ERIC Number: EJ950930
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Response Reversal and Children with Psychopathic Tendencies: Success Is a Function of Salience of Contingency Change
Budhani, S.; Blair, R. J. R.
Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, v46 n9 p972-981 Sep 2005
Background: Previous work has inconsistently reported difficulties with response reversal/extinction in children with psychopathic tendencies. Method: We tested the hypothesis that the degree of impairment seen in children with psychopathic tendencies is a function of the salience of contingency change. We investigated the performance of children with psychopathic tendencies on a novel probabilistic response reversal task involving four conditions with gradated reward-punishment contingencies (100-0, 90-10, 80-20 and 70-30; i.e., for the 100-0 contingency, responding to one object is always rewarded while responding to the other is always punished). Results: In line with predictions, the impairment seen in the children with psychopathic tendencies was an inverse function of the salience of the contingency change. Conclusions: We suggest that this data is consistent with suggestions of subtle orbital frontal cortex impairment in children with psychopathic tendencies.
Descriptors: Prediction, Psychopathology, Children, Hypothesis Testing, Probability, Mental Disorders, Brain
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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