01-06-2013 | Original Article
Cognitive Bias Modification in Pre-adolescent Children: Inducing an Interpretation Bias Affects Self-imagery
Gepubliceerd in: Cognitive Therapy and Research | Uitgave 3/2013Log in om toegang te krijgen
Information processing models suggest that biased interpretation and self-imagery are implicated in the genesis and maintenance of social anxiety. Previous work has shown that inducing an interpretation bias can change the valence of self-related imagery in adults. This study extends previous findings by examining this possibility in children. The effects of manipulating interpretations concerning hypothetical social events in either a benign or a negative direction were tested by having children report on self-imagery generated during subsequent exposure to ambiguous social situations. Our results showed that children reported more negatively valenced self-imagery after prior practice in endorsing negative rather than benign interpretations for ambiguous events. Importantly, this effect was particularly pronounced in children with high levels of social anxiety. These results demonstrate that manipulating interpretive biases can result in corresponding changes in children’s self-imagery and further highlight the importance of future research on the relation among cognitive biases.