ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R
2024, Volume 32 Issue 7 Previous Issue    Next Issue
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Conceptual Framework
The neural replay mechanisms of episodic memory consolidation under stress in humans
LIU Wei, CHEN Ruixin, GUO JinPeng
2024, 32 (7):  1031-1047.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01031
Abstract ( 879 )   PDF (2049KB) ( 1240 )   Peer Review Comments
Memory consolidation typically unfolds gradually during rest or sleep following encoding. However, under stress, the consolidation process can significantly accelerate. This phenomenon has been supported by previous studies in both animals and humans, suggesting that stress can enhance memory consolidation. Yet, the mechanisms driving this accelerated consolidation under stress remain elusive, largely due to a historical lack of quantitative methods for probing neural activity during human memory consolidation phases. Contrary to the conventional perspective, our research posits that stress doesn't simply boost or hinder consolidation. Indeed, while stress increases the pace of neural replay, it also introduces memory distortions and diminishes sequential integrity. Our aim is to leverage computational neuroscience techniques to precisely delineate neural replay dynamics during episodic memory consolidation under stress. We advocate an integrated methodology that combines cognitive psychology, neuroimaging, machine learning, neuroendocrine studies, stress induction, and both physiological and neuroendocrine evaluations to investigate the nuanced impacts of stress on memory consolidation and neural replay, embodying the 'double-edged sword' hypothesis: despite stress potentially accelerating neural replay and facilitating consolidation, it may also impair replay accuracy and disrupt sequence.
Our experimental design is meticulously crafted to dissect the multifaceted influence of stress on memory consolidation. The development of a new neural replay index based on rapid EEG/MEG signals aims to assess replay speed, accuracy, and sequentiality in unprecedented detail. This index is a cornerstone of our methodology, enabling the quantification of neural replay's temporal dynamics, fidelity, and order. To complement this, we will apply diverse memory retrieval paradigms to evaluate the functional outcomes of consolidation under stress. These include a durability test, assessing participants' ability to maintain memory traces over extended periods; a specificity test, examining the recall of precise episodic details versus generalized or incorrect information; and a flexibility test, determining the capacity to apply remembered information to novel problem-solving scenarios.
Furthermore, our study will conduct in-depth brain-behavior correlation analyses to link the neural replay index with specific memory outcomes. We hypothesize that rapid neural replay correlates with enduring memories, while compromised replay precision and sequence relate to diminished memory specificity and adaptability. This nuanced exploration will allow us to juxtapose neural replay characteristics under stress versus non-stress conditions and examine the intricate relationship between neural replay and memory processes during stress.
To rigorously test whether retrieval practice before stress exposure can mitigate its negative effects on consolidation, we will implement a pre-stress retrieval practice session in a subset of participants. This approach will enable us to evaluate the protective effects of active recall against stress-induced memory distortion. Additionally, we aim to utilize neuroendocrine and environmental strategies to modulate stress responses, potentially influencing neural replay during consolidation. Specifically, we will explore the efficacy of cortisol blockers to mitigate stress effects and environmental interventions designed to enhance cognitive resilience against stress.
We anticipate that our findings will unveil stress-induced interactions among memory, emotion, and control networks, primarily involving the amygdala, hippocampus, and prefrontal cortex. Neuroendocrine interventions could directly reduce amygdala activity, enhancing prefrontal-hippocampal connectivity, whereas environmental strategies might bolster prefrontal control over the amygdala, thus promoting a neurobiological environment conducive to optimal memory consolidation.
The implications of our research are profound and far-reaching. By identifying conditions that enhance memory consolidation, we aim to bridge significant gaps between human and animal studies on neural replay. Moreover, our findings could illuminate new strategies for maintaining episodic memory function under stress and offer novel intervention approaches for memory deficits observed in stress-associated psychiatric disorders. Ultimately, this research could pave the way for groundbreaking treatments that harness the neuroplasticity of memory systems, offering hope to individuals suffering from memory impairments and contributing to the broader scientific understanding of memory under stress.
