Positive Schizotypy and Error Detection in the Classic Stroop Paradigm
Barratt, Andrew Henry
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Background: Recent research has indicated a significant impairment evident within schizophrenics and high schizotypes to successfully use executive functioning during error monitoring tasks. (Skillicorn & Watt, InPress; Carter et al, 1999). It has also been noted that schizophrenics display a hyper-activation of the anterior cingulated cortex (ACC) (Mendrek et al, 2004) and hypo-activation of the prefrontal cortex during these times. It is suggested that this hyperactivation of the ACC mutes error signals and weakens the ability to discriminate between erroneous and non-erroneous stimulus. Aim: The aim of this study is to explore the deficit of error monitoring by means of electroencephalogram readings during the classic stroop task. Method: Four analyses were conducted, the first used an experimental design comparing the mean baseline activation between high and low schizotypes. The following two analyses used experimental one way ANOVA’s comparing the change of ACC activation between congruent and incongruent stimuli. Finally, a 2-waymixed factorial analysis was conducted on low and high schizotypal group to examine the level of ACC activation between expected incongruence and unexpected incongruence. Schizotypy was defined using the O-LIFE in a convenience sample of 8 participants. Results: The most significant finding of this study was the interaction between high schizotypy and the lack of activation change which was observed between expected and unexpected incongruence (p<0.05). Conclusion: The findings suggest high schizotypes possess a deficit in error monitoring. The consequence of this is discussed further in terms of relative literature and the confounds of the study.
B.Sc. (Hons) Psychology
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