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    Trait anxiety reduces implicit expectancy during target spatial probability cueing

    Berggren, Nick and Derakhshan, Nazanin (2013) Trait anxiety reduces implicit expectancy during target spatial probability cueing. Emotion 13 (2), pp. 345-349. ISSN 1528-3542.

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    Trait anxiety is associated with selective attentional biases to threat but also with more general impairments in attentional control, primarily supported in tasks involving distractor inhibition. Here, we investigated the novel prediction that anxiety should modulate expectation formation in response to task contingencies. Participants completed a visual search task, where briefly presented color cues predicted subsequent target spatial location on the majority of trials. Responses made in the absence of conscious awareness of cue-target contingency resulted in significantly faster RTs for cue-valid versus invalid trials, but only for low anxious participants; high anxiety eliminated evidence of cueing. This finding suggests that impairments to attentional control in anxiety also affect subtle rule-based learning and predictive coding of expectation. We discuss whether a lack of prediction in anxious behavior may reflect known deficits in attentional control, or may form part of a strategy to promote effective threat detection.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 18 Apr 2013 09:10
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:03


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