Presentation Title

Assessing Neurocognitive Processes and Schizotypal Personality Traits in University Students

Start Date

November 2016

End Date

November 2016

Location

HUB 269

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Abstract

Schizotypal Personality Disorder (SPD) is considered to be an attenuated form of schizophrenia. Studies have demonstrated that SPD is characterized by impairments in neurocognitive processes, social interaction, and behavioral flexibility/imagination. However, the relationships between these impairments and SPD in non-clinical samples remain unclear. This ongoing study compares a comprehensive profile of neurocognitive processes (i.e., attentional blink, impulsivity, self-control, inhibition, emotional memory, and emotional creativity) between 21 university students with higher SPD traits versus 31 of their counterparts with lower SPD traits. Participants’ schizotypal personality traits were assessed using the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ-B). Neurocognitive processes were measured using the Attentional Blink Test, Barratt Impulsivity Scale, Tangney Self-Control Scale, Stop-It Inhibition Test, Immediate Serial Recall Task for emotional memory, and Emotional Creativity Inventory. Interim analyses using a series of t-tests revealed multiple significant group differences between individuals with higher SPD tendencies versus those with lower SPD tendencies on the neurocognitive functions of attentional processing (t(50)= 1.91, p= .031, Cohen’s d=0.54), motor impulsivity (t(50)= -1.93, p= .029, Cohen’s d=0.55), attentional impulsivity (t(50)=-2.00, p= 0.025, Cohen’s d=0.56), non-planning impulsivity (t(50)= -1.60, p= .058, Cohen’s d= 0.44), self-control (t(50)= -4.34, p= 0.0001, Cohen’s d= 1.23), emotional memory for concrete neutral words (t(50)=-1.83, p=.036, Cohen’s d= 0.49), and emotional creativity/ authenticity (t(50)= 1.62, p= .056, Cohen’s d=0.47). Specifically, the higher SPD sample showed more quick shifts in their attention, a greater tendency to act in an instantaneous and unplanned way, and poorer emotional creativity/authenticity compared to the lower SPD group. Interestingly, individuals with higher SPQ traits also exhibited more self-control and a better memory recall for concrete words of neutral valence compared to their counterparts with lower SPQ traits. These preliminary findings could provide new insights into the potential roles of specific aspects of neurocognitive processes in schizophrenia risk factors in healthy individuals.

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Nov 12th, 2:00 PM Nov 12th, 2:15 PM

Assessing Neurocognitive Processes and Schizotypal Personality Traits in University Students

HUB 269

Schizotypal Personality Disorder (SPD) is considered to be an attenuated form of schizophrenia. Studies have demonstrated that SPD is characterized by impairments in neurocognitive processes, social interaction, and behavioral flexibility/imagination. However, the relationships between these impairments and SPD in non-clinical samples remain unclear. This ongoing study compares a comprehensive profile of neurocognitive processes (i.e., attentional blink, impulsivity, self-control, inhibition, emotional memory, and emotional creativity) between 21 university students with higher SPD traits versus 31 of their counterparts with lower SPD traits. Participants’ schizotypal personality traits were assessed using the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ-B). Neurocognitive processes were measured using the Attentional Blink Test, Barratt Impulsivity Scale, Tangney Self-Control Scale, Stop-It Inhibition Test, Immediate Serial Recall Task for emotional memory, and Emotional Creativity Inventory. Interim analyses using a series of t-tests revealed multiple significant group differences between individuals with higher SPD tendencies versus those with lower SPD tendencies on the neurocognitive functions of attentional processing (t(50)= 1.91, p= .031, Cohen’s d=0.54), motor impulsivity (t(50)= -1.93, p= .029, Cohen’s d=0.55), attentional impulsivity (t(50)=-2.00, p= 0.025, Cohen’s d=0.56), non-planning impulsivity (t(50)= -1.60, p= .058, Cohen’s d= 0.44), self-control (t(50)= -4.34, p= 0.0001, Cohen’s d= 1.23), emotional memory for concrete neutral words (t(50)=-1.83, p=.036, Cohen’s d= 0.49), and emotional creativity/ authenticity (t(50)= 1.62, p= .056, Cohen’s d=0.47). Specifically, the higher SPD sample showed more quick shifts in their attention, a greater tendency to act in an instantaneous and unplanned way, and poorer emotional creativity/authenticity compared to the lower SPD group. Interestingly, individuals with higher SPQ traits also exhibited more self-control and a better memory recall for concrete words of neutral valence compared to their counterparts with lower SPQ traits. These preliminary findings could provide new insights into the potential roles of specific aspects of neurocognitive processes in schizophrenia risk factors in healthy individuals.