The Impact of Fearfulness on Childhood Memory: Attention, Effortful Control, and Visual Recognition Memory
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Fear is an integral and adaptive aspect of emotion related development (Gullone, 1999) and is one of the earliest regulatory systems influencing the control of behaviors (Rueda, Posner & Rothbart, 2004). This study examined the potential role of child fearfulness on the relation between attention, effortful control and visual recognition memory. Behavioral and physiological measurements of fear as well as measures of attention and recognition memory were examined. Behavioral tendencies of fearfulness rather than discrete behavioral acts were associated with right frontal asymmetry. VRM performance was also associated with more right frontal functioning. Fearfulness regulated the relation between attention and VRM as well as moderated the relation between effortful control and VRM. This study provided some evidence for the influencing role of normal variations of fear (i.e., non-clinical levels of fear) on the cognitive processes of developing children.
- Doctoral Dissertations