was a general tendency for participants to show an attentional bias towards overweight bodies opposed to medium bodies and thin bodies opposed to medium bodies. Method: Thirty six participants completed a body dissatisfaction scale, and subsequently took part in an eye-tracking study. An eye-tracker was used to measure and record both gaze direction and gaze duration frequencies whilst exposing participants to images of females presented for 2000ms. Each trial compared either thin with medium images, or overweight with medium images. Results: Results indicated that overall participants viewed the thin images for a significantly longer time (M=.451, M= .534 respectively than the overweight images F(1, 34= 9.806, p = .04, ηp2= .224. However, there were no significant effects of gaze direction towards the thin or overweight bodies. Similarly, no significant effects were obtained for direction or duration bias towards the thin or overweight bodies across the high and low body dissatisfied groups. Conclusions: These data show that overall, participants orient their attention more towards thin body images. However, body dissatisfaction level appears to have no effect on such attentional biases.
van Holst, Ruth J; Lemmens, Jeroen S; Valkenburg, Patti M; Peter, Jochen; Veltman, Dick J; Goudriaan, Anna E
The aim of this study was to examine whether behavioral tendencies commonly related to addictive behaviors are also related to problematic computer and video game playing in adolescents. The study of attentional bias and response inhibition, characteristic for addictive disorders, is relevant to the ongoing discussion on whether problematic gaming should be classified as an addictive disorder. We tested the relation between self-reported levels of problem gaming and two behavioral domains: attentional bias and response inhibition. Ninety-two male adolescents performed two attentional bias tasks (addiction-Stroop, dot-probe) and a behavioral inhibition task (go/no-go). Self-reported problem gaming was measured by the game addiction scale, based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-fourth edition criteria for pathological gambling and time spent on computer and/or video games. Male adolescents with higher levels of self-reported problem gaming displayed signs of error-related attentional bias to game cues. Higher levels of problem gaming were also related to more errors on response inhibition, but only when game cues were presented. These findings are in line with the findings of attentional bias reported in clinically recognized addictive disorders, such as substance dependence and pathological gambling, and contribute to the discussion on the proposed concept of "Addiction and Related Disorders" (which may include non-substance-related addictive behaviors) in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-fourth edition. Copyright © 2012 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Pritsch, Carla; Telkemeyer, Silke; Mühlenbeck, Cordelia; Liebal, Katja
Rapid detection and recognition of another individual's emotional state plays a pivotal role for humans and, most likely, other social species. Proper reactions contribute to an individual's survival in potentially dangerous situations; this is ensured by a preferential attention towards salient cues. The predisposition to attend to certain categories of affectively salient stimuli- also referred to as affect-biased attention - is likely shared with other species, since fast detection of and appropriate reaction to threats is crucial to survival. We compared human children and one of our close relatives, Sumatran orangutans (Pongo abelii), and predicted that both look more attentively and longer at emotionally salient facial expressions of their own and corresponding other species, compared to neutral faces. However, in contrast to a bias towards emotions providing relevant information by indicating a threat, both species preferentially looked at the fear-related, but not the angry faces of humans and consistently preferred the silent-bared teeth espressions in orangutans. The differential attention towards certain expressions might derive from their social function and the need to detect a potential threat in the environment. Our findings are consistent with claims rooting this affect-biased attention characteristic of human perception in our evolutionary history.
Greg D. Reynolds
Full Text Available We present an integrative review of research and theory on major factors involved in the early development of attentional biases to faces. Research utilizing behavioral, eye-tracking, and neuroscience measures with infant participants as well as comparative research with animal subjects are reviewed. We begin with coverage of research demonstrating the presence of an attentional bias for faces shortly after birth, such as newborn infants’ visual preference for face-like over non-face stimuli. The role of experience and the process of perceptual narrowing in face processing are examined as infants begin to demonstrate enhanced behavioral and neural responsiveness to mother over stranger, female over male, own- over other-race, and native over non-native faces. Next, we cover research on developmental change in infants’ neural responsiveness to faces in multimodal contexts, such as audiovisual speech. We also explore the potential influence of arousal and attention on early perceptual preferences for faces. Lastly, the potential influence of the development of attention systems in the brain on social-cognitive processing is discussed. In conclusion, we interpret the findings under the framework of Developmental Systems Theory, emphasizing the combined and distributed influence of several factors, both internal (e.g., arousal, neural development and external (e.g., early social experience to the developing child, in the emergence of attentional biases that lead to enhanced responsiveness and processing of faces commonly encountered in the native environment.
Dounskaia, Natalia; Goble, Jacob A
Previous research has revealed directional biases (preferences to select movements in specific directions) during horizontal arm movements with the use of a free-stroke drawing task. The biases were interpreted as a result of a tendency to generate motion at either the shoulder or elbow (leading joint) and move the other (subordinate) joint predominantly passively to avoid neural effort for control of interaction torque. Here, we examined influence of vision, movement speed, and attention on the directional biases. Participants performed the free-stroke drawing task, producing center-out strokes in randomly selected directions. Movements were performed with and without vision and at comfortable and fast pace. A secondary, cognitive task was used to distract attention. Preferred directions remained the same in all conditions. Bias strength mildly increased without vision, especially during fast movements. Striking increases in bias strength were caused by the secondary task, pointing to additional cognitive load associated with selection of movements in the non-preferred directions. Further analyses demonstrated that the tendency to minimize active interference with interaction torque at the subordinate joint matched directional biases in all conditions. This match supports the explanation of directional biases as a result of a tendency to minimize neural effort for interaction torque control. The cognitive load may enhance this tendency in two ways, directly, by reducing neural capacity for interaction torque control, and indirectly, by decreasing capacity of working memory that stores visited directions. The obtained results suggest strong directional biases during daily activities because natural arm movements usually subserve cognitive tasks.
Sørensen, Thomas Alrik; Ásgeirsson, Árni Gunnar
and performance in visual search, much like physical stimulus features. It has been demonstrated that the content of visual memory can guide attention (e.g. Carlisle & Woodman, 2011). This effect can be measured in the response time costs or benefits related to the presence of memorized color in a visual search...... display. Retaining color information in memory biases attention towards that specific color in visual search, apparent by response time costs when a matching distractor is present, but a benefit when the target matches the retained color. We investigated whether a synesthetic color is automatically...... represented in visual memory of observers with color-grapheme synesthesia, and consequently biases attention towards the synesthesia congruent stimuli. A group of synesthetes performed a memory task combined with a visual search for colored Landolt squares to explore this question. Each trial started...
Full Text Available The aim of this study was to investigate whether food-related thought suppression results in an attention bias for food cues. Fifty-nine female students took part in the experiment. All completed a modified exogenous cueing task containing pictures of foods and toys with a similar valence (presentation duration: 250 ms and 1050 ms. Half of the participants were instructed to suppress thoughts about food and the other half was given control instructions, prior to completing the exogenous cueing task. No evidence was found for an enhanced cue validity effect for food cues after food-related thought suppression. Hence, the preliminary results do not provide support for the hypothesis that thought suppression is sufficient to yield an attention bias. Since the study was the first to employ an exogenous cueing task to study the attentional processing of food cues, replication is warranted.
Yeomans, Martin R; Javaherian, Shabnam; Tovey, Heather M; Stafford, Lorenzo D
Attentional bias for drug-related cues has been reported with a wide range of drugs, but to date the extent to which caffeine consumers show similar biases for caffeine-related stimuli has not been tested. The present study therefore examined this issue in terms of differences in attentional bias for caffeine-related words in High, Moderate and Non-caffeine consumers using a dot-probe word task following overnight caffeine abstinence. This study was conducted to test whether caffeine consumers show an attentional bias for caffeine-related words, and whether such biases relate to habitual levels of caffeine use. Sixteen High, Moderate and Non-consumers of caffeine were asked to complete a modified dot-probe task in order to measure attentional bias for caffeine-related relative to neutral control word groups. The task was completed following overnight caffeine abstinence, and participants also completed mood and caffeine-craving measures. The High consumer group showed a significant attentional bias for the caffeine-related words, but no such bias was seen in Moderate or Non-consumer groups. As expected, craving for caffeine was strongest in the High consumers and weakest in the Non-consumers. Attentional bias in the High group correlated with self-reported caffeine consumption and with craving for caffeine, but neither effect was significant in the Moderate group. These data confirm that High caffeine consumers show attentional bias for caffeine-related stimuli, consistent with current theories of drug addiction.
Namaky, Nauder; Beltzer, Miranda L; Werntz, Alexandra J; Lambert, Ann E; Isaacowitz, Derek M; Teachman, Bethany A
The current study used a research domain criteria (RDoC) approach to assess age differences in multiple indicators of attention bias and its ties to anxiety, examining stimulus domain and cognitive control as moderators of older adults' oft-cited positivity effect (bias towards positive and away from negative stimuli, when compared to younger adults). 38 Younger adults and 38 older adults were administered a battery of cognitive control and trait and state anxiety measures, and completed a dot-probe task to assess attention bias, during which reaction time and fixation duration (using eye-tracking) were recorded for negative and neutral social (a salient threat domain for younger adults) and physical (a salient threat domain for older adults) stimuli. Mixed-effects models demonstrated that older adults were faster to react to dot-probe trials when the probe appeared in the place of negative (vs. neutral) physical stimuli, but displayed no difference in reaction time for social stimuli. Also, older (vs. younger) adults with lower levels of cognitive control were less negatively biased in their visual fixation to social stimuli. A negative reaction time attention bias on the dot-probe task predicted greater trait anxiety among participants with low levels of cognitive control, with a more complex pattern predicting state anxiety. Older adults do attend to social and physical stimuli differently. When stimuli concern a social threat, older adults do not preferentially attend to either neutral or negative stimuli. However, when stimuli concern physical threat, older adults preferentially attend to negative stimuli. Threat biases are associated with anxiety at all ages for those with low cognitive control. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Pishyareh, Ebrahim; Tehrani-Doost, Mehdi; Mahmoodi-Gharaie, Javad; Khorrami, Anahita; Joudi, Mitra; Ahmadi, Mehrnoosh
Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) react explosively and inappropriately to emotional stimuli. It could be hypothesized that these children have some impairment in attending to emotional cues. Based on this hypothesis, we conducted this study to evaluate visual directions of children with ADHD towards paired emotional scenes. Thirty boys between the ages of 6 and 11 years diagnosed with ADHD were compared with 30 age-matched normal boys. All participants were presented paired emotional and neutral scenes in the four following categories: pleasant-neutral; pleasant-unpleasant; unpleasant-neutral; and neutral - neutral. Meanwhile, their visual orientations towards these pictures were evaluated using the eye tracking system. The number and duration of first fixation and duration of first gaze were compared between the two groups using the MANOVA analysis. The performance of each group in different categories was also analyzed using the Friedman test. With regards to duration of first gaze, which is the time taken to fixate on a picture before moving to another picture, ADHD children spent less time on pleasant pictures compared to normal group, while they were looking at pleasant - neutral and unpleasant - pleasant pairs. The duration of first gaze on unpleasant pictures was higher while children with ADHD were looking at unpleasant - neutral pairs (P<0.01). Based on the findings of this study it could be concluded that children with ADHD attend to unpleasant conditions more than normal children which leads to their emotional reactivity.
Botta, Fabiano; Lupiáñez, Juan; Sanabria, Daniel
Audiovisual links in spatial attention have been reported in many previous studies. However, the effectiveness of auditory spatial cues in biasing the information encoding into visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM) is still relatively unknown. In this study, we addressed this issue by combining a cuing paradigm with a change detection task in VSWM. Moreover, we manipulated the perceptual organization of the to-be-remembered visual stimuli. We hypothesized that the auditory effect on VSWM would depend on the perceptual association between the auditory cue and the visual probe. Results showed, for the first time, a significant auditory attentional bias in VSWM. However, the effect was observed only when the to-be-remembered visual stimuli were organized in two distinctive visual objects. We propose that these results shed new light on audio-visual crossmodal links in spatial attention suggesting that, apart from the spatio-temporal contingency, the likelihood of perceptual association between the auditory cue and the visual target can have a large impact on crossmodal attentional biases. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Boutelle, Kerri N; Monreal, Teresa; Strong, David R; Amir, Nader
Binge eating is prevalent and is associated with significant psychiatric and medical comorbidities. To date, the most effective psychological treatments for individuals who binge eat are not effective for all patients and they do not result in significant weight loss. Dual process theories suggest that implicit factors, such as attention bias, may influence behavior, even when the behavior is in opposition to long-term goals. Attention bias modification programs have been tested in other areas of psychopathology, and could be utilized to improve outcomes for people who binge eat. Thus, the aim of this open trial was to conduct a preliminary evaluation of an attention bias modification program (ABM-Food) designed to train attention away from food cues. Adults who binge eat and were overweight or obese enrolled in an 8-week ABM-Food program, which consisted of one session in the lab each week and two training sessions at home. Nine participants completed the ABM-Food training program and the post-treatment assessment, and 8 completed the 3-month post-treatment assessment. Results showed that the ABM-Food program is a feasible and acceptable treatment for adults who binge eat. Initial effectiveness data showed decreases in weight, eating disorder symptoms, binge eating, loss of control and responsivity to food in the environment, as well as changes in attention bias. The majority of these effects remained at the 3-month follow-up time point. This study is limited by the single-group open label trial, and the small sample size. This open trial provides initial evidence for the feasibility, acceptability and effectiveness of ABM-Food for individuals who binge eat and are overweight or obese. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Buschschulte, Antje; Boehler, Carsten N; Strumpf, Hendrik; Stoppel, Christian; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Schoenfeld, Mircea A; Hopf, Jens-Max
Attention to task-relevant features leads to a biasing of sensory selection in extrastriate cortex. Features signaling reward seem to produce a similar bias, but how modulatory effects due to reward and attention relate to each other is largely unexplored. To address this issue, it is critical to separate top-down settings defining reward relevance from those defining attention. To this end, we used a visual search paradigm in which the target's definition (attention to color) was dissociated from reward relevance by delivering monetary reward on search frames where a certain task-irrelevant color was combined with the target-defining color to form the target object. We assessed the state of neural biasing for the attended and reward-relevant color by analyzing the neuromagnetic brain response to asynchronously presented irrelevant distractor probes drawn in the target-defining color, the reward-relevant color, and a completely irrelevant color as a reference. We observed that for the prospect of moderate rewards, the target-defining color but not the reward-relevant color produced a selective enhancement of the neuromagnetic response between 180 and 280 msec in ventral extrastriate visual cortex. Increasing reward prospect caused a delayed attenuation (220-250 msec) of the response to reward probes, which followed a prior (160-180 msec) response enhancement in dorsal ACC. Notably, shorter latency responses in dorsal ACC were associated with stronger attenuation in extrastriate visual cortex. Finally, an analysis of the brain response to the search frames revealed that the presence of the reward-relevant color in search distractors elicited an enhanced response that was abolished after increasing reward size. The present data together indicate that when top-down definitions of reward relevance and attention are separated, the behavioral significance of reward-associated features is still rapidly coded in higher-level cortex areas, thereby commanding effective top
Metrik, Jane; Aston, Elizabeth R.; Kahler, Christopher W.; Rohsenow, Damaris J.; McGeary, John E.; Knopik, Valerie S.; MacKillop, James
Background Incentive salience is a multidimensional construct that includes craving, drug value relative to other reinforcers, and implicit motivation such as attentional bias to drug cues. Laboratory cue reactivity (CR) paradigms have been used to evaluate marijuana incentive salience with measures of craving, but not with behavioral economic measures of marijuana demand or implicit attentional processing tasks. Methods This within-subjects study used a new CR paradigm to examine multiple dimensions of marijuana’s incentive salience and to compare CR-induced increases in craving and demand. Frequent marijuana users (N=93, 34% female) underwent exposure to neutral cues then to lit marijuana cigarettes. Craving, marijuana demand via a marijuana purchase task, and heart rate were assessed after each cue set. A modified Stroop task with cannabis and control words was completed after the marijuana cues as a measure of attentional bias. Results Relative to neutral cues, marijuana cues significantly increased subjective craving and demand indices of intensity (i.e., drug consumed at $0) and Omax (i.e., peak drug expenditure). Elasticity significantly decreased following marijuana cues, reflecting sustained purchase despite price increases. Craving was correlated with demand indices (r’s: 0.23–0.30). Marijuana users displayed significant attentional bias for cannabis-related words after marijuana cues. Cue-elicited increases in intensity were associated with greater attentional bias for marijuana words. Conclusions Greater incentive salience indexed by subjective, behavioral economic, and implicit measures was observed after marijuana versus neutral cues, supporting multidimensional assessment. The study highlights the utility of a behavioral economic approach in detecting cue-elicited changes in marijuana incentive salience. PMID:27515723
Metrik, Jane; Aston, Elizabeth R; Kahler, Christopher W; Rohsenow, Damaris J; McGeary, John E; Knopik, Valerie S; MacKillop, James
Incentive salience is a multidimensional construct that includes craving, drug value relative to other reinforcers, and implicit motivation such as attentional bias to drug cues. Laboratory cue reactivity (CR) paradigms have been used to evaluate marijuana incentive salience with measures of craving, but not with behavioral economic measures of marijuana demand or implicit attentional processing tasks. This within-subjects study used a new CR paradigm to examine multiple dimensions of marijuana's incentive salience and to compare CR-induced increases in craving and demand. Frequent marijuana users (N=93, 34% female) underwent exposure to neutral cues then to lit marijuana cigarettes. Craving, marijuana demand via a marijuana purchase task, and heart rate were assessed after each cue set. A modified Stroop task with cannabis and control words was completed after the marijuana cues as a measure of attentional bias. Relative to neutral cues, marijuana cues significantly increased subjective craving and demand indices of intensity (i.e., drug consumed at $0) and Omax (i.e., peak drug expenditure). Elasticity significantly decreased following marijuana cues, reflecting sustained purchase despite price increases. Craving was correlated with demand indices (r's: 0.23-0.30). Marijuana users displayed significant attentional bias for cannabis-related words after marijuana cues. Cue-elicited increases in intensity were associated with greater attentional bias for marijuana words. Greater incentive salience indexed by subjective, behavioral economic, and implicit measures was observed after marijuana versus neutral cues, supporting multidimensional assessment. The study highlights the utility of a behavioral economic approach in detecting cue-elicited changes in marijuana incentive salience. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
Full Text Available Objective: Children with attention-deficit / hyperactivity disorder (ADHD react explosively and inappropriately to emotional stimuli. It could be hypothesized that these children have some impairment in attending to emotional cues. Based on this hypothesis, we conducted this study to evaluate visual directions of children with ADHD towards paired emotional scenes.Method: thirty boys between the ages of 6 and 11 years diagnosed with ADHD were compared with 30 age-matched normal boys. All participants were presented paired emotional and neutral scenes in the four following categories: pleasant-neutral; pleasant-unpleasant; unpleasant-neutral; and neutral – neutral. Meanwhile, their visual orientations towards these pictures were evaluated using the eye tracking system. The number and duration of first fixation and duration of first gaze were compared between the two groups using the MANOVA analysis. The performance of each group in different categories was also analyzed using the Friedman test.Results: With regards to duration of first gaze, which is the time taken to fixate on a picture before moving to another picture, ADHD children spent less time on pleasant pictures compared to normal group ,while they were looking at pleasant – neutral and unpleasant – pleasant pairs. The duration of first gaze on unpleasant pictures was higher while children with ADHD were looking at unpleasant – neutral pairs (P<0.01.Conclusion: based on the findings of this study it could be concluded that children with ADHD attend to unpleasant conditions more than normal children which leads to their emotional reactivity.
Field, Matt; Munafo, Marcus R.; Franken, Ingmar H. A.
Theoretical models of addiction suggest that attentional bias for substance-related cues should be associated with self-reported craving. The authors evaluated the strength of the association by performing a meta-analysis on 68 independent data sets from which correlation coefficients between subjective craving and attentional bias indices were…
Kłosowska, Joanna; Blaut, Agata; Paulewicz, Borysław
This paper focuses on a method of attention bias training, considering in particular its efficacy and usability in several mental disorders. The results of current meta-analyses and selected experiments indicate possible efficacy of training in case of some anxiety disorders (generalised anxiety disorder and social phobia), particularly in young individuals. Its efficacy in other previously tested disorders such as depression and addictions seems questionable. We analysed moderators of training efficacy considered in previous studies: subjects' age, type of training task, type and location of emotional stimuli, duration of training, awareness of test objective and place of testing (research laboratory or subjects' homes). It seems that greater efficacy of attention bias can be achieved by conducting longer trainings, located in a laboratory, rather than in-house, and using verbal rather than visual stimuli. It is not clear whether participants should be informed of the training objective or whether arranging stimuli vertically is more efficient than horizontally.
Fleurkens, Pascal; Rinck, Mike; van Minnen, Agnes
The present study investigated specificity of attentional biases for trauma-related stimuli using an Emotional Stroop Task. Participants were 14 women suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) who had experienced a sexual trauma and 24 healthy non-traumatized women. They were asked to name print colors of 4 different word types: threatening sexual violence words and non-threatening sexual words, threatening accident trauma words, and positive words. Compared to control participants, PTSD patients displayed increased interference by threatening trauma-related, but not by accident trauma and positive words. Interference by non-threatening sexual words occurred as well, but only in those patients who suffered from more severe PTSD arousal symptoms. These findings suggest graded generalization of the attentional bias across stimuli of varying emotional valence, but specificity regarding the trauma topic. Results are discussed in light of current cognitive models of PTSD, and clinical implications are suggested. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Lee, Jeong-Ha; Lee, Jang-Han
This study identified components of attentional bias (e.g. attentional vigilance, attentional avoidance and difficulty with disengagement) that are critical characteristics of survivors of dating violence (DV). Eye movements were recorded to obtain accurate and continuous information regarding attention. DV survivors with high post-traumatic stress symptoms (DV-High PTSS group; n = 20) and low post-traumatic stress symptoms (DV-Low PTSS group; n = 22) and participants who had never experienced DV (NDV group; n = 21) were shown screens displaying emotional (angry, fearful and happy) faces paired with neutral faces and negative (angry and fearful) faces paired with happy faces for 10 s. The results indicate that the DV-High PTSS group spent longer dwelling on angry faces over time compared with the DV-Low PTSS and NDV groups. This result implies that the DV-High PTSS group focused on specific trauma-related stimuli but does not provide evidence of an attentional bias towards threatening stimuli in general.
Tom Joseph Barry
Full Text Available Models of exposure therapy, one of the key components of cognitive behavioural therapy for anxiety disorders, suggest that attention may play an important role in the extinction of fear and anxiety. Evidence from cognitive research suggests that individual differences may play a causal role in the onset and maintenance of anxiety disorders and so it is also likely to influence treatment. We review the evidence concerning attention and treatment outcomes in anxiety disorders. The evidence reviewed here suggests that that attention biases assessed at pre-treatment might actually predict improved response to treatment, and in particular that prolonged engagement with threat as measured in tasks such as the dot probe is associated with greater reductions in anxious symptoms following treatment. We examine this research within a fear learning framework, considering the possible role of individual differences in attention in the extinction of fear during exposure. Theoretical, experimental and clinical implications are discussed, particularly with reference to the potential for attention bias modification programs in augmenting treatment, and also with reference to how existing research in this area might inform best practice for clinicians.
Albert, Kimberly; Gau, Violet; Taylor, Warren D; Newhouse, Paul A
Cognitive bias is a common characteristic of major depressive disorder (MDD) and is posited to remain during remission and contribute to recurrence risk. Attention bias may be related to enhanced amygdala activity or altered amygdala functional connectivity in depression. The current study examined attention bias, brain activity for emotional images, and functional connectivity in post-menopausal women with and without a history of major depression. Attention bias for emotionally valenced images was examined in 33 postmenopausal women with (n=12) and without (n=21) a history of major depression using an emotion dot probe task during fMRI. Group differences in amygdala activity and functional connectivity were assessed using fMRI and examined for correlations to attention performance. Women with a history of MDD showed greater attentional bias for negative images and greater activity in brain areas including the amygdala for both positive and negative images (pcorr amygdala activity for negative images was correlated with attention facilitation for emotional images. Women with a history of MDD had significantly greater functional connectivity between the amygdala and hippocampal complex. In all participants amygdala-hippocampal connectivity was positively correlated with attention facilitation for negative images. Small sample with unbalanced groups. These findings provide evidence for negative attentional bias in euthymic, remitted depressed individuals. Activity and functional connectivity in limbic and attention networks may provide a neurobiological basis for continued cognitive bias in remitted depression. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Reynolds, G; Field, AP; Askew, C
Research with children has shown that vicarious learning can result in changes to 2 of Lang's (1968) 3 anxiety response systems: subjective report and behavioral avoidance. The current study extended this research by exploring the effect of vicarious learning on physiological responses (Lang's final response system) and attentional bias. The study used Askew and Field's (2007) vicarious learning procedure and demonstrated fear-related increases in children's cognitive, behavioral, and physiol...
Full Text Available Cognition can influence emotion by biasing neural activity in the first cortical region in which the reward value and subjective pleasantness of stimuli is made explicit in the representation, the orbitofrontal cortex. The same effect occurs in a second cortical tier for emotion, the anterior cingulate cortex. Similar effects are found for selective attention, to for example the pleasantness vs the intensity of stimuli, which modulates representations of reward value and affect in the orbitofrontal and anterior cingulate cortices. The mechanisms for the effects of cognition and attention on emotion are top-down biased competition and top-down biased activation. Affective and mood states can in turn influence memory and perception, by backprojected biasing influences. Emotion-related decision systems operate to choose between gene-specified rewards such as taste, touch, and beauty. Reasoning processes capable of planning ahead with multiple steps held in working memory in the explicit system can allow the gene-specified rewards not to be selected, or to be deferred. The stochastic, noisy, dynamics of decision-making systems in the brain may influence whether decisions are made by the selfish-gene-specified reward emotion system, or by the cognitive reasoning system that explicitly calculates reward values that are in the interests of the individual, the phenotype.
O'Leary-Barrett, Maeve; Pihl, Robert O; Artiges, Eric; Banaschewski, Tobias; Bokde, Arun L W; Büchel, Christian; Flor, Herta; Frouin, Vincent; Garavan, Hugh; Heinz, Andreas; Ittermann, Bernd; Mann, Karl; Paillère-Martinot, Marie-Laure; Nees, Frauke; Paus, Tomas; Pausova, Zdenka; Poustka, Luise; Rietschel, Marcella; Robbins, Trevor W; Smolka, Michael N; Ströhle, Andreas; Schumann, Gunter; Conrod, Patricia J
To investigate the role of personality factors and attentional biases towards emotional faces, in establishing concurrent and prospective risk for mental disorder diagnosis in adolescence. Data were obtained as part of the IMAGEN study, conducted across 8 European sites, with a community sample of 2257 adolescents. At 14 years, participants completed an emotional variant of the dot-probe task, as well two personality measures, namely the Substance Use Risk Profile Scale and the revised NEO Personality Inventory. At 14 and 16 years, participants and their parents were interviewed to determine symptoms of mental disorders. Personality traits were general and specific risk indicators for mental disorders at 14 years. Increased specificity was obtained when investigating the likelihood of mental disorders over a 2-year period, with the Substance Use Risk Profile Scale showing incremental validity over the NEO Personality Inventory. Attentional biases to emotional faces did not characterise or predict mental disorders examined in the current sample. Personality traits can indicate concurrent and prospective risk for mental disorders in a community youth sample, and identify at-risk youth beyond the impact of baseline symptoms. This study does not support the hypothesis that attentional biases mediate the relationship between personality and psychopathology in a community sample. Task and sample characteristics that contribute to differing results among studies are discussed.
Sani, Susan Raouf Hadadi; Tabibi, Zahra; Fadardi, Javad Salehi; Stavrinos, Despina
The present study explored whether aggression, emotional regulation, cognitive inhibition, and attentional bias towards emotional stimuli were related to risky driving behavior (driving errors, and driving violations). A total of 117 applicants for taxi driver positions (89% male, M age=36.59years, SD=9.39, age range 24-62years) participated in the study. Measures included the Ahwaz Aggression Inventory, the Difficulties in emotion regulation Questionnaire, the emotional Stroop task, the Go/No-go task, and the Driving Behavior Questionnaire. Correlation and regression analyses showed that aggression and emotional regulation predicted risky driving behavior. Difficulties in emotion regulation, the obstinacy and revengeful component of aggression, attentional bias toward emotional stimuli, and cognitive inhibition predicted driving errors. Aggression was the only significant predictive factor for driving violations. In conclusion, aggression and difficulties in regulating emotions may exacerbate risky driving behaviors. Deficits in cognitive inhibition and attentional bias toward negative emotional stimuli can increase driving errors. Predisposition to aggression has strong effect on making one vulnerable to violation of traffic rules and crashes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Chen, Zhuohao; Du, Jinchen; Xiang, Min; Zhang, Yan; Zhang, Shuyue
Social exclusion has many effects on individuals, including the increased need to belong and elevated sensitivity to social information. Using a self-reporting method, and an eye-tracking technique, this study explored people's need to belong and attentional bias towards the socio-emotional information (pictures of positive and negative facial expressions compared to those of emotionally-neutral expressions) after experiencing a brief episode of social exclusion. We found that: (1) socially-excluded individuals reported higher negative emotions, lower positive emotions, and stronger need to belong than those who were not socially excluded; (2) compared to a control condition, social exclusion caused a longer response time to probe dots after viewing positive or negative face images; (3) social exclusion resulted in a higher frequency ratio of first attentional fixation on both positive and negative emotional facial pictures (but not on the neutral pictures) than the control condition; (4) in the social exclusion condition, participants showed shorter first fixation latency and longer first fixation duration to positive pictures than neutral ones but this effect was not observed for negative pictures; (5) participants who experienced social exclusion also showed longer gazing duration on the positive pictures than those who did not; although group differences also existed for the negative pictures, the gaze duration bias from both groups showed no difference from chance. This study demonstrated the emotional response to social exclusion as well as characterising multiple eye-movement indicators of attentional bias after experiencing social exclusion.
O’Leary-Barrett, Maeve; Pihl, Robert O.; Artiges, Eric; Banaschewski, Tobias; Bokde, Arun L. W.; Büchel, Christian; Flor, Herta; Frouin, Vincent; Garavan, Hugh; Heinz, Andreas; Ittermann, Bernd; Mann, Karl; Paillère-Martinot, Marie-Laure; Nees, Frauke; Paus, Tomas; Pausova, Zdenka; Poustka, Luise; Rietschel, Marcella; Robbins, Trevor W.; Smolka, Michael N.; Ströhle, Andreas; Schumann, Gunter; Conrod, Patricia J.
Objective To investigate the role of personality factors and attentional biases towards emotional faces, in establishing concurrent and prospective risk for mental disorder diagnosis in adolescence. Method Data were obtained as part of the IMAGEN study, conducted across 8 European sites, with a community sample of 2257 adolescents. At 14 years, participants completed an emotional variant of the dot-probe task, as well two personality measures, namely the Substance Use Risk Profile Scale and the revised NEO Personality Inventory. At 14 and 16 years, participants and their parents were interviewed to determine symptoms of mental disorders. Results Personality traits were general and specific risk indicators for mental disorders at 14 years. Increased specificity was obtained when investigating the likelihood of mental disorders over a 2-year period, with the Substance Use Risk Profile Scale showing incremental validity over the NEO Personality Inventory. Attentional biases to emotional faces did not characterise or predict mental disorders examined in the current sample. Discussion Personality traits can indicate concurrent and prospective risk for mental disorders in a community youth sample, and identify at-risk youth beyond the impact of baseline symptoms. This study does not support the hypothesis that attentional biases mediate the relationship between personality and psychopathology in a community sample. Task and sample characteristics that contribute to differing results among studies are discussed. PMID:26046352
Carpenter, Gail A; Gaddam, Sai Chaitanya
Memories in Adaptive Resonance Theory (ART) networks are based on matched patterns that focus attention on those portions of bottom-up inputs that match active top-down expectations. While this learning strategy has proved successful for both brain models and applications, computational examples show that attention to early critical features may later distort memory representations during online fast learning. For supervised learning, biased ARTMAP (bARTMAP) solves the problem of over-emphasis on early critical features by directing attention away from previously attended features after the system makes a predictive error. Small-scale, hand-computed analog and binary examples illustrate key model dynamics. Two-dimensional simulation examples demonstrate the evolution of bARTMAP memories as they are learned online. Benchmark simulations show that featural biasing also improves performance on large-scale examples. One example, which predicts movie genres and is based, in part, on the Netflix Prize database, was developed for this project. Both first principles and consistent performance improvements on all simulation studies suggest that featural biasing should be incorporated by default in all ARTMAP systems. Benchmark datasets and bARTMAP code are available from the CNS Technology Lab Website: http://techlab.bu.edu/bART/. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Tan, Jieqing; Ma, Zheng; Gao, Xiaochao; Wu, Yanhong; Fang, Fang
By combining binocular suppression technique and a probe detection paradigm, we investigated attentional bias to invisible stimuli and its gender difference in both high trait anxiety (HTA) and low trait anxiety (LTA) individuals. As an attentional cue, happy or fearful face pictures were presented to HTAs and LTAs for 800 ms either consciously or unconsciously (through binocular suppression). Participants were asked to judge the orientation of a gabor patch following the face pictures. Their performance was used to measure attentional effect induced by the cue. We found gender differences of attentional effect only in the unconscious condition with HTAs. Female HTAs exhibited difficulty in disengaging attention from the location where fearful faces were presented, while male HTAs showed attentional avoidance of it. Our results suggested that the failure to find attentional avoidance of threatening stimuli in many previous studies might be attributed to consciously presented stimuli and data analysis regardless of participants' gender. These findings also contributed to our understanding of gender difference in anxiety disorder.
Full Text Available By combining binocular suppression technique and a probe detection paradigm, we investigated attentional bias to invisible stimuli and its gender difference in both high trait anxiety (HTA and low trait anxiety (LTA individuals. As an attentional cue, happy or fearful face pictures were presented to HTAs and LTAs for 800 ms either consciously or unconsciously (through binocular suppression. Participants were asked to judge the orientation of a gabor patch following the face pictures. Their performance was used to measure attentional effect induced by the cue. We found gender differences of attentional effect only in the unconscious condition with HTAs. Female HTAs exhibited difficulty in disengaging attention from the location where fearful faces were presented, while male HTAs showed attentional avoidance of it. Our results suggested that the failure to find attentional avoidance of threatening stimuli in many previous studies might be attributed to consciously presented stimuli and data analysis regardless of participants' gender. These findings also contributed to our understanding of gender difference in anxiety disorder.
Zhang, Wei; Tang, Xiaoxiang; He, Xianyou; Lai, Shuxian
Substantial evidence suggests that beauty is associated with the survival and reproduction of organisms. Landscape architecture is composed of a series of natural elements that have significant evolutionary implications. The present study used one pilot material ratings and three experiments to examine the mechanisms of aesthetic appraisals of landscape architecture. The results confirmed that landscape architecture elicited a sense of beauty and captured visual attention more easily than other types of architecture during explicit aesthetic rating task (Experiment 1) and implicit aesthetic perception task (dot-probe paradigm, Experiment 2). Furthermore, the spatial cueing paradigm revealed that response latencies were significantly faster for landscape architecture than non-landscape architecture on valid trials, but there was no significant difference in this contrast on invalid trials at 150-ms stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA, Experiment 3a). At 500-ms SOA (Experiment 3b), participants responded significantly faster for landscape architecture on valid trials, but reacted significantly slower for landscape architecture on invalid trials. The findings indicated that the beauty of landscape architecture can be perceived implicitly, and only faster orienting of attention, but not delayed disengagement of attention was generated at early stages of the processing of landscape architecture. However, the attentional bias at later stages of attentional processes may be resulted from both faster orienting of attention and delayed disengagement of attention from landscape architecture photographs. PMID:29467696
Zhang, Wei; Tang, Xiaoxiang; He, Xianyou; Lai, Shuxian
Substantial evidence suggests that beauty is associated with the survival and reproduction of organisms. Landscape architecture is composed of a series of natural elements that have significant evolutionary implications. The present study used one pilot material ratings and three experiments to examine the mechanisms of aesthetic appraisals of landscape architecture. The results confirmed that landscape architecture elicited a sense of beauty and captured visual attention more easily than other types of architecture during explicit aesthetic rating task (Experiment 1) and implicit aesthetic perception task (dot-probe paradigm, Experiment 2). Furthermore, the spatial cueing paradigm revealed that response latencies were significantly faster for landscape architecture than non-landscape architecture on valid trials, but there was no significant difference in this contrast on invalid trials at 150-ms stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA, Experiment 3a). At 500-ms SOA (Experiment 3b), participants responded significantly faster for landscape architecture on valid trials, but reacted significantly slower for landscape architecture on invalid trials. The findings indicated that the beauty of landscape architecture can be perceived implicitly, and only faster orienting of attention, but not delayed disengagement of attention was generated at early stages of the processing of landscape architecture. However, the attentional bias at later stages of attentional processes may be resulted from both faster orienting of attention and delayed disengagement of attention from landscape architecture photographs.
Field, Matt; Munafò, Marcus R.; Franken, Ingmar H. A.
Theoretical models of addiction suggest that attentional bias for substance-related cues should be associated with self-reported craving. The authors evaluated the strength of the association by performing a meta-analysis on 68 independent data sets from which correlation coefficients between subjective craving and attentional bias indices were derived. Additional stratified analyses were conducted to identify any variables that might moderate the association between craving and attentional b...
Lobben, Marit; D'Ascenzo, Stefania
Embodied cognitive theories predict that linguistic conceptual representations are grounded and continually represented in real world, sensorimotor experiences. However, there is an on-going debate on whether this also holds for abstract concepts. Grammar is the archetype of abstract knowledge, and therefore constitutes a test case against embodied theories of language representation. Former studies have largely focussed on lexical-level embodied representations. In the present study we take the grounding-by-modality idea a step further by using reaction time (RT) data from the linguistic processing of nominal classifiers in Chinese. We take advantage of an independent body of research, which shows that attention in hand space is biased. Specifically, objects near the hand consistently yield shorter RTs as a function of readiness for action on graspable objects within reaching space, and the same biased attention inhibits attentional disengagement. We predicted that this attention bias would equally apply to the graspable object classifier but not to the big object classifier. Chinese speakers (N = 22) judged grammatical congruency of classifier-noun combinations in two conditions: graspable object classifier and big object classifier. We found that RTs for the graspable object classifier were significantly faster in congruent combinations, and significantly slower in incongruent combinations, than the big object classifier. There was no main effect on grammatical violations, but rather an interaction effect of classifier type. Thus, we demonstrate here grammatical category-specific effects pertaining to the semantic content and by extension the visual and tactile modality of acquisition underlying the acquisition of these categories. We conclude that abstract grammatical categories are subjected to the same mechanisms as general cognitive and neurophysiological processes and may therefore be grounded.
Scrimin, Sara; Moscardino, Ughetta; Altoè, Gianmarco; Mason, Lucia
Previous research indicates that children can display different attention allocation patterns in response to threat. However, data are lacking on the possible existence of an attentional bias in response to academic stressors, and whether variables related to school well-being (SWB) and students' individual characteristics may influence such attentional patterns. We aimed to investigate whether students show an attentional bias for school-related stressors. We sought to identify groups of students who differ in their perceived SWB, and to test whether they display different attention allocation patterns. We also examined whether negative emotionality moderates the expected association between students' SWB and attentional bias. Eighth-grade students completed a dot-probe detection task to register attentional patterns towards or away from an academic threatening word. SWB in terms of school anxiety, school-based stress, and perceived class climate was also assessed via self-reports. In addition, participants reported on their negative emotionality. The results indicated that students showed an attentional bias towards words describing academic stressors. Cluster analyses allowed the identification of two groups of students with high versus low SWB. Regression analysis indicated that those with low SWB were more likely to show a greater bias and that negative emotionality moderated this relationship. Specifically, within the context of low SWB, students with high negative emotionality were more prone to biased attention towards school-related stressors compared with students with low negative emotionality. The present data indicate a perceptual bias for the detection of academic threats. Within the school practice, teachers should promote SWB and devote specific attention to students with high negative emotionality to reduce a biased allocation of attention in response to school-related stressors. © 2016 The British Psychological Society.
