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Processing efficiency in anxiety: evidence from eye-movements during visual search

Derakhshan, Nazanin and Koster, E.H.W. (2010) Processing efficiency in anxiety: evidence from eye-movements during visual search. Behaviour Research and Therapy 48 (12), pp. 1180-1185. ISSN 0005-7967.

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It is generally held that anxiety is characterized by an attentional bias for threatening information. In recent years there has been an important debate whether these biases reside at the level of attentional selection (threat detection) or attentional processing after threat detection (attentional disengagement). In a visual search task containing emotional facial expressions, eye-movements were examined before and after threat detection in high and low trait anxious individuals to further elucidate the temporal unfolding of attentional bias. Results indicated that high-anxious individuals neither showed facilitated orienting to threat nor impaired disengagement of visual attention from threat. Interestingly, the presence of threat in the visual search display was associated with increased decision times in high-anxious individuals. These results challenge some of the current views on attentional bias to threat but indicate that emotional information reduces processing efficiency in anxiety.

Item Type: Article
Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Anxiety, processing efficiency, eye-movement, threat, visual search, attentional bias
School or Research Centre: Birkbeck Schools and Research Centres > School of Science > Psychological Sciences
Depositing User: Administrator
Date Deposited: 23 Feb 2011 12:31
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2016 12:01

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