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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: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 23 Feb 2011 12:31
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 16:54


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