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Understanding the relationship between schizotypy and attention: dissociating stimulus- and dimension-specific processes

Schmidt-Hansen, Mia and Honey, Robert Colin ORCID: 2014. Understanding the relationship between schizotypy and attention: dissociating stimulus- and dimension-specific processes. Behavioural Brain Research 260 , pp. 8-14. 10.1016/j.bbr.2013.11.028

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Two experiments investigated how the schizotypal characteristics of unusual experiences modulate changes in attention to alphanumeric stimuli. In the first stage of both experiments, participants were required to attend and respond to either Arabic numerals or Latin letters; with the four exemplars from each dimension being presented on a different number of occasions (0, 5, 10, 20). During the test in Experiment 1 (n = 103), speeded alphanumeric decisions were more accurate for the novel than familiar exemplars, irrespective of whether they had been attended to or not. This influence of familiarity was not modulated by schizotypy. During the test in Experiment 2 (n = 128), learning that the attended dimension predicted the presentation of the symbol X (or the absence of X) proceeded more rapidly than learning the corresponding predictions involving the unattended dimension. In the case of novel exemplars, but not familiar exemplars, this modulation of learning by attention was reduced as schizotypy scores increased. Taken together, these results show that schizotypal characteristics do not modulate the influence of familiarity on performance (Experiment 1), but do have an influence on attention, which is best characterised as one on tuning attention to stimulus dimensions rather than individual stimuli.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Uncontrolled Keywords: Schizophrenia; Schizotypy; Unusual experiences; Latent inhibition; Learning; Attention
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0166-4328
Last Modified: 25 Oct 2022 08:36

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