MacLeod, Colin; Grafton, Ben
In this review of research concerning anxiety-linked attentional bias, we seek to illustrate a general principle that we contend applies across the breadth of experimental psychopathology. Specifically, we highlight how maintenance of a clear distinction between process and procedure serves to enhance the advancement of knowledge and understanding, while failure to maintain this distinction can foster confusion and misconception. We show how such clear differentiation has permitted the continuous refinement of assessment procedures, in ways that have led to growing confidence in the existence of the putative attentional bias process of interest, and also increasing understanding of its nature. In contrast, we show how a failure to consistently differentiate between process and procedure has contributed to confusion concerning whether or not attentional bias modification reliably alters anxiety vulnerability and dysfunction. As we demonstrate, such confusion can be avoided by distinguishing the process of attentional bias modification from the procedures that have been employed with the intention of evoking this target process. Such an approach reveals that procedures adopted with the intention of eliciting the attentional bias modification process do not always do so, but that successful evocation of the attentional bias modification process quite reliably alters anxiety symptomatology. We consider some of the specific implications for future research concerning attentional bias modification, while also pointing to the broader implications for experimental psychopathology research in general. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Hendrikse, J J; Cachia, R L; Kothe, E J; McPhie, S; Skouteris, H; Hayden, M J
Obesity rates have increased dramatically in recent decades, and it has proven difficult to treat. An attentional bias towards food cues may be implicated in the aetiology of obesity and influence cravings and food consumption. This review systematically investigated whether attentional biases to food cues exist in overweight/obese compared with healthy weight individuals. Electronic database were searched for relevant papers from inception to October 2014. Only studies reporting food-related attentional bias between either overweight (body mass index [BMI] 25.0-29.9 kg m(-2)) or obese (BMI ≥ 30) participants and healthy weight participants (BMI 18.5-24.9) were included. The findings of 19 studies were reported in this review. Results of the literature are suggestive of differences in attentional bias, with all but four studies supporting the notion of enhanced reactivity to food stimuli in overweight individuals and individuals with obesity. This support for attentional bias was observed primarily in studies that employed psychophysiological techniques (i.e. electroencephalogram, eye-tracking and functional magnetic resonance imaging). Despite the heterogeneous methodology within the featured studies, all measures of attentional bias demonstrated altered cue-reactivity in individuals with obesity. Considering the theorized implications of attentional biases on obesity pathology, researchers are encouraged to replicate flagship studies to strengthen these inferences. © 2015 World Obesity.
Kuckertz, Jennie M.; Amir, Nader; Boffa, Joseph W.; Warren, Ciara K.; Rindt, Susan E. M.; Norman, Sonya; Ram, Vasudha; Ziajko, Lauretta; Webb-Murphy, Jennifer; McLay, Robert
Attention bias modification (ABM) may be an effective treatment for anxiety disorders (Beard, Sawyer, & Hofmann, 2012). As individuals with PTSD possess an attentional bias towards threat-relevant information ABM may prove effective in reducing PTSD symptoms. We examined the efficacy of ABM as an adjunct treatment for PTSD in a real-world setting. We administered ABM in conjunction with prolonged exposure or cognitive-processing therapy and medication in a community inpatient treatment facility for military personnel diagnosed with PTSD. Participants were randomized to either ABM or an attention control condition (ACC). While all participants experienced reductions in PTSD symptoms, participants in the ABM group experienced significantly fewer PTSD and depressive symptoms at post-treatment when compared to the ACC group. Moreover, change in plasticity of attentional bias mediated this change in symptoms and initial attentional bias moderated the effects of the treatment. These results suggest that ABM may be an effective adjunct treatment for PTSD. PMID:25277496
Yu, Hongyu; Li, Songwei; Qian, Mingyi; Yang, Peng; Wang, Xiaoling; Lin, Muyu; Yao, Nisha
Although accumulating research demonstrates the association between attentional bias and social anxiety, the bias for positive stimuli has so far not been adequately studied. The aim is to investigate the time-course of attentional bias for positive social words in participants with high and low social anxiety. In a modified dot-probe task, word-pairs of neutral and positive social words were randomly presented for 100, 500, and 1250 milliseconds in a nonclinical sample of students to test their attentional bias. Non-significant interaction of Group × Exposure Duration was found. However, there was a significant main effect of group, with significantly different response latencies between the high social anxiety (HSA) and low social anxiety (LSA) groups in the 100 ms condition, without for 500 or 1250 ms. With respect to attentional bias, the LSA group showed enhanced preferential attention for positive social words to which the HSA group showed avoidance in the 100 ms condition. In the 500 ms condition, preferential attention to positive social words was at trend in the LSA group, relative to the HSA group. Neither group showed attentional bias in the 1250 ms condition. These findings extend recent research about the attention training program and add to the empirical literature suggesting that the initial avoidance of positive stimuli may contribute to maintaining social anxiety.
Finegood, Eric D; Raver, C Cybele; DeJoseph, Meriah L; Blair, Clancy
Research has long acknowledged the centrality of parents' subjective experiences in the caregiving role for the organization of parenting behaviors and family functioning. Recent scientific advances in cognitive process models and in the neurobiology of parenting indicate that parenting is shaped in part by conscious and nonconscious cognitive processes. This study extends a growing literature on neurocognitive models of parenting by exploring the extent to which attention processes in parents operate independently and interactively with intrapsychic processes, proximal interpersonal stressors, and the larger socioeconomic context to predict perceptions of parenting hassles in primarily low-income Latino/a parents of young children living in urban areas of concentrated disadvantage (N = 185). Analyses indicated that parent reports of anxiety, intimate partner violence, and perceptions of financial hardship each uniquely predicted parents' perceptions of daily parenting hassles. Parents' attentional bias toward threat interacted with anxiety symptoms such that parents experiencing high levels of attention bias toward threat in combination with high levels of anxiety reported significantly more daily parenting hassles. Findings from the current study provide insight into the ways in which neurocognitive processes affect one aspect of parenting, with implications for programs and policies designed to support parenting for families in poverty. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).
Domes, Gregor; Mense, Julia; Vohs, Knut; Habermeyer, Elmar
Offenders with antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) may be characterized by a lack in emotional functioning that manifests in irritability and a lack of remorse. The proposed link between ASPD and negative emotionality led to the question of emotional processing anomalies in ASPD. Furthermore, the effect of childhood maltreatment/abuse on emotional processing was tested in the present study. Violent and sexual offenders with ASPD (n=35), without ASPD (n=34), and healthy non-criminal controls (n=24) were compared in an Emotional Stroop Task (EST) using neutral, negative, and violence-related words. Secondary analyses focused on the effect of psychopathic traits and childhood maltreatment. Offenders with ASPD showed a stronger attentional bias to violence-related and negative words as compared to controls. Comparable results were obtained when grouping offenders to high, medium, and low psychopathic subgroups. Offenders with childhood maltreatment specifically showed stronger violence-related attentional bias than non-maltreated offenders. The data suggest that enhanced attention to violence-related stimuli in adult criminal offenders is associated with adverse developmental experiences and delinquency but to a lesser extent with antisocial or psychopathic traits. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Cho, Ara; Kwak, Soo-Min; Lee, Jang-Han
The effect of media images has been regarded as a significant variable in the construction or in the activation of body images. Individuals who have a negative body image use avoidance coping strategies to minimize damage to their body image. We identified attentional biases and negative emotional responses following exposure to body stimuli. Female university students were divided into two groups based on their use of avoidance coping strategies (high-level group: high avoidance [HA]; low-group: low avoidance [LA]), and were assigned to two different conditions (exposure to thin body pictures, ET, and exposure to oversized body pictures, EO). Results showed that the HA group paid more attention to slim bodies and reported more negative emotions than the LA group, and that the EO had more negative effects than the ET. We suggest that HAs may attend more to slim bodies as a way of avoiding overweight bodies, influenced by social pressure, and in the search for a compensation of a positive emotional balance. However, attentional bias toward slim bodies can cause an upward comparison process, leading to increased body dissatisfaction, which is the main factor in the development of eating disorders (EDs). Therefore, altering avoidance coping strategies should be considered for people at risk of EDs.
McNulty, James K; Meltzer, Andrea L; Makhanova, Anastasia; Maner, Jon K
Two longitudinal studies of 233 newlywed couples suggest that automatic attentional and evaluative biases regarding attractive relationship alternatives can help people maintain relationships by avoiding infidelity. Both studies assessed participants' tendency to automatically disengage attention from photos of attractive, opposite sex individuals; one study assessed participants' tendency to devalue those individuals by comparing their attractiveness evaluations to evaluations made by single people, and both studies assessed infidelity and relationship status multiple times for approximately three years. Several sources of devaluation emerged, but only participants' history of short-term sex predicted both biases; having more short-term sexual partners was associated with being slower to disengage attention from attractive alternatives, and, among men, evaluating such individuals more positively. In turn, both processes exerted indirect effects on relationship dissolution by predicting infidelity; being 100 ms faster to disengage attention from attractive alternatives or rating them 2 scale points lower in attractiveness was associated with a decrease in the odds of infidelity of approximately 50%; the effect of devaluation on infidelity was stronger among participants who evidenced steeper declines in marital satisfaction. These associations emerged because unfaithful individuals took longer to disengage attention from attractive alternatives compared with other social targets and did not differ from singles in their evaluations of those alternatives. Among several other predictors of infidelity, partner attractiveness was associated with a decrease in the odds of infidelity among men but not women. These findings suggest a role for basic psychological processes in predicting infidelity, highlight the critical role of automatic processes in relationship functioning, and suggest novel ways to promote relationship success. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA
Pavlov, S V; Korenyok, V V; Reva, N V; Tumyalis, A V; Loktev, K V; Aftanas, L I
Attentional biases towards affective stimuli reflect an individual balance of appetitive and aversive motivational systems. Vigilance in relation to threatening information reflects emotional imbalance, associated with affective and somatic problems. It is known that meditation practice significantly improves control of attention, which is considered to be a tool for adaptive emotional regulation. In this regard, the main aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of meditation on attentional bias towards neutral and emotional facial expressions. Eyes were tracked while 21 healthy controls and 23 experienced meditators (all males) viewed displays consisting of four facial expressions (neutral, angry, fearful and happy) for 10 s. Measures of biases in initial orienting and maintenance of attention were assessed. No effects were found for initial orienting biases. Meditators spent significantly less time viewing angry and fearful faces than control subjects. Furthermore, meditators selectively attended to happy faces whereas control subjects showed attentional biases towards both angry and happy faces. In sum we can conclude that long-term meditation practice adaptively affects attentional biases towards motivationally significant stimuli and that these biases reflect positive mood and predominance of appetitive motivation.
Jin, Xinhong; Jin, Yahong; Zhou, Shi; Yang, Shun-Nan; Chang, Shuzhi; Li, Hui
Although research on muscle dysmorphia (MD), a body dysmorphic disorder subtype, has recently increased, the causes and mechanisms underlying this disorder remain unclear. Results from studies examining disorders associated with body image suggest the involvement of self-schema in biasing attention toward specific body information. The present study examined whether individuals at higher risk of MD also display attentional biases toward specific types of body images. The validated Chinese version of the Muscle Appearance Satisfaction Scale was used to distinguish men at higher and lower risk of MD. Sixty-five adult Chinese men at higher (HRMD, n = 33) and lower risk of MD (LRMD, n = 32) performed a visual probe task. Initially, an image of a bodybuilder with either larger or smaller musculature was presented on one side of a central point, with a neutral image of a car exterior presented on the other side along the horizontal plane for 2,000 ms. The paired images were removed, and a visual target (a dot) was displayed in the location of one of the previously shown images. Participants were asked to indicate the location of the target, and their eye movements were recorded during the entire visual presentation. Participant reaction time and three eye movement measurements (gaze direction, first saccade latency, and first fixation duration) were recorded for use in determining attentional bias. The HRMD group revealed biases in orienting and maintaining their attention on images of bodybuilders with larger musculatures. Participants in this group consequently had a shorter reaction time in identifying the target that appeared at the location in which an image of a bodybuilder with a larger musculature had been previously displayed. They also directed their initial gaze more frequently, had shorter saccade latency, and had longer first fixation duration on images of bodybuilders with larger musculatures (all p self-schema of specific body information. These
Klaver, Peter; Talsma, Durk
We recorded ERPs to investigate whether the visual memory load can bias visual selective attention. Participants memorized one or four letters and then responded to memory-matching letters presented in a relevant color while ignoring distractor letters or letters in an irrelevant color. Stimuli in the relevant color elicited larger frontal selection positivities (FSP) and occipital selection negativities (OSN) compared to irrelevant color stimuli. Only distractors elicited a larger FSP in the high than in the low memory load task. Memory load prolonged the OSN for all letters. Response mapping complexity was also modulated but did not affect the FSP and OSN. Together, the FSP data suggest that high memory load increased distractability. The OSN data suggest that memory load sustained attention to letters in a relevant color until working memory processing was completed, independently of whether the letters were in working memory or not. Copyright © 2013 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
Katharine N Thakkar
Full Text Available Separate lines of research have noted recruitment of parietal cortex during tasks involving visuo-spatial processes and empathy. To explore the relationship between these two functions, a self-other perspective transformation task and a task of spatial attention (line bisection were administered to 40 healthy participants (19 women. Performance on these tasks was examined in relation to self-reported empathy. Rightward biases in line bisection correlated positively with trait-level self-reported empathic concern, suggesting a left hemisphere mediation of this prosocial personality trait. Unexpectedly, speed of perspective taking in the self-other transformation task correlated negatively with empathic concern, but only in women, which we interpret in light of gender differences in empathy and strategies for egocentric mental transformations. Together, the findings partially support the commonalities in visuo-spatial attention, perspective-taking and empathy. More broadly, they shed additional light on the relationship between basic cognitive functions and complex social constructs.
Thakkar, Katharine N; Brugger, Peter; Park, Sohee
Separate lines of research have noted recruitment of parietal cortex during tasks involving visuo-spatial processes and empathy. To explore the relationship between these two functions, a self-other perspective transformation task and a task of spatial attention (line bisection) were administered to 40 healthy participants (19 women). Performance on these tasks was examined in relation to self-reported empathy. Rightward biases in line bisection correlated positively with trait-level self-reported empathic concern, suggesting a left hemisphere mediation of this prosocial personality trait. Unexpectedly, speed of perspective taking in the self-other transformation task correlated negatively with empathic concern, but only in women, which we interpret in light of gender differences in empathy and strategies for egocentric mental transformations. Together, the findings partially support the commonalities in visuo-spatial attention, perspective-taking and empathy. More broadly, they shed additional light on the relationship between basic cognitive functions and complex social constructs.
McIntosh, Roger C; Tartar, Jaime L; Widmayer, Susan; Rosselli, Monica
Deficits in emotional processing may be attributed to HIV disease or comorbid psychiatric disorders. Electrocortical markers of emotional attention, i.e., amplitude of the P2 and late positive potential (LPP), were compared between 26 HIV+ women and 25 healthy controls during an emotional regulation paradigm. HIV+ women showed early attention bias to negative stimuli indexed by greater P2 amplitude. In contrast, compared with the passive viewing of unpleasant images, HIV+ women demonstrated attenuation of the early and late LPP during positive reappraisal. This interaction remained significant after adjusting for individual differences in apathy, anxiety, and depression. Post hoc analyses implicated time since HIV diagnosis with LPP attenuation during positive reappraisal. Advancing HIV disease may disrupt neural generators associated with the cognitive reappraisal of emotions independent of psychiatric function.
Rose, Abigail K; Brown, Kyle; Field, Matt; Hogarth, Lee
Aims To investigate the mediating role of attentional bias for alcohol cues on alcohol-seeking following devaluation of alcohol. Design Between subject. Setting Eye-tracking laboratory at the University of Liverpool. Participants Student social drinkers (n = 64). Measurements An operant choice task in which participants chose between simultaneously presented alcohol and non-alcohol drink rewards, while attentional bias for alcohol and non-alcohol drink cues was inferred from eye movements. Pa...
Quek, Genevieve L; Finkbeiner, Matthew
Recent evidence suggests that face processing may be more robust in the upper visual field (UVF) than in the lower visual field (LVF). We asked whether this UVF advantage is due to an upward bias in participants' visuospatial attention. Participants classified the sex of a UVF or LVF target face that was preceded by a congruent or incongruent masked prime face. We manipulated spatial attention within subjects by varying the predictability of target location across sessions (UVF:LVF ratio of 50:50 on Day 1 and 20:80 on Day 2). When target location was unpredictable, priming emerged earlier in the UVF (~165 ms) than the LVF (~195 ms). This UVF advantage was reversed when targets were more likely to be presented in the LVF. Here priming arose earlier for LVF targets (~53 ms) than UVF targets (~165 ms). Critically, however, UVF primes were processed to the same degree regardless of whether spatial attention was diffuse (Day 1) or deployed elsewhere (Day 2). We conclude that, while voluntarily directed spatial attention is sufficient to modulate the processing of masked faces in the LVF, it is not sufficient to explain the UVF advantage for masked face processing.
Ma, Yidan; Zhao, Guang; Tu, Shen; Zheng, Yong
A long-term romantic relationship can offer many benefits to committed individuals. Thus, humans possess relationship maintenance mechanisms to protect against threats from those who serve as attractive alternatives or intrasexual rivals. Many studies have indicated that romantic love can act as a commitment device to activate these mechanisms. To examine the attentional bias associated with relationship maintenance among 108 college students (49 single and 59 committed females) in China, we used a semantic priming procedure to activate mental representations associated with romantic love and then asked participants to complete a dot-probe task for the purpose of making a distinction between the engage and disengage components of attention. No significant engaging effects toward attractive faces were observed among committed females, but the following significant disengaging effects were found: when primed with romantic love, single females showed increased attention toward and difficulty in disengaging from attractive male faces, whereas females already in a committed relationship did not alter their attention, remaining as inattentive to attractive alternatives as they were in the baseline condition. In addition, committed females responded to love priming by exhibiting difficulty in disengaging from attractive rivals. The present findings provide evidence in the Chinese cultural context for the existence of early-stage attentional processes in the domain of relationship maintenance that committed Chinese females protected an ongoing relationship by not only being inattentive to attractive males who could serve as attractive alternatives, but also being more attentive to attractive females who could be potential rivals when mental representations associated with romantic love were primed.
Full Text Available A long-term romantic relationship can offer many benefits to committed individuals. Thus, humans possess relationship maintenance mechanisms to protect against threats from those who serve as attractive alternatives or intrasexual rivals. Many studies have indicated that romantic love can act as a commitment device to activate these mechanisms. To examine the attentional bias associated with relationship maintenance among 108 college students (49 single and 59 committed females in China, we used a semantic priming procedure to activate mental representations associated with romantic love and then asked participants to complete a dot-probe task for the purpose of making a distinction between the engage and disengage components of attention. No significant engaging effects toward attractive faces were observed among committed females, but the following significant disengaging effects were found: when primed with romantic love, single females showed increased attention toward and difficulty in disengaging from attractive male faces, whereas females already in a committed relationship did not alter their attention, remaining as inattentive to attractive alternatives as they were in the baseline condition. In addition, committed females responded to love priming by exhibiting difficulty in disengaging from attractive rivals. The present findings provide evidence in the Chinese cultural context for the existence of early-stage attentional processes in the domain of relationship maintenance that committed Chinese females protected an ongoing relationship by not only being inattentive to attractive males who could serve as attractive alternatives, but also being more attentive to attractive females who could be potential rivals when mental representations associated with romantic love were primed.
Ma, Yidan; Zhao, Guang; Tu, Shen; Zheng, Yong
A long-term romantic relationship can offer many benefits to committed individuals. Thus, humans possess relationship maintenance mechanisms to protect against threats from those who serve as attractive alternatives or intrasexual rivals. Many studies have indicated that romantic love can act as a commitment device to activate these mechanisms. To examine the attentional bias associated with relationship maintenance among 108 college students (49 single and 59 committed females) in China, we used a semantic priming procedure to activate mental representations associated with romantic love and then asked participants to complete a dot-probe task for the purpose of making a distinction between the engage and disengage components of attention. No significant engaging effects toward attractive faces were observed among committed females, but the following significant disengaging effects were found: when primed with romantic love, single females showed increased attention toward and difficulty in disengaging from attractive male faces, whereas females already in a committed relationship did not alter their attention, remaining as inattentive to attractive alternatives as they were in the baseline condition. In addition, committed females responded to love priming by exhibiting difficulty in disengaging from attractive rivals. The present findings provide evidence in the Chinese cultural context for the existence of early-stage attentional processes in the domain of relationship maintenance that committed Chinese females protected an ongoing relationship by not only being inattentive to attractive males who could serve as attractive alternatives, but also being more attentive to attractive females who could be potential rivals when mental representations associated with romantic love were primed. PMID:26309232
Zhou, Zhenhe; Cao, Suxia; Li, Hengfen; Li, Youhui
We hypothesized that treatment with escitalopram would improve cognitive bias and contribute to the recovery process for patients with major depressive disorder (MDD). Many previous studies have established that patients with MDD tend to pay selective attention to negative stimuli. The assessment of the level of cognitive bias is regarded as a crucial dimension of treatment outcomes for MDD. To our knowledge, no prior studies have been reported on the effects of treatment with escitalopram on attentional bias in MDD, employing a dot probe task of facial expression. We studied 25 patients with MDD and 25 controls, and used a dot probe task of facial expression to measure cognitive bias. The patients' psychopathologies were rated using the Hamilton Depression Scale (HAMD) at baseline and after 8 weeks of treatment with escitalopram. All participants performed the facial expression dot probe task. The results revealed that the 8 week escitalopram treatment decreased the HAMD scores. The patients with MDD at baseline exhibited an attentional bias towards negative faces, however, no significant bias toward either negative or happy faces were observed in the controls. After the 8 week escitalopram treatment, no significant bias toward negative faces was observed in the patient group. In conclusion, patients with MDD pay more attention to negative facial expressions, and treatment with escitalopram improves this attentional bias toward negative facial expressions. This is the first study, to our knowledge, on the effects of treatment with escitalopram on attentional bias in patients with MDD that has employed a dot probe task of facial expression. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Wabnitz, Pascal; Martens, Ulla; Neuner, Frank
Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is associated with heightened sensitivity to threat cues, typically represented by emotional facial expressions. To examine if this bias can be transferred to a general hypersensitivity or whether it is specific to disorder relevant cues, we investigated electrophysiological correlates of emotional word processing (alpha activity and event-related potentials) in 20 healthy participants and 20 participants with SAD. The experimental task was a silent reading of neutral, positive, physically threatening and socially threatening words (the latter were abusive swear words) while responding to a randomly presented dot. Subsequently, all participants were asked to recall as many words as possible during an unexpected recall test. Participants with SAD showed blunted sensory processing followed by a rapid processing of emotional words during early stages (early posterior negativity - EPN). At later stages, all participants showed enhanced processing of negative (physically and socially threatening) compared to neutral and positive words (N400). Moreover, at later processing stages alpha activity was increased specifically for negative words in participants with SAD but not in healthy controls. Recall of emotional words for all subjects was best for socially threatening words, followed by negative and positive words irrespective of social anxiety. The present findings indicate that SAD is associated with abnormalities in emotional word processing characterised by early hypervigilance to emotional cues followed by cognitive avoidance at later processing stages. Most importantly, the specificity of these attentional biases seems to change as a function of time with a general emotional bias at early and a more specific bias at later processing stages.
Byrow, Yulisha; Peters, Lorna
Attention biases figure prominently in CBT models of social anxiety and are thought to maintain symptoms of social anxiety disorder (SAD). Studies have shown that individual differences in pre-treatment attention biases predict cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) outcome. However, these findings have been inconsistent as to whether vigilance towards threat predicts better or poorer treatment outcome. Adult attachment style is an individual characteristic that may influence the relationship between attention bias and SAD. This study investigates the relationship between attention biases and CBT treatment outcome for SAD. Furthermore, we examined the influence of adult attachment style on this relationship. Participants with a primary diagnosis of SAD completed a passive viewing (measuring vigilance towards threat) and a novel difficulty to disengage (measuring difficulty to disengage attention) eye-tracking task prior to attending 12 CBT group sessions targeting SAD. Symptom severity was measured at pre- and post-treatment. Regression analyses were conducted on a sample of 50 participants. Greater vigilance for threat than avoidance of threat at pre-treatment predicted poorer treatment outcomes. Greater difficulty disengaging from happy faces, compared to neutral faces, predicted poorer treatment outcomes. Attachment style did not moderate these relationships. The associations between attention biases and specific components of CBT treatment were not examined. The novel findings regarding difficulty to disengage attention require replication. The findings have implications for the theoretical models of SAD and for the treatment of SAD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Toh, Wei Lin; Castle, David J; Rossell, Susan L
Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is characterised by repetitive behaviours and/or mental acts occurring in response to preoccupations with perceived defects or flaws in physical appearance. This study aimed to examine attentional biases in BDD via the emotional Stroop task with two modifications: i) incorporating an eye-tracking paradigm, and ii) employing an obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) control group. Twenty-one BDD, 19 OCD and 21 HC participants, who were age-, sex-, and IQ-matched, were included. A card version of the emotional Stroop task was employed based on seven 10-word lists: (i) BDD-positive, (ii) BDD-negative, (iii) OCD-checking, (iv) OCD-washing, (v) general positive, (vi) general threat, and (vii) neutral (as baseline). Participants were asked to read aloud words and word colours consecutively, thereby yielding accuracy and latency scores. Eye-tracking parameters were also measured. Participants with BDD exhibited significant Stroop interference for BDD-negative words relative to HC participants, as shown by extended colour-naming latencies. In contrast, the OCD group did not exhibit Stroop interference for OCD-related nor general threat words. Only mild eye-tracking anomalies were uncovered in clinical groups. Inspection of individual scanning styles and fixation heat maps however revealed that viewing strategies adopted by clinical groups were generally disorganised, with avoidance of certain disorder-relevant words and considerable visual attention devoted to non-salient card regions. The operation of attentional biases to negative disorder-specific words was corroborated in BDD. Future replication studies using other paradigms are vital, given potential ambiguities inherent in emotional Stroop task interpretation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Zhang, Yan; Kong, Fanchang; Han, Li; Najam Ul Hasan, Abbasi; Chen, Hong
The Chinese Wenchuan earthquake, which happened on the 28th of May in 2008, may leave deep invisible scars in individuals. China has a large number of children and adolescents, who tend to be most vulnerable because they are in an early stage of human development and possible post-traumatic psychological distress may have a life-long consequence. Trauma survivors without post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have received little attention in previous studies, especially in event-related potential (ERP) studies. We compared the attention bias to threat stimuli between the earthquake-exposed group and the control group in a masked version of the dot probe task. The target probe presented at the same space location consistent with earthquake-related words was the congruent trial, while in the space location of neutral words was the incongruent trial. Thirteen earthquake-exposed middle school students without PTSD and 13 matched controls were included in this investigation. The earthquake-exposed group showed significantly faster RTs to congruent trials than to incongruent trials. The earthquake-exposed group produced significantly shorter C1 and P1 latencies and larger C1, P1 and P2 amplitudes than the control group. In particular, enhanced P1 amplitude to threat stimuli was observed in the earthquake-exposed group. These findings are in agreement with the prediction that earthquake-exposed survivors have an attention bias to threat stimuli. The traumatic event had a much greater effect on earthquake-exposed survivors even if they showed no PTSD symptoms than individuals in the controls. These results will provide neurobiological evidences for effective intervention and prevention to post-traumatic mental problems. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Based on the theory of incentive sensitization, the exposure to food stimuli sensitizes the brain’s reward circuits and enhances attentional bias toward food. Therefore, reducing attentional bias to food could possibly be beneficial in preventing impulsive eating. The importance of chewing has been increasingly implicated as one of the methods for reducing appetite, however, no studies to investigate the effect of chewing on attentional bias to food. In this study, we investigated whether chewing stimulation (i.e., chewing tasteless gum reduces attentional bias to food as well as an actual feeding (i.e., ingesting a standardized meal does. We measured reaction time, gaze direction and gaze duration to assess attentional bias toward food images in pairs of food and non-food images that were presented in a visual probe task (Experiment 1, n = 21 and/or eye-tracking task (Experiment 2, n = 20. We also measured appetite ratings using visual analog scale. In addition, we conducted a control study in which the same number of participants performed the identical tasks to Experiments 1 and 2, but the participants did not perform sham feeding with gum-chewing/actual feeding between tasks and they took a rest. Two-way ANOVA revealed that after actual feeding, subjective ratings of hunger, preoccupation with food, and desire to eat significantly decreased, whereas fullness significantly increased. Sham feeding showed the same trends, but to a lesser degree. Results of the visual probe task in Experiment 1 showed that both sham feeding and actual feeding reduced reaction time bias significantly. Eye-tracking data showed that both sham and actual feeding resulted in significant reduction in gaze direction bias, indexing initial attentional orientation. Gaze duration bias was unaffected. In both control experiments, one-way ANOVAs showed no significant differences between immediately before and after the resting state for any of the appetite ratings
Gobin, Christina M; Banks, Jonathan B; Fins, Ana I; Tartar, Jaime L
Poor sleep quality has been demonstrated to diminish cognitive performance, impair psychosocial functioning and alter the perception of stress. At present, however, there is little understanding of how sleep quality affects emotion processing. The aim of the present study was to determine the extent to which sleep quality, measured through the Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index, influences affective symptoms as well as the interaction between stress and performance on an emotional memory test and sustained attention task. To that end, 154 undergraduate students (mean age: 21.27 years, standard deviation = 4.03) completed a series of measures, including the Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index, the Sustained Attention to Response Task, an emotion picture recognition task and affective symptom questionnaires following either a control or physical stress manipulation, the cold pressor test. As sleep quality and psychosocial functioning differ among chronotypes, we also included chronotype and time of day as variables of interest to ensure that the effects of sleep quality on the emotional and non-emotional tasks were not attributed to these related factors. We found that poor sleep quality is related to greater depressive symptoms, anxiety and mood disturbances. While an overall relationship between global Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index score and emotion and attention measures was not supported, poor sleep quality, as an independent component, was associated with better memory for negative stimuli and a deficit in sustained attention to non-emotional stimuli. Importantly, these effects were not sensitive to stress, chronotype or time of day. Combined, these results suggest that individuals with poor sleep quality show an increase in affective symptomatology as well as a negative cognitive bias with a concomitant decrease in sustained attention to non-emotional stimuli. © 2015 European Sleep Research Society.
Ma, Ili; Mies, Gabry W; Lambregts-Rommelse, Nanda N J; Buitelaar, Jan K; Cillessen, Antonius H N; Scheres, Anouk
Interference control refers to the ability to selectively attend to certain information while ignoring distracting information. This ability can vary as a function of distractor relevance. Distractors that are particularly relevant to an individual may attract more attention than less relevant distractors. This is referred to as attention bias. Weak interference control and altered reward sensitivity are both important features of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, interference control is typically studied in isolation. This study integrates both. Youths (aged 9 to 17 years) with ADHD (n = 37, 25 boys) and typically-developing controls (n = 38, 20 boys) completed a Stroop task using appetitive words and matched neutral words to assess whether appetitive distractors diminished interference control more in youths with ADHD than controls. In order to test for specificity, aversive words were also included. As expected, appetitive words disrupted interference control but this effect was not stronger for youths with ADHD than the controls. Aversive words, on the other hand, facilitated interference control. Dimensional analyses revealed that this facilitation effect increased substantially as a function of ADHD symptom severity. Possible mechanisms for this effect include up-regulation of interference control as a function of induced negative mood, or as a function of increased effort. In conclusion, appetitive words do not lead to worse interference control in youths with ADHD compared with controls. Interference control was modulated in a valence-specific manner, concurrent with mood-induced effects on cognitive control.
Zmigrod, Sharon; Zmigrod, Leor; Hommel, Bernhard
While recent studies have investigated how processes underlying human creativity are affected by particular visual-attentional states, we tested the impact of more stable attention-related preferences. These were assessed by means of Navon's global-local task, in which participants respond to the global or local features of large letters constructed from smaller letters. Three standard measures were derived from this task: the sizes of the global precedence effect, the global interference effect (i.e., the impact of incongruent letters at the global level on local processing), and the local interference effect (i.e., the impact of incongruent letters at the local level on global processing). These measures were correlated with performance in a convergent-thinking creativity task (the Remote Associates Task), a divergent-thinking creativity task (the Alternate Uses Task), and a measure of fluid intelligence (Raven's matrices). Flexibility in divergent thinking was predicted by the local interference effect while convergent thinking was predicted by intelligence only. We conclude that a stronger attentional bias to visual information about the "bigger picture" promotes cognitive flexibility in searching for multiple solutions.
Dong, Y.; Beuckelaer, A. de; Yu, L.; Zhou, R
Protocols for measuring attentional bias to threat in test-anxiety, a special form of trait-anxiety, are rarely found in the literature. In our eye-tracking study, we introduced a new protocol, and studied the time-course of attention to test-related pictures with varying threat levels in 22 high
Yokum, Sonja; Ng, Janet; Stice, Eric
Behavioral studies reveal that obese vs. lean individuals show attentional bias to food stimuli. Yet research has not investigated this relation using objective brain imaging or tested whether attentional bias to food stimuli predicts future weight gain, which are important aims given the prominence of food cues in the environment. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine attentional bias in 35 adolescent girls ranging from lean to obese using an attention network task involving food and neutral stimuli. BMI correlated positively with speed of behavioral response to both appetizing food stimuli and unappetizing food stimuli, but not to neutral stimuli. BMI correlated positively with activation in brain regions related to attention and food reward, including the anterior insula/frontal operculum, lateral orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (vlPFC), and superior parietal lobe, during initial orientation to food cues. BMI also correlated with greater activation in the anterior insula/frontal operculum during reallocation of attention to appetizing food images and with weaker activation in the medial OFC and ventral pallidum during reallocation of attention to unappetizing food images. Greater lateral OFC activation during initial orientation to appetizing food cues predicted future increases in BMI. Results indicate that overweight is related to greater attentional bias to food cues and that youth who show elevated reward circuitry responsivity during food cue exposure are at increased risk for weight gain.
Lazarov, Amit; Abend, Rany; Seidner, Shiran; Pine, Daniel S; Bar-Haim, Yair
Current attention bias modification (ABM) procedures are designed to implicitly train attention away from threatening stimuli with the hope of reducing stress reactivity and anxiety symptoms. However, the mechanisms underlying effective ABM delivery are not well understood, with awareness of the training contingency suggested as one possible factor contributing to ABM efficacy. Here, 45 high-anxious participants were trained to divert attention away from threat in two ABM sessions. They were randomly assigned to one of three training protocols: an implicit protocol, comprising two standard implicit ABM training sessions; an explicit protocol, comprising two sessions with explicit instruction as to the attention training contingency; and an implicit-explicit protocol, in which participants were not informed of the training contingency in the first ABM session and informed of it at the start of the second session. We examined learning processes and stress reactivity following a stress-induction task. Results indicate that relative to implicit instructions, explicit instructions led to stronger learning during the first training session. Following rest, the explicit and implicit groups exhibited consolidation-related improvement in performance, whereas no such improvement was noted for the implicit-explicit group. Finally, although stress reactivity was reduced after training, contingency awareness did not yield a differential effect on stress reactivity measured using both self-reports and skin conductance, within and across sessions. These results suggest that explicit ABM administration leads to greater initial learning during the training protocol while not differing from standard implicit administration in terms of off-line learning and stress reactivity. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Melles, Reinhilde J; Dewitte, Marieke D; Ter Kuile, Moniek M; Peters, Madelon M L; de Jong, Peter J
Current information processing models propose that heightened attention bias for sex-related threats (eg, pain) and lowered automatic incentive processes ("wanting") may play an important role in the impairment of sexual arousal and the development of sexual dysfunctions such as genitopelvic pain/penetration disorder (GPPPD). Differential threat and incentive processing may also help explain the stronger persistence of coital avoidance in women with vaginismus compared to women with dyspareunia. As the first aim, we tested if women with GPPPD show (1) heightened attention for pain and sex, and (2) heightened threat and lower incentive associations with sexual penetration. Second, we examined whether the stronger persistence of coital avoidance in vaginismus vs dyspareunia might be explained by a stronger attentional bias or more dysfunctional automatic threat/incentive associations. Women with lifelong vaginismus (n = 37), dyspareunia (n = 29), and a no-symptoms comparison group (n = 51) completed a visual search task to assess attentional bias, and single target implicit-association tests to measure automatic sex-threat and sex-wanting associations. There were no group differences in attentional bias or automatic associations. Correlational analysis showed that slowed detection of sex stimuli and stronger automatic threat associations were related to lowered sexual arousal. The findings do not corroborate the view that attentional bias for pain or sex contributes to coital pain, or that differences in coital avoidance may be explained by differences in attentional bias or automatic threat/incentive associations. However, the correlational findings are consistent with the view that automatic threat associations and impaired attention for sex stimuli may interfere with the generation of sexual arousal. Copyright © 2016 International Society for Sexual Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Jessica E Monk
Full Text Available Tests for attention bias potentially offer more rapid assessment of affective state in animals than existing cognitive methods. An attention bias test has previously been developed for sheep and validated as a measure of anxious states. The 3 minute test assessed behavioural responses of sheep in an enclosed arena after brief exposure to the threat of a dog. Experiment 1 of the current study aimed to refine the previously developed method, removing the need for a habituation period and shortening the test duration. Sheep were given either an anxiolytic drug, an anxiogenic drug or a control treatment prior to testing to induce contrasting affective states. Differences in behaviour were found between the treatment groups within the first 45s of the test, indicating the original test duration could be shortened from 180 s. During testing, 36 of 40 animals in the control and anxiolytic groups ate the novel feed offered in the test, indicating it is not necessary to habituate animals to a feed container. Experiment 2 aimed to confirm the responses measured in the test were primarily towards the dog rather than other aspects of the test environment. Sheep exposed to an empty window at the beginning of the test behaved differently to those which were exposed to a dog, indicating sheep behaviour in the test is at least partially a response to the dog. A third group of sheep were also tested with the dog immediately after having small data loggers attached to their necks. Behaviour of these sheep did not differ from the sheep tested without loggers, indicating data logger attachment did not impact their behaviour in the test. In both experiments, treatments did not appear to modify activity (zones crossed, which we propose indicates the test was primarily detecting valence of the affective state rather than arousal.
Gazit, Sivan; Elkana, Odelia; Dawidowicz, Liraz; Yeshayahu, Liel; Biran, Iftah
Conversion disorder (CD) is a largely enigmatic disorder, one that requires a thorough ruling-out process. Prior research suggests that metaphors and conceptualization are rooted in physical experience, and that we interpret our affective world through metaphors. Spatial metaphors (interaction of affect and vertical space) are a prominent example of the grounding of metaphors. This is a relatively unpaved direction of research of CD. The present pilot study sought to explore this view by investigating the "healthy is up, sick is down" spatial metaphors (e.g., "fell ill" and "top shape") in patients with CD, examining the correlation between the processing of bodily-related words, CD, and vertical space. We hypothesized that patients with CD, who experience their bodies as ill, will demonstrate a downwards bias when processing bodily-related words; corresponding to the "healthy is up, sick is down" spatial metaphor. A total of 8 female patients (ages M-38.13 SD-10.44) and 42 female controls (ages M-36.4 SD-14.57) performed a visual attention task. Participants were asked to identify a spatial probe at the top or the bottom of a screen, following either a bodily related (e.g., arm) or non-bodily related (e.g., clock) prime word. As predicted, when processing bodily-related words, patients with CD demonstrated a downwards attention bias. Moreover, the higher the patient's level of somatization, the faster the patient detected lower (vs upper) spatial targets. This study suggests that the changed health paradigm of patients with CD is grounded in sensorimotor perception. Further research could propose new diagnostic and treatment options for CD. Copyright © 2017 The Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Doyle, Rebecca E.; Colditz, Ian G.; Belson, Sue; Cronin, Greg M.; Lee, Caroline
Tests for attention bias potentially offer more rapid assessment of affective state in animals than existing cognitive methods. An attention bias test has previously been developed for sheep and validated as a measure of anxious states. The 3 minute test assessed behavioural responses of sheep in an enclosed arena after brief exposure to the threat of a dog. Experiment 1 of the current study aimed to refine the previously developed method, removing the need for a habituation period and shortening the test duration. Sheep were given either an anxiolytic drug, an anxiogenic drug or a control treatment prior to testing to induce contrasting affective states. Differences in behaviour were found between the treatment groups within the first 45s of the test, indicating the original test duration could be shortened from 180 s. During testing, 36 of 40 animals in the control and anxiolytic groups ate the novel feed offered in the test, indicating it is not necessary to habituate animals to a feed container. Experiment 2 aimed to confirm the responses measured in the test were primarily towards the dog rather than other aspects of the test environment. Sheep exposed to an empty window at the beginning of the test behaved differently to those which were exposed to a dog, indicating sheep behaviour in the test is at least partially a response to the dog. A third group of sheep were also tested with the dog immediately after having small data loggers attached to their necks. Behaviour of these sheep did not differ from the sheep tested without loggers, indicating data logger attachment did not impact their behaviour in the test. In both experiments, treatments did not appear to modify activity (zones crossed), which we propose indicates the test was primarily detecting valence of the affective state rather than arousal. PMID:29293636
Full Text Available Recent research has shown high rates of comorbidity between attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD and autism spectrum disorder (ASD and difficulties regarding differential diagnosis. Unlike those in Western countries, the Japanese ADHD prevalence rate is lower relative to that of ASD. This inconsistency could have occurred because of cultural diversities among professionals such as physicians. However, little is known about attitudes toward ADHD and ASD in non-Western cultural contexts. We conducted two experiments to identify biases in ASD and ADHD assessment. In Study 1, we examined attitudes toward these disorders in medical doctors and mental health professionals, using a web-based questionnaire. In Study 2, medical doctors and clinical psychologists assessed four fictional cases based on criteria for ADHD, ASD, oppositional defiant disorder, and disinhibited social engagement disorder (DSED. Diagnosis of ASD was considered more difficult relative to that of ADHD. Most participants assessed the fictional DSED case as ASD, rather than DSED or ADHD. The results provide evidence that Japanese professionals are more likely to attribute children’s behavioral problems to ASD, relative to other disorders. Therefore, Japanese therapists could be more sensitive to and likely to diagnose ASD, relative to therapists in other countries. These findings suggest that cultural biases could influence clinicians’ diagnosis of ADHD and ASD.