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The psychological mechanism and promotion of green behavior from the perspective of uncertainty intertemporal decision-making
ZHOU Lei, LIN Jiao-Min, CHEN Yi-Qi, LIANG Yong-Chao, GU Chen-Yan, SUN Qi-Zhang
2024, 32 (7):  1048-1056.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01048
Abstract ( 362 )   PDF (499KB) ( 473 )   Peer Review Comments
Citizens' green behavior plays an integral role in China's economic development and the achievement of carbon neutrality and carbon peaking goals in. Exploring the underlying mechanism of decision-making that affects citizens' green behavior and promoting green behavior effectively and persistently are important issues to improve the efficiency of environmental governance in our nation. Green behavior requires citizens to incorporate sustainability principles into their daily decisions, opting for long-term environmentally friendly benefits. While it is hard to put green behavior into practice. One of the most important reasons for this may lie in the perception of uncertainty about the outcome and utility of green behavior. However, research in the field of behavioral decision-making has mainly focused on the behavioral performance of green behavior within the framework of intertemporal choice, leaving the relationship between uncertainty and intertemporal choice in green behavior remaining unclear. This study proposes that uncertainty should be incorporated into the framework of intertemporal choice when studying the underlying mechanism of citizens' green behavior.
Thus, in order to formulate effective behavioral promotion programs, this study aims to reveal the behavioral performance and the underlying mechanism of citizens' green behavior, based on the framework of intertemporal choice with uncertainty. This study proposes to utilize behavioral experiments, eye-tracking technology, field experiments, computational modeling, eye movement manipulation, and other methods and elaborates on three studies. First, Study 1 aims to provide clarity on various types of uncertainty in green behavior through a comprehensive review of existing research. The impact of various types of uncertainty on the choice preference of green behavior will then be explore using cognitive behavioral experiments, which is based on the framework of intertemporal choice combined with uncertainty. Furthermore, Study 2 explore the mechanism of this impact on the cognitive process of green behavior. Following the experimental paradigm of Study 1, Study 2 will utilize eye-tracking technology, along with computational modeling and eye-movement manipulation methods, to reveal the underlying information processing of green behavior and alter green choice preference by shifting visual attention from uncertain to certain information. It aims to explore the underlying mechanism of how uncertainty perception contributes to green behavior as well as to verify whether reducing uncertainty perception is the core driving factor for promoting green behavior. Finally, based on the behavioral performance and underlying mechanism of green behavior revealed in the preceding two studies, Study 3 will explore and verify the methods toward promoting green behavior underlying the principle of reducing uncertainty perception by employing field experiments. Study 3 aims to develop nudging and boosting programs for green behavior.
This study has the following implications. On the theoretical level, firstly, this study expects to fill the gap in existing research and provide a new theoretical basis for green behavior research by clarifying the impact of various types of uncertainty in green behavior. Secondly, it expects to combine behavioral experiments and eye-tracking technology to provide converging evidence to shed light on a comprehensive and in-depth understanding of the decision-making mechanism of green behavior. On the application level, it will provide practical methods for effectively promoting green behavior by reducing various uncertainty perceptions. As a result, it will potentially provide psychological support and advice for the formulation and release of relevant public policies.
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“Rat Race” or “Lying Flat”? The effect of competition stress on psychological compensation
WANG Wangshuai, YI Yanxi, LUO Zhiwei, LI Jie
2024, 32 (7):  1057-1072.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01057
Abstract ( 937 )   PDF (689KB) ( 1497 )   Peer Review Comments
In the modern society with rapidly accelerating pace, competition has become ubiquitous and intense. No doubt that competition can lead to aversive psychological stress. Interestingly, in response to the competition stress, individuals choose two contradictory compensation strategies, as some go “Rat Race”, while others do “Lying Flat”. Why do individuals make contrasting choices? Does it result from different types of stress? What are the psychological mechanisms and boundary conditions of the “Rat Race” and “Lying Flat” effects, respectively? In the current literature, none of these questions has been answered. Therefore, the core concepts of this research are competition stress and psychological compensation; the central story is to reveal the relationship between different types of competition stress and psychological compensation. More specifically, this research distinguishes the multi-dimensional attributes of competition stress. Based on the theory of psychological compensation, we then explore individuals' compensation strategies when faced with different types of competition stress. The paper is structured into three main sections: (1) competition stress is a multi-dimensional concept, encompassing both competition result stress and competition process stress; (2) competition result stress leads to the fluid compensation strategy, which is termed as the “Rat Race” effect. The psychological mechanism of this effect is self-esteem threat, and the boundary condition is self-affirmation; (3) competition process stress drives the escapism compensation strategy, which is termed as the “Lying Flat” effect. The psychological mechanism of this effect is well-being threat, and the boundary condition is social support. This study marks the first attempt to identify different types of competition stress and examines how they respectively affect individuals' compensation strategies. The present paper significantly contributes to the existing literature on competition stress, psychological compensation, self-esteem, and well-being. Moreover, research findings can guide companies' marketing activities, promote individual well-being, and assist public policy making.
