ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B


    25 December 2020, Volume 52 Issue 12 Previous Issue    Next Issue

    Reports of Empirical Studies
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    Reports of Empirical Studies
    The relationship between musical training and inhibitory control: An ERPs study
    CHEN Jiejia, ZHOU Yi, CHEN Jie
    2020, 52 (12):  1365-1376.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01365
    Abstract ( 893 )   HTML ( 79 )  
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    Inhibitory control, a fundamental component of executive function, refers to the ability to control one’s attention and suppress internal and external interferences effectively to achieve the setting targets. It plays a crucial role in allowing us to adapt to the environment and serves as a basis of other cognitive functions, such as reasoning, planning and learning. Moreover, several psychiatric disorders, such as addictions, attention deficit hyperactivity and obsessive-compulsive disorder have been shown to involve deficits in inhibitory control. Thus, establishing ways in which inhibitory control can be improved constitutes an important issue for psychologists and medical scientists. In recent years, musical training has been suggested to be associated with improved executive functions, such as inhibitory control. However, the overall findings in these studies have been mixed. While some studies indicated a positive relationship between musical training and inhibitory control, other studies showed no facilitative effect of musical training. Importantly, however, inhibitory control is not a single function, but can be divided into response inhibition and interference control. Previous studies that assessed the relationship between musical training and inhibitory control failed to investigate these two separate components within the same experiment. Furthermore, its underlying neural mechanism remains elusive. Based on these considerations, the present study aimed to examine the relationship between musical training and inhibitory control through the Go/No-go (response inhibition) and Stroop (interference control) tasks by using the event-related potentials (ERPs).
    Experiments were carried out in an acoustically and electrically shielded room, and lasted approximately 40 minutes. In the Go/No-go task, participants had to press a keyboard button in response to white shapes (Go trials, 75%), while they had to inhibit responding to purple shapes (No-go trials, 25%). Each stimulus was presented for 500 ms with an interstimulus interval of 1000 ms. The experiment consisted of 320 trials, which were presented in a random order. The performance was evaluated using a Signal Detection approach by calculating perceptual sensitivity via: d’ = z(No-go hit rate) - z(Go false alarm rate). Higher d’ values indicate better response inhibition. In the Stroop task, participants were presented with Chinese color words (red, green, blue, yellow), printed in different colors. Stimuli were divided into word-color consistent trails (congruent, 50%) and word-color inconsistent trails (incongruent, 50%). A stimulus was presented for 1000 ms with a random interstimulus interval of 1000~1500 ms. Participants had to name the color in which the word was presented without paying attention to the word’s meaning. The experiment consisted of 240 trials, presented in a random order. The difference between accuracy in the congruent and the incongruent conditions is referred to as the Stroop interference effect. Smaller effects are indicative of better interference control. The experimental sequence was balanced between participants.
    The behavioral results showed that the music group had a smaller interference effect than the control group in the Stroop task, while both groups performed similarly in the Go/No-go task. As for the ERP results, in Go/No-go task, the amplitudes of the N2 (N2d) and P3 difference waves, contrasting No-go and Go trials, were larger in music group than in control group. In the Stroop task, the amplitude of the N450 (N450d) difference wave, contrasting congruent and incongruent trials, were also larger in music group than in control group. However, the amplitude of the SP (SPd) difference wave, which serves as an index of conflict resolution, was similar between the two groups.
    The aim of the present study was to explore the influence of music training on the cognitive and neural mechanisms governing inhibitory control. The present results supported the hypothesis that individuals that received music training had stronger conflict monitoring and motor inhibition abilities when completing the response inhibition task, as well as a better conflict monitoring ability when completing the interference control task. This indicates a potential association between music training and inhibitory control.