Full Text Available Valentin Flaudias,1,2 Georges Brousse,1,2 Ingrid De Chazeron,1,2 François Planche,2 Julien Brun,2 Pierre-Michel Llorca1,2 1Clermont Université, EA 7280 NPsy-Sydo, Clermont-Ferrand, France; 2Pôle Psychiatrie B, CHU Gabriel-Montpied, Clermont-Ferrand, France Background and objectives: Previous studies in alcohol-dependent patients have shown an attentional bias (AB under related substance cues, which can lead to relapse. This AB can be evaluated by the alcohol Stroop test (AST. The AST is a modified Stroop task in which participants have to name the color of an alcohol-related word or a neutral word. AB is the response-time difference between these two types of words. The goal of the current study was to examine modification of AB during specialized hospitalization for alcohol dependence, with the suppression of a training bias that could be present in within-subject design. Methods: Individuals with alcohol-dependence disorders (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition and admitted for withdrawal in the addiction unit of the University Hospital of Clermont-Ferrand (test group, n = 42 and persons with no alcohol or psychiatric disorder (control group, n = 16, recruited among colleagues and friends of the staff, performed the AST. A subgroup of the test group performed the AST in admission (admission group, n = 19, and another subgroup undertook the test immediately before discharge (discharge group, n = 23. Results: Results showed an AB only for patients seen at admission (F[1,55] = 3.283, P = 0.075. Moreover, we observed that the AB in the admission group (mean = 34 ms, standard deviation [SD] = 70.06 was greater than the AB in the control group (mean = 23 ms, SD = 93.42, itself greater than the AB in the discharge group (mean = −12 ms, SD = 93.55 (t = −1.71; P = 0.09. Conclusion: Although the results are preliminary, the present study provides evidence for changes in the AB during alcohol-addiction treatment
Victoria Lynn Harms
Full Text Available Despite an overall body symmetry, human behaviour is full of examples of asymmetry, from writing or gesturing to kissing and cradling. Prior research has revealed that theatre patrons show a bias towards sitting on the right side of a movie theatre. Two competing theories have attempted to explain this seating asymmetry: one posits that expectation of processing demand drives the bias; the other posits that basic motor asymmetries drive the bias. To test these theories we assessed the real-world classroom seating choices of university students using photographs. A bias for students to choose seats on the left side of the classroom was observed, in contrast to the right side bias observed in theatre seating studies. These results provide evidence in support of a processing-expectation bias.
Markant, Julie; Oakes, Lisa M; Amso, Dima
During the first year of life, infants maintain their ability to discriminate faces from their own race but become less able to differentiate other-race faces. Though this is likely due to daily experience with own-race faces, the mechanisms linking repeated exposure to optimal face processing remain unclear. One possibility is that frequent experience with own-race faces generates a selective attention bias to these faces. Selective attention elicits enhancement of attended information and suppression of distraction to improve visual processing of attended objects. Thus attention biases to own-race faces may boost processing and discrimination of these faces relative to other-race faces. We used a spatial cueing task to bias attention to own- or other-race faces among Caucasian 9-month-old infants. Infants discriminated faces in the focus of the attention bias, regardless of race, indicating that infants remained sensitive to differences among other-race faces. Instead, efficacy of face discrimination reflected the extent of attention engagement. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Research with children has shown that vicarious learning can result in changes to 2 of Lang’s (1968) 3 anxiety response systems: subjective report and behavioral avoidance. The current study extended this research by exploring the effect of vicarious learning on physiological responses (Lang’s final response system) and attentional bias. The study used Askew and Field’s (2007) vicarious learning procedure and demonstrated fear-related increases in children’s cognitive, behavioral, and physiological responses. Cognitive and behavioral changes were retested 1 week and 1 month later, and remained elevated. In addition, a visual search task demonstrated that fear-related vicarious learning creates an attentional bias for novel animals, which is moderated by increases in fear beliefs during learning. The findings demonstrate that vicarious learning leads to lasting changes in all 3 of Lang’s anxiety response systems and is sufficient to create attentional bias to threat in children. PMID:25151521
Charlotte Elisabeth Wittekind
Full Text Available Using variants of the emotional Stroop task (EST, a large number of studies demonstrated attentional biases in individuals with PTSD across different types of trauma. However, the specificity and robustness of the emotional Stroop effect in PTSD were questioned recently. In particular, the paradigm cannot disentangle underlying cognitive mechanisms. Transgenerational studies provide evidence that consequences of trauma are not limited to the traumatized people, but extend to close relatives, especially the children. To further investigate attentional biases in PTSD and to shed light on the underlying cognitive mechanism(s, a spatial-cueing paradigm with pictures of different emotional valence (neutral, anxiety, depression, trauma was administered to individuals displaced as children during World War II with (n = 22 and without PTSD (n = 26 as well as to nontraumatized controls (n = 22. To assess whether parental PTSD is associated with biased information processing in children, each one adult offspring was also included in the study. PTSD was not associated with attentional biases for trauma-related stimuli. There was no evidence for a transgenerational transmission of biased information processing. However, when samples were regrouped based on current depression, a reduced inhibition of return (IOR effect emerged for depression-related cues. IOR refers to the phenomenon that with longer intervals between cue and target the validity effect is reversed: uncued locations are associated with shorter and cued locations with longer RTs. The results diverge from EST studies and demonstrate that findings on attentional biases yield equivocal results across different paradigms. Attentional biases for trauma-related material may only appear for verbal but not for visual stimuli in an elderly population with childhood trauma with PTSD. Future studies should more closely investigate whether findings from younger trauma populations also manifest in older
Stojek, Monika; Shank, Lisa M; Vannucci, Anna; Bongiorno, Diana M; Nelson, Eric E; Waters, Andrew J; Engel, Scott G; Boutelle, Kerri N; Pine, Daniel S; Yanovski, Jack A; Tanofsky-Kraff, Marian
Attentional bias (AB) may be one mechanism contributing to the development and/or maintenance of disordered eating. AB has traditionally been measured using reaction time in response to a stimulus. Novel methods for AB measurement include eye tracking to measure visual fixation on a stimulus, and electroencephalography to measure brain activation in response to a stimulus. This systematic review summarizes, critiques, and integrates data on AB gathered using the above-mentioned methods in those with binge eating behaviors, including binge eating, loss of control eating, and bulimia nervosa. Literature searches on PubMed and PsycInfo were conducted using combinations of terms related to binge eating and biobehavioral AB paradigms. Studies using AB paradigms with three categories of stimuli were included: food, weight/shape, and threat. For studies reporting means and standard deviations of group bias scores, Hedges' g effect sizes for group differences in AB were calculated. Fifty articles met inclusion criteria and were reviewed. Individuals who binge eat in the absence of compensatory behaviors show an increased AB to food cues, but few studies have examined such individuals' AB toward weight/shape and threatening stimuli. Individuals with bulimia nervosa consistently show an increased AB to shape/weight cues and socially threatening stimuli, but findings for AB to food cues are mixed. While there are important research gaps, preliminary evidence suggests that the combination of AB to disorder-specific cues (i.e., food and weight/shape) and AB toward threat may be a potent contributor to binge eating. This conclusion underscores previous findings on the interaction between negative affect and AB to disorder-specific cues. Recommendations for future research are provided. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Dong, Yunying; De Beuckelaer, Alain; Yu, Liang; Zhou, Renlai
Protocols for measuring attentional bias to threat in test-anxiety, a special form of trait-anxiety, are rarely found in the literature. In our eye-tracking study, we introduced a new protocol, and studied the time-course of attention to test-related pictures with varying threat levels in 22 high test-anxious (HTA) and 22 low test-anxious (LTA) subjects. To determine whether attentional bias to test-related pictures is due to test-anxiety and not to state-anxiety, we also included a third group of 22 subjects with high state-anxiety but low test-anxiety (HSA). The subjects completed a free viewing task (FVT) in which high threat-neutral (HT-N) and low threat-neutral (LT-N) picture pairs were presented for 3 s. The results demonstrated that: (1) HTA subjects showed initial orienting to LT pictures, early attentional engagement with HT pictures later on and avoidance of HT pictures at the very end; (2) LTA subjects showed initial orienting to HT pictures and maintenance of attention on them later on; while (3) HSA subjects showed an initial orientation towards LT pictures and maintenance of attention on LT and HT pictures later on. These results suggest that, (high) test-anxiety is also prone to attentional bias towards test-related threat stimuli. Implications for future research are discussed.
Roebuck, Andrew J; Dubnyk, Aurora J B; Cochran, David; Mandryk, Regan L; Howland, John G; Harms, Victoria
Research in asymmetrical visuospatial attention has identified a leftward bias in the general population across a variety of measures including visual attention and line-bisection tasks. In addition, increases in rightward collisions, or bumping, during visuospatial navigation tasks have been demonstrated in real world and virtual environments. However, little research has investigated these biases beyond the laboratory. The present study uses a semi-naturalistic approach and the online video game streaming service Twitch to examine navigational errors and assaults as skilled action video game players (n = 60) compete in Counter Strike: Global Offensive. This study showed a significant rightward bias in both fatal assaults and navigational errors. Analysis using the in-game ranking system as a measure of skill failed to show a relationship between bias and skill. These results suggest that a leftward visuospatial bias may exist in skilled players during online video game play. However, the present study was unable to account for some factors such as environmental symmetry and player handedness. In conclusion, video game streaming is a promising method for behavioural research in the future, however further study is required before one can determine whether these results are an artefact of the method applied, or representative of a genuine rightward bias.
Sharbanee, Jason M; Stritzke, Werner G K; Wiers, Reinout W; MacLeod, Colin
To assess whether alcohol-related biases in selective-attention and action tendency uniquely or concurrently predict the ability to regulate alcohol consumption. Two groups of undergraduate social drinkers (total n = 55) who differed in their ability to regulate their alcohol consumption completed a novel Selective-Attention/Action-Tendency Task (SA/ATT), which assessed separately alcohol-related biases in selective attention and action tendency. University of Western Australia, Australia. Dysregulated drinking was operationalized as a self-reported high level of alcohol consumption on the Alcohol Consumption Questionnaire, and a high desire to reduce consumption on the Brief Readiness to Change Algorithm. Selective attention and action tendency were assessed using the SA/ATT, working memory was assessed using the operation-span task and participant characteristics were assessed using the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and Stages of Change Readiness and Treatment Eagerness Scale (SOCRATES). Results indicated that (i) there was no significant association between alcohol-related biases in selective attention and action tendency, r = 0.16, P = 0.274, and (ii) biases towards alcohol, in both selective attention, β = 1.01, odds ratio = 2.74, P = 0.022, and action tendency, β = 1.24, odds ratio = 3.45, P = 0.015, predicted independent variance in dysregulated-drinker status. Biases in selective attention and action tendency appear to be distinct mechanisms that contribute independently to difficulty regulating alcohol consumption. Treatment components that could be combined to target both mechanisms could enhance treatment outcomes for alcohol-use disorders. © 2013 Society for the Study of Addiction.
Barclay, Nicola L; Ellis, Jason G
Contradictory evidence exists relating to the presence of an attention bias to sleep-related stimuli in poor sleepers/insomnia using the emotional Stroop task (EST). These inconsistencies may be due to methodological issues related to the affective valence of the sleep-related stimuli. Thus, individuals may attend differentially to sleep-related stimuli not because of their 'sleep' properties, but their negativity. The current study addresses this by controlling the affective valence of sleep-related words. A total of 107 participants [mean age = 33.22 years, standard deviation (SD) = 12.31 years; 61.7% female] were recruited during an evening event at the Newcastle Science Festival. Participants completed the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and a computerized EST containing 20 non-affective sleep-related, 20 neutral and 20 negatively valenced threat words. Good and poor sleepers were categorized using the PSQI. There were no significant differences between groups on response latency to sleep-related words (t(105) = -0.30, P = 0.76). However, the interaction between good versus poor sleepers and word-type on response latency was significant (F(2,210) = 3.06, P sleep-related words (mean = 723.35, SD = 172.55) compared to threat words (mean = 694.63, SD = 162.17) than good sleepers (mean = 713.20, SD = 166.32; and mean = 716.65, SD = 181.14). The results demonstrate the presence of an attention bias towards sleep-related stimuli compared to threat stimuli in poor sleepers. Accordingly, poor sleepers may be consumed by stimuli relevant to their specific difficulties, as well as being more highly attuned to negative cues that signal anxious states. Thus, the present research suggests that there are two opposing forces at play: one which facilitates performance (non-specific threats) and one which hinders performance (personally relevant threats). © 2013 European Sleep Research Society.
Green, Jessica J; McDonald, John J
The presentation of an attention-directing cue elicits a lateralized ERP deflection called the late directing attention positivity (LDAP) and lateralized changes in alpha-band elelctroencephalogram oscillations. Both of these electrophysiological responses have been independently linked to biasing of visual cortex in anticipation of an impending target. However, the LDAP is not always observed, and the link between the ERP and alpha-band modulations remains unclear. Here, we examined the effect of advance knowledge of the time of target onset on the ERP and alpha-band responses to cues. The LDAP was present only when the attention-directing cues accurately indicated the time of target appearance, whereas two sequential attention-related alpha-band modulations were observed regardless of the temporal information provided by the cues. Thus, alpha-band activity may be a more reliable index of pretarget biasing of visual cortical activity than lateralized ERP effects. Copyright © 2010 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
Full Text Available BackgroundIn the present study, we explored the possibility of the stability of attention bias and memory bias in currently remitted individuals with unipolar depression compared to currently depressed individuals with unipolar depression and never-depressed individuals. MethodsThe Emotional Stroop and autobiographical memory task were administered on 10 participants, who were currently depressed, currently remitted with unipolar depression, or never-depressed. In the emotional Stroop task (EST, the respondent’s task was to indicate the color of the ink of the positive, negative, and neutral words by selecting one of a series of colored blocks. In the autobiographical memory task (AMT, participants were presented with positive, negative, and neutral cue words. For each word, they were asked to report specific events from their life. ResultsBoth the attention bias and memory bias exist in both the clinical groups. In EST, both currently depressed and currently remitted groups were slower to respond to negative words compared to neutral words. Unlike EST, in AMT both currently depressed and currently remitted groups were slower to respond to positive words compared to neutral words. Interestingly, the capacity to generate specific events for negative events was higher in both currently depressed and currently remitted groups. They were over-general in their memories of positive events. Importantly, the never-depressed group was specific in their memories of both positive and negative events of their life. ConclusionsOur findings provide evidence for the stable existence of attention and memory bias in currently remitted individuals. This study has implications for the cognitive behavior therapy for depression to include modules to resolve the attention and memory bias toward negative thought and content, and to build strategies to overcome such biases.
Warschburger, Petra; Calvano, Claudia; Richter, Eike M.; Engbert, Ralf
Background Body image distortion is highly prevalent among overweight individuals. Whilst there is evidence that body-dissatisfied women and those suffering from disordered eating show a negative attentional bias towards their own unattractive body parts and others? attractive body parts, little is known about visual attention patterns in the area of obesity and with respect to males. Since eating disorders and obesity share common features in terms of distorted body image and body dissatisfa...
Shabbir, Maryam; Zon, Adelynn M Y; Thuppil, Vivek
Animals attend to what is relevant in order to behave in an effective manner and succeed in their environments. In several nonhuman species, there is an evolved bias for attending to patterns indicative of threats in the natural environment such as dangerous animals. Because skins of many dangerous animals are typically repetitive, we propose that repetition is the key feature enabling recognition of evolutionarily important threats. The current study consists of two experiments where we measured participants' reactions to pictures of male and female models wearing clothing of various repeating (leopard skin, snakeskin, and floral print) and nonrepeating (camouflage, shiny, and plain) patterns. In Experiment 1, when models wearing patterns were presented side by side with total fixation duration as the measure, the repeating floral pattern was the most provocative, with total fixation duration significantly longer than all other patterns. Leopard and snakeskin patterns had total fixation durations that were significantly longer than the plain pattern. In Experiment 2, we employed a visual-search task where participants were required to find models wearing the various patterns in a setting of a crowded airport terminal. Participants detected leopard skin pattern and repetitive floral pattern significantly faster than two of the nonpatterned clothing styles. Our experimental findings support the hypothesis that repetition of specific visual features might facilitate target detection, especially those characterizing evolutionary important threats. Our findings that intricate, but nonthreatening repeating patterns can have similar attention-grabbing properties to animal skin patterns have important implications for the fashion industry and wildlife trade.
Rieger, Elizabeth; Palermo, Romina; Byrne, Susan; Bell, Jason
The present study sought to investigate the association between selective attentional processing of body images, rumination, and eating disorder symptoms in young women. Seventy-three undergraduate female students (ages 17–24) completed a modified dot-probe task to assess whether young women showed a differential attentional bias pattern towards thin and non-thin female bodies. Participants also completed self-report measures of eating disorder pathology. It was found that increased reports of dietary restraint and body dissatisfaction were associated with both greater attentional bias towards thin bodies and avoidance of non-thin bodies (as compared to neutral images), although the former relationship was stronger than the latter. The results suggest attentional vigilance to thin-ideal images plays a greater role in the potential development and/or maintenance of eating disorder symptoms, at least in a university sample of young women. Results also revealed that eating disorder-specific rumination mediated the relationship between attentional bias to thin ideal images and eating disorder symptoms. These findings build on existing research and theories, for example the impaired disengagement model of rumination, and have potential clinical applications such as specifically targeting ruminative and/or attentional processes in the prevention and/or treatment of eating disorder symptoms. PMID:28542431
Dondzilo, Laura; Rieger, Elizabeth; Palermo, Romina; Byrne, Susan; Bell, Jason
The present study sought to investigate the association between selective attentional processing of body images, rumination, and eating disorder symptoms in young women. Seventy-three undergraduate female students (ages 17-24) completed a modified dot-probe task to assess whether young women showed a differential attentional bias pattern towards thin and non-thin female bodies. Participants also completed self-report measures of eating disorder pathology. It was found that increased reports of dietary restraint and body dissatisfaction were associated with both greater attentional bias towards thin bodies and avoidance of non-thin bodies (as compared to neutral images), although the former relationship was stronger than the latter. The results suggest attentional vigilance to thin-ideal images plays a greater role in the potential development and/or maintenance of eating disorder symptoms, at least in a university sample of young women. Results also revealed that eating disorder-specific rumination mediated the relationship between attentional bias to thin ideal images and eating disorder symptoms. These findings build on existing research and theories, for example the impaired disengagement model of rumination, and have potential clinical applications such as specifically targeting ruminative and/or attentional processes in the prevention and/or treatment of eating disorder symptoms.
Full Text Available The present study sought to investigate the association between selective attentional processing of body images, rumination, and eating disorder symptoms in young women. Seventy-three undergraduate female students (ages 17-24 completed a modified dot-probe task to assess whether young women showed a differential attentional bias pattern towards thin and non-thin female bodies. Participants also completed self-report measures of eating disorder pathology. It was found that increased reports of dietary restraint and body dissatisfaction were associated with both greater attentional bias towards thin bodies and avoidance of non-thin bodies (as compared to neutral images, although the former relationship was stronger than the latter. The results suggest attentional vigilance to thin-ideal images plays a greater role in the potential development and/or maintenance of eating disorder symptoms, at least in a university sample of young women. Results also revealed that eating disorder-specific rumination mediated the relationship between attentional bias to thin ideal images and eating disorder symptoms. These findings build on existing research and theories, for example the impaired disengagement model of rumination, and have potential clinical applications such as specifically targeting ruminative and/or attentional processes in the prevention and/or treatment of eating disorder symptoms.
Schoorl, Stephanie Maartje Desiree (Maartje)
We investigated the effects of two novel treatments for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The first treatment is Attentional Bias Modification (ABM). This treatment for anxiety disorders has become quite popular in a relatively short time and was featured in recent articles in the New York Times
Warschburger, Petra; Calvano, Claudia; Richter, Eike M; Engbert, Ralf
Body image distortion is highly prevalent among overweight individuals. Whilst there is evidence that body-dissatisfied women and those suffering from disordered eating show a negative attentional bias towards their own unattractive body parts and others' attractive body parts, little is known about visual attention patterns in the area of obesity and with respect to males. Since eating disorders and obesity share common features in terms of distorted body image and body dissatisfaction, the aim of this study was to examine whether overweight men and women show a similar attentional bias. We analyzed eye movements in 30 overweight individuals (18 females) and 28 normal-weight individuals (16 females) with respect to the participants' own pictures as well as gender- and BMI-matched control pictures (front and back view). Additionally, we assessed body image and disordered eating using validated questionnaires. The overweight sample rated their own body as less attractive and showed a more disturbed body image. Contrary to our assumptions, they focused significantly longer on attractive compared to unattractive regions of both their own and the control body. For one's own body, this was more pronounced for women. A higher weight status and more frequent body checking predicted attentional bias towards attractive body parts. We found that overweight adults exhibit an unexpected and stable pattern of selective attention, with a distinctive focus on their own attractive body regions despite higher levels of body dissatisfaction. This positive attentional bias may either be an indicator of a more pronounced pattern of attentional avoidance or a self-enhancing strategy. Further research is warranted to clarify these results.
Full Text Available Body image distortion is highly prevalent among overweight individuals. Whilst there is evidence that body-dissatisfied women and those suffering from disordered eating show a negative attentional bias towards their own unattractive body parts and others' attractive body parts, little is known about visual attention patterns in the area of obesity and with respect to males. Since eating disorders and obesity share common features in terms of distorted body image and body dissatisfaction, the aim of this study was to examine whether overweight men and women show a similar attentional bias.We analyzed eye movements in 30 overweight individuals (18 females and 28 normal-weight individuals (16 females with respect to the participants' own pictures as well as gender- and BMI-matched control pictures (front and back view. Additionally, we assessed body image and disordered eating using validated questionnaires.The overweight sample rated their own body as less attractive and showed a more disturbed body image. Contrary to our assumptions, they focused significantly longer on attractive compared to unattractive regions of both their own and the control body. For one's own body, this was more pronounced for women. A higher weight status and more frequent body checking predicted attentional bias towards attractive body parts. We found that overweight adults exhibit an unexpected and stable pattern of selective attention, with a distinctive focus on their own attractive body regions despite higher levels of body dissatisfaction. This positive attentional bias may either be an indicator of a more pronounced pattern of attentional avoidance or a self-enhancing strategy. Further research is warranted to clarify these results.
Lazarov, Amit; Marom, Sofi; Yahalom, Naomi; Pine, Daniel S; Hermesh, Haggai; Bar-Haim, Yair
Cognitive-behavioral group therapy (CBGT) is a first-line treatment for social anxiety disorder (SAD). However, since many patients remain symptomatic post-treatment, there is a need for augmenting procedures. This randomized controlled trial (RCT) examined the potential augmentation effect of attention bias modification (ABM) for CBGT. Fifty patients with SAD from three therapy groups were randomized to receive an 18-week standard CBGT with either ABM designed to shift attention away from threat (CBGT + ABM), or a placebo protocol not designed to modify threat-related attention (CBGT + placebo). Therapy groups took place in a large mental health center. Clinician and self-report measures of social anxiety and depression were acquired pre-treatment, post-treatment, and at 3-month follow-up. Attention bias was assessed at pre- and post-treatment. Patients randomized to the CBGT + ABM group, relative to those randomized to the CBGT + placebo group, showed greater reductions in clinician-rated SAD symptoms post-treatment, with effects maintained at 3-month follow-up. Group differences were not evident for self-report or attention-bias measures, with similar reductions in both groups. Finally, reduction in attention bias did not mediate the association between group and reduction in Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale Structured Interview (LSAS) scores. This is the first RCT to examine the possible augmenting effect of ABM added to group-based cognitive-behavioral therapy for adult SAD. Training patients' attention away from threat might augment the treatment response to standard CBGT in SAD, a possibility that could be further evaluated in large-scale RCTs.
Albery, Ian P; Lowry, Jessica; Frings, Dan; Johnson, Henry Lee; Hogan, Cassandra; Moss, Antony C
If sexual compulsivity and other addictive behaviours share common aetiology, contemporary proposals about the role of attentional processes in understanding addictive behaviours are relevant. To examine attentional biases for sex-related words among sexually active individuals and the relationship between sexual compulsivity and sexual behavioural engagement with attentional bias, 55 sexually active individuals completed a modified Stroop task and the sexual compulsivity scale. Findings showed attentional bias towards sex-related stimuli among sexually active participants. In addition, among those with low levels of sexual compulsivity, levels of attentional bias were the same across all levels of sexual experience. Among those with higher levels of sexual compulsivity, greater attentional bias was linked with lower levels of sexual experience. Attentional preference for concern-related stimuli varies as a function of the interaction between how long a person has been active sexually and how compulsive their sexual behaviour is. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Full Text Available The aim of the study was to determine the effectiveness of Attentional Bias Modification (ABM and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT on the reduction of pain intensityin patients with chronic pain. This study was a quasiexperimental pretest-posttest design with control group. All patients who referred to physiotherapy clinics for pain during 2015 were participated in the study. They completed the Brief Pain Inventory-short form (BPI-SF for assessing severity of pain. Attentional bias was evaluated using computerized Dot-Probe task. The patients with chronic pain were screened by diagnostic criteria of DSM-V; neurologic diagnosis, and interview. 36 people were selected and randomly divided to three groups computer-based ABM, CBT, and control (12 cases in each group. Group A was trained in 8 sessions-each 15 minutes with the modified computerized Dot-Probe task for attentional bias modification. Group B was trained in 11 sessions-each 45 minutes with CBT program of Turk and Ferry for the chronic pain treatment. And Placebo program was administered for group C in which they completed 8 classic DotProbe sessions. In the end, for the posttest (T2 the participants were tested to identify the changes in biased attention to the emotional stimuli using classing Dot-Probe tasks, and BPI questionnaire to evaluate the changes of severity of pain. Data were analyzed using one-way variance analysis(ANOVA. On the BPI-SF, CBT more reduced the pain intensitythan computer-based ABM.In addition ABM treatment is more effective in reduction of attentional bias.Both of treatments are effective but CBT is more effective than ABM in reduction of pain intensity.
Sladek, Michael R; Doane, Leah D; Jewell, Shannon L; Luecken, Linda J
Social stress and associated coping responses can profoundly influence women's stress physiology and health. Implicit social attentional biases can also influence psychological and physiological stress responses. The purpose of this study was to explore whether a coping style characterized by greater use of social support predicts indices of cortisol activity in laboratory and daily life contexts among female university students. We hypothesized that the relation of this coping style to cortisol activity would be moderated by women's attentional biases. Seventy-four women (M age = 19.44, range: 17.8-27.8, 64% White) completed an interpersonal stress task and an attentional bias task in the lab, along with a self-report coping inventory. Participants provided five saliva samples during the lab protocol, followed by three saliva samples per day for three consecutive weekdays. Outcome measures included cortisol response to lab tasks (AUCg), diurnal cortisol slope, diurnal AUCg, and cortisol awakening response (CARi). A coping style characterized by greater use of social support predicted lower lab AUCg and lower, flatter average diurnal cortisol slope for women with attentional avoidance compared to women with attentional vigilance (ps < .05). Responding to stress by using social support is linked to lower cortisol responses to social stress and diurnal cortisol activity for women with implicit avoidance of social threat cues.
Veenstra, Esther M.; de Jong, Peter J.
A striking feature of the restricting subtype of anorexia nervosa (AN) is that these patients are extremely successful in restricting their food intake. Possibly, they are highly efficient in avoiding attentional engagement of food cues, thereby preventing more elaborate processing of food cues and
Julie A. Hadwin
Full Text Available Research indicates that cognitive processes linked to the detection of threat stimuli are associated with poor attentional control, placing children and adolescents at increased risk for the development of anxious affect. The current study aimed to provide preliminary data to assess whether an intervention designed to improve attentional control (via working memory; WM would lead to better performance in tests of WM and would be associated with positive changes in symptoms of trait and test anxiety, increased inhibitory control and reduced attention to threat. Forty adolescents aged 11-14 years who reported elevated anxiety and low attentional control were randomly allocated to a WM training or an active cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT control group. Post intervention, WM training was associated with greater improvements (versus. CBT in trained WM tasks. Both groups however reported fewer anxiety symptoms, demonstrated increased inhibitory control and a reduction in attentional biases to threat post intervention and these results were maintained at follow up. The study provides indicative evidence which suggests that WM training has similar benefits to a more traditional CBT intervention on reduced anxiety and attentional biases for threat. Future research should aim to replicate the findings in a large sample size and explore the broader impact of training on day to day functioning. In addition, further research is needed to identify which participants benefit most from different interventions (using baseline characteristics on treatment compliance and outcome.
Full Text Available Attention bias modification (ABM programs have been considered as a promising new approach for the treatment of various disorders, including social anxiety disorder (SAD. However, previous studies yielded ambiguous results regarding the efficacy of ABM in SAD. The present proof-of-concept study investigates the feasibility of a newly developed virtual reality (VR-based dot-probe training paradigm. It was designed to facilitate attentional disengagement from threatening stimuli in socially anxious individuals (N=15. The following outcomes were examined: (a self-reports of enjoyment, motivation, flow and presence, (b attentional bias for social stimuli, and (c social anxiety symptoms. Results showed that ABM training is associated with high scores in enjoyment, motivation, flow and presence. Furthermore, significant improvements in terms of attention bias and social anxiety symptoms were observed from pre- to follow-up assessment. The study suggests that VR is a feasible and presumably a promising new medium for ABM trainings. Controlled studies will need to be carried out.
Full Text Available Strong bottom-up impulses and weak top-down control may interactively lead to overeating and, consequently, weight gain. In the present study, female university freshmen were tested at the start of the first semester and again at the start of the second semester. Attentional bias toward high- or low-calorie food-cues was assessed using a dot-probe paradigm and participants completed the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale . Attentional bias and motor impulsivity interactively predicted change in body mass index: motor impulsivity positively predicted weight gain only when participants showed an attentional bias toward high-calorie food-cues. Attentional and non-planning impulsivity were unrelated to weight change. Results support findings showing that weight gain is prospectively predicted by a combination of weak top-down control (i.e. high impulsivity and strong bottom-up impulses (i.e. high automatic motivational drive toward high-calorie food stimuli. They also highlight the fact that only specific aspects of impulsivity are relevant in eating and weight regulation.
Heitmann, Janika; van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E.; Vermeulen, Karin M.; Ostafin, Brian D.; MacLeod, Colin; Wiers, Reinout W.; DeFuentes-Merillas, Laura; Fledderus, Martine; Markus, Wiebren; de Jong, Peter J.
Background: The automatic tendency to attend to and focus on substance-related cues in the environment (attentional bias), has been found to contribute to the persistence of addiction. Attentional bias modification (ABM) interventions might, therefore, contribute to treatment outcome and the
Heitmann, J.; van Hemel-Ruiter, M.E.; Vermeulen, K.M.; Ostafin, B.D.; MacLeod, C.; Wiers, R.W.; DeFuentes-Merillas, L.; Fledderus, M.; Markus, W.; de Jong, P.J.
Background The automatic tendency to attend to and focus on substance-related cues in the environment (attentional bias), has been found to contribute to the persistence of addiction. Attentional bias modification (ABM) interventions might, therefore, contribute to treatment outcome and the
Michalka, Samantha W.; Kong, Lingqiang; Rosen, Maya L.; Shinn-Cunningham, Barbara G.; Somers, David C.
Summary The frontal lobes control wide-ranging cognitive functions; however, functional subdivisions of human frontal cortex are only coarsely mapped. Here, functional magnetic resonance imaging reveals two distinct visual-biased attention regions in lateral frontal cortex, superior precentral sulcus (sPCS) and inferior precentral sulcus (iPCS), anatomically interdigitated with two auditory-biased attention regions, transverse gyrus intersecting precentral sulcus (tgPCS) and caudal inferior frontal sulcus (cIFS). Intrinsic functional connectivity analysis demonstrates that sPCS and iPCS fall within a broad visual-attention network, while tgPCS and cIFS fall within a broad auditory-attention network. Interestingly, we observe that spatial and temporal short-term memory (STM), respectively, recruit visual and auditory attention networks in the frontal lobe, independent of sensory modality. These findings not only demonstrate that both sensory modality and information domain influence frontal lobe functional organization, they also demonstrate that spatial processing co-localizes with visual processing and that temporal processing co-localizes with auditory processing in lateral frontal cortex. PMID:26291168
Michalka, Samantha W; Kong, Lingqiang; Rosen, Maya L; Shinn-Cunningham, Barbara G; Somers, David C
The frontal lobes control wide-ranging cognitive functions; however, functional subdivisions of human frontal cortex are only coarsely mapped. Here, functional magnetic resonance imaging reveals two distinct visual-biased attention regions in lateral frontal cortex, superior precentral sulcus (sPCS) and inferior precentral sulcus (iPCS), anatomically interdigitated with two auditory-biased attention regions, transverse gyrus intersecting precentral sulcus (tgPCS) and caudal inferior frontal sulcus (cIFS). Intrinsic functional connectivity analysis demonstrates that sPCS and iPCS fall within a broad visual-attention network, while tgPCS and cIFS fall within a broad auditory-attention network. Interestingly, we observe that spatial and temporal short-term memory (STM), respectively, recruit visual and auditory attention networks in the frontal lobe, independent of sensory modality. These findings not only demonstrate that both sensory modality and information domain influence frontal lobe functional organization, they also demonstrate that spatial processing co-localizes with visual processing and that temporal processing co-localizes with auditory processing in lateral frontal cortex. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Aim: The purpose of this study was to compare the attention bias about tempting incentives related to opium materials in treated, addicted and normal people. Duration of consumption and treating were also considered. Method: In this causal-comparative study population was all addicted people who were referred to the rehabilitation offices, addiction treatment clinic, rebirthing centers and Narcotics Anonymous of East Azerbaijan. This study consisted of five groups of men, including addicted to opium materials which are divided into two groups namely: long consumption period and people with short consumption period, also, treated people including long term treated and short term treated, and a normal control group. Altogether, 103 selected people were studied. Sample groups were similar in terms of age, education, and sex. For measuring attention bias towards tempting stimuli related opiates, a words recognition test was used. This test included three subtests and one recognition test. The recognition scores for the three categories of words were measured. Results: The findings indicated that there was a difference in attention against opium material incentives between control group and the mild and severe consumers groups. Also there were significant differences between treated people with the short time distance and control group, and control group had less temptation and biases in comparison to the other groups. Finally, those who have mild consumption are threatened more in comparison with the control group. Conclusion: The findings have applied implications.
Schepers, Robbie; Markus, C Rob
Stress is often found to increase the preference and intake of high caloric foods. This effect is known as emotional eating and is influenced by cognitive as well as biological stress vulnerabilities. An S-allele of the 5-HTTLPR gene has been linked to decreased (brain) serotonin efficiency, leading to decreased stress resilience and increased risks for negative affect and eating related disturbances. Recently it has been proposed that a cognitive ruminative thinking style can further exacerbate the effect of this gene by prolonging the already increased stress response, thereby potentially increasing the risk of compensating by overeating high palatable foods. This study was aimed at investigating whether there is an increased risk for emotional eating in high ruminative S/S-allele carriers reflected by an increased attention bias for high caloric foods during stress. From a large (N=827) DNA database, participants (N=100) were selected based on genotype (S/S or L/L) and ruminative thinking style and performed an eye-tracking visual food-picture probe task before and after acute stress exposure. A significant Genotype x Rumination x Stress-interaction was found on attention bias for savory food; indicating that a stress-induced attention bias for specifically high-caloric foods is moderated by a gene x cognitive risk factor. Both a genetic (5-HTTLPR) and cognitive (ruminative thinking) stress vulnerability may mutually increase the risk for stress-related abnormal eating patterns. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Greenaway, Rebecca; Mogg, Karin; Bradley, Brendan P
According to recent models of drug dependence, attentional bias for drug cues provides an index of vulnerability to drug-taking and relapse. The present study examined attentional bias for smoking-related information in pregnant women and its relationship with smoking experience and attitudes. Participants were 71 pregnant women (35 without smoking experience; 36 with experience of smoking, of whom 16 reported currently smoking). Attentional bias was assessed from the interference index of smoking-related words on a modified Stroop task. The attentional bias for smoking cues was positively associated with smoking experience, and with more favourable general attitudes to smoking (i.e. incentive-related bias). The bias was also greater in women who perceived greater harm of passive smoking to their foetus (i.e. threat-related bias), which was independent of smoking experience. Results indicate that attentional bias for smoking-related cues is independently associated with both incentive-related (reward) and threat-related (aversive) evaluations of cigarette smoking in pregnant women. This work highlights the need for longitudinal research to investigate whether the attentional bias provides a cognitive index of vulnerability for persistent smoking behaviour both during and after pregnancy. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Luque, David; Vadillo, Miguel A; Le Pelley, Mike E; Beesley, Tom
It has been suggested that attention is guided by two factors that operate during associative learning: a predictiveness principle, by which attention is allocated to the best predictors of outcomes, and an uncertainty principle, by which attention is allocated to learn about the less known features of the environment. Recent studies have shown that predictiveness-driven attention can operate rapidly and in an automatic way to exploit known relationships. The corresponding characteristics of uncertainty-driven attention, on the other hand, remain unexplored. In two experiments we examined whether both predictiveness and uncertainty modulate attentional processing in an adaptation of the dot probe task. This task provides a measure of automatic orientation to cues during associative learning. The stimulus onset asynchrony of the probe display was manipulated in order to explore temporal characteristics of predictiveness- and uncertainty-driven attentional effects. Results showed that the predictive status of cues determined selective attention, with faster attentional capture to predictive than to non-predictive cues. In contrast, the level of uncertainty slowed down responses to the probe regardless of the predictive status of the cues. Both predictiveness- and uncertainty-driven attentional effects were very rapid (at 250 ms from cue onset) and were automatically activated.
Kätsyri, Jari; Kinnunen, Teemu; Kusumoto, Kenta; Oittinen, Pirkko; Ravaja, Niklas
Television viewers' attention is increasingly more often divided between television and "second screens", for example when viewing television broadcasts and following their related social media discussion on a tablet computer. The attentional costs of such multitasking may vary depending on the ebb and flow of the social media channel, such as its emotional contents. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that negative social media messages would draw more attention than similar positive messages. Specifically, news broadcasts were presented in isolation and with simultaneous positive or negative Twitter messages on a tablet to 38 participants in a controlled experiment. Recognition memory, gaze tracking, cardiac responses, and self-reports were used as attentional indices. The presence of any tweets on the tablet decreased attention to the news broadcasts. As expected, negative tweets drew longer viewing times and elicited more attention to themselves than positive tweets. Negative tweets did not, however, decrease attention to the news broadcasts. Taken together, the present results demonstrate a negativity bias exists for social media messages in media multitasking; however, this effect does not amplify the overall detrimental effects of media multitasking.
