Matching Items (12)

Attention and Memory Problems in Everyday Life Among Young Adult Cannabis Users

Description

The need to fully understand the possible consequences of young-adult cannabis use has become increasingly critical as a result of major cannabis policy changes. The purpose of this study was

The need to fully understand the possible consequences of young-adult cannabis use has become increasingly critical as a result of major cannabis policy changes. The purpose of this study was to determine if young-adult users exhibit cognitive deficits on laboratory-based tests and memory and attention deficits in everyday life. Participants were 152 students from a large U.S. university enrolled in introductory psychology courses and the top and bottom 10% of the 12-item Yale University PRIME Screening Test for psychotic-like experiences. Participants were asked about their cannabis use and were given six cognitive tests spanning executive function and memory. To test functional impairment in memory and attention, participants were asked to nominate informants (people who knew them well) and these rated the participants on an attention problems scale of four items and a memory problems scale of three items. Results showed that individuals who used cannabis more frequently were rated as having more attention and memory problems and that, consistent with prior research, more frequent cannabis use was associated with worse memory test performance, though the association was not present between frequency of use and executive function test performance. Additionally, it was found that informant-reported attention problems were associated with poorer performance on two of the executive function cognitive tests. The present findings suggest that individuals who use cannabis more frequently experience noticeable memory and attention problems in everyday life, despite the lack of significant correlation between this functional impairment and cognitive test performance. Informant reports, therefore, may be useful in future research for understanding or predicting cognitive impairment in young adults.

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Date Created
  • 2016-12

Brain Processes in Self-Regulation: An Electroencephalography (EEG) Study

Description

Temporal discounting refers to our tendency to discount the value of future rewards. At the extreme, temporal discounting can give rise to detrimental myopic decision-making. Most studies examining the neural

Temporal discounting refers to our tendency to discount the value of future rewards. At the extreme, temporal discounting can give rise to detrimental myopic decision-making. Most studies examining the neural basis of temporal discounting in people have been performed using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). However, fMRI has relatively poor temporal resolution compared with the speed at which people make choices, so understanding choice dynamics using fMRI is difficult. We address the issue utilizing electroencephalography (EEG) to study cortical processes related to temporal discounting. The fMRI literature has found that a network of fronto-parietal brain regions plays an important role during the decision-making process. We aim to explore activity in these regions during the decision process and determine how cortical activity relates to choice parameters. Based on prior fMRI studies, we hypothesized that dorsomedial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC) may act as a regulator of dorsal lateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) and there will be an increase in dlPFC activity for more difficult decisions. We also hypothesized that neural activity may be directly related to the temporal discount rate we estimate behaviorally. We utilized regression analysis to determine the relationship. The results found supported our hypotheses. This study may open the door to a better understanding of the dynamic of brain regions while performing a temporal discounting task.

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Date Created
  • 2017-05

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The Comparison of Frontostriatal Tracts Between Adolescents with ADHD and a Typically Developing Adolescent Control Group

Description

The frontostriatal reward circuit serves an underlying role in reward processing, cognitive planning, and motor control in the context of achieving a goal. Furthermore, research suggests a relationship between the

The frontostriatal reward circuit serves an underlying role in reward processing, cognitive planning, and motor control in the context of achieving a goal. Furthermore, research suggests a relationship between the reward circuits and behavior expressed in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD); however, the specific structural differences of the reward circuits in those with ADHD remain ambiguous. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) techniques were used to analyze diffusion weighted magnetic resonance imaging (DWI) data in order to examine the structural connectivity of frontostriatal reward pathways in ADHD adolescents compared to typically developing (TD) adolescents. It was hypothesized that measures of impulsivity would be predicted by white matter tract integrity measures in frontostriatal tracts related to affective processing (ventromedial prefrontal cortex to ventral striatum, vmPFC) in adolescents with ADHD, and that there would be reduced tract integrity in tracts related to executive control (dorsolateral prefrontal and anterior cingulate cortex—dlPFC and ACC, respectively). Frontostriatal tracts as well as the hippocampus and amygdala were examined in relation to age and impulsivity using both correlation and regression models. Results indicated that impulsivity declined with age in the TD group while no significant trend was identified for the ADHD group. The hypotheses were not supported and results for both predictions on the affective and executive circuits showed opposite trends from what was expected.