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    Assimilation mechanisms of phonological encoding in second language spoken production for English-Chinese bilinguals
    XIN Xin, LAN Tianyi, ZHANG Qingfang
    2020, 52 (12):  1377-1392.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01377
    Abstract ( 320 )   HTML ( 34 )  
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    Whether and how L2 spoken word production influences the similarities and differences between L1 network and L2 network is still controversial. Studies in language comprehension have documented that bilinguals present an accommodation or an assimilation pattern in L2 processing. For bilinguals, an accommodation pattern of L2 involves additional neural correlates than L1, while an assimilation one shows overlapping neural correlates with L1. Using electrophysiological measures, the present study thus aims to compare the patterns of L2 phonological encoding in spoken word production for bilingual speakers.
    In a picture-word interference task, we combined the event-related potential (ERP) technique and spatio-temporal segmentation method to examine assimilation and accommodation mechanisms of L2 phonological encoding in English-Chinese bilinguals. Twenty-two native Mandarin speakers (13 males, mean age: 21.9) and 18 English-Chinese bilinguals (13 males, mean age: 22.9) participated in the study. The stimuli materials were designed into two languages (Chinese and English) and paired with three phonologically related conditions (syllabically related, phonemically related, and unrelated). Participants were required to ignore distracter words and name the picture as accurately as possible.
    Behavioral data revealed a significant syllable effect in Chinese native speakers, and English-Chinese bilinguals name pictures in both English and Chinese, showing that pictures paired with syllabically related distractors were named faster than those paired with unrelated distractors. ERP data showed that syllabically related distractors elicited a larger modulated ERPs than unrelated ones in the time window of 250~300 ms in native Chinese speakers, and phonemically related distractors elicited a larger waveform than the one in unrelated ones in the time window of 200~250 ms in English-Chinese bilinguals naming pictures in English or Chinese. Results of spatio-temporal segmentation revealed identical microstates (Map1, Map3, and Map4) in English-Chinese bilinguals naming pictures in English or Chinese. There was only a significant difference in microstate duration. However, Chinese native speakers exhibited a different brain microstate (Map2) when they named pictures in Chinese.
    In sum, ERP and spatio-temporal segmentation results consistently indicated that English-Chinese bilinguals showed an assimilation pattern in speaking Chinese (L2) network, in which the electrophysiological pattern was more similar to the one when they spoke native English, rather than the one when native Chinese speakers spoke Chinese.

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    Emotion regulation strategy of self-focused and situation-focused reappraisal and their impact on subsequent cognitive control
    SUN Yan, LV Jiaojiao, LAN Fan, ZHANG Lina
    2020, 52 (12):  1393-1406.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01393
    Abstract ( 534 )   HTML ( 16 )  
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    It is important to explore the relationship between emotion regulation and cognitive control for a better understanding of diseases involving emotional control failure. Cognitive reappraisal is the most effective and commonly used emotion regulation strategy to improve individual emotional state. Will it consume cognitive resources needed for subsequent cognitive control tasks? The results of previous studies on this issue are not consistent. The reason may be that previous studies treated reappraisal as a single strategy, and did not distinguish subtypes of reappraisal to explore this issue. Reappraisal can be divided into self-focused and situation-focused reappraisal. According to previous studies, this two reappraisal strategies may have different effects on subsequent cognitive control tasks. However, there has been no direct experimental comparison on this issue.
    In this study, self-focused reappraisal (n = 23) and situation-focused reappraisal (n = 26) were used to investigate whether to increase or decrease negative emotion had different effects on subsequent cognitive control tasks. All participants completed a cross- combination paradigm of cognitive reappraisal and Stroop task. Event-related potential (ERP) was used to assess the effectiveness of emotion regulation (late positive potential, LPP) during the reappraisal phase, as well as to assess the cognitive resource (P300) and cognitive control (sustained potential, SP) during the Stroop task.
    The results showed that both reappraisal strategies could effectively regulate emotion at the level of subjective reporting. In addition, on the level of arousal, increase negative > view negative > decrease negative > watch neutral, as opposite to the valence rating. Furthermore, EEG results of the reappraisal stage showed that self-focused reappraisal would trigger larger LPP amplitude than situation-focused reappraisal whether it increased or decreased negative emotion. This proved that situation-focused reappraisal was more effective than self-focused reappraisal when negative emotion was decreased. On the contrary, self-focused reappraisal was more effective than situation-focused reappraisal when negative emotion was increased. Compared with the three emotion regulation conditions that appeared in negative stimulus pictures, the interference scores of accuracy for viewing neutral picture were significantly greater. While, compared with the other three emotion regulation conditions, the P300 interference score of increases negative emotion was significantly smaller. The difference of the SP amplitude under the situation-focused reappraisal incongruent condition minus the congruent condition was higher than the self-focused reappraisal. It might be considered the SP amplitude interference score of situation-focused reappraisal was more positive than that of self-focused reappraisal.
    In conclusion, the results of this study indicated that (1) self-focused reappraisal and situation-focused reappraisal could effectively regulate emotion, while the regulating effects were different. (2) compared to neutral stimuli, negative stimuli trigger higher levels of negative emotion and subsequent poorer cognitive control of conflicting tasks from behavioral perspective. (3) compared with watching and decreasing negative emotion, increasing negative emotion may further deplete the available cognitive resources for subsequent tasks at the level of neural mechanisms. Furthermore, situation-focused reappraisal had a greater impact on cognitive control of subsequent conflict tasks after decreasing negative emotion than self-focused reappraisal.