Full Text Available Television viewers' attention is increasingly more often divided between television and "second screens", for example when viewing television broadcasts and following their related social media discussion on a tablet computer. The attentional costs of such multitasking may vary depending on the ebb and flow of the social media channel, such as its emotional contents. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that negative social media messages would draw more attention than similar positive messages. Specifically, news broadcasts were presented in isolation and with simultaneous positive or negative Twitter messages on a tablet to 38 participants in a controlled experiment. Recognition memory, gaze tracking, cardiac responses, and self-reports were used as attentional indices. The presence of any tweets on the tablet decreased attention to the news broadcasts. As expected, negative tweets drew longer viewing times and elicited more attention to themselves than positive tweets. Negative tweets did not, however, decrease attention to the news broadcasts. Taken together, the present results demonstrate a negativity bias exists for social media messages in media multitasking; however, this effect does not amplify the overall detrimental effects of media multitasking.
Werthmann, Jessica; Renner, Fritz; Roefs, Anne; Huibers, Marcus J H; Plumanns, Lana; Krott, Nora; Jansen, Anita
Emotional eating is associated with overeating and the development of obesity. Yet, empirical evidence for individual (trait) differences in emotional eating and cognitive mechanisms that contribute to eating during sad mood remain equivocal. The aim of this study was to test if attention bias for food moderates the effect of self-reported emotional eating during sad mood (vs neutral mood) on actual food intake. It was expected that emotional eating is predictive of elevated attention for food and higher food intake after an experimentally induced sad mood and that attentional maintenance on food predicts food intake during a sad versus a neutral mood. Participants (N = 85) were randomly assigned to one of the two experimental mood induction conditions (sad/neutral). Attentional biases for high caloric foods were measured by eye tracking during a visual probe task with pictorial food and neutral stimuli. Self-reported emotional eating was assessed with the Dutch Eating Behavior Questionnaire (DEBQ) and ad libitum food intake was tested by a disguised food offer. Hierarchical multivariate regression modeling showed that self-reported emotional eating did not account for changes in attention allocation for food or food intake in either condition. Yet, attention maintenance on food cues was significantly related to increased intake specifically in the neutral condition, but not in the sad mood condition. The current findings show that self-reported emotional eating (based on the DEBQ) might not validly predict who overeats when sad, at least not in a laboratory setting with healthy women. Results further suggest that attention maintenance on food relates to eating motivation when in a neutral affective state, and might therefore be a cognitive mechanism contributing to increased food intake in general, but maybe not during sad mood. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Previous research has been inconsistent on whether violent video games exert positive and/or negative effects on cognition. In particular, attentional bias in facial affect processing after violent video game exposure continues to be controversial. The aim of the present study was to investigate attentional bias in facial recognition after short term exposure to violent video games and to characterize the neural correlates of this effect. In order to accomplish this, participants were exposed to either neutral or violent video games for 25 min and then event-related potentials (ERPs were recorded during two emotional search tasks. The first search task assessed attentional facilitation, in which participants were required to identify an emotional face from a crowd of neutral faces. In contrast, the second task measured disengagement, in which participants were required to identify a neutral face from a crowd of emotional faces. Our results found a significant presence of the ERP component, N2pc, during the facilitation task; however, no differences were observed between the two video game groups. This finding does not support a link between attentional facilitation and violent video game exposure. Comparatively, during the disengagement task, N2pc responses were not observed when participants viewed happy faces following violent video game exposure; however, a weak N2pc response was observed after neutral video game exposure. These results provided only inconsistent support for the disengagement hypothesis, suggesting that participants found it difficult to separate a neutral face from a crowd of emotional faces.
Liu, Yanling; Lan, Haiying; Teng, Zhaojun; Guo, Cheng; Yao, Dezhong
Previous research has been inconsistent on whether violent video games exert positive and/or negative effects on cognition. In particular, attentional bias in facial affect processing after violent video game exposure continues to be controversial. The aim of the present study was to investigate attentional bias in facial recognition after short term exposure to violent video games and to characterize the neural correlates of this effect. In order to accomplish this, participants were exposed to either neutral or violent video games for 25 min and then event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded during two emotional search tasks. The first search task assessed attentional facilitation, in which participants were required to identify an emotional face from a crowd of neutral faces. In contrast, the second task measured disengagement, in which participants were required to identify a neutral face from a crowd of emotional faces. Our results found a significant presence of the ERP component, N2pc, during the facilitation task; however, no differences were observed between the two video game groups. This finding does not support a link between attentional facilitation and violent video game exposure. Comparatively, during the disengagement task, N2pc responses were not observed when participants viewed happy faces following violent video game exposure; however, a weak N2pc response was observed after neutral video game exposure. These results provided only inconsistent support for the disengagement hypothesis, suggesting that participants found it difficult to separate a neutral face from a crowd of emotional faces.
Folkvord, Frans; Anschütz, Doeschka J; Wiers, Reinout W; Buijzen, Moniek
This study examined the potential moderating role of attentional bias (i.e., gaze duration, number of fixations, latency of initial fixation) in the effect of advergames promoting energy-dense snacks on children's snack intake. A randomized between-subject design was conducted with 92 children who played an advergame that promoted either energy-dense snacks or nonfood products. Eye movements and reaction times to food and nonfood cues were recorded to assess attentional bias during playtime using eye-tracking methods. Children could eat freely after playing the game. The results showed that playing an advergame containing food cues increased total intake. Furthermore, children with a higher gaze duration for the food cues ate more of the advertised snacks. In addition, children with a faster latency of initial fixation to the food cues ate more in total and ate more of the advertised snacks. The number of fixations on the food cues did not increase actual snack intake. Food advertisements are designed to grab attention, and this study shows that the extent to which a child's attention is directed to a food cue increases the effect of the advertisement. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Jeromin, Franziska; Rief, Winfrief; Barke, Antonia
Background and aims People with substance abuse and pathological gamblers show an attentional bias. In a laboratory setting, we found an attentional bias using an addiction Stroop in adults with Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD). We aimed at investigating this effect using two web-based experiments. Methods Study 1: Gamers with IGD, casual gamers, and non-gamers (N = 81, 28.1 ± 7.8 years) completed a web-based addiction Stroop with a fully randomized word order. They saw computer-related and neutral words in four colors and indicated the word color via keypress. Study 2: Gamers with IGD, casual gamers, and non-gamers (N = 87, 23.4 ± 5.1 years) completed a web-based addiction Stroop and a classical Stroop (incongruent color and neutral words), which both had a block design. We expected that in both studies, only the gamers with IGD would react more slowly to computer-related words in the addiction Stroop. All groups were expected to react more slowly to incongruent color words in the classical Stroop. Results In neither study did the gamers with IGD differ in their reaction times to computer-related words compared to neutral words. In Study 2, all groups reacted more slowly to incongruent color words than to neutral words confirming the validity of the online reaction time assessment. Discussion Gamers with IGD did not show a significant attentional bias. IGD may differ from substance abuse and pathological gambling in this respect; alternatively experimenting on the Internet may have introduced error variance that made it harder to detect a bias.
Colzato, Lorenza S; van der Wel, Pauline; Sellaro, Roberta; Hommel, Bernhard
Recent studies show that a single bout of meditation can impact information processing. We were interested to see whether this impact extends to attentional focusing and the top-down control over irrelevant information. Healthy adults underwent brief single bouts of either focused attention meditation (FAM), which is assumed to increase top-down control, or open monitoring meditation (OMM), which is assumed to weaken top-down control, before performing a global-local task. While the size of the global-precedence effect (reflecting attentional focusing) was unaffected by type of meditation, the congruency effect (indicating the failure to suppress task-irrelevant information) was considerably larger after OMM than after FAM. Our findings suggest that engaging in particular kinds of meditation creates particular cognitive-control states that bias the individual processing style toward either goal-persistence or cognitive flexibility. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
He, Jie; Zhai, Shuyi; Wu, Weiyang; Lou, Liyue
The current longitudinal study examined the association of temperamental inhibition (assessed by behavioral observation and parental reports) at three years old with reward and punishment bias (measured by a spatial cueing task) and mothers' and teachers' reports of internalizing behaviors and social competence at five years old in 153 Chinese…
Gulley, Lauren D.; Oppenheimer, Caroline W.; Hankin, Benjamin L.
Theories of affective learning suggest that early experiences contribute to emotional disorders by influencing the development of processing biases for negative emotional stimuli. Although studies have shown that physically abused children preferentially attend to angry faces, it is unclear whether youth exposed to more typical aspects of negative…
Nuijten, Mascha; Blanken, Peter; Van den Brink, Wim; Goudriaan, Anna E; Hendriks, Vincent M
High impulsivity and attentional bias are common in cocaine-dependent patients and predict poor treatment outcomes. The pharmacological agent modafinil is studied for its cognitive-enhancing capacities and may therefore improve clinical outcomes in crack-cocaine dependent patients. In this study, we investigated first whether pre-treatment impulsivity and attentional bias predict treatment outcome; next whether the drug modafinil given as an add-on treatment to cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) improves impulsivity and attentional bias; and last, whether changes in impulsivity and attentional bias are related to improvements in treatment outcome. Crack-cocaine dependent outpatients (n = 65) were randomised to 12 weeks CBT plus modafinil (400 mg/day) or only CBT. Self-reported impulsivity was assessed at baseline using the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale. At baseline and Week 12, we assessed inhibitory control as a behavioural measure of impulsivity, in terms of cognitive interference (Stroop task) and response inhibition ('stop-signal task'), and attentional bias with the addiction Stroop task. Clinical outcomes were CBT-retention and crack-cocaine use. At baseline, self-reported impulsivity predicted better CBT-retention; low self-reported and behavioural impulsivity and attentional bias predicted less crack-cocaine use. Changes in cognitive performance were not modafinil-related, but most likely due to low adherence. Improvements in impulsivity or attentional bias were not associated with CBT-retention nor changes in crack-cocaine use. Baseline impulsivity and attentional bias predicted clinical outcomes in crack-cocaine dependent patients. There were no firm indications that modafinil reduced impulsivity nor attentional bias in this population. Future studies involving cognitive-enhancing medications should include strategies to optimise adherence, to be better able to evaluate their potential. © The Author(s) 2016.
Boettcher, Johanna; Leek, Linda; Matson, Lisa; Holmes, Emily A.; Browning, Michael; MacLeod, Colin; Andersson, Gerhard; Carlbring, Per
Biases in attention processes are thought to play a crucial role in the aetiology and maintenance of Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). The goal of the present study was to examine the efficacy of a programme intended to train attention towards positive cues and a programme intended to train attention towards negative cues. In a randomised, controlled, double-blind design, the impact of these two training conditions on both selective attention and social anxiety were compared to that of a control training condition. A modified dot probe task was used, and delivered via the internet. A total of 129 individuals, diagnosed with SAD, were randomly assigned to one of these three conditions and took part in a 14-day programme with daily training/control sessions. Participants in all three groups did not on average display an attentional bias prior to the training. Critically, results on change in attention bias implied that significantly differential change in selective attention to threat was not detected in the three conditions. However, symptoms of social anxiety reduced significantly from pre- to follow-up-assessment in all three conditions (dwithin = 0.63–1.24), with the procedure intended to train attention towards threat cues producing, relative to the control condition, a significantly greater reduction of social fears. There were no significant differences in social anxiety outcome between the training condition intended to induce attentional bias towards positive cues and the control condition. To our knowledge, this is the first RCT where a condition intended to induce attention bias to negative cues yielded greater emotional benefits than a control condition. Intriguingly, changes in symptoms are unlikely to be by the mechanism of change in attention processes since there was no change detected in bias per se. Implications of this finding for future research on attention bias modification in social anxiety are discussed. Trial Registration Clinical
Naim, Reut; Kivity, Yogev; Bar-Haim, Yair; Huppert, Jonathan D
Attention bias modification treatment (ABMT) and cognitive bias modification of interpretation (CBM-I) both have demonstrated efficacy in alleviating social anxiety, but how they compare with each other, their combination, and with a combined control condition has not been studied. We examined their relative and combined efficacy compared to control conditions in a randomized controlled trial (RCT). Ninety-five adults diagnosed with social anxiety disorder (SAD), were randomly allocated to 4 groups: ABMT + CBM-I control (hereafter ABMT; n = 23), CBM-I + ABMT control (hereafter CBM-I; n = 24), combined ABMT + CBM-I (n = 23), and combined control (n = 25). Treatment included eight sessions over four weeks. Clinician-rated and self-reported measures of social anxiety symptoms, functional impairment, and threat-related attention and interpretive biases were evaluated at baseline, post-treatment, and 3-month follow-up. ABMT yielded greater symptom reduction as measured by both clinician-ratings (Cohen's ds = 0.57-0.70) and self-reports (ds = 0.70-0.85) compared with the CBM-I, the combined ABMT + CBM-I, and the combined control conditions. Neither of the other conditions demonstrated superior symptom change compared to the control condition. No group differences were found for functioning or cognitive biases measures. Limitations mainly include the mix of active and control treatments applied across the different groups. Therefore, the net effect of each of the treatments by itself could not be clearly tested. Results suggest superiority of ABMT compared to CBM-I and their combination in terms of symptom reduction. Possible interpretations and methodological issues underlying the observed findings are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Freijy, Tanya; Mullan, Barbara; Sharpe, Louise
The primary aim of this study was to extend previous research on food-related attentional biases by examining biases towards pictorial versus word stimuli, and foods of high versus low calorific value. It was expected that participants would demonstrate greater biases to pictures over words, and to high-calorie over low-calorie foods. A secondary aim was to examine associations between BMI, dietary restraint, external eating and attentional biases. It was expected that high scores on these individual difference variables would be associated with a bias towards high-calorie stimuli. Undergraduates (N = 99) completed a dot probe task including matched word and pictorial food stimuli in a controlled setting. Questionnaires assessing eating behaviour were administered, and height and weight were measured. Contrary to predictions, there were no main effects for stimuli type (pictures vs words) or calorific value (high vs low). There was, however, a significant interaction effect suggesting a bias towards high-calorie pictures, but away from high-calorie words; and a bias towards low-calorie words, but away from low-calorie pictures. No associations between attentional bias and any of the individual difference variables were found. The presence of a stimulus type by calorific value interaction demonstrates the importance of stimuli type in the dot probe task, and may help to explain inconsistencies in prior research. Further research is needed to clarify associations between attentional bias and BMI, restraint, and external eating. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Allen, Thomas J.; Sherman, Jeffrey W.; Conrey, Frederica R.; Stroessner, Steven J.
In two experiments, we investigated the relationships among stereotype strength, processing capacity, and the allocation of attention to stereotype-consistent versus stereotype-inconsistent information describing a target person. The results of both experiments showed that, with full capacity, greater stereotype strength was associated with increased attention toward stereotype-consistent versus stereotype-inconsistent information. However, when capacity was diminished, greater stereotype strength was associated with increased attention toward inconsistent versus consistent information. Thus, strong stereotypes may act as self-confirming filters when processing capacity is plentiful, but as efficient information gathering devices that maximize the acquisition of novel (disconfirming) information when capacity is depleted. Implications for models of stereotyping and stereotype change are discussed. PMID:20161043
Payne, Lisa; Rogers, Chad S; Wingfield, Arthur; Sekuler, Robert
Auditory selective attention makes it possible to pick out one speech stream that is embedded in a multispeaker environment. We adapted a cued dichotic listening task to examine suppression of a speech stream lateralized to the nonattended ear, and to evaluate the effects of attention on the right ear's well-known advantage in the perception of linguistic stimuli. After being cued to attend to input from either their left or right ear, participants heard two different four-word streams presented simultaneously to the separate ears. Following each dichotic presentation, participants judged whether a spoken probe word had been in the attended ear's stream. We used EEG signals to track participants' spatial lateralization of auditory attention, which is marked by interhemispheric differences in EEG alpha (8-14 Hz) power. A right-ear advantage (REA) was evident in faster response times and greater sensitivity in distinguishing attended from unattended words. Consistent with the REA, we found strongest parietal and right frontotemporal alpha modulation during the attend-right condition. These findings provide evidence for a link between selective attention and the REA during directed dichotic listening. © 2016 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
Ma, I.; Mies, G.W.; Lambregts-Rommelse, N.N.J.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Cillessen, A.H.N.; Scheres, A.P.J.
Interference control refers to the ability to selectively attend to certain information while ignoring distracting information. This ability can vary as a function of distractor relevance. Distractors that are particularly relevant to an individual may attract more attention than less relevant
Sørensen, Thomas Alrik; Ásgeirsson, Árni Gunnar
Grapheme-color synesthesia affects visual cognition in significant ways. The congruence or incongruence of physical stimuli with synesthetic color affects how quickly and accurately synesthetes respond to stimuli, and the induced color experience may help them memorize achromatic material and performance in visual search, much like physical stimulus features. It has been demonstrated that the content of visual memory can guide attention (e.g. Carlisle & Woodman, 2011). This effect can be ...
Full Text Available Research in both infants and adults demonstrated that attachment expectations are associated with the attentional processing of attachment-related information. However, this research suffered from methodological issues and has not been validated across ages. Employing a more ecologically valid paradigm to measure attentional processes by virtue of eye tracking, the current study tested the defensive exclusion hypothesis in late childhood. According to this hypothesis, insecurely attached children are assumed to defensively exclude attachment-related information. We hypothesized that securely attached children process attachment- related neutral and emotional information in a more open manner compared to insecurely attached children. Sixty-two children (59.7% girls, 8-12 years completed two different tasks, while eye movements were recorded: task one presented an array of neutral faces including mother and unfamiliar women and task two presented the same with happy and angry faces. Results indicated that more securely attached children looked longer at mother's face regardless of the emotional expression. Also, they tend to have more maintained attention to mother's neutral face. Furthermore, more attachment avoidance was related to a reduced total viewing time of mother's neutral, happy, and angry face. Attachment anxiety was not consistently related to the processing of mother's face. Findings support the theoretical assumption that securely attached children have an open manner of processing all attachment-related information.
Jiang, Zhaocai; Zhao, Xiuxin; Li, Cancan
The aim of this study was to examine the relationships of personality types (i.e., self-control, BAS/BIS) and online shopping addiction (OSA) behavior and to investigate whether high-OSA tendency individuals display attentional biases toward online shopping-related (OS-related) stimuli as well as the links between attentional bias and personality types. The study included 98 college students divided into three groups (i.e., high-, medium- and low-OSA) according to their OSA behavior. The personality types (i.e., self-control, BAS/BIS) and OSA behavior were investigated by questionnaires. The attentional bias was evaluated by the OS-related Stroop and dot-probe task (DPT) paradigms. OSA was positively predicted by time spent on online shopping per day and average consumption for online shopping monthly, and negatively by self-control. High-OSA individuals displayed significant attentional biases toward OS-related stimuli in the Stroop, but not DPT paradigm. Moreover, the attentional bias toward OSA-related stimuli in high-OSA individuals was negatively correlated with self-control. These findings demonstrated the critical role of self-control in OSA behavior and attentional bias to OS-related stimuli in high-OSA individuals, indicating that more importance should be attached to self-control for the clinical intervention of online shopping addiction in future studies. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Bauer, Anika; Schneider, Silvia; Waldorf, Manuel; Adolph, Dirk; Vocks, Silja
Background Previous research indicates that body image disturbance is transmitted from mother to daughter via modeling of maternal body-related behaviors and attitudes (indirect transmission) and via maternal body-related feedback (direct transmission). So far, the transmission of body-related attentional biases, which according to cognitive-behavioral theories play a prominent role in the development and maintenance of eating disorders, has not been analyzed. The current eye-tracking study applied the concepts of direct and indirect transmission to body-related attentional biases by examining body-related viewing patterns on self- and other-pictures within mother-daughter dyads. Methods Eye movements of N = 82 participants (n = 41 healthy female adolescents, mean age 15.82 years, SD = 1.80, and their mothers, mean age 47.78 years, SD = 4.52) were recorded while looking at whole-body pictures of themselves and a control peer. Based on fixations on self-defined attractive and unattractive body areas, visual attention bias scores were calculated for mothers and daughters, representing the pattern of body-related attention allocation. Based on mothers’ fixations on their own daughter’s and the adolescent peer’s body, a second visual attention bias score was calculated, reflecting the mothers’ viewing pattern on their own daughter. Results Analysis of variance revealed an attentional bias for self-defined unattractive body areas in adolescents. The girls’ visual attention bias score correlated significantly with their mothers’ bias score, indicating indirect transmission, and with their mothers’ second bias score, indicating direct transmission. Moreover, the girls’ bias score correlated significantly with negative body-related feedback from their mothers. Conclusions Female adolescents show a deficit-oriented attentional bias for one’s own and a peer’s body. The correlated body-related attention patterns imply that attentional biases might be
Full Text Available Previous research indicates that body image disturbance is transmitted from mother to daughter via modeling of maternal body-related behaviors and attitudes (indirect transmission and via maternal body-related feedback (direct transmission. So far, the transmission of body-related attentional biases, which according to cognitive-behavioral theories play a prominent role in the development and maintenance of eating disorders, has not been analyzed. The current eye-tracking study applied the concepts of direct and indirect transmission to body-related attentional biases by examining body-related viewing patterns on self- and other-pictures within mother-daughter dyads.Eye movements of N = 82 participants (n = 41 healthy female adolescents, mean age 15.82 years, SD = 1.80, and their mothers, mean age 47.78 years, SD = 4.52 were recorded while looking at whole-body pictures of themselves and a control peer. Based on fixations on self-defined attractive and unattractive body areas, visual attention bias scores were calculated for mothers and daughters, representing the pattern of body-related attention allocation. Based on mothers' fixations on their own daughter's and the adolescent peer's body, a second visual attention bias score was calculated, reflecting the mothers' viewing pattern on their own daughter.Analysis of variance revealed an attentional bias for self-defined unattractive body areas in adolescents. The girls' visual attention bias score correlated significantly with their mothers' bias score, indicating indirect transmission, and with their mothers' second bias score, indicating direct transmission. Moreover, the girls' bias score correlated significantly with negative body-related feedback from their mothers.Female adolescents show a deficit-oriented attentional bias for one's own and a peer's body. The correlated body-related attention patterns imply that attentional biases might be transmitted directly and indirectly from mothers
Mehl, Nora; Bergmann, Sarah; Klein, Annette M; Daum, Moritz; von Klitzing, Kai; Horstmann, Annette
Impaired self-regulation, especially in food-specific situations, has been linked to childhood obesity. These deficits may be acquired during the development of obesity rather than being a prerequisite thereof. The current study, hence, focused on an at-risk population versus controls. Normal-weight children of obese and normal-weight parents were tested regarding attentional flexibility, emotion regulation, and inhibitory control. A sample of 50 preschoolers of obese parents (n=25) or normal-weight parents (n=25) participated in this study. Through eye-tracking, attentional bias for food cues was measured during a visual probe task using food and toy images. Emotion regulation was assessed during a distress-evoking task, and inhibitory control was examined through a delay-of-gratification task. Both tasks are standardized and were conducted in non-food contexts. Results showed no significant group differences in overall attentional bias to food images over toy images. However, children of normal-weight parents showed a preference for toy images. Regarding emotion regulation, children in the risk group expressed significantly less overall emotional distress. In addition, less gaze aversion and bodily sadness could be observed in this group. No differences were found for inhibitory control. Findings suggest that general deficits in self-regulation are not yet present in normal-weight children at risk for obesity. Instead, they might develop as a by-product of unhealthy weight gain. Results indicate, however, that children of obese parents are less emotionally expressive compared with children of normal-weight parents. Furthermore, children of normal-weight parents appeared to be more interested in toy images than in food images. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Werthmann, Jessica; Jansen, Anita; Vreugdenhil, Anita C E; Nederkoorn, Chantal; Schyns, Ghislaine; Roefs, Anne
Obesity prevalence among children is high and knowledge on cognitive factors that contribute to children's reactivity to the "obesogenic" food environment could help to design effective treatment and prevention campaigns. Empirical studies in adults suggest that attention bias for food could be a risk factor for overeating. Accordingly, the current study tested if children with obesity have an elevated attention bias for food when compared to healthy-weight children. Another aim was to explore whether attention biases for food predicted weight-change after 3 and 6 months in obese children. Obese children (n = 34) were recruited from an intervention program and tested prior to the start of this intervention. Healthy-weight children (n = 36) were recruited from local schools. First, attention biases for food were compared between children with obesity (n = 30) and matched healthy-weight children (n = 30). Second, regression analyses were conducted to test if food-related attention biases predicted weight changes after 3 and 6 months in children with obesity following a weight loss lifestyle intervention. Results showed that obese children did not differ from healthy-weight children in their attention bias to food. Yet automatically directing attention toward food (i.e., initial orientation bias) was related to a reduced weight loss (R² = .14, p = .032) after 6 months in children with obesity. High palatable food is a salient stimulus for all children, irrespective of their weight status. However, automatically directing attention to food cues might facilitate further weight gain in children with obesity. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Waters, Allison M; Kershaw, Rachel
Anxious children show attention biases towards and away from threat stimuli. Moreover, threat avoidance compared to vigilance predicts a poorer outcome from exposure-based treatments, such as cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), yet the mechanisms underlying this differential response are unclear. Pavlovian fear conditioning is a widely accepted theory to explain the acquisition and extinction of fear, including exposure-based treatments, such as CBT. In typical fear conditioning experiments, anxious children have shown larger physiological responses to an aversive unconditional stimulus (i.e., US on CS+ trials) and to non-reinforced stimuli (CS-) during fear acquisition and to both CSs during fear extinction compared to non-anxious peers. This study examined whether threat avoidance compared to threat vigilance was related to differences in fear acquisition and extinction in anxious children. Thirty-four clinically-anxious children completed a visual probe task including angry-neutral face pairs to determine the direction of threat attention bias as well as a discriminant conditioning and extinction task in which a geometric shape CS+ was paired with an aversive tone US, while the CS- geometric shape was always presented alone during acquisition trials. Both CSs were presented alone during extinction trials. Fear acquisition and extinction were indexed by skin conductance responses (SCR) and subjective measures. Children were classified as threat vigilant (N = 18) and threat avoidant (n = 16) based on the direction of threat attention bias on the visual probe task. During acquisition, threat avoidant relative to threat vigilant anxious children displayed larger orienting SCRs to both CSs during the first block of trials and larger third interval SCRs to the US on CS+ trials as well as on CS- trials. During extinction, threat avoidant anxious children showed delayed extinction of SCRs to both the CS+ and CS- and reported higher subjective anxiety ratings after
Foerster, Rebecca M; Schneider, Werner X
Many everyday tasks involve successive visual-search episodes with changing targets. Converging evidence suggests that these targets are retained in visual working memory (VWM) and bias attention from there. It is unknown whether all or only search-relevant features of a VWM template bias attention during search. Bias signals might be configured exclusively to task-relevant features so that only search-relevant features bias attention. Alternatively, VWM might maintain objects in the form of bound features. Then, all template features will bias attention in an object-based manner, so that biasing effects are ranked by feature relevance. Here, we investigated whether search-irrelevant VWM template features bias attention. Participants had to saccade to a target opposite a distractor. A colored cue depicted the target prior to each search trial. The target was predefined only by its identity, while its color was irrelevant. When target and cue matched not only in identity (search-relevant) but also in color (search-irrelevant), saccades went more often and faster directly to the target than without any color match (Experiment 1). When introducing a cue-distractor color match (Experiment 2), direct target saccades were most likely when target and cue matched in the search-irrelevant color and least likely in case of a cue-distractor color match. When cue and target were never colored the same (Experiment 3), cue-colored distractors still captured the eyes more often than different-colored distractors despite color being search-irrelevant. As participants were informed about the misleading color, the result argues against a strategical and voluntary usage of color. Instead, search-irrelevant features biased attention obligatorily arguing for involuntary top-down control by object-based VWM templates. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
MacMahon, Kenneth M A; Broomfield, Niall M; Espie, Colin A
Cognitive models of primary insomnia (PI) suggest attention bias as a maintaining process. This study used a hallmark measure of attention bias, the dot-probe task, to determine whether attention bias to sleep-related stimuli is present in individuals with PI. Control groups of good sleepers (GS) and individuals with delayed sleep phase syndrome (DSPS), a sleep disorder with no presumed cognitive pathway and, hence, no predicted association with attention bias, were included. A between-groups (PI, DSPS, GS) design was employed. Participants completed a dot-probe task with stimuli comprising sleep-related and neutral words, balanced for length and frequency of usage. It was predicted a priori that PI would show greater attention bias to sleep stimuli compared with GS and DSPS groups. No difference between GS and DSPS was predicted. Sixty-three individuals completed the study (PI = 21; DSPS = 22; GS = 20), with those in PI and DSPS classified by International Classification of Sleep Disorders criteria according to self-report sleep diaries and actigraphy. GS scored Sleep Quality Index, reported being good sleepers, and met no criteria for a current or previous sleep disorder. N/A. As predicted, PI showed increased vigilance for sleep-related stimuli relative to GS and DSPS. No differences between GS and those with DSPS were found. The PI group showed shorter response latencies relative to the GS and DSPS groups. Results support an association between attention bias and PI. Further work must determine whether or not attention bias is a causal factor. Speeded responses in the PI group suggest heightened arousal, indicating that physiologic factors may play a related role.
Somppi, Sanni; Törnqvist, Heini; Topál, József; Koskela, Aija; Hänninen, Laura; Krause, Christina M; Vainio, Outi
The neuropeptide oxytocin plays a critical role in social behavior and emotion regulation in mammals. The aim of this study was to explore how nasal oxytocin administration affects gazing behavior during emotional perception in domestic dogs. Looking patterns of dogs, as a measure of voluntary attention, were recorded during the viewing of human facial expression photographs. The pupil diameters of dogs were also measured as a physiological index of emotional arousal. In a placebo-controlled within-subjects experimental design, 43 dogs, after having received either oxytocin or placebo (saline) nasal spray treatment, were presented with pictures of unfamiliar male human faces displaying either a happy or an angry expression. We found that, depending on the facial expression, the dogs' gaze patterns were affected selectively by oxytocin treatment. After receiving oxytocin, dogs fixated less often on the eye regions of angry faces and revisited (glanced back at) more often the eye regions of smiling (happy) faces than after the placebo treatment. Furthermore, following the oxytocin treatment dogs fixated and revisited the eyes of happy faces significantly more often than the eyes of angry faces. The analysis of dogs' pupil diameters during viewing of human facial expressions indicated that oxytocin may also have a modulatory effect on dogs' emotional arousal. While subjects' pupil sizes were significantly larger when viewing angry faces than happy faces in the control (placebo treatment) condition, oxytocin treatment not only eliminated this effect but caused an opposite pupil response. Overall, these findings suggest that nasal oxytocin administration selectively changes the allocation of attention and emotional arousal in domestic dogs. Oxytocin has the potential to decrease vigilance toward threatening social stimuli and increase the salience of positive social stimuli thus making eye gaze of friendly human faces more salient for dogs. Our study provides further
Full Text Available The neuropeptide oxytocin plays a critical role in social behavior and emotion regulation in mammals. The aim of this study was to explore how nasal oxytocin administration affects gazing behavior during emotional perception in domestic dogs. Looking patterns of dogs, as a measure of voluntary attention, were recorded during the viewing of human facial expression photographs. The pupil diameters of dogs were also measured as a physiological index of emotional arousal. In a placebo-controlled within-subjects experimental design, 43 dogs, after having received either oxytocin or placebo (saline nasal spray treatment, were presented with pictures of unfamiliar male human faces displaying either a happy or an angry expression. We found that, depending on the facial expression, the dogs’ gaze patterns were affected selectively by oxytocin treatment. After receiving oxytocin, dogs fixated less often on the eye regions of angry faces and revisited (glanced back at more often the eye regions of smiling (happy faces than after the placebo treatment. Furthermore, following the oxytocin treatment dogs fixated and revisited the eyes of happy faces significantly more often than the eyes of angry faces. The analysis of dogs’ pupil diameters during viewing of human facial expressions indicated that oxytocin may also have a modulatory effect on dogs’ emotional arousal. While subjects’ pupil sizes were significantly larger when viewing angry faces than happy faces in the control (placebo treatment condition, oxytocin treatment not only eliminated this effect but caused an opposite pupil response. Overall, these findings suggest that nasal oxytocin administration selectively changes the allocation of attention and emotional arousal in domestic dogs. Oxytocin has the potential to decrease vigilance toward threatening social stimuli and increase the salience of positive social stimuli thus making eye gaze of friendly human faces more salient for dogs. Our
Phillips, Kristy; Wright, Bradley J; Kent, Stephen
To determine if cognitive processing, and subjective and physiological responses to stress and relaxation differed between an irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) group and control group. How these variables relate to the severity of IBS symptoms was also determined. Twenty-one IBS participants and 20 controls provided cognitive (attention and processing), subjective (perceived stress and vigour), and physiological (heart rate, blood pressure, and skin conductance) data during a relaxation and stress phase. Logistic regression analyses determined which variables are related to the IBS group and hierarchical linear regression assessed how the variables are related to the severity of IBS symptoms. Subjective and cognitive factors (drowsiness at baseline, total vigour, and reduced Stroop colour-naming accuracy for negative words) are significantly related to IBS, χ2 (3, N=41)=23.67, pself-schema, as well as perceived low vigour were important in categorising IBS. Low subjective vigour and reduced physiological reactivity to both relaxation and stress conditions were associated with IBS severity, suggestive of illness-related allostatic load. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Sweeny, Timothy D; Whitney, David
A person's gaze reveals much about their focus of attention and intentions. Sensitive perception of gaze is thus highly relevant for social interaction, especially when it is directed toward the viewer. Yet observers also tend to overestimate the likelihood that gaze is directed toward them. How might the visual system balance these competing goals, maximizing sensitivity for discriminating gazes that are relatively direct, while at the same time allowing many gazes to appear as if they look toward the viewer? Perceiving gaze is an emergent visual process that involves integrating information from the eyes with the rotation of the head. Here, we examined whether the visual system leverages emergent representation to balance these competing goals. We measured perceived gaze for a large range of pupil and head combinations and found that head rotation has a nonlinear influence on a person's apparent direction of looking, especially when pupil rotations are relatively direct. These perceptual distortions could serve to expand representational space and thereby enhance discriminability of gazes that are relatively direct. We also found that the emergent perception of gaze supports an abundance of direct gaze metamers-different combinations of head and pupil rotations that combine to generate the appearance of gaze directed toward the observer. Our results thus demonstrate a way in which the visual system flexibly integrates information from facial features to optimize social perception. Many gazes can be made to look toward you, yet similar gazes need not appear alike. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Levi Bolin, B; Alcorn, Joseph L; Lile, Joshua A; Rush, Craig R; Rayapati, Abner O; Hays, Lon R; Stoops, William W
Disrupted glutamate homeostasis is thought to contribute to cocaine-use disorder, in particular, by enhancing the incentive salience of cocaine stimuli. n-Acetylcysteine might be useful in cocaine-use disorder by normalizing glutamate function. In prior studies, n-acetylcysteine blocked the reinstatement of cocaine seeking in laboratory animals and reduced the salience of cocaine stimuli and delayed relapse in humans. The present study determined the ability of maintenance on n-acetylcysteine (0 or 2400mg/day, counterbalanced) to reduce the incentive salience of cocaine stimuli, as measured by an attentional bias task, and attenuate intranasal cocaine self-administration (0, 30, and 60mg). Fourteen individuals (N=14) who met criteria for cocaine abuse or dependence completed this within-subjects, double-blind, crossover-design study. Cocaine-cue attentional bias was greatest following administration of 0mg cocaine during placebo maintenance, and was attenuated by n-acetylcysteine. Cocaine maintained responding during placebo and n-acetylcysteine maintenance, but the reinforcing effects of cocaine were significantly attenuated across both maintenance conditions in participants maintained on n-acetylcysteine first compared to participants maintained on placebo first. These results collectively suggest that a reduction in the incentive salience of cocaine-related stimuli during n-acetylcysteine maintenance may be accompanied by reductions in cocaine self-administration. These results are in agreement with, and link, prior preclinical and clinical trial results suggesting that n-acetylcysteine might be useful for preventing cocaine relapse by attenuating the incentive salience of cocaine cues. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Etcheverry, Paul E; Waters, Andrew J; Lam, Cho; Correa-Fernandez, Virmarie; Vidrine, Jennifer Irvin; Cinciripini, Paul M; Wetter, David W
To examine whether initial orienting (IO) and inability to disengage (ITD) attention from negative affective stimuli moderate the association of negative affect with smoking abstinence during a quit attempt. Data were from a longitudinal cohort study of smoking cessation (N = 424). A negative affect modified Stroop task was administered 1 week before and on quit day to measure IO and ITD. Ecological Momentary Assessments were used to create negative affect intercepts and linear slopes for the week before quitting and on quit day. Quit day and long-term abstinence measures were collected. Continuation ratio logit model analyses found significant interactions for prequit negative affect slope with prequit ITD, odds ratio (OR) = 0.738 (0.57, 0.96), p = .02, and for quit day negative affect intercept with quit day ITD, OR = 0.62 (0.41, 950), p = .03, predicting abstinence. The Prequit Negative Affect Intercept × Prequit IO interaction predicting quit day abstinence was significant, OR = 1.42 (1.06, 1.90), p = .02, as was the Quit Day Negative Affect Slope × Quit Day IO interaction predicting long-term abstinence, OR = 1.45 (1.02, 2.08), p = .04. The hypothesis that the association of negative affect with smoking abstinence would be moderated by ITD was generally supported. Among individuals with high ITD, negative affect was inversely related to abstinence, but unrelated to abstinence among individuals with lower levels of ITD. Unexpectedly, among individuals with low IO, negative affect was inversely related to abstinence, but unrelated to abstinence among individuals with higher levels of ITD. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Etcheverry, Paul E.; Waters, Andrew J.; Lam, Cho; Correa-Fernandez, Virmarie; Vidrine, Jennifer Irvin; Cinciripini, Paul M.; Wetter, David W.
Objective To examine whether initial orienting (IO) and inability to disengage attention (ITD) from negative affective stimuli moderate the association of negative affect with smoking abstinence during a quit attempt. Methods Data were from a longitudinal cohort study of smoking cessation (N=424). A negative affect modified Stroop was administered one week before and on quit day to measure IO and ITD. Ecological Momentary Assessments were used to create negative affect intercepts and linear slopes for the week before quitting and on quit day. Quit day and long-term abstinence measures were collected. Results Continuation ratio (CR) logit model analyses found significant interactions of pre-quit negative affect slope with pre-quit ITD [OR = .738(.57, .96), p= .02] and quit day negative affect intercept with quit day ITD [OR = .62(.41, 950), p= .03] predicting abstinence. The interaction of pre-quit negative affect intercept and pre-quit IO predicting quit day abstinence was significant [OR = 1.42(1.06, 1.90), p= .02], as was the interaction of quit day negative affect slope and quit day IO predicting long-term abstinence [OR = 1.45(1.02, 2.08), p= .04]. Conclusions The hypothesis that the association of negative affect with smoking abstinence would be moderated by ITD was generally supported. Among individuals with high ITD, negative affect was inversely related to abstinence, but unrelated to abstinence among individuals with lower levels of ITD. Unexpectedly, among individuals with low IO negative affect was inversely related to abstinence, but unrelated to abstinence among individuals with higher levels of ITD. PMID:27505211
Ashley, Victoria; Honzel, Nikki; Larsen, Jary; Justus, Timothy; Swick, Diane
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) involves debilitating symptoms that can disrupt cognitive functioning. The emotional Stroop has been commonly used to examine the impact of PTSD on attentional control, but no published study has yet used it with Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans, and only one previous study has compared groups on habituation to trauma-related words. We administered the emotional Stroop, the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and the PTSD Checklist (PCL) to 30 veterans with PTSD, 30 military controls, and 30 civilian controls. Stroop word types included Combat, Matched-neutral, Neutral, Positive and Negative. Compared to controls, veterans with PTSD were disproportionately slower in responding to Combat words. They were also slower and less accurate overall, did not show interference on Negative or Positive words relative to Neutral, and showed a trend for delayed but successful habituation to Combat words. Higher PCL and BDI scores also correlated with larger interference effects. Because of its specificity in detecting attentional biases to trauma-related words, the emotional Stroop task may serve as a useful pre- and post task with intervention studies of PTSD patients.