The research questions of this paper are rooted in practicality and real-world, and answering these questions in turn contributes to the extant literature in at least two ways. First, while existing research on competition stress has shed light on how it alters an individual's physical and mental states, it portrayed competition stress as a unidimensional construct, overlooking its potential multidimensional nature. Moreover, prior studies have failed to explore individuals' compensatory strategies under competition stress. Consequently, this research reveals the multidimensional attribute of competition stress, delineating it into competition result stress and competition process stress. Subsequently, how different types of competition stress lead to contrasting compensatory strategies are analyzed, including the “Rat Race” effect engendered by competition result stress and the “Lying Flat” effect prompted by competition process stress.
Second, this paper contributes to the literature on self-esteem and well-being. Specifically, regarding self-esteem, while previous research has primarily examined its direct influence on individuals, this study uncovers that self-esteem serves as the underlying psychological mechanism driving the “Rat Race” effect. In terms of well-being, despite being frequently investigated in extant research, yet it received less attention in explaining psychological compensation. Therefore, findings from the present research enrich the literature on well-being, expanding our understanding of its connections with competition stress and compensatory behaviors.
Aside from the theoretical contributions, the current research also provides practical implications in three ways. For enterprises, the psychological compensation behavior impelled by competition stress is shown to follow a traceable pattern, which can be leveraged for increasing market share and sales profits. For instance, product slogans aimed at individuals opting for “Rat Race” can aim to evoke their competitive mindset, while brands tailored to those embracing “Lying Flat” should emphasize concepts like escaping the “noise” and maintaining the inner peace. As for individuals, it is suggested that when faced with severe competition stress, individuals can restore psychological resources through recalling past successful experiences or seeking for the support from families and friends. Furthermore, for policymakers, given that over-competition may lead to negative outcomes, this research reminds policymakers to maintain a moderate competition level in the society and to make necessary interventions when necessary.
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The concept of team temporal leadership and its mechanisms on team and individual effectiveness
LI Yuhui, YANG Chenlu
2024, 32 (7):  1073-1086.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01073
Abstract ( 189 )   PDF (568KB) ( 278 )   Peer Review Comments
Time is the paramount intangible resource in organizations. In an external environment characterized by rapid technological and customer demand changes, as well as increasing uncertainty, organizations that effectively utilize time can seize opportunities, enhance their market responsiveness, and foster dynamic innovation capabilities. For individuals, efficient use of time can improve performance within limited timeframes, reduce overtime hours, and promote work-life balance. In modern organizations, teams have gradually emerged as the fundamental unit of work. Through teams, organizations accomplish complex tasks, and the utilization of individual time is also closely related to the work teams. Team leaders play a pivotal role in team operations, and the importance of team temporal leadership is becoming increasingly prominent.
Team temporal leadership, recognized as a crucial factor in enhancing the efficiency of organizational time utilization, has garnered significant research attention in recent years. Nevertheless, significant gaps still exist in the research on team temporal leadership. Firstly, clarification is needed concerning the conceptual connotation and dimensions of team temporal leadership. Additionally, the validity of measurement scales pertaining to team temporal leadership within the Chinese context must be verified. Secondly, the mechanisms underlying the impact of team temporal leadership remain incompletely explored. Prior studies have primarily focused on mechanisms through the lens of team cognition, motivation, and psychological state, yet they have overlooked the analysis of team interaction processes and affective tone. Thirdly, insufficient attention has been given to the cross-level influence of team temporal leadership on individuals. There is an urgent need for further exploration of how team temporal leadership affects subordinates' individual effectiveness, particularly with regard to the mediating role played by their time management skills, time cognition, and motivation.
