What Happens When Verbal Threat Information and Vicarious Learning Combine?

Askew, Chris, Kessock-Philip, Hannah and Field, Andy P (2008) What Happens When Verbal Threat Information and Vicarious Learning Combine? Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy, 36 (4). pp. 491-505. ISSN 1352-4658

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Abstract

Recent research has shown that the verbal information and vicarious learning pathways to fear create long term fear cognitions and can create cognitive biases and avoidance in children. However, it is unlikely that these pathways operate in isolation in the aetiology of childhood fear and the interaction between these pathways is untested. Three preliminary experiments are reported that explore the combined effect of verbal threat information and vicarious learning on self-reported fear beliefs in 7-9-year-old children. Results showed that prior negative information significantly facilitated the effect of negative vicarious learning on children's fear beliefs (Experiment 1); however, there was not a significant combined effect of verbal threat information and vicarious learning when they the information was presented during (Experiment 2) or after (Experiment 3) vicarious learning. These results support the idea that verbal information can affect CS-US associations formed in subsequent vicarious learning events, but contradict the proposal that it can change fear beliefs already acquired through vicarious learning by changing how a person evaluates the vicarious learning episode.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF0712 Developmental psychology Including infant psychology, child psychology, adolescence, adulthood
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Depositing User: Andy Field
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 15:49
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2012 09:16
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/14609
Google Scholar:4 Citations
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