Sarah M. Sass
Full Text Available Anxiety is characterized by attentional biases to threat, but findings are inconsistent for depression. To address this inconsistency, the present study systematically assessed the role of co-occurring anxiety in attentional bias in depression. In addition, the role of emotional valence, arousal, and gender was explored. Ninety-two nonpatients completed the Penn State Worry Questionnaire (PSWQ; Meyer et al., 1990; Molina & Borkovec, 1994 and portions of the Mood and Anxiety Symptom Questionnaire (MASQ; Watson, Clark, et al., 1995; Watson, Weber, et al., 1995. Individuals reporting high levels of depression and low levels of anxiety (depression only, high levels of depression and anxiety (combined, or low levels of both (control completed an emotion-word Stroop task during event-related brain potential (ERP recording. Pleasant and unpleasant words were matched on emotional arousal level. An attentional bias was not evident in the depression-only group. Women in the combined group had larger N200 amplitude for pleasant than unpleasant stimuli, and the combined group as a whole had larger right-lateralized P300 amplitude for pleasant than unpleasant stimuli, consistent with an early and later attentional bias that is specific to unpleasant valence in the combined group. Men in the control group had larger N200 amplitude for pleasant than unpleasant stimuli, consistent with an early attentional bias that is specific to pleasant valence. The present study indicates that the nature and time course of attention prompted by emotional valence and not arousal differentiates depression with and without anxiety, with some evidence of gender moderating early effects. Overall, results suggest that co-occurring anxiety is more important than previously acknowledged in demonstrating evidence of attentional biases in depression.
Uusberg, Helen; Peet, Krista; Uusberg, Andero; Akkermann, Kirsti
Appearance-related attention biases are thought to contribute to body image disturbances. We investigated how preoccupation with body image is associated with attention biases to body size, focusing on the role of social comparison processes and automaticity. Thirty-six women varying on self-reported preoccupation compared their actual body size to size-modified images of either themselves or a figure-matched peer. Amplification of earlier (N170, P2) and later (P3, LPP) ERP components recorded under low vs. high concurrent working memory load were analyzed. Women with high preoccupation exhibited an earlier bias to larger bodies of both self and peer. During later processing stages, they exhibited a stronger bias to enlarged as well as reduced self-images and a lack of sensitivity to size-modifications of the peer-image. Working memory load did not affect these biases systematically. Current findings suggest that preoccupation with body image involves an earlier attention bias to weight increase cues and later over-engagement with own figure. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Bultitude, Janet H.
Hemispatial neglect (‘neglect’) is a disabling condition that can follow damage to the right side of the brain, in which patients show difficulty in responding to or orienting towards objects and events that occur on the left side of space. Symptoms of neglect can manifest in both space- and object-based frames of reference. Although patients can show a combination of these two forms of neglect, they are considered separable and have distinct neurological bases. In recent years considerable evidence has emerged to demonstrate that spatial symptoms of neglect can be reduced by an intervention called prism adaptation. Patients point towards objects viewed through prismatic lenses that shift the visual image to the right. Approximately five minutes of repeated pointing results in a leftward recalibration of pointing and improved performance on standard clinical tests for neglect. The understanding of prism adaptation has also been advanced through studies of healthy participants, in whom adaptation to leftward prismatic shifts results in temporary neglect-like performance. Here we examined the effect of prism adaptation on the performance of healthy participants who completed a computerised test of space- and object-based attention. Participants underwent adaptation to leftward- or rightward-shifting prisms, or performed neutral pointing according to a between-groups design. Significant pointing after-effects were found for both prism groups, indicating successful adaptation. In addition, the results of the computerised test revealed larger reaction-time costs associated with shifts of attention between two objects compared to shifts of attention within the same object, replicating previous work. However there were no differences in the performance of the three groups, indicating that prism adaptation did not influence space- or object-based attention for this task. When combined with existing literature, the results are consistent with the proposal that prism
Wald, I; Fruchter, E; Ginat, K; Stolin, E; Dagan, D; Bliese, P D; Quartana, P J; Sipos, M L; Pine, D S; Bar-Haim, Y
Efficacy of pre-trauma prevention for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has not yet been established in a randomized controlled trial. Attention bias modification training (ABMT), a computerized intervention, is thought to mitigate stress-related symptoms by targeting disruptions in threat monitoring. We examined the efficacy of ABMT delivered before combat in mitigating risk for PTSD following combat. We conducted a double-blind, four-arm randomized controlled trial of 719 infantry soldiers to compare the efficacy of eight sessions of ABMT (n = 179), four sessions of ABMT (n = 184), four sessions of attention control training (ACT; n = 180), or no-training control (n = 176). Outcome symptoms were measured at baseline, 6-month follow-up, 10 days following combat exposure, and 4 months following combat. Primary outcome was PTSD prevalence 4 months post-combat determined in a clinical interview using the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale. Secondary outcomes were self-reported PTSD and depression symptoms, collected at all four assessments. PTSD prevalence 4 months post-combat was 7.8% in the no-training control group, 6.7% with eight-session ABMT, 2.6% with four-session ABMT, and 5% with ACT. Four sessions of ABMT reduced risk for PTSD relative to the no-training condition (odds ratio 3.13, 95% confidence interval 1.01-9.22, p < 0.05, number needed to treat = 19.2). No other between-group differences were found. The results were consistent across a variety of analytic techniques and data imputation approaches. Four sessions of ABMT, delivered prior to combat deployment, mitigated PTSD risk following combat exposure. Given its low cost and high scalability potential, and observed number needed to treat, research into larger-scale applications is warranted. The ClinicalTrials.gov identifier is NCT01723215.
Aviram-Friedman, Roni; Astbury, Nerys; Ochner, Christopher N; Contento, Isobel; Geliebter, Allan
To refine the biobehavioral markers of binge eating disorder (BED). We conducted fMRI brain scans using images of high energy processed food (HEPF), low energy unprocessed food (LEUF), or non-foods (NF) in 42 adults (obese with BED [obese -BED; n=13] and obese with no BED [obese non-BED; n=29]) selected via ads. Two blood oxygenated level dependent (BOLD) signal contrast maps were examined: food versus nonfood, and HEPF versus LEUF. In addition, score differences on the disinhibition scale were correlated with BOLD signals. food versus nonfood showed greater BOLD activity for BED in emotional, motivational and somatosensory brain areas: insula, anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), Brodmann areas (BA) 19 & 32, inferior parietal lobule (IPL), posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), and lingual, postcentral, middle temporal and cuneate gyri (p≤0.005; k≥88). HEPF versus LEUF showed greater BOLD activity for BED in inhibitory brain regions: BA 6, middle and superior frontal gyri (p<0.01; k≥119). The groups also differed in the relationships between disinhibition and BOLD activity in the postcentral gyrus (PCG; p=0.04) and ACC-BA 32 (p=0.02). For all participants jointly, PCG BOLD amplitude predicted greater disinhibition (p=0.04). Food images elicited neural activity indicating attention bias (cuneate & PCG), emotion dysregulation (BA 19 & 32), and disinhibition (MFG, BA6 & SFG) in obese with BED. These may help tailor a treatment for the obesity with BED phenotype. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Nuijten, Mascha; Blanken, Peter; van den Brink, Wim; Goudriaan, Anna E.; Hendriks, Vincent M.
High impulsivity and attentional bias are common in cocaine-dependent patients and predict poor treatment outcomes. The pharmacological agent modafinil is studied for its cognitive-enhancing capacities and may therefore improve clinical outcomes in crack-cocaine dependent patients. In this study, we
Freeth, M.; Ropar, D.; Chapman, P.; Mitchell, P.
The reported experiments aimed to investigate whether a person and his or her gaze direction presented in the context of a naturalistic scene cause perception, memory, and attention to be biased in typically developing adolescents and high-functioning adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). A novel computerized image manipulation program…
Quinn, Paul C.; Doran, Matthew M.; Reiss, Jason E.; Hoffman, James E.
Previous looking time studies have shown that infants use the heads of cat and dog images to form category representations for these animal classes. The present research used an eye-tracking procedure to determine the time course of attention to the head and whether it reflects a preexisting bias or online learning. Six- to 7-month-olds were…
Wagner, Daymond; Eslinger, Paul J; Barrett, A M
To characterize the mediation of attention and action in space following traumatic brain injury (TBI). Two exploratory analyses were performed to determine the influence of spatial 'Aiming' motor versus spatial 'Where' bias on line bisection in TBI participants. The first experiment compared performance according to severity and location of injury in TBI. The second experiment examined bisection performance in a larger TBI sample against a matched control group. In both experiments, participants bisected lines in near and far space using an apparatus that allowed for the fractionation of spatial Aiming versus Where error components. In the first experiment, participants with severe injuries tended to incur rightward error when starting from the right in far space, compared with participants with mild injuries. In the second experiment, when performance was examined at the individual level, more participants with TBI tended to incur rightward motor error compared to controls. TBI may cause frontal-subcortical cognitive dysfunction and asymmetric motor perseveration, affecting spatial Aiming bias on line bisection. Potential effects on real-world function need further investigation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Heitmann, Janika; van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E; Vermeulen, Karin M; Ostafin, Brian D; MacLeod, Colin; Wiers, Reinout W; DeFuentes-Merillas, Laura; Fledderus, Martine; Markus, Wiebren; de Jong, Peter J
The automatic tendency to attend to and focus on substance-related cues in the environment (attentional bias), has been found to contribute to the persistence of addiction. Attentional bias modification (ABM) interventions might, therefore, contribute to treatment outcome and the reduction of relapse rates. Based on some promising research findings, we designed a study to test the clinical relevance of ABM as an add-on component of regular intervention for alcohol and cannabis patients. The current protocol describes a study which will investigate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a newly developed home-delivered, multi-session, internet-based ABM (iABM) intervention as an add-on to treatment as usual (TAU). TAU consists of cognitive behavioural therapy-based treatment according to the Dutch guidelines for the treatment of addiction. Participants (N = 213) will be outpatients from specialized addiction care institutions diagnosed with alcohol or cannabis dependency who will be randomly assigned to one of three conditions: TAU + iABM; TAU + placebo condition; TAU-only. Primary outcome measures are substance use, craving, and rates of relapse. Changes in attentional bias will be measured to investigate whether changes in primary outcome measures can be attributed to the modification of attentional bias. Indices of cost-effectiveness and secondary physical and psychological complaints (depression, anxiety, and stress) are assessed as secondary outcome measures. This randomized control trial will be the first to investigate whether a home-delivered, multi-session iABM intervention is (cost-) effective in reducing relapse rates in alcohol and cannabis dependency as an add-on to TAU, compared with an active and a waiting list control group. If proven effective, this ABM intervention could be easily implemented as a home-delivered component of current TAU. Netherlands Trial Register, NTR5497 , registered on 18th September 2015.
Çek, Demet; Sánchez, Alvaro; Timpano, Kiara R
Attention bias to threat (e.g., disgust faces) is a cognitive vulnerability factor for social anxiety occurring in early stages of information processing. Few studies have investigated the relationship between social anxiety and attention biases, in conjunction with emotional and cognitive responses to a social stressor. Elucidating these links would shed light on maintenance factors of social anxiety and could help identify malleable treatment targets. This study examined the associations between social anxiety level, attention bias to disgust (AB-disgust), subjective emotional and physiological reactivity to a social stressor, and subsequent post-event processing (PEP). We tested a mediational model where social anxiety level indirectly predicted subsequent PEP via its association with AB-disgust and immediate subjective emotional reactivity to social stress. Fifty-five undergraduates (45% female) completed a passive viewing task. Eye movements were tracked during the presentation of social stimuli (e.g., disgust faces) and used to calculate AB-disgust. Next, participants gave an impromptu speech in front of a video camera and watched a neutral video, followed by the completion of a PEP measure. Although there was no association between AB-disgust and physiological reactivity to the stressor, AB-disgust was significantly associated with greater subjective emotional reactivity from baseline to the speech. Analyses supported a partial mediation model where AB-disgust and subjective emotional reactivity to a social stressor partially accounted for the link between social anxiety levels and PEP. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Cintrón-Valentín, Myrna; Ellis, Nick C.
Eye-tracking was used to investigate the attentional processes whereby different types of focus on form (FonF) instruction assist learners in overcoming learned attention and blocking effects in their online processing of second language input. English native speakers viewed Latin utterances combining lexical and morphological cues to temporality…
Thomas, Nicole A; Burkitt, Jennifer A; Patrick, Regan E; Elias, Lorin J
People tend to display the left cheek when posing for a portrait; however, this effect does not appear to generalise to advertising. The amount of body visible in the image and the sex of the poser might also contribute to the posing bias. Portraits also exhibit lateral lighting biases, with most images being lit from the left. This effect might also be present in advertisements. A total of 2801 full-page advertisements were sampled and coded for posing direction, lighting direction, sex of model, and amount of body showing. Images of females showed an overall leftward posing bias, but the biases in males depended on the amount of body visible. Males demonstrated rightward posing biases for head-only images. Overall, images tended to be lit from the top left corner. The two factors of posing and lighting biases appear to influence one another. Leftward-lit images had more leftward poses than rightward, while the opposite occurred for rightward-lit images. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the posing biases in advertisements are dependent on the amount of body showing in the image, and that biases in lighting direction interact with these posing biases.
Janet H. Bultitude
Full Text Available Hemispatial neglect (‘neglect’ is a disabling condition that can follow damage to the right side of the brain, in which patients show difficulty in responding to or orienting towards objects and events that occur on the left side of space. Symptoms of neglect can manifest in both space- and object-based frames of reference. Although patients can show a combination of these two forms of neglect, they are considered separable and have distinct neurological bases. In recent years considerable evidence has emerged to demonstrate that spatial symptoms of neglect can be reduced by an intervention called prism adaptation. Patients point towards objects viewed through prismatic lenses that shift the visual image to the right. Approximately five minutes of repeated pointing results in a leftward recalibration of pointing and improved performance on standard clinical tests for neglect. The understanding of prism adaptation has also been advanced through studies of healthy participants, in whom adaptation to leftward prismatic shifts results in temporary neglect-like performance. Here we examined the effect of prism adaptation on the performance of healthy participants who completed a computerised test of space- and object-based attention. Participants underwent adaptation to leftward- or rightward-shifting prisms, or performed neutral pointing according to a between-groups design. Significant pointing after-effects were found for both prism groups, indicating successful adaptation. In addition, the results of the computerised test revealed larger reaction-time costs associated with shifts of attention between two objects compared to shifts of attention within the same object, replicating previous work. However there were no differences in the performance of the three groups, indicating that prism adaptation did not influence space- or object-based attention for this task. When combined with existing literature, the results are consistent with the
Full Text Available People with anxiety disorders show an attentional bias for threat (AB, and Attention Bias Modification (ABM procedures have been found to reduce this bias. However, the underlying processes accounting for this effect remain poorly understood. One explanation suggests that ABM requires the modification of attention control, driven by the recruitment of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC. In the present double-blind study, we examined whether modifying left DLPFC activation influences the effect of ABM on AB. We used transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS to directly modulate cortical excitability of the left DLPFC during an ABM procedure designed to reduce AB to threat. Anodal tDCS increases excitability, whereas cathodal tDCS decreases it. We randomly assigned highly trait-anxious individuals to one of three conditions: 1 ABM combined with cathodal tDCS, 2 ABM combined with anodal tDCS, or 3 ABM combined with sham tDCS. We assessed the effects of these manipulations on both reaction times and eye-movements on a task indexing AB. Results indicate that combining ABM and anodal tDCS over the left DLPFC reduces the total duration that participants' gaze remains fixated on threat, as assessed using eye-tracking measurement. However, in contrast to previous studies, there were no changes in AB from baseline to post-training for participants that received ABM without tDCS. As the tendency to maintain attention to threat is known to play an important role in the maintenance of anxiety, the present findings suggest that anodal tDCS over the left DLPFC may be considered as a promising tool to reduce the maintenance of gaze to threat. Implications for future translational research combining ABM and tDCS are discussed.
Leeners, Brigitte; Kruger, Tillmann H C; Geraedts, Kirsten; Tronci, Enrico; Mancini, Toni; Ille, Fabian; Egli, Marcel; Röblitz, Susanna; Saleh, Lanja; Spanaus, Katharina; Schippert, Cordula; Zhang, Yuangyuang; Hengartner, Michael P
Background: Interpretation of observational studies on associations between prefrontal cognitive functioning and hormone levels across the female menstrual cycle is complicated due to small sample sizes and poor replicability. Methods: This observational multisite study comprised data of n = 88 menstruating women from Hannover, Germany, and Zurich, Switzerland, assessed during a first cycle and n = 68 re-assessed during a second cycle to rule out practice effects and false-positive chance findings. We assessed visuospatial working memory, attention, cognitive bias and hormone levels at four consecutive time-points across both cycles. In addition to inter-individual differences we examined intra-individual change over time (i.e., within-subject effects). Results: Estrogen, progesterone and testosterone did not relate to inter-individual differences in cognitive functioning. There was a significant negative association between intra-individual change in progesterone and change in working memory from pre-ovulatory to mid-luteal phase during the first cycle, but that association did not replicate in the second cycle. Intra-individual change in testosterone related negatively to change in cognitive bias from menstrual to pre-ovulatory as well as from pre-ovulatory to mid-luteal phase in the first cycle, but these associations did not replicate in the second cycle. Conclusions: There is no consistent association between women's hormone levels, in particular estrogen and progesterone, and attention, working memory and cognitive bias. That is, anecdotal findings observed during the first cycle did not replicate in the second cycle, suggesting that these are false-positives attributable to random variation and systematic biases such as practice effects. Due to methodological limitations, positive findings in the published literature must be interpreted with reservation.
Full Text Available Background: Interpretation of observational studies on associations between prefrontal cognitive functioning and hormone levels across the female menstrual cycle is complicated due to small sample sizes and poor replicability.Methods: This observational multisite study comprised data of n = 88 menstruating women from Hannover, Germany, and Zurich, Switzerland, assessed during a first cycle and n = 68 re-assessed during a second cycle to rule out practice effects and false-positive chance findings. We assessed visuospatial working memory, attention, cognitive bias and hormone levels at four consecutive time-points across both cycles. In addition to inter-individual differences we examined intra-individual change over time (i.e., within-subject effects.Results: Estrogen, progesterone and testosterone did not relate to inter-individual differences in cognitive functioning. There was a significant negative association between intra-individual change in progesterone and change in working memory from pre-ovulatory to mid-luteal phase during the first cycle, but that association did not replicate in the second cycle. Intra-individual change in testosterone related negatively to change in cognitive bias from menstrual to pre-ovulatory as well as from pre-ovulatory to mid-luteal phase in the first cycle, but these associations did not replicate in the second cycle.Conclusions: There is no consistent association between women's hormone levels, in particular estrogen and progesterone, and attention, working memory and cognitive bias. That is, anecdotal findings observed during the first cycle did not replicate in the second cycle, suggesting that these are false-positives attributable to random variation and systematic biases such as practice effects. Due to methodological limitations, positive findings in the published literature must be interpreted with reservation.
Kolarova, Julieta D; Ayoub, Iyad M; Gazmuri, Raúl J
When given during closed-chest resuscitation, cariporide (4-isopropyl-methylsulfonylbenzoyl-guanidine methanesulfonate; a selective inhibitor of the Na(+)/H(+) exchanger isoform-1) enables generation of viable perfusion pressures with less depth of compression. We hypothesized that this effect results from greater blood flows generated for a given depth of compression. Two series of 14 rats each underwent 10 min of untreated ventricular fibrillation followed by 8 min of chest compression before defibrillation was attempted. Compression depth was adjusted to maintain an aortic diastolic pressure (ADP) between 26 and 28 mmHg in the first series and between 36 and 38 mmHg in the second series. Within each series, rats were randomized to receive cariporide (3 mg/kg) or NaCl (0.9%; control) before chest compression was started. Blood flow was measured using 15-mum fluorescent microspheres. Less depth of compression was required to maintain the target ADP when cariporide was present in both series 1 (13.6 +/- 1.2 vs. 16.6 +/- 1.2 mm; P < 0.001) and series 2 (15.3 +/- 1.0 vs. 18.9 +/- 1.5 mm; P < 0.001). Despite less compression depth, the cardiac index in cariporide-treated rats was comparable to control rats in series 1 (11.1 +/- 0.7 vs. 11.3 +/- 1.4 ml.min(-1).kg(-1); P = not significant) but higher in series 2 (15.5 +/- 2.3 vs. 9.9 +/- 1.4 ml.min(-1).kg(-1); P < 0.05). Increases in compression depth (from series 1 to series 2) increased myocardial, cerebral, and adrenal blood flow in cariporide-treated rats. We conclude that cariporide enhances the efficacy of closed-chest resuscitation by leftward shift of the flow-depth relationship.
Dorrian, Jillian; McLean, Benjamin; Banks, Siobhan; Loetscher, Tobias
There is evidence that a decrease in alertness is associated with a rightward shift of attention. Alertness fluctuates throughout the day and peak times differ between individuals. Some individuals feel most alert in the morning; others in the evening. Our aim was to investigate the influence of morningness/eveningness and time of testing on spatial attention. It was predicted that attention would shift rightwards when individuals were tested at their non-optimal time as compared to tests at peak times. A crowdsourcing internet marketplace, Amazon Mechanical Turk (AMT) was used to collect data. Given questions surrounding the quality of data drawn from such virtual environments, this study also investigated the sensitivity of data to demonstrate known effects from the literature. Five-hundred and thirty right-handed participants took part between 6 am and 11 pm. Participants answered demographic questions, completed a question from the Horne and Östberg Morningness/Eveningness Scale, and performed a spatial attentional task (landmark task). For the landmark task, participants indicated whether the left or right segment of each of 72 pre-bisected lines was longer (longer side counterbalanced). Response bias was calculated by subtracting the 'number of left responses' from the 'number of right responses', and dividing by the number of trials. Negative values indicate a leftward attentional bias, and positive values a rightward bias. Well-supported relationships between variables were reflected in the dataset. Controlling for age, there was a significant interaction between morningness/eveningness and time of testing (morning=6 am-2.30 pm, evening=2.30 pm-11 pm) (pattention from peak to off-peak times of testing for those identifying as morning types, but not evening types. Findings support the utility of crowdsourcing internet marketplaces as data collection vehicles for research. Results also suggest that the deployment of spatial attention is modulated by an
Full Text Available Background: Today, within creased substance, type of substance used has changed. Therefore, drug abuse in population of crack to the stimulant drugs (amphetamine particularly crystal is expanding and increasing. Therefore, the purpose of the present study was the comparison of attentional bias and difficulty of emotional states regulation and their correlation with craving severity in drug abuser methamphetamines and crack. Materials and Methods: Type of research was descriptive analytical correlation. Population was total of users with methamphetamines and crack in summer and fall 2011 at the city of Isfahan, and 34 users with crystal with daily at least one year were selected on the basis of the snow ball sampling and 31 users with crack with daily at least one year were selected on the basis of the sample sampling. The difficulties emotion regulation scale (DERS, Stroop test and OCDUS were used as the outcome measures. For findings used of descriptive statistics and multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA and regression analysis were used. Results: The results of analysis of variance showed that between drug abuser crystal and crack significantly differed of attentional bias and difficulty of emotional states regulation. The greatest differences to components of a lack of transparency, lack of emotional awareness, limit emotional states regulation strategies and of emotional responses. But, only the variable non-acceptance negative emotional of subscale of the difficulty of emotional states regulation was able to craving (as an important indicator of durable use substance in of both crack and crystal predicted. This variable is only 13% of the variance craving in drug abuser crack and crystal can be explained. Other findings showed that although there is no difference between the two groups in the intensity of craving, but attentional bias among drug abuser crack and crystal was a significant difference. Conclusion: Overall, can be said
Duerksen, Kari N; Friedrich, Trista E; Elias, Lorin J
People tend to exhibit a leftward bias in posing. Various studies suggest that posing to the left portrays a stronger emotion, whereas posing to the right portrays a more neutral emotion. Religions such as Christianity emphasize the role of strong emotions in religious experience, whereas religions such as Buddhism emphasize the calming of emotions as being important. In the present study, we investigated if the emphasis on emotionality of a religion influences the depiction of their religious figures. Specifically, we coded 484 paintings of Jesus and Buddha from online art databases for whether the deity exhibited a left bias, right bias, or central face presentation. The posing biases were analysed to discover whether paintings of Jesus would more frequently depict a leftward bias than paintings of Buddha. Jesus is more commonly depicted with a leftward bias than Buddha, and Buddha is more commonly depicted with a central face presentation than Jesus. These findings support the idea that the amount of emotionality that is to be conveyed in artwork influences the whether the subject is posed with a leftward bias.
Negative attitudes toward Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can lead to delays in help-seeking, negative self-image, social isolation, social rejection, and treatment barriers. The aim of the current research was to extend the research literature on ADHD by using a measure of implicit cognition to complement existing questionnaire/self-report data. Study 1 used a behavioural implicit measure known as the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) and three explicit measures...
Ashley, Victoria; Honzel, Nikki; Larsen, Jary; Justus, Timothy; Swick, Diane
Background Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) involves debilitating symptoms that can disrupt cognitive functioning. The emotional Stroop has been commonly used to examine the impact of PTSD on attentional control, but no published study has yet used it with Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans, and only one previous study has compared groups on habituation to trauma-related words. Methods We administered the emotional Stroop, the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and the PTSD Checklist (PCL) ...
Jabben, Nienke; Arts, Baer; Jongen, Ellen M M; Smulders, Fren T Y; van Os, Jim; Krabbendam, Lydia
Research in cognitive processes and attitudes in bipolar disorder is scarce and has provided mixed findings, possibly due to differences in current mood state. It is unclear whether alterations in cognitive processes and attitudes are only related to the depressive mood states of bipolar patients or also represent a vulnerability marker for the development of future (depressive) episodes. This was investigated in the current study. Both implicit (attentional bias for emotional words) and explicit (dysfunctional attitudes and personality characteristics) measures of cognitive processes and attitudes were assessed in 77 bipolar patients with varying levels of depressive symptoms (depressed=17, euthymic n=60), their healthy first-degree relatives (n=39) and a healthy control group (n=61). Analyses of variance were used to investigate differences between groups. Mildly depressed patients with bipolar disorder demonstrated an attentional bias away from positive emotional words and showed increased dysfunctional attitudes and higher levels of neuroticism. Euthymic patients were largely comparable to healthy controls and only differed from controls in higher levels of neuroticism. Relatives were similar to controls on all measures, although they significantly differed from bipolar patients in displaying less neuroticism and more extraversion. No firm conclusions regarding causality can be drawn from the associations that were found between cognitive processes and attitudes and the evolution of mood symptoms in bipolar disorder. Alterations in cognitive processes and attitudes in bipolar patients appear to be mostly related to the expression of mood symptomatology rather than to the vulnerability for bipolar disorder. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
David, Oana A; Capris, David; Jarda, Alexandra
Parenting programs are currently treatment of choice for behavioral disorders in children and one of their main components is reducing the negativity bias in the child-parent dyad. The Rational Positive Parenting Program (rPPP) is a program with a special focus on parent emotion-regulation functional reappraisal strategies, which has recently received consistent support for reducing child externalizing and internalizing disorders. In the last years, online interventions were proliferated and the Attention Bias Modification (ABM) becoming a promising implicit therapeutic intervention based on attention deployment emotion-regulation strategy, or adjunctive module to usual treatments, with results in multiple domains, varying from pain to self-esteem and emotional disorders (e.g., anxiety). We conducted two studies to investigate (1) the efficacy of the ABM procedures applied to parents and (2) the efficacy of the online version of the rPPP augmented with an ABM module. A total of 42 parents of children aged 2-12 years old participated in the first study, being allocated either to the ABM training or wait-list. Positive results were reported by the parents participating in the ABM group for own distress, satisfaction, positive interactions with the child, and child's strengths. In the second study, 53 parents and their children were allocated either in the rPPP group or in the rPPP + ABM group. Results show that ABM training can boost the effects of the rPPP on the strengths of children reported by the parents after the intervention. Findings are discussed in the light of limited research on using online tools for coaching effective emotion-regulation strategies for parents.
Full Text Available Aim: Addiction to opium can be resulted to different effects. Current research designed in order to comprise if neuro-psychological functions among Amphetamine consumers and normal people. Method: Research design was causal-comparative design which performed in consumers and normal people. Research population was all opium consumers of Bahar city. Addict group included of 33 Amphetamine consumers who were referred to Baharestan addiction withdrawal center by snowball sampling. The comparison group included 39 normal people that matched with addict group with consideration of age, sex, education. All samples were studied by technical management of center and by using of perceptual diagnostic tests. Wisconsin cards, reaction time tests (simple, diagnostic, and selective and attention bias (Stroop was used. Results: the results of the research indicated that Amphetamine consumers were significantly different with normal people in consideration of error number, but there wasn’t significant difference on error in Wisconsin test. In reaction time Amphetamine consumers had least reaction time and highest number of errors, in three states. In simple trial there weren’t significant difference, but two groups were significant different in selective and diagnostic trial on time and number of errors. Also, there wasn’t significant difference on attention bias with consideration of error, but there was significant difference with consideration of time. Conclusion: on the basis of results it can be claimed Amphetamine consumption can be affected on neuro-cognitive functions. Identifying and understanding of these factors can be useful in better understanding of problem, and can be led to different therapeutic treatment.
Full Text Available The present study aimed to investigate the processes through which individuals with social anxiety attend to and interpret compound emotional expressions of the face and body. Incongruent face-body compound images that combined an angry face (or body with a fearful, sad, or happy body (or face were presented to a social anxiety group (SA; n=22 and a healthy control group (HC; n=22. The participants were instructed to interpret the emotional state of the image, and their eye-movements and behavioral responses were measured. The results revealed that both group showed longer scanpath length during the recognition of compound images which combined angry face with angry, fearful, sadness, or happy body. The SA group also showed longer scanpath length in congruent face-body compound images of fear and sad. Additionally, the SA group fixated for a shorter period of time on the face and longer on the body than the HC group. Regarding emotion interpretation, the SA group was more likely to interpret the emotional state of incongruent face-body compound images based on the body than the HC group. These findings provide a preliminary observation that individuals with social anxiety showed different attentional bias pattern by congruency of face-body compound images and that it might have biased their interpretations of the emotional states.
Lowe, Robyn; Menzies, Ross; Packman, Ann; O'Brian, Sue; Jones, Mark; Onslow, Mark
Background: Many adults who stutter presenting for speech treatment experience social anxiety disorder. The presence of mental health disorders in adults who stutter has been implicated in a failure to maintain speech treatment benefits. Contemporary theories of social anxiety disorder propose that the condition is maintained by negative…
Full Text Available There is an ongoing debate whether an impairment of visual attentional functions constitutes an additional or even an isolated deficit of developmental dyslexia (DD. Especially performance in tasks that require the processing of multiple visual elements in parallel has been reported to be impaired in DD. We review studies that used parameter-based assessment for identifying and quantifying impaired aspect(s of visual attention that underlie this multi-element-processing deficit in DD. These studies used the mathematical framework provided by the ‘theory of visual attention’ (TVA; Bundesen, 1990 to derive quantitative measures of general attentional resources and attentional weighting aspects on the basis of behavioral performance in whole- and partial-report tasks. Based on parameter estimates in children and adults with DD, the reviewed studies support a slowed perceptual processing speed as an underlying primary deficit in DD. Moreover, a reduction in visual short term memory storage capacity seems to present a modulating component, contributing to difficulties in written language processing. Furthermore, comparing the spatial distributions of attentional weights in children and adults suggest that having limited reading and writing skills might impair the development of a slight leftward bias, that is typical for unimpaired adult readers.
Rettie, Hannah C; Hogan, Lee M; Cox, W Miles
This study assessed relationships between clients' attentional bias (AB) for different types of stimuli and their treatment outcomes. Alcohol AB during detoxification has previously been shown to predict relapse, but further research was needed to clarify this relationship. The current study determined whether AB for recovery-related words would also predict treatment outcome. Participants were 45 clients undergoing alcohol detoxification, and a control group of 36 staff members. They rated words for personal relevance in four categories (alcohol-related, neutral, positive change-related, and negative change-related). Participants completed an individualized Stroop task containing their chosen words. They were also assessed on readiness-to-change, difficulties with emotion regulation, drinking problems, anxiety, and depression. Clients were interviewed at a three-month follow-up to determine their treatment outcome. As predicted, questionnaire measures did not predict clients' treatment outcome (p > .05). A logistic regression model indicated that the best predictor of treatment outcome was AB for positive change-related words (p = .048), with successful individuals having less AB for these words than for the other word categories. Although this finding was unexpected, it was supported by significant relationships between positive change-related interference scores and continuous measures of drinking at follow-up [i.e. number of units drunk (p = .039) and number of drinking days (p = .018)]. The results suggest that positive change-related words are a better predictor of treatment outcome than are either alcohol-related words or negative change-related words. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Klein, A.M.; van Niekerk, R.; ten Brink, G.; Rapee, R.M.; Hudson, J.L.; Bögels, S.M.; Becker, E.S.; Rinck, M.
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Cognitive theories suggest that cognitive biases may be related and together influence the anxiety response. However, little is known about the interrelations of cognitive bias tasks and whether they allow for an improved prediction of fear-related behavior in addition to
Rieger, Elizabeth; Dolan, Ashleigh; Thomas, Brittany; Bell, Jason
Interpersonal dysfunction and weight/shape-based self-worth have been implicated as key constructs for eating disorders, although the relationship between these two concepts is under-researched. This study investigated the moderating role of weight/shape-based self-worth in terms of the impact of interpersonal rejection on attentional bias regarding thin-ideal and non-thin images. Participants were 94 females without an eating disorder, who were exposed to either interpersonal rejection or acceptance (using the Cyberball paradigm), and subsequently assessed in terms of their attentional biases regarding thin-ideal and non-thin images. Results revealed that weight/shape-based self-worth moderated the relationship between interpersonal rejection/acceptance and attentional biases for thin-ideal (but not non-thin) images. Specifically, participants with a greater tendency to base their self-worth on weight/shape demonstrated reduced avoidance of thin-ideal images when rejected relative to those who were accepted. The findings support the role of interpersonal rejection in eliciting attentional disturbances among those with higher body weight/shape-based self-worth. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Ranzini, Mariagrazia; Carbè, Katia; Gevers, Wim
Number interval bisection consists of estimating the mid-number within a pair (1-9=>5). Healthy adults and right-brain damage patients can show biased performance in this task, underestimating and overestimating the mid-number, respectively. The role of visuospatial attention during this task, and its interplay with other cognitive abilities (e.g., working memory) is still object of debate. In this study we explored the relation between visuospatial attention and individual differences in working memory and executive functions during number interval bisection. To manipulate the deployment of visuospatial attention, healthy participants tracked a dot moving to the left or moving to the right while bisecting numerical intervals. We also collected information concerning verbal and visuospatial short-term memory span, and concerning verbal and visuospatial fluency scores. Beside replicating what is typically observed in this task (e.g., underestimation bias), a correlation was observed between verbal short-term memory and bisection bias, and an interesting relation between performance in the number interval bisection, verbal short-term memory, and visuospatial attention. Specifically, performance of those participants with low verbal span was affected by the direction of the moving dot, underestimating at a larger extent when the dot moved leftward than rightward. Finally, it was also observed that participants' verbal fluency ability contributed in the generation of biases in the numerical task. The finding of the involvement of abilities belonging to the verbal domain contributes to unveil the multi-componential nature of number interval bisection. Considering the debate on the nature of number interval bisection and its use in the clinical assessment of deficits following brain damage, this finding may be interesting also from a clinical perspective. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Sosa, Yamaya; Clarke, Aaron M.; McCourt, Mark E.
Neurologically normal subjects misperceive the midpoints of lines (PSE) as reliably leftward of veridical center, a phenomenon known as pseudoneglect. This leftward bias reflects the dominance of the right cerebral hemisphere in deploying spatial attention. Transient visual cues, delivered to either the left or right endpoints of lines, modulate PSE such that leftward biases are increased by leftward cues, and are decreased by rightward cues, relative to a no-cue control condition. We ask whe...
Full Text Available While the influence of spatial-numerical associations in number categorization tasks has been well established, their role in mental arithmetic is less clear. It has been hypothesized that mental addition leads to rightward and upward shifts of spatial attention (along the mental number line, whereas subtraction leads to leftward and downward shifts. We addressed this hypothesis by analyzing spontaneous eye movements during mental arithmetic. Participants solved verbally presented arithmetic problems (e.g., 2+7, 8-3 aloud while looking at a blank screen. We found that eye movements reflected spatial biases in the ongoing mental operation: Gaze position shifted more upward when participants solved addition compared to subtraction problems, and the horizontal gaze position was partly determined by the magnitude of the operands. Interestingly, the difference between addition and subtraction trials was driven by the operator (plus vs. minus but was not influenced by the computational process. Thus, our results do not support the idea of a mental movement toward the solution during arithmetic but indicate a semantic association between operation and space.
Hartmann, Matthias; Mast, Fred W; Fischer, Martin H
While the influence of spatial-numerical associations in number categorization tasks has been well established, their role in mental arithmetic is less clear. It has been hypothesized that mental addition leads to rightward and upward shifts of spatial attention (along the "mental number line"), whereas subtraction leads to leftward and downward shifts. We addressed this hypothesis by analyzing spontaneous eye movements during mental arithmetic. Participants solved verbally presented arithmetic problems (e.g., 2 + 7, 8-3) aloud while looking at a blank screen. We found that eye movements reflected spatial biases in the ongoing mental operation: Gaze position shifted more upward when participants solved addition compared to subtraction problems, and the horizontal gaze position was partly determined by the magnitude of the operands. Interestingly, the difference between addition and subtraction trials was driven by the operator (plus vs. minus) but was not influenced by the computational process. Thus, our results do not support the idea of a mental movement toward the solution during arithmetic but indicate a semantic association between operation and space.
Ermakov, A S
During individual development of vertebrates, the anteroposterior, dorsoventral, and left-right axes of the body are established. Although the vertebrates are bilaterally symmetric outside, their internal structure is asymmetric. Of special interest is the insight into establishment of visceral left-right asymmetry in mammals, since it has not only basic but also an applied medical significance. As early as 1976, it was hypothesized that the ciliary action could be associated with the establishment of left-right asymmetry in mammals. Currently, the majority of researchers agree that the ciliary action in the region of Hensen's node and the resulting leftward laminar fluid flow play a key role in the loss of bilateral symmetry and triggering of expression of the genes constituting the Nodal-Ptx2 signaling cascade, specific of the left side of the embryo. The particular mechanism underlying this phenomenon is still insufficiently clear. There are three competing standpoints on how leftward fluid flow induces expression of several genes in the left side of the embryo. The morphogen gradient hypothesis postulates that the leftward flow creates a high concentration of a signaling biomolecule in the left side of Hensen's node, which, in turn, stimulates triggering of.gene expression of the Nodal-Ptx2 cascade. The biomechanical hypothesis (or two-cilia model) states that the immotile cilia located in the periphery of Hensen's node act as mechanosensors, activate mechanosensory ion channels, and trigger calcium signaling in the left side of the embryo. Finally, the "shuttle-bus model" holds that leftward fluid flow carries the lipid vesicles, which are crashed when colliding immotile cilia in the periphery of Hensen's node to release the contained signaling biomolecules. It is also noteworthy that the association between the ciliary action and establishment of asymmetry has been recently discovered in representatives of the lower invertebrates. In this paper, the author
Sendhil Mullainathan; Andrei Shleifer
There are two different types of media bias. One bias, which we refer to as ideology, reflects a news outlet's desire to affect reader opinions in a particular direction. The second bias, which we refer to as spin, reflects the outlet's attempt to simply create a memorable story. We examine competition among media outlets in the presence of these biases. Whereas competition can eliminate the effect of ideological bias, it actually exaggerates the incentive to spin stories.
Ferguson, Christopher J
This article responds to five comments on my "Angry Birds" meta-analysis of video game influences on children (Ferguson, 2015, this issue). Given ongoing debates on video game influences, comments varied from the supportive to the self-proclaimed "angry," yet hopefully they and this response will contribute to constructive discussion as the field moves forward. In this reply, I address some misconceptions in the comments and present data that challenge the assumption that standardized regression coefficients are invariably unsuitable for meta-analysis or that bivariate correlations are invariably suitable for meta-analysis. The suitability of any data should be considered on a case-by-case basis, and data indicates that the coefficients included in the "Angry Birds" meta-analysis did not distort results. Study selection, effect size extraction, and interpretation improved upon problematic issues in other recent meta-analyses. Further evidence is also provided to support the contention that publication bias remains problematic in video game literature. Sources of acrimony among scholars are explored as are areas of agreement. Ultimately, debates will only be resolved through a commitment to newer, more rigorous methods and open science. © The Author(s) 2015.
