Priming performance-related concerns induces task-related mind-wandering

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Dayna R. Touron, Professor of Psychology and Associate Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Two experiments tested the hypothesis that priming of performance-related concerns would (1) increase the frequency of task-related mind-wandering (i.e., task-related interference; TRI) and (2) decrease task performance. In each experiment, sixty female participants completed an operation span task (OSPAN) containing thought content probes. The task was framed as a math task for those in a condition primed for math-related stereotype threat and as a memory task for those in a control condition. In both studies, women whose performance-related concerns were primed via stereotype threat reported more TRI than women in the control. The second experiment used a more challenging OSPAN task and stereotype primed women also had lower math accuracy than controls. These results support the “control failures × current concerns” framework of mind-wandering, which posits that the degree to which the environmental context triggers personal concerns influences both mind-wandering frequency and content.

Additional Information

Consciousness & Cognition, 55, 126-135. [2017]
Language: English
Date: 2017
Mind wandering, Stereotype threat, Executive control

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