This study systematically investigates team temporal leadership, clarifying its conceptual connotation, exploring its mechanisms on team and individual effectiveness, and subsequently establishing a nomological network of team temporal leadership. Specifically, it encompasses three sub-studies. Study 1 delves into the conceptual connotation of team temporal leadership and develops a validated measurement scale for it, ensuring its strong reliability and validity in the Chinese context. Study 2 employs a multi-source questionnaire survey to explore the multiple mechanisms of team temporal leadership on team effectiveness, taking into account team cognition, interaction processes, and affective tone. It specifically examines the mediating effects of temporal team mental model, team communication quality, and team positive affective tone, as well as the moderating role of team task interdependence. Study 3 aims to utilize multilevel linear models to investigate the cross-level mechanism of team temporal leadership on individual effectiveness. This includes examining the mediating effects of subordinates' time management skill, temporal predictability, effort during goal pursuit, and thriving at work.
This study aims to contribute significantly in three key areas. Firstly, it addresses urgent fundamental issues that require resolution in the field of team temporal leadership research. By clarifying and defining the concept of team temporal leadership and developing a validated measurement scale, this study establishes a crucial foundation for the further advancement of this research domain. Secondly, this study pushes the boundaries of team temporal leadership research, complementing and driving theoretical advancements. Given the incomplete and limited understanding of the mechanisms of team temporal leadership, this study delves deeper into the multi-level mechanisms underlying its impact on both team and individual effectiveness, thereby effectively expanding the scope of research. Thirdly, this study addresses the pressing needs of contemporary management practices. In the rapidly evolving business environment, where technology and customer demands are constantly changing, organizations must not only innovate in their products and services but also ensure rapid market delivery to outpace their competitors. The efficient utilization of time resources within organizations has become a critical concern in management practices. By exploring the effects and mechanisms of team temporal leadership on both team and individual effectiveness, this study offers valuable insights to address urgent time management challenges faced by organizations.
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The association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction: A three-level meta-analysis
MENG Xianxin, YAN Chen, YU Delin, GAO Shuling, FU Xiaolan
2024, 32 (7):  1087-1103.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01087
Abstract ( 409 )   PDF (2707KB) ( 694 )   Peer Review Comments
A growing body of research has examined the association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction. Results of these research are inconclusive, and the strength of the association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction varied greatly, ranging from -0.1 to 0.56. The Interaction of Person-Affect-Cognition-Execution (I-PACE) model suggests that childhood maltreatment could influence an individual's emotion, cognition, and executive function, potentially leading to internet addiction. The Compensatory internet use (CIU) model proposes that individuals who have experienced childhood maltreatment may turn to the internet as a coping mechanism to avoid negative emotions and real-life problems. The self-determination theory indicates that childhood maltreatment can increase the risk of excessive internet use by hindering the fulfillment of basic psychological needs. The stress coping theory indicates that the severity of childhood maltreatment could impact the development of internet addiction as a coping strategy in dealing with stress in real life. While theories and research suggest that childhood maltreatment can contribute to the development of internet addiction, results have been inconsistent. Therefore, this meta-analysis aimed to estimate the extent to which childhood maltreatment is associated with internet addiction, and whether this association varies in terms of characteristics of the study or sample, such as the type of childhood maltreatment, gender, age, etc.
A systematic literature review was conducted in Science Direct, EBSCO, Google Scholar, CNKI (China National Knowledge Infrastructure), CSTJD (China Science and Technology Journal Database) and WFD (Wanfang Data). A three-level meta-analysis was performed using R to synthesize effect sizes and conduct moderator analyses. Publication bias was assessed using funnel plots and Egger's regression.