Donfrancesco, Renato; Di Trani, Michela; Porfirio, Maria Cristina; Giana, Grazia; Miano, Silvia; Andriola, Elda
Some clinical studies on attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have been found to overlap those of studies on personality, particularly those on the Novelty Seeking trait (NS) as measured by the Junior Temperament and Character Inventory (JTCI). The aim of this study was to evaluate the potential role of NS in clinical research on ADHD. We enroled 146 ADHD children (125 boys; mean age=9.61, S.D.=2.50) and 223 age- and gender-matched control children (178 boys; mean age=9.41, S.D.=2.30). All the parents filled in the JTCI for the evaluation of personality according to Cloninger׳s model. An exploratory factor analysis differentiated the NS items that concern "Impulsivity" (NS1) from those that concern other features (NS2). Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVAs) revealed significant differences between ADHD children and non-ADHD children in temperamental dimensions: the scores of ADHD children were higher than those of non-ADHD children in Total NS, NS1-Impulsivity and NS2. Our results show that the NS dimension of the JTCI in ADHD children is higher than in non-ADHD children, even when a correction is made for impulsivity items. This finding suggests that the NS trait plays a central role in ADHD diagnosis even when items referred to impulsivity are removed from the NS scale. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Attention and inhibition are of vital importance in everyday functioning. Problems of attention and inhibition are central to disorders such as Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Both bias and disengagement key components of visuospatial attention. Bias refers to neuronal signals that
Pt>oplt’ somt’timt’s ban difficulty conh·olling tht’ir intakt’ of ct’rtaio foods such as: - Swt’t’ts likt’ ict’ crt’am, chocolatt’, doughnuts ...prob~ v.ith: Ice cream Chocolate Apples Doughnuts Broccoli Cookies Cake Candy White Rolls Lettuce Pasta Strawberries Rice Crackers Chips Bread...relative reinforcing efficacy and situating the measures of pharmacological reinforcement with behavioral economics : a theoretical proposal
Patrisius Istiarto Djiwandono
Abstract: An issue that has recently been gaining more attention in the domain of language testing is item bias. Defined as the characteristic of an item which causes learners of the same abilities but of different social groups to perform differently, the bias can be present as gender, ethnic, religious, social class, or cultural bias. The paper brings up a discussion in this area of concern by starting off from the concept of culture. It then explains what cultural bias is, how it manifests...
Tække, Jesper; Paulsen, Michael Eric
In these years digital media and wireless networks are introduced in upper secondary schools in Denmark. This implies new “attentional objects” like updates on Facebook or tweets on Twitter within instant reach of the pupils and teachers. Also it implies new kinds of attention (awareness) like when...... pupils try to listen to the teacher and simultaneously participate in online games. To this new social setting the teachers has reacted with either prohibition or unconcern. What has not been realised is that the introduction of new media profoundly challenges the way attention hitherto has functioned...... as a psychic prerequisite for the social interaction between pupils and teachers. New kinds of “split attention” arise and new kinds of social mediation (regulation and “use”) of psychic attention become necessary if teaching in the new digital medium milieu shall be beneficial. In this paper we qualify...
In protected areas, wildlife may lose their fear of humans, and prey species may use human-disturbed areas to escape natural predators. Lateral bedding posture bias may reflect difference in monitoring and these changing patterns of risk stimuli. I studied wild elk in Banff and Jasper National Parks, Canada, where habituated animals enter into conflicts with humans, abandon migration, and negatively affect entire ecosystems. I recorded lateral bedding postures and lateral differences in detection distances when elk were approached. Elk had leftward posture biases when facing away from the herd toward the presumptive direction of potential predation, but had rightward biases when facing towards conspecifics. I found migratory elk had stronger lateral biases than elk residing year-round near humans. These results show lateral posture biases are context dependent on risk, and as these risks change, lateral biases change as well. These results provide important insights for the management of prey species subject to changing patterns of predation and human disturbance, and contribute to our growing understanding of the ecological implications of laterality in wild species.
I read with interest the comment by Mark Wilson in the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics regarding bias and conflicts of interest in medical journals. Wilson targets one journal (the New England Journal of Medicine: NEJM) and one particular "scandal" to make his point that journals' decisions on publication are biased by commercial conflicts of interest (CoIs). It is interesting that he chooses the NEJM which, by his own admission, had one of the strictest CoI policies and had published widely on this topic. The feeling is that if the NEJM can be guilty, they can all be guilty.
Dohmen, Thomas; Sauermann, Jan
This paper surveys the empirical literature on the behavior of referees in professional football and other sports. Referees are typically appointed by a principal to be impartial, especially when unbiased referee judgment is vital for the accomplishment of the principal's objective. Answering whether referees make biased decisions and understanding the causes that lead referees to digress from their principal duty of impartiality is therefore fundamental from a theoretical point of view. At t...
Vreeswijk, Jacob Dirk; Thomas, Tom; van Berkum, Eric C.; van Arem, Bart
Travel time is probably one of the most studied attributes in route choice. Recently, perception of travel time received more attention as several studies have shown its importance in explaining route choice behavior. In particular, travel time estimates by travelers appear to be biased against non-
Vreeswijk, Jacob Dirk; Thomas, Tom; van Berkum, Eric C.; van Arem, Bart
Travel time is probably one of the most studied attributes in route choice. Recently, perception of travel time received more attention as several studies have shown its importance in explaining route choice behavior. In particular, travel time estimates by travelers appear to be biased against
Weitzer, Ronald; Tuch, Steven A.
The current controversy surrounding racial profiling in America has focused renewed attention on the larger issue of racial bias by the police. Yet little is known about the extent of police racial bias and even less about public perceptions of the problem. This article analyzes recent national survey data on citizens' views of and reported…
Despite increased attention in the area of hate crime research in the past 20 years, sexual orientation bias crimes have rarely been singled out for study. When these types of crimes are looked at, the studies are typically descriptive in nature. This article seeks to increase our knowledge of sexual orientation bias by answering the question:…
Avaliação da ansiedade e do viés de atenção no canal visual para estímulos emocionais em uma amostra não clínica Assessment of anxiety and attentional bias in the visual channel toward emotional stimuli in a non-clinical sample
Wilson Vieira Melo
Full Text Available A ansiedade vem sendo estudada como fator capaz de influenciar a atenção visual seletiva em experimentos como a Visual Probe Detection Task (VPDT. Este estudo objetivou comparar o viés de atenção para imagens emocionais em pessoas com diferentes níveis de ansiedade de traço e estado usando a VPDT. Oitenta e dois estudantes universitários responderam ao IDATE. Na VPDT, utilizaram-se 12 pares de imagens com alto nível de ativação e valência negativa, pareadas com imagens controles neutras, do International Affective Picture System (IAPS. Os estímulos eram apresentados durante 200 m. O viés de atenção não foi diferente entre os participantes com baixos e altos níveis de ansiedade de traço e estado. Tais resultados indicaram que elas não são importantes para o viés de atenção para estímulos negativos com altos níveis de ativação. Além disso, é possível que o viés de atenção para estímulos ansiogênicos seja observado apenas em populações clínicas.Anxiety has been observed as a factor capable to influence the visual selective attention in experiments such as the Visual Probe Detection Task (VPDT. This study aimed to compare the attentional bias to emotional images in people with different levels of trait and state anxiety using a VPDT. Eighty-two undergraduate students performed VPDT and answered the State and Trait Anxiety Inventory. In VPDT, 12 pairs of images from International Affective Picture System (emotional image with high arousal level and negative valence/and one control, neutral were presented during 200 m. There was no attentional bias difference between the participants neither with low nor high levels of trait or state of anxiety. These results indicated that trait or state anxiety might not be important to attentional bias to negative and arousing visual stimuli. It is possible that just clinical populations with anxiety disorders often show attentional bias to anxiogenic stimuli.
Barbara La Scaleia
Full Text Available We expand the anecdotic report by Johansson that back-and-forth linear harmonic motions appear uniform. Six experiments explore the role of shape and spatial orientation of the trajectory of a point-light target in the perceptual judgment of uniform motion. In Experiment 1, the target oscillated back-and-forth along a circular arc around an invisible pivot. The imaginary segment from the pivot to the midpoint of the trajectory could be oriented vertically downward (consistent with an upright pendulum, horizontally leftward, or vertically upward (upside-down. In Experiments 2 to 5, the target moved uni-directionally. The effect of suppressing the alternation of movement directions was tested with curvilinear (Experiment 2 and 3 or rectilinear (Experiment 4 and 5 paths. Experiment 6 replicated the upright condition of Experiment 1, but participants were asked to hold the gaze on a fixation point. When some features of the trajectory evoked the motion of either a simple pendulum or a mass-spring system, observers identified as uniform the kinematic profiles close to harmonic motion. The bias towards harmonic motion was most consistent in the upright orientation of Experiment 1 and 6. The bias disappeared when the stimuli were incompatible with both pendulum and mass-spring models (Experiments 3 to 5. The results are compatible with the hypothesis that the perception of dynamic stimuli is biased by the laws of motion obeyed by natural events, so that only natural motions appear uniform.
La Scaleia, Barbara; Zago, Myrka; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Lacquaniti, Francesco; Viviani, Paolo
We expand the anecdotic report by Johansson that back-and-forth linear harmonic motions appear uniform. Six experiments explore the role of shape and spatial orientation of the trajectory of a point-light target in the perceptual judgment of uniform motion. In Experiment 1, the target oscillated back-and-forth along a circular arc around an invisible pivot. The imaginary segment from the pivot to the midpoint of the trajectory could be oriented vertically downward (consistent with an upright pendulum), horizontally leftward, or vertically upward (upside-down). In Experiments 2 to 5, the target moved uni-directionally. The effect of suppressing the alternation of movement directions was tested with curvilinear (Experiment 2 and 3) or rectilinear (Experiment 4 and 5) paths. Experiment 6 replicated the upright condition of Experiment 1, but participants were asked to hold the gaze on a fixation point. When some features of the trajectory evoked the motion of either a simple pendulum or a mass-spring system, observers identified as uniform the kinematic profiles close to harmonic motion. The bias towards harmonic motion was most consistent in the upright orientation of Experiment 1 and 6. The bias disappeared when the stimuli were incompatible with both pendulum and mass-spring models (Experiments 3 to 5). The results are compatible with the hypothesis that the perception of dynamic stimuli is biased by the laws of motion obeyed by natural events, so that only natural motions appear uniform. PMID:24667578
Girelli, Luisa; Marinelli, Chiara Valeria; Grossi, Giuseppe; Arduino, Lisa S
Increasing evidence supports the contribution of both biological and cultural factors to visuospatial processing. The present study adds to the literature by exploring the interplay of perceptual and linguistic mechanisms in determining visuospatial asymmetries in adults (Experiment 1) and children (Experiment 2). In particular, pre-schoolers (3 and 5 year-olds), school-aged children (8 year-old), and adult participants were required to bisect different types of stimuli, that is, lines, words, and figure strings. In accordance with the literature, results yielded a leftward bias for lines and words and a rightward bias for figure strings, in adult participants. More critically, different biases were found for lines, words, and figure strings in children as a function of age, reflecting the impact of both cultural and biological factors on the processing of different visuospatial materials. Specifically, an adult-like pattern of results emerged only in the older group of children (8 year-old), but not in pre-schoolers. Results are discussed in terms of literacy, reading habits exposure, and biological maturation.
La Scaleia, Barbara; Zago, Myrka; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Lacquaniti, Francesco; Viviani, Paolo
We expand the anecdotic report by Johansson that back-and-forth linear harmonic motions appear uniform. Six experiments explore the role of shape and spatial orientation of the trajectory of a point-light target in the perceptual judgment of uniform motion. In Experiment 1, the target oscillated back-and-forth along a circular arc around an invisible pivot. The imaginary segment from the pivot to the midpoint of the trajectory could be oriented vertically downward (consistent with an upright pendulum), horizontally leftward, or vertically upward (upside-down). In Experiments 2 to 5, the target moved uni-directionally. The effect of suppressing the alternation of movement directions was tested with curvilinear (Experiment 2 and 3) or rectilinear (Experiment 4 and 5) paths. Experiment 6 replicated the upright condition of Experiment 1, but participants were asked to hold the gaze on a fixation point. When some features of the trajectory evoked the motion of either a simple pendulum or a mass-spring system, observers identified as uniform the kinematic profiles close to harmonic motion. The bias towards harmonic motion was most consistent in the upright orientation of Experiment 1 and 6. The bias disappeared when the stimuli were incompatible with both pendulum and mass-spring models (Experiments 3 to 5). The results are compatible with the hypothesis that the perception of dynamic stimuli is biased by the laws of motion obeyed by natural events, so that only natural motions appear uniform.
Ranzini, Mariagrazia; Lisi, Matteo; Zorzi, Marco
Growing evidence suggests that orienting visual attention in space can influence the processing of numerical magnitude, with leftward orienting speeding up the processing of small numbers relative to larger ones and the converse for rightward orienting. The manipulation of eye movements is a convenient way to direct visuospatial attention, but several aspects of the complex relationship between eye movements, attention orienting and number processing remain unexplored. In a previous study, we observed that inducing involuntary, reflexive eye movements by means of optokinetic stimulation affected number processing only when numerical magnitude was task relevant (i.e., during magnitude comparison, but not during parity judgment; Ranzini et al., in J Cogn Psychol 27, 459-470, (2015). Here, we investigated whether processing of task-irrelevant numerical magnitude can be modulated by voluntary eye movements, and whether the type of eye movements (smooth pursuit vs. saccades) would influence this interaction. Participants tracked with their gaze a dot while listening to a digit. The numerical task was to indicate whether the digit was odd or even through non-spatial, verbal responses. The dot could move leftward or rightward either continuously, allowing tracking by smooth pursuit eye movements, or in discrete steps across a series of adjacent locations, triggering a sequence of saccades. Both smooth pursuit and saccadic eye movements similarly affected number processing and modulated response times for large numbers as a function of direction of motion. These findings suggest that voluntary eye movements redirect attention in mental number space and highlight that eye movements should play a key factor in the investigation of number-space interactions.
Full Text Available The Spatial-Numerical Association of Response Codes (SNARC suggests the existence of an association between number magnitude and response position, with faster left-key responses to small numbers and faster right-key responses to large numbers. The attentional SNARC effect (Att-SNARC suggests that perceiving numbers can also affect the allocation of spatial attention, causing a leftward (vs. rightward target detection advantage after perceiving small (vs. large numbers. Considering previous findings that revealed similar spatial association effects for both numbers and musical note values (i.e., the relative duration of notes, the aim of this study is to investigate whether presenting note values instead of numbers causes a spatial shift of attention in musicians. The results show an advantage in detecting a leftward (vs. rightward target after perceiving small (vs. large musical note values. The fact that musical note values cause a spatial shift of attention strongly suggests that musicians process numbers and note values in a similar manner.
Cislak, Aleksandra; Formanowicz, Magdalena; Saguy, Tamar
The bias against women in academia is a documented phenomenon that has had detrimental consequences, not only for women, but also for the quality of science. First, gender bias in academia affects female scientists, resulting in their underrepresentation in academic institutions, particularly in higher ranks. The second type of gender bias in science relates to some findings applying only to male participants, which produces biased knowledge. Here, we identify a third potentially powerful source of gender bias in academia: the bias against research on gender bias. In a bibliometric investigation covering a broad range of social sciences, we analyzed published articles on gender bias and race bias and established that articles on gender bias are funded less often and published in journals with a lower Impact Factor than articles on comparable instances of social discrimination. This result suggests the possibility of an underappreciation of the phenomenon of gender bias and related research within the academic community. Addressing this meta-bias is crucial for the further examination of gender inequality, which severely affects many women across the world.
Anderson, Brian A.; Yantis, Steven
Stimuli that have previously been associated with the delivery of reward involuntarily capture attention when presented as unrewarded and task-irrelevant distractors in a subsequent visual search task. It is unknown how long such effects of reward learning on attention persist. One possibility is that value-driven attentional biases are plastic…
Waterman, Amanda H; Giles, Oscar T; Havelka, Jelena; Ali, Sumaya; Culmer, Peter R; Wilkie, Richard M; Mon-Williams, Mark
The nativist hypothesis suggests universal features of human behaviour can be explained by biologically determined cognitive substrates. This nativist account has been challenged recently by evolutionary models showing that the cultural transmission of knowledge can produce behavioural universals. Sensorimotor invariance is a canonical example of a behavioural universal, raising the issue of whether culture can influence not only which skills people acquire but also the development of the sensorimotor system. We tested this hypothesis by exploring whether culture influences the developing sensorimotor system in children. We took kinematic measures of motor control asymmetries in adults and children from differing cultures where writing follows opposite directions. British and Kuwaiti adults ( n = 69) and first grade (5-6 year old) children ( n = 140) completed novel rightward and leftward tracing tasks. The Kuwaitis were better when moving their arm leftward while the British showed the opposite bias. Bayesian analysis techniques showed that while children were worse than adults, they also showed asymmetries-with the asymmetry magnitude related to accuracy levels. Our findings support the idea that culture influences the sensorimotor system.
This article examines the shifts in attention and focus as one teacher introduces and explains an image that represents the processes involved in a numeric problem that his students have been working on. This paper takes a micro-analytic approach to examine how the focus of attention shifts through what the teacher and students do and say in the…
Liu, Taosheng; Abrams, Jared; Carrasco, Marisa
Voluntary (endogenous, sustained) covert spatial attention selects relevant sensory information for prioritized processing. The behavioral and neural consequences of such selection have been extensively documented, but its phenomenology has received little empirical investigation. We asked whether voluntary attention affects the subjective appearance of contrast--a fundamental dimension of visual perception. We used a demanding rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) task to direct endogenous attention to a given location and measured perceived contrast at the attended and unattended locations. Attention increased perceived contrast of suprathreshold stimuli and also improved performance on a concurrent orientation discrimination task at the cued location. We ruled out response bias as an alternative account of the pattern of results. Thus, this study establishes that voluntary attention enhances perceived contrast. This phenomenological consequence links behavioral and neurophysiological studies on the effects of attention.
Clarke, Alasdair D F; Stainer, Matthew J; Tatler, Benjamin W; Hunt, Amelia R
Much effort has been made to explain eye guidance during natural scene viewing. However, a substantial component of fixation placement appears to be a set of consistent biases in eye movement behavior. We introduce the concept of saccadic flow, a generalization of the central bias that describes the image-independent conditional probability of making a saccade to (xi+1, yi+1), given a fixation at (xi, yi). We suggest that saccadic flow can be a useful prior when carrying out analyses of fixation locations, and can be used as a submodule in models of eye movements during scene viewing. We demonstrate the utility of this idea by presenting bias-weighted gaze landscapes, and show that there is a link between the likelihood of a saccade under the flow model, and the salience of the following fixation. We also present a minor improvement to our central bias model (based on using a multivariate truncated Gaussian), and investigate the leftwards and coarse-to-fine biases in scene viewing.
Pires, Armando José Garcia
The media bias literature has focused its attention on single-ideology media firms. We analyze the incentives for media firms to adopt a multi-ideology strategy. A multi-ideology strategy occurs when a media firm adapts news to consumers’ political preferences. In this sense, news customization can reduce media bias, since media firms can cover a larger variety of political opinions. We show that although the incentives to customize are larger under duopoly than under monopoly, a monopolist m...
Addleman, Douglas A; Tao, Jinyi; Remington, Roger W; Jiang, Yuhong V
To what degree does spatial attention for one task spread to all stimuli in the attended region, regardless of task relevance? Most models imply that spatial attention acts through a unitary priority map in a task-general manner. We show that implicit learning, unlike endogenous spatial cuing, can bias spatial attention within one task without biasing attention to a spatially overlapping secondary task. Participants completed a visual search task superimposed on a background containing scenes, which they were told to encode for a later memory task. Experiments 1 and 2 used explicit instructions to bias spatial attention to one region for visual search; Experiment 3 used location probability cuing to implicitly bias spatial attention. In location probability cuing, a target appeared in one region more than others despite participants not being told of this. In all experiments, search performance was better in the cued region than in uncued regions. However, scene memory was better in the cued region only following endogenous guidance, not after implicit biasing of attention. These data support a dual-system view of top-down attention that dissociates goal-driven and implicitly learned attention. Goal-driven attention is task general, amplifying processing of a cued region across tasks, whereas implicit statistical learning is task-specific. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).
Keywords. codon bias; alcohol dehydrogenase; Darwinian fitness; Drosophila melanogaster. RESEARCH COMMENTARY. Benefits of being biased! SUTIRTH DEY*. Evolutionary Biology Laboratory, Evolutionary & Organismal Biology Unit,. Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research,. Jakkur P.O. Box 6436 ...
Polly V Peers
Full Text Available Attentional control refers to the regulatory processes that ensure that our actions are in accordance with our goals. Dual-system accounts view temperament as consisting of both individual variation in emotionality (e.g. trait anxiety and variation in regulatory attentional mechanisms that act to modulate emotionality. Increasing evidence links trait variation in attentional control to clinical mood and anxiety disorder symptoms, independent of trait emotionality. Attentional biases to threat have been robustly linked to mood and anxiety disorders. However, the role of variation in attentional control in influencing such biases, and the neural underpinnings of trait variation in attentional control, are unknown. Here, we show, that individual differences in trait attentional control, even when accounting for trait and state anxiety, are related to the magnitude of an attentional blink following threat-related targets. Moreover, we demonstrate that activity in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, is observed specifically in relation to control of attention over threatening stimuli, in line with neural theories of attentional control, such as guided activation theory. These results have key implications for neurocognitive theories of attentional bias and emotional resilience.
Kravchenko, Mariia; Cass, Andrew Knox
institution in technical subjects, but the methods are applicable to most teaching situations. The outcomes are, that paying attention to the process of recording existing lecture content leads to interactive video. This new content can be embedded in a structured lesson design and can greatly improve...
Full Text Available In this paper, we introduce and study the size-biased form of Kumaraswamy distribution. The Kumaraswamy distribution which has drawn considerable attention in hydrology and related areas was proposed by Kumarswamy. The new distribution is derived under sizebiased probability of sampling taking the weights as the variate values. Various distributional and characterizing properties of the model are studied. The methods of maximum likelihood and matching quantiles estimation are employed to estimate the parameters of the proposed model. Finally, we apply the proposed model to simulated and real data sets.
Liu, Taosheng; Fuller, Stuart; Carrasco, Marisa
Selective attention enhances visual information processing, as measured by behavioral performance and neural activity. However, little is known about its effects on subjective experience. Here, we investigated the effect of transient (exogenous) attention on the appearance of visual motion, using a psychophysical procedure that directly measures appearance and controls for response bias. Observers viewed pairs of moving dot patterns and reported the motion direction of the more coherent pattern. Directing attention (via a peripheral precue) to a stimulus location increased its perceived coherence level and improved performance on a direction discrimination task. In a control experiment, we ruled out response bias by lengthening the time interval between the cue and the stimuli, so that the effect of transient attention could no longer be exerted. Our results are consistent with those of neurophysiological studies showing that attention modulates motion processing and provide evidence of a subjective perceptual correlate of attention, with a concomitant effect on performance.
Full Text Available We estimate the CPI bias in Korea by employing the approach of Engel’s Law as suggested by Hamilton (2001. This paper is the first attempt to estimate the bias using Korean panel data, Korean Labor and Income Panel Study(KLIPS. Following Hamilton’s model with nonlinear specification correction, our estimation result shows that the cumulative CPI bias over the sample period (2000-2005 was 0.7 percent annually. This CPI bias implies that about 21 percent of the inflation rate during the period can be attributed to the bias. In light of purchasing power parity, we provide an interpretation of the estimated bias.
By writing scientific articles we communicate science among colleagues and peers. By doing this, it is our responsibility to adhere to some basic principles like transparency and accuracy. Authors, journal editors and reviewers need to be concerned about the quality of the work submitted for publication and ensure that only studies which have been designed, conducted and reported in a transparent way, honestly and without any deviation from the truth get to be published. Any such trend or deviation from the truth in data collection, analysis, interpretation and publication is called bias. Bias in research can occur either intentionally or unintentionally. Bias causes false conclusions and is potentially misleading. Therefore, it is immoral and unethical to conduct biased research. Every scientist should thus be aware of all potential sources of bias and undertake all possible actions to reduce or minimize the deviation from the truth. This article describes some basic issues related to bias in research.
Full Text Available With the advent of social media and peer production, the amount of new online content has grown dramatically. To identify interesting items in the vast stream of new content, providers must rely on peer recommendation to aggregate opinions of their many users. Due to human cognitive biases, the presentation order strongly affects how people allocate attention to the available content. Moreover, we can manipulate attention through the presentation order of items to change the way peer recommendation works. We experimentally evaluate this effect using Amazon Mechanical Turk. We find that different policies for ordering content can steer user attention so as to improve the outcomes of peer recommendation.
Within the spokes model of Chen and Riordan (2007) that allows for non-localized competition among arbitrary numbers of media outlets, we quantify the effect of concentration of ownership on quality and bias of media content. A main result shows that too few commercial outlets, or better, too few separate owners of commercial outlets can lead to substantial bias in equilibrium. Increasing the number of outlets (commercial and non-commercial) tends to bring down this bias; but the strongest ef...
Miyazaki, Masahito; Fujii, Emiko; Saijo, Takahiko; Mori, Kenji; Kagami, Shoji
Both attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and chronic tic disorder (TD) are hyperkinetic disorders. These disorders often coexist with each other and frequently have sensory components. Therefore, we hypothesized that they might have a common pathophysiology involving the somatosensory system, especially hyper-excitabilities of primary somatosensory area. To evaluate sensory system excitability, we examined somatosensory evoked potentials (SEP) elicited by median nerve stimulation in 18 children with ADHD and 18 children with TD. Three children with ADHD and 8 children with TD showed giant SEP and the peak-to-peak amplitude for N20-P25 was also significantly greater than that obtained from normally developing children (PADHD and PADHD (PADHD and TD, its severity, especially in the left-hemisphere, differs (i.e. TD has left-ward hyper-excitability). The possibility remains that hyper-excitability of the primary somatosensory area is a reason why these disorders often coexist with each other and left-ward hyper-excitability of the primary somatosensory area is a unique feature of TD described for the first time.
Carrigan, Maureen H; Drobes, David J; Randall, Carrie L
This study investigated the sensitivity of the emotional Stroop test for identifying individuals who reported drinking to cope with social fears. Community volunteers completed a modified Stroop task during which social threat, alcohol-related, and control words were presented. High scores on drinking-to-cope measures were hypothesized to be associated with longer response latencies to both social threat and alcohol-related words. Consistent with previous studies, alcohol dependence was correlated with latencies for alcohol-related words, and level of social anxiety was correlated with response latency to social threat words. As expected, drinking-to-cope measures predicted response latency to alcohol-related and social threat words. These results suggest that the emotional Stroop test is useful in studying the relationship between social anxiety and alcohol consumption. Copyright 2005 APA.
Fan, Judith E.; Turk-Browne, Nicholas B.
Holding recently experienced information in mind can help us achieve our current goals. However, such immediate and direct forms of guidance from working memory are less helpful over extended delays or when other related information in long-term memory is useful for reaching these goals. Here we show that information that was encoded in the past…
are made by data variation, while the model is the same. It appears that SR0 generates narrow funnels much at odds with observed funnels, while the other four funnels look more realistic. SR1 to SR4 give the mean a substantial bias that confirms the prior causing the bias. The FAT-PET MRA works well...
On what grounds can we conclude that an act of categorization is biased? In this chapter, it is contended that in the absence of objective norms of what categories actually are, biases in categorization can only be specified in relation to theoretical understandings of categorization. Therefore, the
Kemps, Eva; Tiggemann, Marika; Orr, Jenna; Grear, Justine
There is emerging evidence that attentional biases are related to the consumption of substances such as alcohol and tobacco, and that attentional bias modification can reduce unwanted consumption of these substances. We present evidence for the first time to our knowledge that the same logical argument applies in the food and eating domain. We conducted two experiments that used a modified dot probe paradigm to train undergraduate women to direct their attention toward ("attend") or away from ("avoid") food cues (i.e., pictures of chocolate). In Experiment 1, attentional bias for chocolate cues increased in the "attend" group, and decreased in the "avoid" group. Experiment 2 showed that these training effects generalized to novel, previously unseen chocolate pictures. Importantly, attentional retraining affected chocolate consumption and craving. In both experiments, participants in the "avoid" group ate less chocolate in a so-called taste test than did those in the "attend" group. In addition, in Experiment 2, but not in Experiment 1, the "attend" group reported stronger chocolate cravings following training, whereas the "avoid" group reported less intense cravings. The results support predictions of cognitive-motivational models of craving and consumption that attentional biases play a causal role in consumption behavior. Furthermore, they present a promising avenue for tackling unwanted food cravings and (over)eating. © 2013 American Psychological Association
Ásgeirsson, Árni Gunnar; Kristjánsson, Árni; Bundesen, Claus
Current behavior is influenced by events in the recent past. In visual attention, this is expressed in many varia- tions of priming effects. Here, we investigate color priming in a brief exposure digit-recognition task. Observers performed a masked odd-one-out singleton recognition taskwhere...... the target-color either repeated or changed between subsequent trials. Performance was measured by recognition accuracy over exposure durations. The purpose of the study was to replicate earlier findings of perceptual priming in brief displays and to model those results based on a Theory of Visual Attention...... by a simple four parameter model, where VSTM capacity and spatial biases of attention are ignored, or more fine-grained by a 10 parameter model that takes these aspects into account....
Siniscalchi, Marcello; d'Ingeo, Serenella; Fornelli, Serena; Quaranta, Angelo
The relationship between visuospatial attention and paw preference was investigated in domestic dogs. Visuospatial attention was evaluated using a food detection task that closely matches the so-called "cancellation" task used in human studies. Paw preference was estimated by quantifying the dog's use of forepaws to hold a puzzle feeder device (namely the "Kong") while eating its content. Results clearly revealed a strong relationship between visuospatial attention bias and motor laterality, with a left-visuospatial bias in the left-pawed group, a right-visuospatial bias in the right-pawed group and with the absence of significant visuospatial attention bias in ambi-pawed subjects. The current findings are the first evidence for the presence of a relationship between motor lateralization and visuospatial attentional mechanisms in a mammal species besides humans.
Gropalis, Maria; Bleichhardt, Gaby; Hiller, Wolfgang; Witthöft, Michael
According to cognitive-behavioral models of hypochondriasis (HYP), biased attentional and memory processes related to health threat stimuli are crucial for the development and maintenance of severe health anxiety. Little is known about the specificity, temporal stability, and modifiability of these biases via psychotherapy. In an emotional Stroop and subsequent recognition task, the authors compared attention and memory processes for health-related words (illnesses, bodily complaints, and panic-related words) in patients with HYP (n = 32), other somatoform disorders (SFD; n = 27), and panic disorder (PD; n = 25). A control group consisted of 31 healthy participants (CG). All patients were reexamined after 4 months of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). Patients with HYP showed a significant attentional bias toward all 3 target word categories. Evidence for a specific bias was found only for the PD group. General recognition performance for health threat and neutral words was best in the HYP group. After therapy, attentional bias had clearly decreased in the HYP and SFD patients. Patients with HYP can be characterized by attentional bias and more elaborate verbal processing. These irregularities tend to disappear after psychotherapy.
Welliver, Paul W.
Discusses a new principle which has been added to the AECT (Association for Educational Communications and Technology) Code of Professional Ethics regarding discrimination, harassment, and bias. An example is presented which illustrates a violation of a professional colleague's rights. (LRW)
Full Text Available We examine two departures of individual perceptions of randomness from probability theory: the hot hand and the gambler's fallacy, and their respective opposites. This paper's first contribution is to use data from the field (individuals playing roulette in a casino to demonstrate the existence and impact of these biases that have been previously documented in the lab. Decisions in the field are consistent with biased beliefs, although we observe significant individual heterogeneity in the population. A second contribution is to separately identify these biases within a given individual, then to examine their within-person correlation. We find a positive and significant correlation across individuals between hot hand and gambler's fallacy biases, suggesting a common (root cause of the two related errors. We speculate as to the source of this correlation (locus of control, and suggest future research which could test this speculation.
Drecourt, J.-P.; Madsen, H.; Rosbjerg, Dan
This paper reviews two different approaches that have been proposed to tackle the problems of model bias with the Kalman filter: the use of a colored noise model and the implementation of a separate bias filter. Both filters are implemented with and without feedback of the bias into the model state...... are illustrated on a simple one-dimensional groundwater problem. The results show that the presented filters outperform the standard Kalman filter and that the implementations with bias feedback work in more general conditions than the implementations without feedback. 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved........ The colored noise filter formulation is extended to correct both time correlated and uncorrelated model error components. A more stable version of the separate filter without feedback is presented. The filters are implemented in an ensemble framework using Latin hypercube sampling. The techniques...
Weiss, Ruth Palombo
Looks at how gender shapes the way humans learn from biological and sociological perspectives. Indicates that teachers interact more frequently with males and that trainers should try to overcome gender bias. Suggests that discrimination persists in adult education. (JOW)
Anil V. Mishra; Umaru B. Conteh
This paper constructs the float adjusted measure of home bias and explores the determinants of bond home bias by employing the International Monetary Fund's high quality dataset (2001 to 2009) on cross-border bond investment. The paper finds that Australian investors' prefer investing in countries with higher economic development and more developed bond markets. Exchange rate volatility appears to be an impediment for cross-border bond investment. Investors prefer investing in countries with ...
Full Text Available When adding or subtracting two quantities, adults often compute an estimated outcome that is larger or smaller, respectively, than the actual outcome, a bias referred to as “operational momentum”. The effects of attention on operational momentum were investigated. Participants viewed a display in which two arrays of objects were added, or one array was subtracted from another array, and judged whether a subsequent outcome (probe array contained the correct or incorrect number of objects. In a baseline condition, only the arrays to be added or subtracted were viewed. In divided attention conditions, participants simultaneously viewed a sequence of colors or shapes, and judged which color (a non-spatial judgment or shape (a spatial judgment was repeated. Operational momentum occurred in all conditions, but was higher in divided attention conditions than in the baseline condition, primarily for addition problems. This pattern suggests that dividing attention, rather than decreasing operational momentum by decreasing attentional shifts, actually increased operational momentum. These results are consistent with a heightened use of arithmetic heuristics under conditions of divided attention.
Custers, J. A. E.; Becker, E. S.; Gielissen, M. F. M.; van Laarhoven, H. W. M.; Rinck, M.; Prins, J. B.
Anxious people show an attentional bias towards threatening information. It was investigated whether an attentional bias exists for cancer-related stimuli in breast cancer survivors and if different levels of fear of cancer recurrence would lead to different patterns of selective attention. Breast
Mundy, Peter; Newell, Lisa
Before social cognition there is joint processing of information about the attention of self and others. This joint attention requires the integrated activation of a distributed cortical network involving the anterior and posterior attention systems. In infancy, practice with the integrated activation of this distributed attention network is a major contributor to the development of social cognition. Thus, the functional neuroanatomies of social cognition and the anterior–posterior attention ...
Kemps, Eva; Tiggemann, Marika; Elford, Joanna
Accumulating evidence shows that cognitive bias modification produces immediate changes in attentional bias for, and consumption of, rewarding substances including food. This study examined the longevity of these attentional bias modification effects. A modified dot probe paradigm was used to determine whether alterations in biased attentional processing of food cues, and subsequent effects on consumption, were maintained at 24-h and one-week follow-up. One hundred and forty-nine undergraduate women were trained to direct their attention toward ('attend') or away from ('avoid') food cues (i.e., pictures of chocolate). Within each group, half received a single training session, the other half completed 5 weekly training sessions. Attentional bias for chocolate cues increased in the 'attend' group, and decreased in the 'avoid' group immediately post training. Participants in the 'avoid' group also ate disproportionately less of a chocolate food product in a so-called taste test than did those in the 'attend' group. Importantly, the observed re-training effects were maintained 24 h later and also one week later, but only following multiple training sessions. There are a number of limitations that could be addressed in future research: (a) the inclusion of a no-training control group, (b) the inclusion of a suspicion probe to detect awareness of the purpose of the taste test, and (c) the use of different tasks to assess and re-train attentional bias. The results showed sustained effects of attentional re-training on attentional bias and consumption. They further demonstrate the importance of administering multiple re-training sessions in attentional bias modification protocols. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Meyberg, Susann; Sinn, Petra; Engbert, Ralf; Sommer, Werner
Microsaccades - i.e., small fixational saccades generated in the superior colliculus (SC) - have been linked to spatial attention. While maintaining fixation, voluntary shifts of covert attention toward peripheral targets result in a sequence of attention-aligned and attention-opposing microsaccades. In most previous studies the direction of the voluntary shift is signaled by a spatial cue (e.g., a leftwards pointing arrow) that presents the most informative part of the cue (e.g., the arrowhead) in the to-be attended visual field. Here we directly investigated the influence of cue position and tested the hypothesis that microsaccades align with cue position rather than with the attention shift. In a spatial cueing task, we presented the task-relevant part of a symmetric cue either in the to-be attended visual field or in the opposite field. As a result, microsaccades were still weakly related to the covert attention shift; however, they were strongly related to the position of the cue even if that required a movement opposite to the cued attention shift. Moreover, if microsaccades aligned with cue position, we observed stronger cueing effects on manual response times. Our interpretation of the data is supported by numerical simulations of a computational model of microsaccade generation that is based on SC properties, where we explain our findings by separate attentional mechanisms for cue localization and the cued attention shift. We conclude that during cueing of voluntary attention, microsaccades are related to both - the overt attentional selection of the task-relevant part of the cue stimulus and the subsequent covert attention shift. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Jensen, Henning Tarp; Robinson, Sherman; Tarp, Finn
The measurement issue is the key issue in the literature on trade policy-induced agri-cultural price incentive bias. This paper introduces a general equilibrium effective rate of protection (GE-ERP) measure, which extends and generalizes earlier partial equilibrium nominal protection measures....... For the 15 sample countries, the results indicate that the agricultural price incentive bias, which was generally perceived to exist during the 1980s, was largely eliminated during the 1990s. The results also demonstrate that general equilibrium effects and country-specific characteristics - including trade...... shares and intersectoral linkages - are crucial for determining the sign and magnitude of trade policy bias. The GE-ERP measure is therefore uniquely suited to capture the full impact of trade policies on agricultural price incentives. A Monte Carlo procedure confirms that the results are robust...
Full Text Available Background and Objectives: Negative cognitive biases have been linked to anxiety and mood problems. Accumulated data from laboratory studies show that positive and negative interpretation styles with accompanying changes in mood can be induced through cognitive bias modification (CBM paradigms. Despite the therapeutic potential of positive training effects, few studies have explored training paradigms administered via smartphones. The current study aimed to compare the effectiveness of three different types of training programmes (cognitive bias modification-attention, CBM-A; cognitive bias modification-interpretation, CBM-I; attention and interpretation modification, AIM administered via smart-phones by using a control condition (CC.Methods:Seventy-six undergraduate participants with high social anxiety (Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale, LSAS ≥ 30 were randomly assigned to four groups: CBM-A (n = 20, CBM-I (n = 20, AIM (n = 16, and CC (n = 20.Results: The results showed that the effects of CBM training, CBM-I training, or AIM training vs. CC for attention yielded no significant differences in dot-probe attention bias scores. The CBM-I group showed significantly less threat interpretation and more benign interpretation than the CC group on interpretation bias scores.Conclusions: The present results supported the feasibility of delivering CBM-I via smartphones, but the effectiveness of CBM-A and AIM training via smartphones was limited.
roughly parallels the advent and widespread introduction of personal computers into everyday life (52). As Lynch (52) points out in a historical...Hyperactivity Disorder ( ADHD ) with some surprising success. These programs, as with other CACR, consist of thousands of training trials spaced over the course...were then distributed to research staff who rated the overall quality of the image as a salient stimulus based on its category on a 0 (not good) - 5
Fruh, Sharon M; Nadglowski, Joe; Hall, Heather R; Davis, Sara L; Crook, Errol D; Zlomke, Kimberly
Overweight and obesity are escalating in epidemic proportions in the United States. Individuals with overweight and obesity are often reluctant to seek medical help, not only for weight reduction but also for any health issue because of perceived provider discrimination. Providers who are biased against individuals with obesity can hinder our nation's effort to effectively fight the obesity epidemic. By addressing weight bias in the provider setting, individuals affected by obesity may be more likely to engage in a meaningful and productive discussion of weight. Providers need to be the go-to source for obesity-focused information on new and emerging treatments.