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    Influence of maternal negative parenting, peer victimization and the FKBP5 gene on adolescent depressive symptoms
    TIAN Xiangjuan, CAO Yanmiao, ZHANG Wenxin
    2020, 52 (12):  1407-1420.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01407
    Abstract ( 408 )   HTML ( 24 )  
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    Depression is one of the most prevalent mental health problems during adolescence. Research has indicated that distal stress and proximal stress as well as their interaction are important predictors of adolescent depressive symptoms. There are two different hypotheses — cumulative stress hypothesis and match-mismatch hypothesis — to understand the interaction between distal stress and proximal stress. It has been suggested that an individual’s genetic susceptibility may determine which of these two hypotheses is relevant, but very little empirical research has considered the impact of genetic predisposition on these issues. Furthermore, recent researchers have paid attention to the cumulative genetic score (CGS) of multiple loci rather than to single polymorphism. The present study was designed to extend prior research by exploring whether the interaction effects of distal maternal negative parenting and proximal peer victimization were consistent with the cumulative stress hypothesis or the match-mismatch hypothesis, for adolescents who carried higher or lower CGS of FKBP5 gene.
    In this study, 970 adolescents (48.8% male) were followed from Grade 6 to Grade 9. At T1 (Mage = 12.31 years, SD = 0.47), adolescent depressive symptoms were assessed using Children’s Depression Inventory (CDI). Mothers reported their negative parenting via the Chinese version of Child-Rearing Practices Report (CRPR). At T2 (Mage = 15.32 years, SD = 0.47), saliva samples of adolescents were collected and genotyped for three FKBP5 gene polymorphisms. Peer victimization and depressive symptoms were tested using Multidimensional Peer Victimization Scale (MPVS) and CDI, respectively. A series of hierarchical regressions and internal replication analyses were conducted to test the three-way interaction among maternal negative parenting, peer victimization and CGS of FKBP5 on depressive symptoms, separately for male and female adolescents.
    The results showed that, after T1 depressive symptoms were controlled for, maternal negative parenting, peer victimization and CGS had a significant three-way interaction on male adolescent depressive symptoms at T2. Specifically, among male adolescents who had higher CGS, maternal negative parenting negatively predicted depressive symptoms in the context of higher peer victimization, which fitted better with the match-mismatch hypothesis. The interaction between negative parenting and peer victimization was not significant among males with lower CGS, but showed a cumulative stress trend. The three-way interaction was not observed among females.
    By examining the interaction effect of maternal negative parenting, peer victimization and CGS on depressive symptoms, the present study highlights the important role of individuals’ genetic susceptibility in understanding the distal and proximal stress interactions during adolescence. This underscores the complex environmental and multiple loci underpinnings of depressive symptoms and lends some support for both the cumulative stress and match-mismatch hypotheses on the etiology of depressive symptoms.

