Responsibility Attitude and Stimulus Valence in Relation to Recognition and Confidence in Recognition of Words

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    Perceived responsibility may have significant cognitive consequences for both clinical and non-clinical groups. Under conditions of increased responsibility, individuals have been found to show a positive memory bias, but also a decline in metamemory for salient stimuli. Stimulus salience enhances retrieval by means of directive attention, but may actually impede metamemory, especially among anxious populations. It has been suggested that for OCD patients and nonclinical participants with OCD symptoms, progressive exposure to emotionally salient stimuli worsens confidence in memory, while having no effect in memory accuracy. Perceived responsibility is associated with a positive memory bias for negative stimuli with reduced memory confidence. The current study investigated the possible association in a healthy population among responsibility, measured by the Responsibility Attitude Scale (RAS), recognition and confidence in recognition of words that varied in valence. 85 healthy participants were administered the RAS prior to taking part in a word recognition task. Results indicated that responsibility attitude did not predict memory accuracy or memory confidence for negatively, positively or neutrally valenced words. Furthermore, word valence had no effect on memory confidence but did have a significant effect on memory accuracy. Implications for future research point towards the utilisation of responsibility-relevant stimuli.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1159-1167
    Number of pages9
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 23 Jul 2015


    • Responsibility
    • Valence
    • Metamemory
    • Memory confidence
    • Obsessive
    • Compulsive


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