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  • 2017-12

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The Association Between Ongoing Task Context and Target Action Influences Activity-Based Prospective Memory

Description

Prospective memory is defined as the process of remembering to do something at a particular point in the future after first forming a conscious intention. There are three types of

Prospective memory is defined as the process of remembering to do something at a particular point in the future after first forming a conscious intention. There are three types of prospective memory intentions; event-based, time-based and activity-based intentions. Research has suggested that activity-based is one of the dominant prospective memory failures that people self-report yet there is little research on this area of prospective memory. The current study focuses on how activity-based PM is influenced by the association between the match of internal context and intended action. According to previous research, similar context between intention formation and retrieval has been shown to facilitate prospective memory, which increases the execution of intentions. Based on literature, we hypothesized that there would be higher intention completion when the internal context matches the intended action to be completed in the future. Results showed that internal context affected activity-based intention completion significantly. However the interaction between internal context and the intended action did not significantly affect intention completion. Although we did not get the hypothesized interaction, the means do cross over showing the interaction pattern is there. We decided to treat this as a pilot study and replicate it with a well-powered experiment consisting of 560 valid participants.

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Date Created
  • 2015-12

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Habitization of Intertemporal Decision-Making: Influence on Framing Effects

Description

We hypothesized that recurrent exposure to a temporal discounting task would habitize participants, so that they become insensitive to framing effects. Temporal discounting is a behavioral trend which describes how

We hypothesized that recurrent exposure to a temporal discounting task would habitize participants, so that they become insensitive to framing effects. Temporal discounting is a behavioral trend which describes how people discount the value of a reward dependent on the time until receipt. Participants completed a temporal discounting task weekly for five weeks, to promote formation of a habitual decision strategy. Concomitant with this, we expected that people would shift their decision process from a deliberate, goal-oriented approach that is sensitive to changes in reward outcomes and environmental context, to a simplified, automatic approach that minimizes cognitive effort. We expected that this shift in decision strategy would be evident in a reduced influence of contextual effects on choice outcomes. We tested this hypothesis by leveraging two framing effects \u2014 the date/delay effect and the decimal effect. Consistent with our hypothesis, we find that the date/delay effect is significant on week 1, shows significant changes in week 1 to week 5, and is no longer significant on week 5. The results for the decimal effects were not significant. We discuss these results with respect to the cognitive processes that underlie temporal discounting and self-control.

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Date Created
  • 2016-05

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Overcoming bias: Neural Correlates of Judgment Bias and Framing Effects in Cognition of Music

Description

Prior expectations can bias evaluative judgments of sensory information. We show that information about a performer's status can bias the evaluation of musical stimuli, reflected by differential activity of the

Prior expectations can bias evaluative judgments of sensory information. We show that information about a performer's status can bias the evaluation of musical stimuli, reflected by differential activity of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). Moreover, we demonstrate that decreased susceptibility to this confirmation bias is (a) accompanied by the recruitment of and (b) correlated with the white-matter structure of the executive control network, particularly related to the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC). By using long-duration musical stimuli, we were able to track the initial biasing, subsequent perception, and ultimate evaluation of the stimuli, examining the full evolution of these biases over time. Our findings confirm the persistence of confirmation bias effects even when ample opportunity exists to gather information about true stimulus quality, and underline the importance of executive control in reducing bias.

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Date Created
  • 2018-05

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Accounting for BOLD Signal Latencies Using Temporal Derivative

Description

The use of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has been increasing in popularity due to its ability to measure brain activity during presentation of stimuli. Blood flow responses in the

The use of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has been increasing in popularity due to its ability to measure brain activity during presentation of stimuli. Blood flow responses in the brain occur when a stimulus is presented and can be measured using fMRI. The delay of onset of this blood flow response can vary due to distances from the heart to the brain blood vessels. This variability causes differences in onset and time to peak blood flow response across the brain that is not currently predictable. To account for this, statistical analyses add the response's temporal derivative to regression models. Derived from the Taylor series expansion, the temporal derivative corrects for small variations in the time delay for the blood flow response (i.e. less than 1 second or so). However, I show that inclusion of the temporal derivative in analyses increases false positive rates. I conducted fMRI analyses on data collected as participants complete motor responses and on resting state data. Analyses were repeated both with and without inclusion of the temporal derivative. More significant responses were found with inclusion of the temporal derivative in both cases, suggesting possible increases in false positive rates. The goal of the present study is to increase awareness of the current fMRI data analysis practices and their potential flaws.