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    Effect of power on conspicuous prosocial behavior
    YAO Qi, WU Zhangjian, ZHANG Changqing, FU Guoqun
    2020, 52 (12):  1421-1435.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01421
    Abstract ( 616 )   HTML ( 46 )  
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    Conspicuous prosocial behavior refers to prosocial behaviors that are publicly displayed to enhance the image of the helper in the eyes of others. The existing researches suggest that sense of power simultaneously generates self-interested behaviors and inhibits individual prosocial behavior. However, an increased number of recent researches indicate that several personal traits and environmental factors encourage individuals with power to conduct more prosocial behaviors. Moreover, few researches have been conducted to explore the relationship between power and conspicuous prosocial behavior. The present study proposes that high-power-sense (vs. low-power-sense) individuals are more willing to engage in conspicuous prosocial behaviors with self-presentation as a mediating variable.
    Five experiments (Experiments 1, 2a, 2b, 3, and 4) were performed to test the hypotheses. Experiments 1 and 3 explored the relationship between power and conspicuous prosocial behaviors using the class role imagination task to manipulate sense of power. Participants of Experiment 1 (139 adults, 50 men) were provided with information about two backpacks. Participants of Experiment 3 (237 adults, 121 men) were shown an advertisement. Participants of Experiment 2a (147 adults, 75 men) were high and low power-sense individuals who were instructed to report donation willingness and amount under two conditions, namely, public acknowledgment and control. Experiment 2b was a field study in which participants (210 adults, 93 men) who completed a recall task decided whether to write down their e-mail after perusing the information about a public service advertisement. Lastly, Experiment 4 examined the mediating role of self-presentation, and 117 adults were asked to indicate their sense of power, self-presentation motivation, and willingness to participate in blatant benevolence by a random sequence.
    Experiment 1 indicated that the high-power-sense (vs. low-power-sense) individuals tended to buy conspicuous green products with clear environmental labels. Experiment 2a demonstrated that individuals with a high sense of power displayed higher levels of willingness to donate and donate more compared with the powerless and under the public acknowledgment condition. Experiment 2b revealed that people with a high (vs. low) sense of power tended to write down their e-mail under the public acknowledgment condition. Experiment 3 provided evidence that a strongly conspicuous inclination among high-power-sense participants was not attributed to a general tendency to show off when engaging in prosocial behaviors. Finally, Experiment 4 not only replicated the effect of power on conspicuous prosocial behaviors, but also established the mediating role of self-presentation.
    The current study demonstrates the relationship between power and conspicuous prosocial behaviors. That is, individuals with high (vs. low) power are more willing to engage in conspicuous prosocial behaviors with self-presentation as a mediating factor. The findings of this work have important practical significance for marketing managers in terms of the utilization of sense of power to effectively guide individuals to engage in prosocial behaviors.

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    Warmth and competence: Impact of third-party punishment on punishers’ reputation
    CHEN Sijing, XU Yechao
    2020, 52 (12):  1436-1451.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01436
    Abstract ( 518 )   HTML ( 19 )  
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    Third-party punishment (TPP) not only provides a theoretical explanation to the extensive cooperation among genetically unrelated individuals but also raises a second-order free-riding problem. To solve this challenge, some researchers have proposed the reputational benefits of TPP as a potential explanation. That is, given the positive reputation derived from the punishment, the probability that the punisher would be helped in the future is enhanced. However, a growing body of literature has suggested that punishers’ reputation (PR) is not necessarily positive. Three reasons underlying the contradictory findings regarding PR may exist in the existing literature. Previous research a) views reputation as a uni-dimensional variable that is simply negative or positive, b) fails to take into account punishment motives, and c) only considers financial punishment and overlooks the existence of other forms of punishment.
    A series of experiments were conducted to answer the main research questions raised in the current study: a) Does TPP have different effects on the two dimensions of PR (experiment 1)? b) Does the attribution of punishment motives (APM) significantly affect PR (experiment 2)? c) Do financial and social punishment diverge on the effects on PR (experiments 2 and 3)? All these experiments used the dictator game as the experimental paradigm, in which the dictator received an initial endowment and decided to what extent she/he wanted to split this endowment with the recipient, and the observer (financially or socially) punished the dictator for an offer she/he deemed unfair. In experiments 1 and 2, every participant played each role four times in a random order. In experiment 3, the participants just observed the game. After being presented with the performance of their partners (experiments 1 and 2) or the actors (experiment 3), the participants were asked to rate their reputation on a seven-point Likert scale consisting of six items and attribute punishment motives on a seven-point Likert scale with self-focused or group-focused anchors.
    The results of experiment 1 showed that TPP generally reduced participants’ evaluation of PR in the warmth dimension and improved their evaluation in the competence dimension. Moreover, the punishment deemed group-focused could further improve the positive impact of TPP on competence while ameliorating its negative impact on warmth. The results of experiment 2 revealed that participants relied to a large extent on the cooperation level of punishers to determine whether their punishments were group-focused or self-focused, thus affecting their evaluation of PR. Moreover, with the option of social punishment available, financial punishment significantly reduced the evaluation of PR in terms of warmth regardless of their punishment motives, but the evaluation in terms of competence was quite different. In the absence of social punishment, financial punishment improved the evaluation of PR. Otherwise, financial punishment reduced its evaluation. This finding was partially replicated in experiment 3, which further demonstrated by examining the interaction between APM and punishment forms that the APM moderated the effects of the two types of punishment on PR. When deemed self-focused, the financial punishment reduced participants’ evaluation of PR in the warmth dimension significantly more than the social punishment. When viewed as group-focused, financial punishment enhanced participants’ evaluation of PR in the competence dimension significantly less than social punishment.
    In conclusion, this study found evidence that, when considering the impact of TPP on PR, considering the motives underlying punishment and viewing reputation as a multi-dimensional construct is necessary, implying that the reputational benefits of punishing cannot fully explain the selective advantages of TPP and that other factors must have contributed to the selection and diffusion of TPP in evolution.