Jensen, Henning Tarp; Robinson, Sherman; Tarp, Finn
Measurement is a key issue in the literature on price incentive bias induced by trade policy. We introduce a general equilibrium measure of the relative effective rate of protection, which generalizes earlier protection measures. For our fifteen sample countries, results indicate that the agricul......Measurement is a key issue in the literature on price incentive bias induced by trade policy. We introduce a general equilibrium measure of the relative effective rate of protection, which generalizes earlier protection measures. For our fifteen sample countries, results indicate...... protection measure is therefore uniquely suited to capture the full impact of trade policies on relative agricultural price incentives....
Jones, P E; Roelofsma, P H
This paper provides a critical review of social contextual and group biases that are relevant to team decision-making in command and control situations. Motivated by the insufficient level of attention this area has received, the purpose of the paper is to provide an insight into the potential that these types of biases have to affect the decision-making of such teams. The biases considered are: false consensus, groupthink, group polarization and group escalation of commitment. For each bias the following four questions are addressed. What is the descriptive nature of the bias? What factors induce the bias? What psychological mechanisms underlie the bias? What is the relevance of the bias to command and control teams? The analysis suggests that these biases have a strong potential to affect team decisions. Consistent with the nature of team decision-making in command and control situations, all of the biases considered tend to be associated with those decisions that are important or novel and are promoted by time pressure and high levels of uncertainty. A concept unifying these biases is that of the shared mental model, but whereas false consensus emanates from social projection tendencies, the rest emanate from social influence factors. The authors also discuss the 'tricky' distinction between teams and groups and propose a revised definition for command and control team. Finally, the authors emphasize the need for future empirical research in this area to pay additional attention to the social side of cognition and the potential that social biases have to affect team decision-making.
Arsenault, Darin J.; Foster, Sharon L.
This study examined attention and memory processes assumed by the social information-processing model to be biased in aggressive children. We also explored whether similar biases were associated with overt and relational aggression. A total of 96 fourth through sixth graders saw videos of overtly and relationally aggressive child actors and…
Conclusion: Individuals with paranoid personality traits have more biases than normal individuals in terms of interpreting vague faces. The results of this study indicated the importance of attention to cognitive biases among individuals with paranoid personality traits or paranoid personality disorder because such biases can significantly influence behavioral patterns in individuals, and consequently degrade their functioning. Also, bias towards the processing of negative signs appears to be the most important cognitive element is involved in interpersonal relationships.
Nicholls, Michael E R; Thomas, Nicole A; Loetscher, Tobias
The aim of this study was to investigate asymmetrical interactions between humans and their environment using online seat booking sites. Functional differences between the cerebral hemispheres affect the choices people make. For example, when asked to imagine going to a cinema, people preferentially select seats to the right We investigated whether this experimental research generalizes to online booking sites for aircraft and theaters. Occupancy rates for seats taken on the left and right sides were assessed for 100 airline flights with 12,762 available seats and 37 theater performances with 34,456 seats. On the basis of previous research, a rightward bias was predicted for aircraft and theaters. For aircraft, contrary to expectation, occupancy rate was higher for left- compared with right-side seats. For theaters, a rightward bias was observed when the theater was less than half full.The bias was not affected by the orientation of the map. For aircraft, the leftward preference could be attributable to a rightward turning bias or a "feeling" that the port seats are closer to the exit, even though they are not. For theaters, the data demonstrate that the rightward preference observed in earlier studies exists only when the theater is relatively empty. Asymmetrical seating may play an important role in the efficient assimilation of information from the environment, and this role should take this into account when designing effective human-environment interfaces.The online method of assessing seating used in the current study provides an informative and potentially powerful means of assessing asymmetries in human perception and action.
Kostov, Kiril; Janyan, Armina
It has been established that the task-irrelevant orientation of an object's graspable handle produces a stimulus-response compatibility effect, resulting in faster reaction times when the location of the response corresponds to that of the object's handle. There is ongoing debate whether to attribute this affordance effect to motoric or to attentional components. In an attempt to reconcile these two viewpoints, we employed a novel experimental approach for investigating the relationship between attention and affordance. Using 3-D positional sound, auditory spatial attention was manipulated in order to explore its effects on affordance. Subjects were presented images of everyday graspable objects and had to respond bimanually (left or right) whether the object (featuring a leftward or rightward handle) was presented upright or upside-down. Prior to each affording object, sound localization cues were manipulated so as to orient auditory attention to the left, or to the right of the interaural axis (control). We obtained a peculiar pattern of results, which not only appears to provide support for an attention-shift account of affordance but does so in a cross-modal context.
Dormal, Valérie; Schuller, Anne-Marie; Nihoul, Julie; Pesenti, Mauro; Andres, Michael
Recent behavioural and brain imaging studies have provided evidence for rightward and leftward attention shifts while solving addition and subtraction problems respectively, suggesting that mental arithmetic makes use of mechanisms akin to those underlying spatial attention. However, this hypothesis mainly relies on correlative data and the causal relevance of spatial attention for mental arithmetic remains unclear. In order to test whether the mechanisms underlying spatial attention are necessary to perform arithmetic operations, we compared the performance of right brain-lesioned patients, with and without left unilateral neglect, and healthy controls in addition and subtraction of two-digit numbers. We predicted that patients with left unilateral neglect would be selectively impaired in the subtraction task while being unimpaired in the addition task. The results showed that neglect patients made more errors than the two other groups to subtract large numbers, whereas they were still able to solve large addition problems matched for difficulty and magnitude of the answer. This finding demonstrates a causal relationship between the ability to attend the left side of space and the solving of large subtraction problems. A plausible account is that attention shifts help localizing the position of the answer on a spatial continuum while subtracting large numbers. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Masson, Nicolas; Letesson, Clément; Pesenti, Mauro
Processing numbers induces shifts of spatial attention in probe detection tasks, with small numbers orienting attention to the left and large numbers to the right side of space. This has been interpreted as supporting the concept of a mental number line with number magnitudes ranging from left to right, from small to large numbers. Recently, the investigation of this spatial-numerical link has been extended to mental arithmetic with the hypothesis that solving addition or subtraction problems might induce attentional displacements, rightward or leftward respectively. At the neurofunctional level, the activations elicited by the resolution of additions have been shown to resemble those induced by rightward eye movements. However, the possible behavioural counterpart of these activations has not yet been observed. Here we investigated overt attentional shifts with a target detection task primed by addition and subtraction problems (2-digit ± 1-digit operands) in participants whose gaze orientation was recorded during the presentation of the problems and while calculating. No evidence of early overt attentional shifts was observed while participants were hearing the first operand, the operator or the second operand, but they shifted their gaze towards the right during the solving step of addition. These results show that gaze shifts related to arithmetic problem solving are elicited during the solving procedure, and suggest that their functional role is to access, from the first operand, the representation of the result.
Anderson, Brian A
It is now well established that the visual attention system is shaped by reward learning. When visual features are associated with a reward outcome, they acquire high priority and can automatically capture visual attention. To date, evidence for value-driven attentional capture has been limited entirely to the visual system. In the present study, I demonstrate that previously reward-associated sounds also capture attention, interfering more strongly with the performance of a visual task. This finding suggests that value-driven attention reflects a broad principle of information processing that can be extended to other sensory modalities and that value-driven attention can bias cross-modal stimulus competition.
Nikolaus F Troje
Full Text Available The silhouette illusion published online a number of years ago by the Japanese Flash designer Nobuyuki Kayahara has received substantial attention from the online community. One feature that seems to make it interesting is an apparent rotational bias: Observers see it spinning more often clockwise than counter-clockwise. Here, we show that this rotational bias is in fact due to the visual system's preference for viewpoints from above rather than from below.
Full Text Available The brain shifts attention by selectively modulating sensory information about relevant environmental features. It has been shown that eye, head, trunk and limb position can bias spatial attention. This leads to the interesting question: Does the brain only recruit bodily information that is explicitly related to orienting behaviour to direct attention, or more generally? We tested whether tongue position, which does not explicitly functionally relate to orienting behaviour, biases attention in a visual search task. Thirty-six participants completed three visual search trial blocks of increased difficulty each consisting of three tongue positions for 50 trials. Response times and error rates were used to assess whether tongue position modulates visual attention. Results show that sensorimotor information from the tongue modulates attention in a difficult visual search task: faster responses to visual search targets presented ipsilateral with the tongue; slower responses when contralateral. In line with cognition being generally embodied, the tongue plays a surprising role in directing attention.
Abrams, Jared; Barbot, Antoine; Carrasco, Marisa
Voluntary covert attention selects relevant sensory information for prioritized processing. The behavioral and neural consequences of such selection have been extensively documented, but its phenomenology has received little empirical investigation. Involuntary attention increases perceived spatial frequency (Gobell & Carrasco, 2005), but involuntary attention can differ from voluntary attention in its effects on performance in tasks mediated by spatial resolution (Yeshurun, Montagna, & Carrasco, 2008). Therefore, we ask whether voluntary attention affects the subjective appearance of spatial frequency--a fundamental dimension of visual perception underlying spatial resolution. We used a demanding rapid serial visual presentation task to direct voluntary attention and measured perceived spatial frequency at the attended and unattended locations. Attention increased the perceived spatial frequency of suprathreshold stimuli and also improved performance on a concurrent orientation discrimination task. In the control experiment, we ruled out response bias as an alternative account by using a lengthened interstimulus interval, which allows observers to disengage attention from the cued location. In contrast to the main experiment, the observers showed neither increased perceived spatial frequency nor improved orientation discrimination at the attended location. Thus, this study establishes that voluntary attention increases perceived spatial frequency. This phenomenological consequence links behavioral and neurophysiological studies on the effects of attention.
Hughes, Alicia M; Hirsch, Colette R; Nikolaus, Stephanie; Chalder, Trudie; Knoop, Hans; Moss-Morris, Rona
This study aims to replicate a UK study, with a Dutch sample to explore whether attention and interpretation biases and general attentional control deficits in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) are similar across populations and cultures. Thirty eight Dutch CFS participants were compared to 52 CFS and 51 healthy participants recruited from the UK. Participants completed self-report measures of symptoms, functioning, and mood, as well as three experimental tasks (i) visual-probe task measuring attentional bias to illness (somatic symptoms and disability) versus neutral words, (ii) interpretive bias task measuring positive versus somatic interpretations of ambiguous information, and (iii) the Attention Network Test measuring general attentional control. Compared to controls, Dutch and UK participants with CFS showed a significant attentional bias for illness-related words and were significantly more likely to interpret ambiguous information in a somatic way. These effects were not moderated by attentional control. There were no significant differences between the Dutch and UK CFS groups on attentional bias, interpretation bias, or attentional control scores. This study replicated the main findings of the UK study, with a Dutch CFS population, indicating that across these two cultures, people with CFS demonstrate biases in how somatic information is attended to and interpreted. These illness-specific biases appear to be unrelated to general attentional control deficits.
Understanding the relation between attention and consciousness is an important part of our understanding of consciousness. Attention, unlike consciousness, can be systematically manipulated in psychophysical experiments and a law-like relation between attention and consciousness is waiting to be discovered. Most attempts to discover the nature of this relation are focused on a special type of attention: spatial visual attention. In this review I want to introduce another type of attention to ...
Smith, Louise; Leung, Wing Gi; Crane, Bryony; Parkinson, Brian; Toulopoulou, Timothea; Yiend, Jenny
Most research into cognitive biases has used Western samples, despite potential East-West socio-cultural differences. One reason is the lack of appropriate measures for non-Westerners. This study is about cross-linguistic equivalence which needs to be established before assessing cross-cultural differences in future research. We developed parallel Mandarin and English measures of interpretation bias and attention bias using back-translation and decentering procedures. We assessed task equivalence by administering both sets of measures to 47 bilingual Mandarin-English speakers. Interpretation bias measurement was similar and reliable across language versions, confirming suitability of the Mandarin versions for future cross-cultural research. By contrast, scores on attention bias tasks did not intercorrelate reliably, suggesting that nonverbal stimuli such as pictures or facial expressions of emotion might present better prospects for cross-cultural comparison. The development of the first set of equivalent measures of interpretation bias in an Eastern language paves the way for future research investigating East-West differences in biased cognition.
Polit, Denise F; Beck, Cheryl Tatano
Using data from a consecutive sample of 259 studies published in four leading nursing research journals in 2005-2006, we examined whether nurse researchers favor females as study participants. On average, 75.3% of study participants were female, and 38% of studies had all-female samples. The bias favoring female participants was statistically significant and persistent. The bias was observed regardless of funding source, methodological features, and other participant and researcher characteristics, with one exception: studies that had male investigators had more sex-balanced samples. When designing studies, nurse researchers need to pay close attention to who will benefit from their research and to whether they are leaving out a specific group about which there is a gap in knowledge. (c) 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Costa-Giomi, Eugenia; Ilari, Beatriz
Caregivers and early childhood teachers all over the world use singing and speech to elicit and maintain infants' attention. Research comparing infants' preferential attention to music and speech is inconclusive regarding their responses to these two types of auditory stimuli, with one study showing a music bias and another one…
Colzato, L.S.; Hommel, B.; van den Wildenberg, W.P.M.; Hsieh, S.
Increasing evidence suggests that religious practice induces systematic biases in attentional control. We used Navon's global-local task to compare attentional bias in Taiwanese Zen Buddhists and Taiwanese atheists; two groups brought up in the same country and culture and matched with respect to
Custers, J.A.E.; Becker, E.S.; Gielissen, M.F.M.; Laarhoven, H.W.M. van; Rinck, M.; Prins, J.B.
BACKGROUND: Anxious people show an attentional bias towards threatening information. PURPOSE: It was investigated whether an attentional bias exists for cancer-related stimuli in breast cancer survivors and if different levels of fear of cancer recurrence would lead to different patterns of
Sedlacek, William E.
Three types of test bias are discussed: content bias, atmosphere bias, and use bias. Use bias is considered the most important. Tests reflect the bias in society, and eliminating test bias means eliminating racism and sexism in society. A six-stage model to eliminate racism and sexism is presented. (Author)
Jaworski, Jessica L Bean; Eigsti, Inge-Marie
Visual attention is integral to social interaction and is a critical building block for development in other domains (e.g., language). Furthermore, atypical attention (especially joint attention) is one of the earliest markers of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The current study assesses low-level visual attention and its relation to social attentional processing in youth with ASD and typically developing (TD) youth, aged 7 to 18 years. The findings indicate difficulty overriding incorrect attentional cues in ASD, particularly with non-social (arrow) cues relative to social (face) cues. The findings also show reduced competition in ASD from cues that remain on-screen. Furthermore, social attention, autism severity, and age were all predictors of competing cue processing. The results suggest that individuals with ASD may be biased towards speeded rather than accurate responding, and further, that reduced engagement with visual information may impede responses to visual attentional cues. Once attention is engaged, individuals with ASD appear to interpret directional cues as meaningful. These findings from a controlled, experimental paradigm were mirrored in results from an ecologically valid measure of social attention. Attentional difficulties may be exacerbated during the complex and dynamic experience of actual social interaction. Implications for intervention are discussed.
Booth, Robert W; Mackintosh, Bundy; Sharma, Dinkar
High trait anxious individuals tend to show biased processing of threat. Correlational evidence suggests that executive control could be used to regulate such threat-processing. On this basis, we hypothesized that trait anxiety-related cognitive biases regarding threat should be exaggerated when executive control is experimentally impaired by loading working memory. In Study 1, 68 undergraduates read ambiguous vignettes under high and low working memory load; later, their interpretations of these vignettes were assessed via a recognition test. Trait anxiety predicted biased interpretation of social threat vignettes under high working memory load, but not under low working memory load. In Study 2, 53 undergraduates completed a dot probe task with fear-conditioned Japanese characters serving as threat stimuli. Trait anxiety predicted attentional bias to the threat stimuli but, again, this only occurred under high working memory load. Interestingly however, actual eye movements toward the threat stimuli were only associated with state anxiety, and this was not moderated by working memory load, suggesting that executive control regulates biased threat-processing downstream of initial input processes such as orienting. These results suggest that cognitive loads can exacerbate trait anxiety-related cognitive biases, and therefore represent a useful tool for assessing cognitive biases in future research. More importantly, since biased threat-processing has been implicated in the etiology and maintenance of anxiety, poor executive control may be a risk factor for anxiety disorders. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).
Brockmeyer, Timo; Anderle, Alisa; Schmidt, Hagen; Febry, Stephanie; Wünsch-Leiteritz, Wally; Leiteritz, Andreas; Friederich, Hans-Christoph
A distorted body image and pronounced body dissatisfaction are hallmarks of anorexia nervosa (AN) that typically result in dietary restraint and compensatory behaviours. Cognitive biases such as negative interpretation bias are considered key maintaining factors of these maladaptive cognitions and behaviours. However, little attention has been paid to empirical tests whether negative interpretation bias exists in AN and to what degree it is associated with symptom severity. Participants in the present study were 40 women with AN and 40 healthy women with no history of an eating disorder. Body-related negative interpretation bias (i.e., a tendency to interpret ambiguous information about the own body in a negative way) was measured by a Scrambled Sentences Task. Patients with AN showed a stronger body-related negative interpretation bias than healthy controls. Within both groups, negative interpretation bias correlated strongly and positively with AN symptom severity and these effects were not moderated by levels of depressive symptoms. The findings support the idea that biased interpretation of body-related information is associated with the specific psychopathology of AN. Targeted, computerised interventions (e.g. interpretation bias modification) may help to alter these dysfunctional cognitive schemas that lie at the heart of AN. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Gozli, Davood G; Moskowitz, Joshua B; Pratt, Jay
Expecting a particular stimulus can facilitate processing of that stimulus over others, but what is the fate of other stimuli that are known to co-occur with the expected stimulus? This study examined the impact of learned association on feature-based attention. The findings show that the effectiveness of an uninformative color transient in orienting attention can change by learned associations between colors and the expected target shape. In an initial acquisition phase, participants learned two distinct sequences of stimulus-response-outcome, where stimuli were defined by shape ('S' vs. 'H'), responses were localized key-presses (left vs. right), and outcomes were colors (red vs. green). Next, in a test phase, while expecting a target shape (80% probable), participants showed reliable attentional orienting to the color transient associated with the target shape, and showed no attentional orienting with the color associated with the alternative target shape. This bias seemed to be driven by learned association between shapes and colors, and not modulated by the response. In addition, the bias seemed to depend on observing target-color conjunctions, since encountering the two features disjunctively (without spatiotemporal overlap) did not replicate the findings. We conclude that associative learning - likely mediated by mechanisms underlying visual object representation - can extend the impact of goal-driven attention to features associated with a target stimulus. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
The origin of photosensitivity of graphene devices has been attributed to either thermoelectric, photovoltaic, or bolometric effects. Here we report on the intrinsic photoresponse of electrically biased, but otherwise homogeneous single-layer graphene. In this simple, yet unstudied experimental condition, the photocurrent shows polarity reversal, as it alternates between two of these effects while sweeping the electronic potential. Near the Dirac point, the photovoltaic effect dominates, and the photocurrent adds to the transport current. Away from the Dirac point, the bolometric effect dominates, and reduces the transport current. Magnitude and polarity of the photocurrent allow us to infer the hot carrier and phonon temperatures under light illumination. The electron temperature is found to be an order of magnitude higher than the phonon temperature, shedding light on energy loss pathways other than via intrinsic graphene phonons. (M. Freitag et al., Nature Photonics, accepted for publication (2012).)
Monem, Ramey G; Fillmore, Mark T
Attentional bias to alcohol-related stimuli is believed to be an important contributor to the development and maintenance of drug abuse. There is a considerable body of research examining attentional bias, much of which has typically utilized image-display tasks as a means to assess the phenomenon. Little, however, is known about the nature of this bias in an individual's natural environment. The current study sought to implement a novel approach to assessing attentional bias in vivo. Participants wore portable eye-tracking glasses that recorded video from their point of view and measured fixation time to objects they observed. They entered a room that was designed to represent a recreational setting in which both alcohol- and nonalcoholic-neutral beverages were placed along with other stimuli. In two different testing sessions, participants were free to visually explore the room. Participants showed similar fixation times to alcohol and neutral beverages during Session 1. Attentional bias to alcoholic beverages was observed in Session 2 because fixation time decreased to neutral but not to alcoholic beverages. The magnitude of attentional bias was positively associated with drinking habits, with heavier drinkers demonstrating a higher degree of bias to alcohol. These findings provide an ecological model of how attentional bias can develop as the net result of attention being sustained to alcoholic stimuli while diminishing to other stimuli over time. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).
Schumacher, Sophie E; Kemps, Eva; Tiggemann, Marika
Recent evidence has demonstrated that bias modification training has potential to reduce cognitive biases for attractive targets and affect health behaviours. The present study investigated whether cognitive bias modification training could be applied to reduce approach bias for chocolate and affect subsequent chocolate consumption. A sample of 120 women (18-27 years) were randomly assigned to an approach-chocolate condition or avoid-chocolate condition, in which they were trained to approach or avoid pictorial chocolate stimuli, respectively. Training had the predicted effect on approach bias, such that participants trained to approach chocolate demonstrated an increased approach bias to chocolate stimuli whereas participants trained to avoid such stimuli showed a reduced bias. Further, participants trained to avoid chocolate ate significantly less of a chocolate muffin in a subsequent taste test than participants trained to approach chocolate. Theoretically, results provide support for the dual process model's conceptualisation of consumption as being driven by implicit processes such as approach bias. In practice, approach bias modification may be a useful component of interventions designed to curb the consumption of unhealthy foods. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
.... Attention may affect the perceived clarity of visual displays and improve performance. In this project, a powerful external noise method was developed to identify and characterize the effect of attention on perceptual performance in visual tasks...
Habekost, Thomas; Starrfelt, Randi
Psychophysical studies have identified two distinct limitations of visual attention capacity: processing speed and apprehension span. Using a simple test, these cognitive factors can be analyzed by Bundesen's Theory of Visual Attention (TVA). The method has strong specificity and sensitivity...
.... Attention may affect the perceived clarity of visual displays and improve performance. In this project, a powerful external noise method was developed to identify and characterize the effect of attention on perceptual performance in visual tasks...
McGeorge, Peter; Beschin, Nicoletta; Colnaghi, Alessandra; Rusconi, Maria Luisa; Della Sala, Sergio
One hundred right-handed healthy individuals were asked to imagine a familiar scene (the Piazza del Duomo, Milan) from two opposite viewpoints and report what they could see. For elements that should be visible from the participants' viewpoint, more elements were reported from the left side of the image than from the right, irrespective of view. These results establish that there is a lateralized bias in reporting the details in mental images--representational pseudoneglect. This bias is in the opposite direction and significantly smaller than the bias seen in individuals with representational neglect following right hemisphere damage. Representational pseudoneglect appears analogous to perceptual pseudoneglect and the two may share an underlying mechanism. The results are interpreted as indicating that pseudo-representational neglect arises as the result of a bias in the allocation of attention to the imagined scene.
Gluud, Lise Lotte
Research on bias in clinical trials may help identify some of the reasons why investigators sometimes reach the wrong conclusions about intervention effects. Several quality components for the assessment of bias control have been suggested, but although they seem intrinsically valid, empirical...... evidence is needed to evaluate their effects on the extent and direction of bias. This narrative review summarizes the findings of methodological studies on the influence of bias in clinical trials. A number of methodological studies suggest that lack of adequate randomization in published trial reports...
Carolina B Menezes; Mirtes G Pereira; Lisiane Bizarro
Introduction: Focused attention meditation is the voluntary focusing of attention on a chosen object in a sustained fashion, whose objective is to develop attentional and emotional regulatory skills./objective: We investigated the effect of a six-week focused attention meditation training on a discrimination task with emotional distractors by comparing participants’ discriminability and bias before and after training. Method: College students were randomly assigned to either focused meditatio...
Farooq, Omar; Taouss, Mohammed
Can information environment of a firm explain home bias in analysts’ recommendations? Can the extent of agency problems explain optimism difference between foreign and local analysts? This paper answers these questions by documenting the effect of information environment on home bias in analysts’...
Bundesen, Claus; Habekost, Thomas
The nature of attention is one of the oldest and most central problems in psychology. A huge amount of research has been produced on this subject in the last half century, especially on attention in the visual modality, but a general explanation has remained elusive. Many still view attention res....... The book explains the TVA model and shows how it accounts for attentional effects observed across all the research areas described. Principles of Visual Attention offers a uniquely integrated view on a central topic in cognitive neuroscience....
Cetin, Uzay; Bingol, Haluk O.
In the new digital age, information is available in large quantities. Since information consumes primarily the attention of its recipients, the scarcity of attention is becoming the main limiting factor. In this study, we investigate the impact of advertisement pressure on a cultural market where consumers have a limited attention capacity. A model of competition for attention is developed and investigated analytically and by simulation. Advertisement is found to be much more effective when the attention capacity of agents is extremely scarce. We have observed that the market share of the advertised item improves if dummy items are introduced to the market while the strength of the advertisement is kept constant.
Hopfinger, Joseph B
Mechanisms of attention are a prime target for investigating the plasticity of the adult brain, as these core mechanisms act at the intersection of top-down and bottom-up processing, and the wide variety of methods used in attention research can be utilized to elucidate the mechanisms of plasticity. This special issue of Cognitive Neuroscience presents three new empirical papers and a discussion paper with peer commentaries. In the first article, Voelker, Sheese, and colleagues investigate the influence of genetic variation on the effectiveness of attention training. Della Libera and colleagues then present a study investigating how individual differences in personality traits affect the acquisition of reward-based attention biases. In the final empirical paper, Hopfinger and colleagues present a transcranial stimulation study investigating the influence of different oscillatory stimulations on the efficiency of attentional reorienting. Finally, Voelker, Piscopo, and colleagues present a discussion paper in which they suggest that successful training of attention is linked to changes in the underlying white matter. The papers in this special issue present a sampling of the range of issues and methodologies being brought to bear to further our understanding of the malleability of the mechanisms of attention and of the plasticity of the brain.
Bundesen, Claus; Habekost, Thomas
The nature of attention is one of the oldest and most central problems in psychology. A huge amount of research has been produced on this subject in the last half century, especially on attention in the visual modality, but a general explanation has remained elusive. Many still view attention...... research as a field that is fundamentally fragmented. This book takes a different perspective and presents a unified theory of visual attention: the TVA model. The TVA model explains the many aspects of visual attention by just two mechanisms for selection of information: filtering and pigeonholing....... These mechanisms are described in a set of simple equations, which allow TVA to mathematically model a large number of classical results in the attention literature. The theory explains psychological and neuroscientific findings by the same equations; TVA is a complete theory of visual attention, linking mind...
Oehlberg, Katherine A; Revelle, William; Mineka, Susan
Although biased attention to emotional stimuli is considered a vulnerability factor for anxiety and dysphoria, research has infrequently related such attentional biases to dimensional models of vulnerability for anxiety and mood disorders. In two studies (Study 1, n = 64; Study 2, n = 168), we evaluate the differential associations of general negative affectivity, anxiety, and dysphoria with biases in selective attention among nonclinical participants selected to vary in both anxiety and dysphoria. Across both studies, preferential processing of angry faces at a 300-ms exposure duration was associated with a general tendency to experience a range of negative affect, rather than being specific to symptoms of either anxiety or dysphoria. In the second study, we found evidence of a suppressor relationship between anxiety and dysphoria in the prediction of delayed attentional biases (1,000 ms) for sad faces. In particular, dysphoria was specifically associated with biased attention toward sad cues, but only after statistically accounting for anxiety; by contrast, anxiety was specifically associated with attentional avoidance of sad cues, but only after statistically accounting for dysphoria. These results suggest that the specificity of relationships between components of negative affectivity and attention to emotional stimuli varies as a function of the time course at which attentional biases are assessed, highlighting the importance of evaluating both anxiety and dysphoria in research on attentional processing of emotional stimuli.
Seaby, Lauren Paige; Refsgaard, Jens Christian; Sonnenborg, Torben
The question of which climate model bias correction methods and spatial scales for correction are optimal for both projecting future hydrological changes as well as removing initial model bias has so far received little attention. For 11 climate models (CMs), or GCM/RCM – Global/Regional Climate ...
Wilkowski, Benjamin M.; Robinson, Michael D.; Gordon, Robert D.; Troop-Gordon, Wendy
Previous research has shown that trait anger is associated with biases in attention and interpretation, but the temporal relation between these two types of biases remains unresolved. Indeed, two very different models can be derived from the literature. One model proposes that interpretation biases emerge from earlier biases in attention, whereas the other model proposes that hostile interpretations occur quickly, even prior to the allocation of attention to specific cues. Within the context of integrated visual scenes of ambiguously intended harm, the two models make opposite predictions that can be examined using an eye-tracking methodology. The present study (N = 45) therefore tracked participants’ allocation of attention to hostile and non-hostile cues in ambiguous visual scenes, and found support for the idea that high anger individuals make early hostile interpretations prior to encoding hostile and non-hostiles cues. The data are important in understanding associations between trait anger and cognitive biases. PMID:24920865
Humphreys, Kathryn L; Kircanski, Katharina; Colich, Natalie L; Gotlib, Ian H
Early life stress is associated with poorer social functioning. Attentional biases in response to threat-related cues, linked to both early experience and psychopathology, may explain this association. To date, however, no study has examined attentional biases to fearful facial expressions as a function of early life stress or examined these biases as a potential mediator of the relation between early life stress and social problems. In a sample of 154 children (ages 9-13 years) we examined the associations among interpersonal early life stressors (i.e., birth through age 6 years), attentional biases to emotional facial expressions using a dot-probe task, and social functioning on the Child Behavior Checklist. High levels of early life stress were associated with both greater levels of social problems and an attentional bias away from fearful facial expressions, even after accounting for stressors occurring in later childhood. No biases were found for happy or sad facial expressions as a function of early life stress. Finally, attentional biases to fearful faces mediated the association between early life stress and social problems. Attentional avoidance of fearful facial expressions, evidenced by a bias away from these stimuli, may be a developmental response to early adversity and link the experience of early life stress to poorer social functioning. © 2016 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.
Inglis, Matthew; Simpson, Adrian
In this paper we briefly describe the dual process account of reasoning, and explain the role of heuristic biases in human thought. Concentrating on the so-called matching bias effect, we describe a piece of research that indicates a correlation between success at advanced level mathematics and an ability to override innate and misleading…
Anelli, Filomena; Avanzi, Stefano; Arzy, Shahar; Mancuso, Mauro; Frassinetti, Francesca
Numerous studies agree that time is represented in spatial terms in the brain. Here we investigate how a deficit in orienting attention in space influences the ability to mentally travel in time, that is to recall the past and anticipate the future. Right brain-damaged patients, with (RBD-N+) and without neglect (RBD-N-), and healthy controls (HC) were subjected to a Mental Time Travel (MTT) task. Participants were asked to project themselves in time to past, present or future (i.e., self-projection) and, for each self-projection, to judge whether events were located relatively in the past or the future (i.e., self-reference). The MTT-task was performed before and after a manipulation, through prismatic adaptation (PA), inducing a leftward shift of spatial attention. Before PA, RBD-N+ were slower for future than for past events, whereas RBD-N- and HC responded similarly to past and future events. A leftward shift of spatial attention by PA reduced the difference in past/future processing in RBD-N+ and fastened RBD-N- and HC's response to past events. Assuming that time concepts, such as past/future, are coded with a left-to-right order on a mental time line (MTL), a recursive search of future-events can explain neglect patients' performance. Improvement of the spatial deficit following PA reduces the recursive search of future events on the rightmost part of the MTL, facilitating exploration of past events on the leftmost part of the MTL, finally favoring the correct location of past and future events. In addition, the study of the anatomical correlates of the temporal deficit in mental time travel through voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping showed a correlation with a lesion located in the insula and in the thalamus. These findings provide new insights about the inter-relations of space and time, and can pave the way to a procedure to rehabilitate a deficit in these cognitive domains. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
L. Carvalho de Mesquita Ferreira (Luciana)
textabstractOrganizational studies emphasizing the role of attention in organizational behavior depart from the idea that organizations, like individuals, have limited capacity to attend to environmental stimuli. The bounded capacity of the organizations to respond to stimuli is conditioned by the
Hepworth, Rebecca; Mogg, Karin; Brignell, Catherine; Bradley, Brendan P
Following negative reinforcement and affect-regulation models of dysfunctional appetitive motivation, this study examined the effect of negative mood on objective and subjective cognitive indices of motivation for food; i.e., attentional bias for food cues and self-reported hunger/urge to eat, respectively. The study extended previous research on the effect of mood on food motivation by using (i) an experimental mood manipulation, (ii) an established index of attentional bias from the visual-probe task and (iii) pictorial food cues, which have greater ecological validity than word stimuli. Young female adults (n=80) were randomly allocated to a neutral or negative mood induction procedure. Attentional biases were assessed at two cue exposure durations (500 and 2000ms). Results showed that negative mood increased both attentional bias for food cues and subjective appetite. Attentional bias and subjective appetite were positively inter-correlated, suggesting a common mechanism, i.e. activation of the food-reward system. Attentional bias was also associated with trait eating style, such as external and restrained eating. Thus, current mood and trait eating style each influenced motivation for food (as reflected by subjective appetite and attentional bias). Findings relate to models of cognitive mechanisms underlying normal and dysfunctional appetitive motivation and eating behaviour. 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Jeong, Donghui; Desjacques, Vincent; Schmidt, Fabian
Here, we briefly introduce the key results of the recent review (arXiv:1611.09787), whose abstract is as following. This review presents a comprehensive overview of galaxy bias, that is, the statistical relation between the distribution of galaxies and matter. We focus on large scales where cosmic density fields are quasi-linear. On these scales, the clustering of galaxies can be described by a perturbative bias expansion, and the complicated physics of galaxy formation is absorbed by a finite set of coefficients of the expansion, called bias parameters. The review begins with a detailed derivation of this very important result, which forms the basis of the rigorous perturbative description of galaxy clustering, under the assumptions of General Relativity and Gaussian, adiabatic initial conditions. Key components of the bias expansion are all leading local gravitational observables, which include the matter density but also tidal fields and their time derivatives. We hence expand the definition of local bias to encompass all these contributions. This derivation is followed by a presentation of the peak-background split in its general form, which elucidates the physical meaning of the bias parameters, and a detailed description of the connection between bias parameters and galaxy (or halo) statistics. We then review the excursion set formalism and peak theory which provide predictions for the values of the bias parameters. In the remainder of the review, we consider the generalizations of galaxy bias required in the presence of various types of cosmological physics that go beyond pressureless matter with adiabatic, Gaussian initial conditions: primordial non-Gaussianity, massive neutrinos, baryon-CDM isocurvature perturbations, dark energy, and modified gravity. Finally, we discuss how the description of galaxy bias in the galaxies' rest frame is related to clustering statistics measured from the observed angular positions and redshifts in actual galaxy catalogs.
Desjacques, Vincent; Jeong, Donghui; Schmidt, Fabian
This review presents a comprehensive overview of galaxy bias, that is, the statistical relation between the distribution of galaxies and matter. We focus on large scales where cosmic density fields are quasi-linear. On these scales, the clustering of galaxies can be described by a perturbative bias expansion, and the complicated physics of galaxy formation is absorbed by a finite set of coefficients of the expansion, called bias parameters. The review begins with a detailed derivation of this very important result, which forms the basis of the rigorous perturbative description of galaxy clustering, under the assumptions of General Relativity and Gaussian, adiabatic initial conditions. Key components of the bias expansion are all leading local gravitational observables, which include the matter density but also tidal fields and their time derivatives. We hence expand the definition of local bias to encompass all these contributions. This derivation is followed by a presentation of the peak-background split in its general form, which elucidates the physical meaning of the bias parameters, and a detailed description of the connection between bias parameters and galaxy statistics. We then review the excursion-set formalism and peak theory which provide predictions for the values of the bias parameters. In the remainder of the review, we consider the generalizations of galaxy bias required in the presence of various types of cosmological physics that go beyond pressureless matter with adiabatic, Gaussian initial conditions: primordial non-Gaussianity, massive neutrinos, baryon-CDM isocurvature perturbations, dark energy, and modified gravity. Finally, we discuss how the description of galaxy bias in the galaxies' rest frame is related to clustering statistics measured from the observed angular positions and redshifts in actual galaxy catalogs.
Logemann, H.N.A.; Bocker, K.B.E.; Deschamps, P.K.H.; Kemner, C.; Kenemans, J.L.
The cholinergic system has been implicated in visuospatial attention but the exact role remains unclear. In visuospatial attention, bias refers to neuronal signals that modulate the sensitivity of sensory cortex, while disengagement refers to the decoupling of attention making reorienting possible.
Olivers, C.N.L.; Peters, J.; Houtkamp, R.; Roelfsema, P.R.
Recent studies have revealed a strong relationship between visual working memory and selective attention, such that attention is biased by what is currently on our mind. However, other data show that not all memorized items influence the deployment of attention, thus calling for a distinction within
Westerwick, Axel; Johnson, Benjamin K.; Knobloch-Westerwick, Silvia
The present work examines the role of source vs. content cues for the confirmation bias, in which recipients spend more time with content aligning with preexisting attitudes. In addition to testing how both source and content cues facilitate this biased pattern of selective exposure, the study
Considerable attention has been devoted to the presence of favourite-longshot boas in sports betting markets where favourites are ‘under-bet’ with odds that are superior to those predicted under fully efficient markets. Underdogs are ‘under-bet’ with odds that are even more unfair than those...... that would be predicted under market efficiency. The favourite-longshot bias has been well-documented in horse racing. In this chapter the author extends the analysis of favourite-longshot bias to European handball leagues covering six countries. The chapter uses regression-based analysis to demonstrate...
Schwartz, Odelia; Coen-Cagli, Ruben
Attention to a spatial location or feature in a visual scene can modulate the responses of cortical neurons and affect perceptual biases in illusions. We add attention to a cortical model of spatial context based on a well-founded account of natural scene statistics. The cortical model amounts to a generalized form of divisive normalization, in which the surround is in the normalization pool of the center target only if they are considered statistically dependent. Here we propose that attention influences this computation by accentuating the neural unit activations at the attended location, and that the amount of attentional influence of the surround on the center thus depends on whether center and surround are deemed in the same normalization pool. The resulting form of model extends a recent divisive normalization model of attention (Reynolds & Heeger, 2009). We simulate cortical surround orientation experiments with attention and show that the flexible model is suitable for capturing additional data and makes nontrivial testable predictions. PMID:23345413
Peters, Emmanuelle R; Moritz, Steffen; Schwannauer, Matthias; Wiseman, Zoe; Greenwood, Kathryn E; Scott, Jan; Beck, Aaron T; Donaldson, Catherine; Hagen, Roger; Ross, Kerry; Veckenstedt, Ruth; Ison, Rebecca; Williams, Sally; Kuipers, Elizabeth; Garety, Philippa A
The Cognitive Biases Questionnaire for psychosis (CBQp) was developed to capture 5 cognitive distortions (jumping to conclusions, intentionalising, catastrophising, emotional reasoning, and dichotomous thinking), which are considered important for the pathogenesis of psychosis. Vignettes were adapted from the Cognitive Style Test (CST),(1) relating to "Anomalous Perceptions" and "Threatening Events" themes. Scale structure, reliability, and validity were investigated in a psychosis group, and CBQp scores were compared with those of depressed and healthy control samples. The CBQp showed good internal consistency and test-retest reliability. The 5 biases were not independent, with a 2-related factor scale providing the best fit. This structure suggests that the CBQp assesses a general thinking bias rather than distinct cognitive errors, while Anomalous Perception and Threatening Events theme scores can be used separately. Total CBQp scores showed good convergent validity with the CST, but individual biases were not related to existing tasks purporting to assess similar reasoning biases. Psychotic and depressed populations scored higher than healthy controls, and symptomatic psychosis patients scored higher than their nonsymptomatic counterparts, with modest relationships between CBQp scores and symptom severity once emotional disorders were partialled out. Anomalous Perception theme and Intentionalising bias scores showed some specificity to psychosis. Overall, the CBQp has good psychometric properties, although it is likely that it measures a different construct to existing tasks, tentatively suggested to represent a bias of interpretation rather than reasoning, judgment or decision-making processes. It is a potentially useful tool in both research and clinical arenas.
