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Flashcards in CASEY - Biological Studies Deck (39)
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What is part of long term life success where psychologists would suggest that individuals have different strategies to resist temptation?

The ability to resist temptation and delay your gratification (put off the joy until later)


What do psychologists believe we use to delay gratification by suppressing inappropriate thoughts or actions?

Cognitive control strategies


Delay of gratification depends on what?

A persons ability to have this cognitive control - and there are natural differences in how humans use these strategies.


What is cooling?

A cognitive strategy which means your attention is placed on the 'cool' features of a stimulus, such as shape of a piece of cake, rather than a HOT or appealing features such as the taste.


What would the cognitive difference between people explain?

Why some people seem naturally better at resisting temptation than others


What does research suggest about 'hot' and 'cool' systems?

That they are interacting neural-cognitive systems.

This means that there is an interaction between brain areas and thought processes that affects people's ability to resist temptation.


What does the 'cool' system involve?

Cognitive control


What does the hot system involves?

Desires and emotions that are associated with emotional brain regions such as the central striatum.


What did Eigsti (2006) suggest about doing delay of gratification tasks in childhood?

It can predict the performance on cognitive control tasks in adult life - such as the ability to control ones' inappropriate thoughts and actions in favour of appropriate ones

In gratification tasks, children who focussed on the reward or hot feature e.g. Taste of marshmallow or biscuit and had a high temptation focus found it difficult to suppress inappropriate actions than low temptation focus people.


What other forms could temptation focus come in?

Social situations

- either revise or go out to a party

Low delayers would go to the party


What is the definition of delay of gratification?

You resist the temptation of an immediate reward in order to receive a bigger better reward later


Cool features/tasks definition

Attention is placed on the 'cool' neutral features of stimulus.

E.g. The shape of the slice of cake


Definition of hot features/tasks

Focussing on the more appealing features of the stimulus

Eh delicious taste or sweet smell


Inferior Frontal Gyrus

-Located in the pre-frontal cortex
-Involved in decision making and interprets facial and situational expression
-Resolves competing motives
-Employs cognitive control strategies


Individuals with greater activity in the IFG should be able to...

Exhibit more cognitive control.. this means that those individuals with greater activity in this part of the brain are more likely to be better at delaying gratification.


Individuals with lower activity in the IFG are less able to...

Exhibit cognitive controls... this means those individuals with less activity in this part of the brain are less likely to resist temptation and are worse at delaying gratification.


Ventral Striatum

-Involved in decision making but with more immediate choices and rewards.


Individuals with greater activity at the Ventral Striatum suggests...

a person has a stronger feeling about the rewards on offer, so is less likely to delay their gratification.. they can't resist temptation and would have to immediately take the reward and act on impulse.


Individuals with lower activity at the Ventral Striatum suggests a person would be..

more likely to delay their gratification... and would wait for better reward rather than act on impulse.


What is the aim of Casey's study

To build on previous research to assess whether the delay of gratification in childhood predicts impulse control activities to alluring cues or social cues in terms of both behaviours and brain function.


Why were the nature of the targets in an impulse control task manipulated (some more alluring than others) ?

to examine the relationship between performance on the tasks and brain activity at the time (behavioural and neural correlates) of high and low delayers using functional magnetics resonance imaging (fMRI).


Research Method of Casey's study

Quasi Experiment - naturally occurring IV whether the participant is a high or low delayer:
-High delayers- p's who resisted the cookie at 4yrs old
-Low delayers were participants who did not resist the cookie at 4yrs old.


What were the DV's?

-Experiment 1 performance on impulse control task (reaction time & accuracy)
-Experiment 2 performance on impulse control task (reaction time & accuracy) and imagining results using fMRI


What did some participants complete in their 20's, 30's?

Self-report scales


What was the experimental design?

Repeated measures as participants in experiment 1 did both 'hot' and 'cool' tasks


What is this study classed as?

longitudinal as it followed some participants from 4yrs until 40yrs - so tracking development of the high and low delayers as children into adulthood.


What did the original sample consist of?

562 4yr olds from Stanford Nursery who completed the traditional delay of gratification task- marshmallow test in 1960s/70s.


How many completed self-control scales in their 20s?

155 (1993)


How many completed it in their 30s?

135 (2003)


Why did they complete these?

To see if their self-control abilities remained consistent in these follow up assessments - this was to check that they still are low and high delayers as adults.