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    A new dual-objective CD-CAT item selection method based on the Gini index
    LUO Fen, WANG Xiaoqing, CAI Yan, TU Dongbo
    2020, 52 (12):  1452-1465.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01452
    Abstract ( 295 )   HTML ( 8 )  
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    Existing literature has shown that dual-objective CD-CAT testing can facilitate the achievement of measurement objectives for both formative and summative assessments. And the Gini Index can be used as a measurement for the degree of uncertainty of random variables since a smaller Gini value indicates a lower degree of uncertainty. Hence, this paper proposed a Gini-Index-based selection method for dual-objective CD-CAT, and it measured the changes in the posterior probability of knowledge state and confidence interval for latent traits estimation. By adopting the Bayesian Decision Theory, the potential information of participants could be detected based on participants’ responses and changes in posterior probability distribution of two the random variables.
    Monte Carlo Simulation was used to test the performances of the selection method based on Gini, ASI, IPA, and JSD, respectively. The item banks measured 5 attributes consisting of 250 items in total, and each item measured 3 attributes at most. The true knowledge state of each participant was generated by HO-CDM and Multivariate Normal Models (both means were 0 and covariance coefficient was 0.8 and 0.2, respectively). G-DINA, DINA, and R-RUM were adopted as the cognitive diagnostic models, and the item bank of each of these three models included both CDM and 2PL parameters. Specifically, CDM parameters were generated by a G-DINA package in R software with the slipping and guessing parameters randomly selected from a uniform distribution in a range from 0.05 to 0.25. The 2PL parameters were estimated by factoring in the responses elicited from 3,000 participants’ responses to all items in item banks using the mirt package. Four indexes, namely the pattern match ratio, root mean square error of latent trait, chi-square value, and time needed for item selection, were adopted in comparing the efficiency of different item selection methods. The value for each index was the mean of 10 repeated simulations of 1,000 participants’ responses to all item bank.
    The results showed that (1) The Gini and IPA selection methods had similar performance in terms of pattern match ratio, root mean square error of latent trait, and chi-square value. Both methods were high in precision measurement and low in sensitivity to CDM and the distribution of participants’ cognitive patterns, making both methods applicable to the item banks featuring a mixture of cognitive diagnosis models. By comparison, the Gini method outperformed the IPA method slightly in pattern match ratio and time needed for item selection in which the Gini method was only one-tenth that of the IPA method; (2) Both the Gini and ASI selection methods were weighted linear combination approaches. The performances of the two methods were very close in the short test. In the long test, however, although the time needed for item selection using the ASI method was only one-third that of the Gini method, the latter was superior to the former in terms of measurement accuracy and chi-square value; (3) Although the JSD method outperformed the Gini method in terms of uniformity of item bank usage and time needed for item selection, its measurement accuracy was far less than the latter.
    To summarize, the Gini, IPA, and ASI selection methods all have good measurement accuracy and hence are all recommended for short tests. For medium and long tests with a limited number of attributes and a smaller item bank, the Gini and IPA selection methods are recommended. As the number of attributes and item bank size grow, the Gini method is recommended. When there are high correlations among different attributes, as well as a large number of attributes and big item bank size, the ASI and JSD selection methods are recommended, with the ASI method slightly outperforming the JSD method in measurement accuracy.

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