Working definition of cognitive bias: Patterns by which information is sought and interpreted that can lead to systematic errors in decisions. Cognitive bias is used in diverse fields: Economics, Politics, Intelligence, Marketing, to name a few. Attempts to ground cognitive science in physical characteristics of the cognitive apparatus exceed our knowledge. Studies based on correlations; strict cause and effect is difficult to pinpoint. Effects cited in the paper and discussed here have been replicated many times over, and appear sound. Many biases have been described, but it is still unclear whether they are all distinct. There may only be a handful of fundamental biases, which manifest in various ways. Bias can effect system verification in many ways . Overconfidence -> Questionable decisions to deploy. Availability -> Inability to conceive critical tests. Representativeness -> Overinterpretation of results. Positive Test Strategies -> Confirmation bias. Debiasing at individual level very difficult. The potential effect of bias on the verification process can be managed, but not eliminated. Worth considering at key points in the process.
E S Nwauche
Full Text Available This article reviews the interpretation of section 6(2(aii of the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act which makes an administrator “biased or reasonably suspected of bias” a ground of judicial review. In this regard, the paper reviews the determination of administrative bias in South Africa especially highlighting the concept of institutional bias. The paper notes that inspite of the formulation of the bias ground of review the test for administrative bias is the reasonable apprehension test laid down in the case of President of South Africa v South African Rugby Football Union(2 which on close examination is not the same thing. Accordingly the paper urges an alternative interpretation that is based on the reasonable suspicion test enunciated in BTR Industries South Africa (Pty Ltd v Metal and Allied Workers Union and R v Roberts. Within this context, the paper constructs a model for interpreting the bias ground of review that combines the reasonable suspicion test as interpreted in BTR Industries and R v Roberts, the possibility of the waiver of administrative bias, the curative mechanism of administrative appeal as well as some level of judicial review exemplified by the jurisprudence of article 6(1 of the European Convention of Human Rights, especially in the light of the contemplation of the South African Magistrate Court as a jurisdictional route of judicial review.
Pot-Kolder, Roos; Veling, Wim; Counotte, Jacqueline; van der Gaag, Mark
Cognitive biases are associated with psychosis liability and paranoid ideation. This study investigated the moderating relationship between pre-existing self-reported cognitive biases and the occurrence of paranoid ideation in response to different levels of social stress in a virtual reality environment. This study included 170 participants with different levels of psychosis liability (55 recent onset psychosis, 20 ultrahigh risk for psychosis, 42 siblings of psychotic patients, and 53 controls). All participants were exposed to virtual environments with different levels of social stress. The level of experienced paranoia in the virtual environments was measured with the State Social Paranoia Scale. Cognitive biases were assessed with a self-report continuous measure. Also, cumulative number of cognitive biases was calculated using dichotomous measures of the separate biases, based on general population norm scores. Higher belief inflexibility bias (Z = 2.83, P virtual environments. Level of paranoid response increased with number of cognitive biases present (B = 1.73, P < .001). The effect of environmental stressors on paranoid ideation was moderated by attention to threat bias (Z = 2.78, P < .01) and external attribution bias (Z = 2.75, P < .01), whereas data-gathering bias and belief inflexibility did not moderate the relationship. There is an additive effect of separate cognitive biases on paranoid response to social stress. The effect of social environmental stressors on paranoid ideation is further enhanced by attention to threat bias and external attribution bias.
Michiel van Elk
Full Text Available Previous studies have shown that one's prior beliefs have a strong effect on perceptual decision-making and attentional processing. The present study extends these findings by investigating how individual differences in paranormal and conspiracy beliefs are related to perceptual and attentional biases. Two field studies were conducted in which visitors of a paranormal conducted a perceptual decision making task (i.e. the face/house categorization task; Experiment 1 or a visual attention task (i.e. the global/local processing task; Experiment 2. In the first experiment it was found that skeptics compared to believers more often incorrectly categorized ambiguous face stimuli as representing a house, indicating that disbelief rather than belief in the paranormal is driving the bias observed for the categorization of ambiguous stimuli. In the second experiment, it was found that skeptics showed a classical 'global-to-local' interference effect, whereas believers in conspiracy theories were characterized by a stronger 'local-to-global interference effect'. The present study shows that individual differences in paranormal and conspiracy beliefs are associated with perceptual and attentional biases, thereby extending the growing body of work in this field indicating effects of cultural learning on basic perceptual processes.
van Elk, Michiel
Previous studies have shown that one's prior beliefs have a strong effect on perceptual decision-making and attentional processing. The present study extends these findings by investigating how individual differences in paranormal and conspiracy beliefs are related to perceptual and attentional biases. Two field studies were conducted in which visitors of a paranormal conducted a perceptual decision making task (i.e. the face/house categorization task; Experiment 1) or a visual attention task (i.e. the global/local processing task; Experiment 2). In the first experiment it was found that skeptics compared to believers more often incorrectly categorized ambiguous face stimuli as representing a house, indicating that disbelief rather than belief in the paranormal is driving the bias observed for the categorization of ambiguous stimuli. In the second experiment, it was found that skeptics showed a classical 'global-to-local' interference effect, whereas believers in conspiracy theories were characterized by a stronger 'local-to-global interference effect'. The present study shows that individual differences in paranormal and conspiracy beliefs are associated with perceptual and attentional biases, thereby extending the growing body of work in this field indicating effects of cultural learning on basic perceptual processes.
Finke, Kathrin; Schwarzkopf, Wolfgang; Müller, Ulrich; Frodl, Thomas; Müller, Hermann J; Schneider, Werner X; Engel, Rolf R; Riedel, Michael; Möller, Hans-Jürgen; Hennig-Fast, Kristina
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) persists frequently into adulthood. The decomposition of endophenotypes by means of experimental neuro-cognitive assessment has the potential to improve diagnostic assessment, evaluation of treatment response, and disentanglement of genetic and environmental influences. We assessed four parameters of attentional capacity and selectivity derived from simple psychophysical tasks (verbal report of briefly presented letter displays) and based on a "theory of visual attention." These parameters are mathematically independent, quantitative measures, and previous studies have shown that they are highly sensitive for subtle attention deficits. Potential reductions of attentional capacity, that is, of perceptual processing speed and working memory storage capacity, were assessed with a whole report paradigm. Furthermore, possible pathologies of attentional selectivity, that is, selection of task-relevant information and bias in the spatial distribution of attention, were measured with a partial report paradigm. A group of 30 unmedicated adult ADHD patients and a group of 30 demographically matched healthy controls were tested. ADHD patients showed significant reductions of working memory storage capacity of a moderate to large effect size. Perceptual processing speed, task-based, and spatial selection were unaffected. The results imply a working memory deficit as an important source of behavioral impairments. The theory of visual attention parameter working memory storage capacity might constitute a quantifiable and testable endophenotype of ADHD.
Schmitz, Florian; Naumann, Eva; Biehl, Stefanie; Svaldi, Jennifer
Cognitive models of eating disorders propose that attentional biases for disorder-relevant stimuli contribute to eating disorder pathology. Empirical evidence of a contribution of attentional biases for binge eating disorder (BED) is still scarce. The aim of the present study was to assess attention engagement towards, and disengagement from, food stimuli in overweight females with BED (n = 25) and a group of overweight and obese women without BED (OW; n = 30). Participants completed a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) paradigm with food and neutral words as target stimuli. This task can be used to decompose an attentional bias for food stimuli into its stimulus engagement and stimulus disengagement components. Findings indicate that facilitated stimulus engagement for food stimuli over neutral stimuli was more pronounced in the BED group compared to the OW group. Conversely, there were no substantial disengagement effects in either group. Thereby, results support the idea that early attentional processes are biased in BED. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Abramo, Giovanni; D’Angelo, Ciriaco Andrea; Rosati, Francesco
It is well known that women are underrepresented in the academic systems of many countries. Gender discrimination is one of the factors that could contribute to this phenomenon. This study considers a recent national academic recruitment campaign in Italy, examining whether women are subject...... to more or less bias than men. The findings show that no gender-related differences occur among the candidates who benefit from positive bias, while among those candidates affected by negative bias, the incidence of women is lower than that of men. Among the factors that determine success in a competition...
The practice of Homeopathy ought to be strictly logical. In the Organon Samuel Hahnemann gives the impression that the unprejudiced observer should be able to follow an algorithmic route to the simillimum in every case. Judgement and Decision Research, however, indicates that when people grapple with complex systems like homeopathy they are more likely to use heuristics or empirical rules to help them reach a solution. Thus Hahnemann's concept of the unprejudiced observer is virtually impossible to attain. There is inevitable bias in both case-taking and remedy selection. Understanding the types of bias may enable the practitioner to reduce his/her own bias.
Leong, Yuan Chang; Radulescu, Angela; Daniel, Reka; DeWoskin, Vivian; Niv, Yael
Little is known about the relationship between attention and learning during decision making. Using eye tracking and multivariate pattern analysis of fMRI data, we measured participants' dimensional attention as they performed a trial-and-error learning task in which only one of three stimulus dimensions was relevant for reward at any given time. Analysis of participants' choices revealed that attention biased both value computation during choice and value update during learning. Value signals in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and prediction errors in the striatum were similarly biased by attention. In turn, participants' focus of attention was dynamically modulated by ongoing learning. Attentional switches across dimensions correlated with activity in a frontoparietal attention network, which showed enhanced connectivity with the ventromedial prefrontal cortex between switches. Our results suggest a bidirectional interaction between attention and learning: attention constrains learning to relevant dimensions of the environment, while we learn what to attend to via trial and error. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Moher, Jeff; Song, Joo-Hyun
Target selection is often biased by an observer's recent experiences. However, not much is known about whether these selection biases influence behavior across different effectors. For example, does looking at a red object make it easier to subsequently reach towards another red object? In the current study, we asked observers to find the uniquely colored target object on each trial. Randomly intermixed pre-trial cues indicated the mode of action: either an eye movement or a visually guided reach movement to the target. In Experiment 1, we found that priming of popout, reflected in faster responses following repetition of the target color on consecutive trials, occurred regardless of whether the effector was repeated from the previous trial or not. In Experiment 2, we examined whether an inhibitory selection bias away from a feature could transfer across effectors. While priming of popout reflects both enhancement of the repeated target features and suppression of the repeated distractor features, the distractor previewing effect isolates a purely inhibitory component of target selection in which a previewed color is presented in a homogenous display and subsequently inhibited. Much like priming of popout, intertrial suppression biases in the distractor previewing effect transferred across effectors. Together, these results suggest that biases for target selection driven by recent trial history transfer across effectors. This indicates that representations in memory that bias attention towards or away from specific features are largely independent from their associated actions.
Rothkegel, Lars O M; Trukenbrod, Hans A; Schütt, Heiko H; Wichmann, Felix A; Engbert, Ralf
When watching the image of a natural scene on a computer screen, observers initially move their eyes toward the center of the image-a reliable experimental finding termed central fixation bias. This systematic tendency in eye guidance likely masks attentional selection driven by image properties and top-down cognitive processes. Here, we show that the central fixation bias can be reduced by delaying the initial saccade relative to image onset. In four scene-viewing experiments we manipulated observers' initial gaze position and delayed their first saccade by a specific time interval relative to the onset of an image. We analyzed the distance to image center over time and show that the central fixation bias of initial fixations was significantly reduced after delayed saccade onsets. We additionally show that selection of the initial saccade target strongly depended on the first saccade latency. A previously published model of saccade generation was extended with a central activation map on the initial fixation whose influence declined with increasing saccade latency. This extension was sufficient to replicate the central fixation bias from our experiments. Our results suggest that the central fixation bias is generated by default activation as a response to the sudden image onset and that this default activation pattern decreases over time. Thus, it may often be preferable to use a modified version of the scene viewing paradigm that decouples image onset from the start signal for scene exploration to explicitly reduce the central fixation bias.
Filley, Christopher M
Attention is a complex neurobehavioral domain that is essential for all higher functions. Large areas of the brain are devoted to attention, reflecting its importance in the entire range of mental operations. Currently, two major distributed neural networks are recognized as mediating complementary aspects of attentional function. One is a diffuse system that distributes attention globally. This attentional system is subserved by a widespread network of thalamic and bihemispheric structures in which the frontal lobes are particularly important. The second network, a focal system that distributes attention to salient aspects of spatial experience, is lateralized to frontal and parietal regions of the right hemisphere. Both attentional networks are comprised of cortical and subcortical gray matter structures, as well as connecting white matter tracts that integrate these regions into functional ensembles. Neurological disorders frequently produce dramatic syndromes reflecting dysfunction of these networks. Among these syndromes are the acute confusional state, which results from disturbance of the diffuse system, and left neglect, which follows disruption of the right hemisphere system. The neuroanatomy of attention is crucial for understanding important neurobehavioral syndromes and their treatment.
Orquin, Jacob Lund; Mueller Loose, Simone
This paper reviews studies on eye movements in decision making, and compares their observations to theoretical predictions concerning the role of attention in decision making. Four decision theories are examined: rational models, bounded rationality, evidence accumulation, and parallel constraint...... satisfaction models. Although most theories were confirmed with regard to certain predictions, none of the theories adequately accounted for the role of attention during decision making. Several observations emerged concerning the drivers and down-stream effects of attention on choice, suggesting...... that attention processes plays an active role in constructing decisions. So far, decision theories have largely ignored the constructive role of attention by assuming that it is entirely determined by heuristics, or that it consists of stochastic information sampling. The empirical observations reveal...
Kwee, R E; The ATLAS collaboration
Since the restart of the LHC in November 2009, ATLAS has collected inelastic pp-collisions to perform first measurements on charged particle densities. These measurements will help to constrain various models describing phenomenologically soft parton interactions. Understanding the trigger efficiencies for different event types are therefore crucial to minimize any possible bias in the event selection. ATLAS uses two main minimum bias triggers, featuring complementary detector components and trigger levels. While a hardware based first trigger level situated in the forward regions with 2.09 < |eta| < 3.8 has been proven to select pp-collisions very efficiently, the Inner Detector based minimum bias trigger uses a random seed on filled bunches and central tracking detectors for the event selection. Both triggers were essential for the analysis of kinematic spectra of charged particles. Their performance and trigger efficiency measurements as well as studies on possible bias sources will be presen...
Lynn K Perry
Full Text Available Children acquire attentional biases that help them generalize novel words to novel objects. Researchers have proposed that these biases arise from regularities in the early noun vocabulary children learn and suggest that the specifics of the biases should be tied to the specifics of individual children’s vocabularies. However, evidence supporting this proposal to date comes from studies of group means. The current study examines the relations between the statistics of the nouns young children learn and the similarities and differences in the biases they demonstrate. We show that individual differences in vocabulary structure predict individual differences in novel noun generalization. Thus, these data support the proposal that word-learning biases emerge from the regularities present in individual children’s vocabularies and, importantly, that children’s online attention during an experiment is mediated by instances of past learning.
Chen, Yi-Chuan; Spence, Charles
The extent to which attention modulates multisensory processing in a top-down fashion is still a subject of debate among researchers. Typically, cognitive psychologists interested in this question have manipulated the participants' attention in terms of single/dual tasking or focal/divided attention between sensory modalities. We suggest an alternative approach, one that builds on the extensive older literature highlighting hemispheric asymmetries in the distribution of spatial attention. Specifically, spatial attention in vision, audition, and touch is typically biased preferentially toward the right hemispace, especially under conditions of high perceptual load. We review the evidence demonstrating such an attentional bias toward the right in extinction patients and healthy adults, along with the evidence of such rightward-biased attention in multisensory experimental settings. We then evaluate those studies that have demonstrated either a more pronounced multisensory effect in right than in left hemispace, or else similar effects in the two hemispaces. The results suggest that the influence of rightward-biased attention is more likely to be observed when the crossmodal signals interact at later stages of information processing and under conditions of higher perceptual load-that is, conditions under which attention is perhaps a compulsory enhancer of information processing. We therefore suggest that the spatial asymmetry in attention may provide a useful signature of top-down attentional modulation in multisensory processing.
S. Roy (Santanu); J.M.A. Viaene (Jean-Marie)
textabstractAnalyzes international trade where consumer preferences exhibit country bias. Why country biases arise; How trade can occur in the presence of country bias; Implication for the pattern of trade and specialization.
Finlayson, Nonie J; Papageorgiou, Andriani; Schwarzkopf, D Samuel
How we perceive the environment is not stable and seamless. Recent studies found that how a person qualitatively experiences even simple visual stimuli varies dramatically across different locations in the visual field. Here we use a method we developed recently that we call multiple alternatives perceptual search (MAPS) for efficiently mapping such perceptual biases across several locations. This procedure reliably quantifies the spatial pattern of perceptual biases and also of uncertainty and choice. We show that these measurements are strongly correlated with those from traditional psychophysical methods and that exogenous attention can skew biases without affecting overall task performance. Taken together, MAPS is an efficient method to measure how an individual's perceptual experience varies across space.
early in the auditory system. Evoked oto-acoustic emissions (EOAE), a measure of activity of outer hair cells in the cochlea, were recorded during...trial of methylphenidate in black adolescents. Attentional, behavioral, and physiological effects. CLINICAL.PEDIATRICS., 27,74-81. Bruto, V...B., & Schoeler, T. (1988). Attention deficit disorder and methylphenidate : a multilevel analysis of dose-response effects on children’s impulsivity
of Dracula to account for the novel’s impact and resilience. Dracula connected squarely with late-Victorian anxieties, but the novel also appeals to trans-historical adaptive dispositions. I analyze Stoker’s use of narrative strategies to grab and sustain attention, and Count Dracula as a supercharged...... predator, a counterintuitive monster well-designed to engage attention and spark the imagination....
Lindstrom, Kara M; Guyer, Amanda E; Mogg, Karin; Bradley, Brendan P; Fox, Nathan A; Ernst, Monique; Nelson, Eric E; Leibenluft, Ellen; Britton, Jennifer C; Monk, Christopher S; Pine, Daniel S; Bar-Haim, Yair
The ability of positive and negative facial signals to influence attention orienting is crucial to social functioning. Given the dramatic developmental change in neural architecture supporting social function, positive and negative facial cues may influence attention orienting differently in relatively young or old individuals. However, virtually no research examines such age-related differences in the neural circuitry supporting attention orienting to emotional faces. We examined age-related correlations in attention-orienting biases to positive and negative face emotions in a healthy sample (N=37; 9-40 years old) using functional magnetic resonance imaging and a dot-probe task. The dot-probe task in an fMRI setting yields both behavioral and neural indices of attention biases towards or away from an emotional cue (happy or angry face). In the full sample, angry-face attention bias scores did not correlate with age, and age did not correlate with brain activation to angry faces. However, age did positively correlate with attention bias towards happy faces; age also negatively correlated with left cuneus and left caudate activation to a happy bias fMRI contrast. Secondary analyses suggested age-related changes in attention bias to happy faces. The tendency in younger children to direct attention away from happy faces (relative to neutral faces) was diminished in the older age groups, in tandem with increasing neural deactivation. Implications for future work on developmental changes in attention-emotion processing are discussed.
Sarkar, Santanu; Venkateswarlu, Ayineedi
International audience; RC4 is one of the most popular stream cipher with wide industrial applications, it has received serious attention in cryptology literature in the last two decades. In 1995, Roos pointed out that the elements SN [y] of the permutation SN after the Key Scheduling Algorithm for the first few values of y are biased to certain combinations of secret key bytes. These correlations were theoretically studied by Paul and Maitra (SAC 2007). The formula for the correlation probab...
Müller-Oehring, Eva M; Schulte, Tilman
Deficits of attention, emotion, and cognition occur in individuals with alcohol abuse and addiction. This review elucidates the concepts of attention, emotion, and cognition and references research on the underlying neural networks and their compromise in alcohol use disorder. Neuroimaging research on adolescents with family history of alcoholism contributes to the understanding of pre-existing brain structural conditions and characterization of cognition and attention processes in high-risk individuals. Attention and cognition interact with other brain functions, including perceptual selection, salience, emotion, reward, and memory, through interconnected neural networks. Recent research reports compromised microstructural and functional network connectivity in alcoholism, which can have an effect on the dynamic tuning between brain systems, e.g., the frontally based executive control system, the limbic emotion system, and the midbrain-striatal reward system, thereby impeding cognitive flexibility and behavioral adaptation to changing environments. Finally, we introduce concepts of functional compensation, the capacity to generate attentional resources for performance enhancement, and brain structure recovery with abstinence. An understanding of the neural mechanisms of attention, emotion, and cognition will likely provide the basis for better treatment strategies for developing skills that enhance alcoholism therapy adherence and quality of life, and reduce the propensity for relapse. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Bouchard, Geneviève; Saint-Aubin, Jean
Building on previous work on the role of attention deficits associated with the regulation of executive control in psychiatric disorders, we examine whether these attention deficits are related to an interpersonal disturbance, the experience of divorce. Attentional capacities of 95 randomly selected couples from the general population were measured with a well-established task, the Attentional Network Task, which assesses the efficiency of 3 attention networks (that is, alerting, orienting, and executive control). Among the 190 participants, 32 had experienced a divorce in the past. ANCOVAs were used to compare divorced people in marital or cohabiting unions with people in first unions in their performance on this purely cognitive task. Our findings indicate that divorced people who are currently living in a cohabiting relationship show significantly lower executive control than other adults living as couples, after controlling for sex, age, income, and education. This subgroup of divorced people not only exhibit greater difficulty in responding to some stimuli while ignoring irrelevant ones but also manifest cognitive deficits in conflict resolution. This study highlights the links between attention and the long-term maintenance of intimate relationships. Our results may have important implications for the identification of people at risk for divorce.
Humphreys, Glyn W.; Sotiropoulos, Stamatios N.; Kennard, Christopher; Cazzoli, Dario
Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) applied over the right posterior parietal cortex (PPC) in healthy participants has been shown to trigger a significant rightward shift in the spatial allocation of visual attention, temporarily mimicking spatial deficits observed in neglect. In contrast, rTMS applied over the left PPC triggers a weaker or null attentional shift. However, large interindividual differences in responses to rTMS have been reported. Studies measuring changes in brain activation suggest that the effects of rTMS may depend on both interhemispheric and intrahemispheric interactions between cortical loci controlling visual attention. Here, we investigated whether variability in the structural organization of human white matter pathways subserving visual attention, as assessed by diffusion magnetic resonance imaging and tractography, could explain interindividual differences in the effects of rTMS. Most participants showed a rightward shift in the allocation of spatial attention after rTMS over the right intraparietal sulcus (IPS), but the size of this effect varied largely across participants. Conversely, rTMS over the left IPS resulted in strikingly opposed individual responses, with some participants responding with rightward and some with leftward attentional shifts. We demonstrate that microstructural and macrostructural variability within the corpus callosum, consistent with differential effects on cross-hemispheric interactions, predicts both the extent and the direction of the response to rTMS. Together, our findings suggest that the corpus callosum may have a dual inhibitory and excitatory function in maintaining the interhemispheric dynamics that underlie the allocation of spatial attention. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The posterior parietal cortex (PPC) controls allocation of attention across left versus right visual fields. Damage to this area results in neglect, characterized by a lack of spatial awareness of the side of space
Hannah Kathleen Skinner
Full Text Available The attentional biases of individuals with high and low levels of depression and anxiety were tested using the Attentional Blink paradigm. A rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP task was used to detect biases in identification of emotionally valenced target images. The independent variables were depression, anxiety, lag of target stimulus, and emotional valence of target images. The dependent variables were accuracy, reaction times, and pupil dilation. As predicted, attentional biases were found for symptoms of both depression and anxiety, independently and co-morbidly, for dependent variables. The data suggest that there are both differences and similarities in the effects of symptoms of anxiety and depression on attentional biases around emotional stimuli.
Lee, Wi Hyoung; Choi, Hyun Ho; Kim, Do Hwan; Cho, Kilwon
Recent studies of the bias-stress-driven electrical instability of organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) are reviewed. OFETs are operated under continuous gate and source/drain biases and these bias stresses degrade device performance. The principles underlying this bias instability are discussed, particularly the mechanisms of charge trapping. There are three main charge-trapping sites: the semiconductor, the dielectric, and the semiconductor-dielectric interface. The charge-trapping phenomena in these three regions are analyzed with special attention to the microstructural dependence of bias instability. Finally, possibilities for future research in this field are presented. This critical review aims to enhance our insight into bias-stress-induced charge trapping in OFETs with the aim of minimizing operational instability.
Richards, Helen J; Benson, Valerie; Donnelly, Nick; Hadwin, Julie A
Theoretical frameworks of anxiety propose that attentional biases to threat-related stimuli cause or maintain anxious states. The current paper draws on theoretical frameworks and key empirical studies to outline the distinctive attentional processes highlighted as being important in understanding anxiety. We develop a conceptual framework to make a distinction between two attentional biases: selective attention to threat and hypervigilance for threat. We suggest that these biases each have a different purpose and can account for the typical patterns of facilitated and impaired attention evident in anxious individuals. The framework is novel in its specification of the eye movement behavior associated with these attentional biases. We highlight that selective attention involves narrowing overt attention onto threat to ensure that these stimuli receive processing priority, leading to rapid engagement with task-relevant threat and delayed disengagement from task-irrelevant threat. We show that hypervigilance operates in the presence and absence of threat and involves monitoring for potential dangers via attentional broadening or excessive scanning of the environment with numerous eye movements, leading to improved threat detection and increased distraction from task-irrelevant threat. We conclude that future research could usefully employ eye movement measures to more clearly understand the diverse roles of attention in anxiety. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Mezulis, Amy H; Abramson, Lyn Y; Hyde, Janet S; Hankin, Benjamin L
Researchers have suggested the presence of a self-serving attributional bias, with people making more internal, stable, and global attributions for positive events than for negative events. This study examined the magnitude, ubiquity, and adaptiveness of this bias. The authors conducted a meta-analysis of 266 studies, yielding 503 independent effect sizes. The average d was 0.96, indicating a large bias. The bias was present in nearly all samples. There were significant age differences, with children and older adults displaying the largest biases. Asian samples displayed significantly smaller biases (d = 0.30) than U.S. (d = 1.05) or Western (d = 0.70) samples. Psychopathology was associated with a significantly attenuated bias (d = 0.48) compared with samples without psychopathology (d = 1.28) and community samples (d = 1.08). The bias was smallest for samples with depression (0.21), anxiety (0.46), and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (0.55). Findings confirm that the self-serving attributional bias is pervasive in the general population but demonstrates significant variability across age, culture, and psychopathology. ((c) 2004 APA, all rights reserved)
Schledde, Bastian; Galashan, F Orlando; Przybyla, Magdalena; Kreiter, Andreas K; Wegener, Detlef
Nonspatially selective attention is based on the notion that specific features or objects in the visual environment are effectively prioritized in cortical visual processing. Feature-based attention (FBA), in particular, is a well-studied process that dynamically and selectively addresses neurons preferentially processing the attended feature attribute (e.g., leftward motion). In everyday life, however, behavior may require high sensitivity for an entire feature dimension (e.g., motion), but experimental evidence for a feature dimension-specific attentional modulation on a cellular level is lacking. Therefore, we investigated neuronal activity in macaque motion-selective mediotemporal area (MT) in an experimental setting requiring the monkeys to detect either a motion change or a color change. We hypothesized that neural activity in MT is enhanced when the task requires perceptual sensitivity to motion. In line with this, we found that mean firing rates were higher in the motion task and that response variability and latency were lower compared with values in the color task, despite identical visual stimulation. This task-specific, dimension-based modulation of motion processing emerged already in the absence of visual input, was independent of the relation between the attended and stimulating motion direction, and was accompanied by a spatially global reduction of neuronal variability. The results provide single-cell support for the hypothesis of a feature dimension-specific top-down signal emphasizing the processing of an entire feature class. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Cortical processing serving visual perception prioritizes information according to current task requirements. We provide evidence in favor of a dimension-based attentional mechanism addressing all neurons that process visual information in the task-relevant feature domain. Behavioral tasks required monkeys to attend either color or motion, causing modulations of response strength, variability, latency, and
Wilcockson, T.D.W.; Sanal, N.E.M.
Objectives: Cannabis is now the most widely used illicit substance in the world. Previous research demonstrates that cannabis use is associated with dysfunctional affect regulation and anxiety. Anxiety is characterised by attentional biases in the presence of emotional information. This novel study therefore examined the attentional bias of cannabis users when presented with anxiety-related stimuli. The aim was to establish whether cannabis users respond to anxiety-related stimuli differently...
Hanania, Rima; Smith, Linda B.
We review and relate two literatures on the development of attention in children: one concerning flexible attention switching and the other concerning selective attention. The first is a growing literature on preschool children's performances in an attention-switching task indicating that children become more flexible in their attentional control…
Anita D. Barber
While CON–DMN anti-correlation is associated with improved attention in ADHD, other circuitry supports improved attention in TD children. Greater CON–DMN anti-correlation supported better attentional control in children with ADHD, but worse attentional control in TD children. On the other hand, greater DMN–occipital anti-correlation supported better attentional control in TD children.
Commodari, Elena; Guarnera, Maria
Attention plays a critical role in information processing. Its adequate functioning is required for correct development of complex cognitive abilities and regular scholastic progress. Children with attention deficits often have difficulties in reading, writing, and arithmetic. The present study investigated interactions among reading skills, overall scholastic performance as rated by teachers, and components of attention: visual reaction time, simple immediate span of attention, and selectivity. The sample was 98 students in the first and second years of public junior high school (age range 11-14 years, M = 12.6, SD = 1.2), i.e., with expected already well-established reading. Reading was evaluated using Comprehension, Accuracy, and Speed tests. Overall scholastic performance was obtained by means of teachers' ratings. Simple Reaction Time, Digit Span, and Color-Word Interference, included in a multitask computerized test, assessed attention. Analysis confirmed the hypothesis that the reading skills are strongly predictive of the Scholastic Assessment rated by the teachers. High scholastic ratings were correlated with Reading Speed and Accuracy rather than Reading Comprehension. Poor readers showed worse performances on the Digit Span test which measures simple immediate span of attention. Good and poor readers obtained a similar score on the Color-Word Interference task. This observation seems to contrast with the more common interpretation of this effect, suggesting that reading is an automatic process and, therefore, the semantic dimension overcomes the controlled perceptual one. According to other studies, an alternative explanation is suggested. In conclusion, present results confirm the hypothesis of a strong link among reading speed and accuracy, scholastic assessment as rated by teachers, simple immediate span of attention, and visual reaction time.
Blank, Hartmut; Fischer, Volkhard; Erdfelder, Edgar
Two studies on political hindsight bias were conducted on the occasions of the German parliament election in 1998 and the Nordrhein-Westfalen state parliament election in 2000. In both studies, participants predicted the percentage of votes for several political parties and recalled these predictions after the election. The observed hindsight effects were stronger than those found in any prior study on political elections (using percentage of votes as the dependent variable). We argue that the length of the retention interval between original judgement and recollection is mainly responsible for this difference. In our second study, we investigated possible artifacts in political hindsight biases using a control-group design where half of the participants recalled their predictions shortly before or after the election. Hindsight bias was preserved, reinforcing the results of earlier studies with non-control-group designs. Finally, we discuss the possibility that the hindsight experience (in political judgement and in general) actually consists of three different, partly independent components.
Full Text Available This research examines the determinants of firms’ investment introducing a behavioral perspective that has received little attention in corporate finance literature. The following central hypothesis emerges from a set of recently developed theories: Investment decisions are influenced not only by their fundamentals but also depend on some other factors. One factor is the biasness of any CEO to their investment, biasness depends on the cognition and emotions, because some leaders use them as heuristic for the investment decision instead of fundamentals. This paper shows how CEO emotional bias (optimism, loss aversion and overconfidence affects the investment decisions. The proposed model of this paper uses Bayesian Network Method to examine this relationship. Emotional bias has been measured by means of a questionnaire comprising several items. As for the selected sample, it has been composed of some 100 Tunisian executives. Our results have revealed that the behavioral analysis of investment decision implies leader affected by behavioral biases (optimism, loss aversion, and overconfidence adjusts its investment choices based on their ability to assess alternatives (optimism and overconfidence and risk perception (loss aversion to create of shareholder value and ensure its place at the head of the management team.
Yi Xiang; Miklos Sarvary
Bias in the market for news is well-documented. Recent research in economics explains the phenomenon by assuming that consumers want to read (watch) news that is consistent with their tastes or prior beliefs rather than the truth. The present paper builds on this idea but recognizes that (i) besides “biased” consumers, there are also “conscientious” consumers whose sole interest is in discovering the truth, and (ii) consistent with reality, media bias is constrained by the truth. These two fa...
Phillips, P.E.; Wootton, A.J.; Rowan, W.L.; Ritz, C.P.; Rhodes, T.L.; Bengtson, R.D.; Hodge, W.L.; Durst, R.D.; McCool, S.C.; Richards, B.; Gentle, K.W.; Schoch, P.; Forster, J.C.; Hickok, R.L.; Evans, T.E.
Experiments using an electrically biased limiter have been performed on the Texas Experimental Tokamak (TEXT). A small movable limiter is inserted past the main poloidal ring limiter (which is electrically connected to the vacuum vessel) and biased at V Lim with respect to it. The floating potential, plasma potential and shear layer position can be controlled. With vertical strokeV Lim vertical stroke ≥ 50 V the plasma density increases. For V Lim Lim > 0 the results obtained are inconclusive. Variation of V Lim changes the electrostatic turbulence which may explain the observed total flux changes. (orig.)
Turner, Erick H
Publication bias undermines the integrity of the evidence base by inflating apparent drug efficacy and minimizing drug harms, thus skewing the risk-benefit ratio. This paper reviews the topic of publication bias with a focus on drugs prescribed for psychiatric conditions, especially depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and autism. Publication bias is pervasive; although psychiatry/psychology may be the most seriously afflicted field, it occurs throughout medicine and science. Responsibility lies with various parties (authors as well as journals, academia as well as industry), so the motives appear to extend beyond the financial interests of drug companies. The desire for success, in combination with cognitive biases, can also influence academic authors and journals. Amid the flood of new medical information coming out each day, the attention of the news media and academic community is more likely to be captured by studies whose results are positive or newsworthy. In the peer review system, a fundamental flaw arises from the fact that authors usually write manuscripts after they know the results. This allows hindsight and other biases to come into play, so data can be "tortured until they confess" (a detailed example is given). If a "publishable" result cannot be achieved, non-publication remains an option. To address publication bias, various measures have been undertaken, including registries of clinical trials. Drug regulatory agencies can provide valuable unpublished data. It is suggested that journals borrow from the FDA review model. Because the significance of study results biases reviewers, results should be excluded from review until after a preliminary judgment of study scientific quality has been rendered, based on the original study protocol. Protocol publication can further enhance the credibility of the published literature.
Fulmer, Connie L.
The purpose of this study was to investigate gender bias in pre-service principals using the Gender-Leader Implicit Association Test. Analyses of student-learning narratives revealed how students made sense of gender bias (biased or not-biased) and how each reacted to evidence (surprised or not-surprised). Two implications were: (1) the need for…
Pickens, Judy E., Ed.; And Others
This guidebook discusses ways to eliminate various types of discrimination from business communications. Separately authored chapters discuss eliminating racial and ethnic bias; eliminating sexual bias; achieving communication sensitive about handicaps of disabled persons; eliminating bias from visual media; eliminating bias from meetings,…
The library literature addressing the role of bias in collection development emphasizes a philosophical approach. It is based on the notion that bias can be controlled by the conscious act of believing in certain values and adhering to a code of ethics. It largely ignores the psychological research on bias, which suggests that bias is a more…
Barendse, M. T.; Oort, F. J.; Werner, C. S.; Ligtvoet, R.; Schermelleh-Engel, K.
Measurement bias is defined as a violation of measurement invariance, which can be investigated through multigroup factor analysis (MGFA), by testing across-group differences in intercepts (uniform bias) and factor loadings (nonuniform bias). Restricted factor analysis (RFA) can also be used to detect measurement bias. To also enable nonuniform…
Booth, Charlotte; Songco, Annabel; Parsons, Sam; Heathcote, Lauren; Vincent, John; Keers, Robert; Fox, Elaine
Optimal psychological development is dependent upon a complex interplay between individual and situational factors. Investigating the development of these factors in adolescence will help to improve understanding of emotional vulnerability and resilience. The CogBIAS longitudinal study (CogBIAS-L-S) aims to combine cognitive and genetic approaches to investigate risk and protective factors associated with the development of mood and impulsivity-related outcomes in an adolescent sample. CogBIAS-L-S is a three-wave longitudinal study of typically developing adolescents conducted over 4 years, with data collection at age 12, 14 and 16. At each wave participants will undergo multiple assessments including a range of selective cognitive processing tasks (e.g. attention bias, interpretation bias, memory bias) and psychological self-report measures (e.g. anxiety, depression, resilience). Saliva samples will also be collected at the baseline assessment for genetic analyses. Multilevel statistical analyses will be performed to investigate the developmental trajectory of cognitive biases on psychological functioning, as well as the influence of genetic moderation on these relationships. CogBIAS-L-S represents the first longitudinal study to assess multiple cognitive biases across adolescent development and the largest study of its kind to collect genetic data. It therefore provides a unique opportunity to understand how genes and the environment influence the development and maintenance of cognitive biases and provide insight into risk and protective factors that may be key targets for intervention.
Smith, Daniel T; Schenk, Thomas
Spatial attention and eye-movements are tightly coupled, but the precise nature of this coupling is controversial. The influential but controversial Premotor theory of attention makes four specific predictions about the relationship between motor preparation and spatial attention. Firstly, spatial attention and motor preparation use the same neural substrates. Secondly, spatial attention is functionally equivalent to planning goal directed actions such as eye-movements (i.e. planning an action is both necessary and sufficient for a shift of spatial attention). Thirdly, planning a goal directed action with any effector system is sufficient to trigger a shift of spatial attention. Fourthly, the eye-movement system has a privileged role in orienting visual spatial attention. This article reviews empirical studies that have tested these predictions. Contrary to predictions one and two there is evidence of anatomical and functional dissociations between endogenous spatial attention and motor preparation. However, there is compelling evidence that exogenous attention is reliant on activation of the oculomotor system. With respect to the third prediction, there is correlational evidence that spatial attention is directed to the endpoint of goal-directed actions but no direct evidence that this attention shift is dependent on motor preparation. The few studies to have directly tested the fourth prediction have produced conflicting results, so the extent to which the oculomotor system has a privileged role in spatial attention remains unclear. Overall, the evidence is not consistent with the view that spatial attention is functionally equivalent to motor preparation so the Premotor theory should be rejected, although a limited version of the Premotor theory in which only exogenous attention is dependent on motor preparation may still be tenable. A plausible alternative account is that activity in the motor system contributes to biased competition between different sensory
Full Text Available This position paper argues how there has to be much more to smart city learning than just wayshowing, and something better as augmented reality than covering the world with instructions. Attention has become something for many people to know better in an age of information superabundance. Embodied cognition explains how the work-ings of attention are not solely a foreground task, as if attention is something to pay. As digital media appear in ever more formats and contexts, their hybrids with physical form increasing influence how habitual engagement with persistent situations creates learning. Ambient information can just add to the distraction by multitasking, or it can support more favorable processes of shifting among different kinds of information with a particular intent. As one word for this latter process, foraging deserves more consideration in smart city learning
Vijver, Fons J.R. van de
"Bias refers to the presence of nuisance factors in cross-cultural research. Three types of bias are distinguished, depending on whether the nuisance factor is located at the level of the construct (construct bias), the measurement instrument as a whole (method bias) or the items (item bias or differential item functioning). Equivalence refers to the measurement level characteristics that apply to cross-cultural score comparisons; three types of equivalence are defined: construct (identity of...
Mengel, Friederike; Sauermann, Jan; Zölitz, Ulf Zoelitz
This paper provides new evidence on gender bias in teaching evaluations. We exploit a quasi-experimental dataset of 19,952 student evaluations of university faculty in a context where students are randomly allocated to female or male instructors. Despite the fact that neither students’ grades nor
Pedersen, Rasmus Tue
Numbers permeate modern political communication. While current scholarship on framing effects has focused on the persuasive effects of words and arguments, this article shows that framing of numbers can also substantially affect policy preferences. Such effects are caused by ratio bias, which...
Full Text Available Many critical activities require visual attention to be distributed simultaneously among distinct tasks where the attended foci are not spatially separated. In our two experiments, participants performed a large number of trials where both a primary task (enumeration of spots and a secondar