A total of 46 studies (N = 106,780 participants) producing 152 effect sizes were included in this meta-analysis. The result indicated a significant positive association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction, with a small correlation coefficient (r = 0.227). Moderator analyses revealed that the type of childhood maltreatment had a significant moderating effect. Specifically, the association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction was significantly higher for emotional abuse than for emotional neglect, physical abuse, physical neglect and sexual abuse. Additionally, the association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction was moderated by the severity of maltreatment, the measurement of maltreatment, the proportion of only child in the sample, gender, and cultural background. Compared to the high maltreatment group, the correlation coefficient between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction was significantly larger in the low maltreatment group. The correlation was significantly higher when childhood maltreatment was measured by using the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire than by using other scales. The positive correlation between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction decreased as the proportion of female and only child in the sample increased. The correlation between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction was greater in Eastern culture than in Western culture. The type and measurement of internet addiction, age, data type, and the timing of data collection did not moderate the association between childhood maltreatment and internet addiction.
This study not only provides supports for diverse theoretical perspectives, including the self-determination theory, the CIU model, the I-PACE model, and the stress coping theory, but also offers a deep understanding of the association of early traumatic experiences and internet addiction. By identifying moderators such as the type and severity of maltreatment, measurement, demographic variables and cultural background, this research provides a solid foundation for prevention and intervention of internet addiction.
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A meta-analysis of the relationship between achievement goal orientation and academic achievement: The mediating role of self-efficacy and student engagement
WU Jiahui, FU Hailun
2024, 32 (7):  1104-1125.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01104
Abstract ( 388 )   PDF (963KB) ( 670 )   Peer Review Comments
Achievement goal orientation is an important source of motivation for individuals, and it affects academic performance by influencing cognitive, emotional, and motivational processes related to academics. Examining the relationship between achievement goal orientation and academic performance can reveal the intrinsic reasons for differentiation in students' grades, thereby deepening the understanding of the inherent mechanisms of students' learning processes at a micro level. Consequently, there is growing interest in the relationship between achievement goal orientation and academic performance. With continuing advances in developmental psychology, current research is increasingly focusing on the mediating mechanisms between achievement goal orientation and academic performance. A review the literature reveals that current research mainly focuses on exploring the independent and chained effects of self-efficacy and student engagement on academic performance at the non-intellectual factor level. Self-efficacy refers to an individual's belief in their perceived ability to achieve predetermined goals, which is a key factor influencing students' learning engagement and academic performance. Student engagement refers to the time and effort individuals invest in purposeful educational activities and is an important proximal factor in predicting students' academic performance. However, there are no uniform findings on the strength of the correlation between achievement goal orientation and academic performance. There is also no clear conclusion on which moderating factors influence both, as well as the extent to which mediating factors affect them. Furthermore, current meta-analyses have a relatively scattered explanatory perspective on achievement goal orientation; so far, only the relationship between the sub-dimensions of achievement goal orientation and academic performance has been explored. In addition, some studies have placed achievement goal orientation within the intermediate structure of motivation and behavior, focusing on the association between achievement goal orientation and its antecedents and consequences. Moreover, current meta-analyses have not fully explored the potential moderating factors in the relationship between the four-factor structure of achievement goal orientation and academic performance. Due to the limited number of studies on the relationship between mastery-avoidance goals and academic performance, previous research has mostly focused on overall tracking by incorporating mastery-avoidance goals into mastery goals. Finally, current meta-analyses have not yet thoroughly investigate the mediating of non-intellectual factors between achievement goal orientation and academic performance, with most studies focusing on integrating effect sizes and exploring possible moderating variables, using samples that do not involve mediating variables. Specifically, the meta-analysis of the four-factor structural model of achievement goal orientation, dating back approximately ten years, may suffer from time lag bias. Therefore, the present study, based on achievement goal orientation theory, expectancy-value theory, and self-efficacy theory, conducted a meta-analysis to explore the consistencies and differences in existing international studies. It provides a comprehensive report on the relevance of the relationship between achievement goal orientation and academic performance, with a particular focus on exploring the mediating effects of self-efficacy and student engagement as well as a range of moderating effects. A total of 67 empirical research and 206 effect sizes were included through literature retrieval. Results of our analysis were as follows: (1) Mastery-approach and performance-approach goals were significantly and positively correlated with academic achievement, while mastery-avoidance and performance-avoidance goals were significantly and negatively correlated with academic achievement; each indicator was robustly and weakly dependent on academic achievement. (2) The relationship between achievement goal orientation and academic achievement was influenced by age stage and measurement tools, but not by gender ratio or achievement type. (3) Self-efficacy and student engagement played significant mediating roles in the relationship between achievement goal orientation and academic performance; however, the mediating effect of student engagement was only significant for students in the middle school group and not the university school group.