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  • 2018-12

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Risky Decision-Making Behavior: An Analysis of The Gambler's Fallacy and The Near-Miss Effect

Description

There are two common cognitive distortions present in risky decision-making behavior. The gambler's fallacy is the notion that a random game of chance is potentially biased by previous outcomes, and

There are two common cognitive distortions present in risky decision-making behavior. The gambler's fallacy is the notion that a random game of chance is potentially biased by previous outcomes, and the near-miss effect is the overestimation of the probability of winning immediately after barely missing a win. This study replicated a portion of the methods of Clark et al. (2014) in an attempt to support the presence of these two fallacies in online simulated risky decision-making tasks. One hundred individuals were recruited and asked to perform one of two classic gambling tasks, either predict the outcome of a dichromatic roulette wheel or spin a simplified, two-reel slot machine. An analysis of color predictions as a function of run length revealed a classic gambler's fallacy effect in the roulette wheel task. A heightened motivation to continue playing after a win, but not a near or full miss, was seen in the slot machine task. How pleased an individual was with the results of the previous round directly affected his or her interest in continuing to play in both experiments. These findings indicate that the gambler's fallacy is present in online decision-making simulations involving risk, but that the near-miss effect is not.

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Date Created
  • 2017-05

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Associations between executive cognitive functioning in early adolescence and alcohol-related problems in young adulthood: results from a prospective, longitudinal study

Description

Poor executive cognitive functioning (ECF) is associated with a variety of alcohol-related problems, however, it is not known whether poor ECF precedes the onset of heavy drinking. Establishing the temporal

Poor executive cognitive functioning (ECF) is associated with a variety of alcohol-related problems, however, it is not known whether poor ECF precedes the onset of heavy drinking. Establishing the temporal precedence of poor ECF may have implications for our understanding of the development of Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD). The present study tests associations between early-adolescent ECF and young-adult risky drinking and alcohol-related problems in a prospective study of youth followed to young adulthood. Participants completed three ECF tasks at ages 11-14 and reported on their risky drinking and alcohol-related problems at ages 18-24. A latent ECF factor was created to determine whether early-adolescent ECF was associated with drinking outcomes after controlling for relevant covariates (e.g., age, sex, family history of AUD). Early-adolescent ECF, as measured by a latent factor, was unrelated to young-adult alcohol misuse and alcohol-related problems. However, sensitivity analyses revealed that an individual ECF task tapping response inhibition predicted young-adult peak drinks in a day. Present findings suggest that ECF is not a robust predictor of risky drinking or alcohol-related problems, and that this relation may be specific to the ECF component of response inhibition.

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Date Created
  • 2017

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Experimental Manipulation of Motivation and Self-Efficacy for Self-Control

Description

Self-control has been shown to be an important influence behind a variety of risk and protective behaviors, such as substance abuse. Although prior research points to the existence of multiple

Self-control has been shown to be an important influence behind a variety of risk and protective behaviors, such as substance abuse. Although prior research points to the existence of multiple dimensions of self-control, this concept is not consistently defined and frequently only studied as a conglomerate in clinical research. The current study sought to examine how two experimental manipulations of subcomponents of self-control (motivation and self-efficacy) affect real-world consumptive behavior after accounting for executive function. Additionally, the validity and reliability of a brief state survey measure of perceived self-control capacity, internal motivation, and external motivation was tested. The goal was to examine how basic scientific principles involved in self-control translate into clinically relevant behaviors, which may inform understanding of momentary lapses in self-control behavior, potentially leading to novel prevention and intervention efforts. 94 college students completed a 1-2 hour laboratory protocol during which they completed survey and laboratory-based tasks of self-control and related behaviors, executive function, and ad libitum alcohol consumption. Results showed that the self-efficacy manipulation successfully increased perceived self-control capacity, although this did not lead to a significant reduction in consumption. The motivation manipulation neither increased motivation nor reduced consumption in this sample. However, the brief state survey measure of self-control subcomponents demonstrated strong test-retest reliability and distinction from trait self-control, demonstrating its viability for use in future research. By elucidating the relationships between specific mechanisms of self-control, laboratory-based tasks and manipulations, and real-world consumptive behaviors, prevention and intervention efforts for problems such as alcohol abuse may be tailored to the needs of the individual and made more impactful and cost-effective.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020