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Regular Articles
Creative thinking from the perspective of embodied cognition
ZHANG Ke, DU Xiumin
2024, 32 (7):  1126-1137.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01126
Abstract ( 433 )   PDF (483KB) ( 682 )   Peer Review Comments
According to the embodied cognition approach, the mind is not an isolated entity, but rather that the mind and the body form an integrated system. Indeed, bodily experiences of sensations and movements have been found to affect cognitive processes, such as memory, decision making, as well as creative thinking. Creative thinking is the kind of thinking mode that generates novel and appropriate viewpoints or products, of which divergent and convergent thinking are two common types. Up to now, numerous foreign researches of creative thinking from the perspective of embodied cognition have been reported, while domestic researches are scarce. To promote the development of domestic research, we reviewed relevant researches about embodied creativity.
This paper reviewed existing researches on embodied creativity from the aspects of perception of movement, visual sense, tactile sense and taste sense. With regard to perception of movement, this paper introduced breaking/no breaking the walls, open/closed body postures, arm flexion/extension, switching to another hand, fluid/nonfluid arm movement, free/restricted walking, and aggregation action. With regard to visual sense, this paper introduced close/distant spatial distance, direct/oblique gaze, bright/dark condition, red/blue color, order/disorder, and standing inside/outside the box. With regard to tactile sense, this paper introduced soft/hard tactical experiences, and warmth/coldness. With regard to taste sense, this paper introduced sweet/sour taste, and alcohol or non-alcohol. The above bodily experiences of sensations and movements could promote or impede creative thinking. Motivational factor, cognitive factor or emotional factor might mediate these embodied effects.
There are theories that explain the relevant embodied effects on creativity: conceptual metaphor theory, cognitive development theory and evolutionary psychology. In the conceptual metaphor theory, metaphors have been recognized as the bridge that connects the creative thinking and body. People often use familiar bodily experiences to construct abstract creative thinking through metaphor. Walls, order, standing inside the box are often perceived as rules, whereas disorder, breaking the walls, standing outside the box are often perceived as breaking rules, which could promote creative thinking. So, disorder, breaking the walls, standing outside the box could enhance creative thinking. In cognitive development theory, the schema stores a large amount of thinking, as which actions were internalized. Internalization of bodily experiences of sensations and movements could affect creative thinking. For example, close spatial distance was internalized as close relation, which promoted collaborative behaviors and collaborative creativity. In evolutionary psychology, human cognition, such as creative thinking, which is based on bodily experiences, are perceived as an "adaptor" evolved by humans to address early pressures from survival and reproduction. For example, while our body were stabbed, the red blood flowed out. So red color was perceived as association with danger, and red color could induce avoidance motivation, that was helpful to our safety in evolution. Red color could restrain creative thinking by the avoidance motivation.
Further exploration of the relationship between bodily experiences and creative thinking is demanded in the future. Previous studies paid attention to the effect of bodily experiences on creative thinking, while the effect of creative thinking on bodily experiences was ignored. So research about bidirectional associations between them is needed. Due to movement which affected signal acquisition, the cognitive and neural mechanisms of embodied effects were scarcely explored. Mental simulation and fNIRS could settle this problem. Some embodied effects could not be repeated. So the replication problem of embodied effects was needed to settle. We live in a world with multisensory experience, whose effect on creative thinking are needed to pay attention. Studies on the relationship between bodily experiences and malevolent or benevolent creativity were scarce, so related studies were needed. Finally, due to the rise of artificial intelligence, machine learning methods could be used to study embodied creativity.
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The cognitive neural mechanisms of age-related decline in mnemonic discrimination and its application
ZENG Qinghe, CUI Xiaoyu, TANG Wei, LI Juan
2024, 32 (7):  1138-1151.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01138
Abstract ( 208 )   PDF (789KB) ( 336 )   Peer Review Comments
Mnemonic discrimination (MD) refers to the ability to accurately distinguish similar memory experiences. Currently, mnemonic similarity task (MST) is commonly employed to measure and study MD. Previous neuroimaging studies have shown that MD relies on a neural computing mechanism known as pattern separation, which enables the transformation of similar and overlapping input patterns into distinctive representations.
Extensive research has long been focused on exploring the contribution of the hippocampus to MD and pattern separation, particularly emphasizing the roles of the dentate gyrus and CA3 subfields within the hippocampus. However, recent years have yielded a compilation of insights indicating that pattern separation is not only dependent on the hippocampus, but rather a concerted effort involving multiple structures within the medial temporal lobe. The processing of highly overlapping information begins prior to hippocampal engagement, with object-related information traversing the perirhinal and lateral entorhinal cortices, while spatial or contextual information navigating the parahippocampal and medial entorhinal cortices. Here, initial separation occurs, promoting subsequent pattern separation within the hippocampal DG/CA3 subregion. Additionally, we have also come to understand that MD could be supported by large-scale brain networks. Besides pattern separation, the occipital regions play a crucial role in fine-grained perceptual representation, while the prefrontal cortex is essential for monitoring and cognitive control, both of which are also vital for achieving MD.
The elderly tend to exhibit a noticeable decline in MD due to aging and aging-related pathologies. Previous studies have demonstrated that hippocampal dysfunction significantly contributes to this deficit. Early disruptions of hippocampal microstructure and progressive atrophy of the DG/CA3 subfields are closely linked to the decline of MD. Furthermore, the hyperactivation of the DG/CA3 subregions due to reduced neural efficiency, as well as abnormal functional connectivity between the hippocampus and other medial temporal lobe structures, could also exacerbate this decline. Aging-related changes in other brain regions, such as hypoactivation in the entorhinal cortex, fiber loss of the perforant path, damage to structural and functional integrity of the prefrontal cortex, along with alterations in functional connectivity within the default mode network, are also associated with the decline of MD. In addition, given its reliance on the medial temporal lobe, MD can reflect abnormal brain structural damage and functional deterioration in the early stages of cognitive impairment. This enables MST to hold significant potential in early identification of cognitive impairment.
To further explore the causes of the decline of MD in the elderly, future studies should employ more advanced imaging techniques like ultra-high field functional magnetic resonance imaging technology to separately investigate the impact of aging in the DG and CA3 subregions on MD. It is also critical to research more about the cognitive neural mechanisms underlying the impact of neocortical dysfunction on MD, with a particular focus on age-related changes in cortical-hippocampal interaction mechanisms. Large-scale prospective cohorts should also be established to validate the effectiveness of MST in early identification of cognitive impairment.
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Abnormal emotional processing in people with Internet Gaming Disorder
CHANG Qianrui, HE Weiqi
2024, 32 (7):  1152-1163.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01152
Abstract ( 381 )   PDF (471KB) ( 512 )   Peer Review Comments
Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD) has garnered increasing attention from international communities, and the research on the topic has become more urgent and vital. Existing studies indicate that people with IGD exhibit abnormalities in emotional processing, along with corresponding abnormalities in brain mechanisms.
The abnormal emotional processing in individuals with IGD can be broadly categorized into two facets: biased processing of negative emotional stimuli and challenges in effectively regulating negative emotions. Firstly, people with IGD exhibit abnormal processing biases toward negative emotional stimuli, especially those associated with anger. On one hand, in facial expression recognition tasks, individuals with IGD show processing biases towards angry faces but not sad faces. Anger but not sadness is a typical representative of threatening facial expressions even though both are negative emotions. These imply that processing of various types of negative facial expressions in individuals with IGD rather than broadly comparing negative facial expressions with positive ones needs further investigation. On the other hand, in executive control tasks, people with IGD exhibit abnormal automatization and biases when processing negative interfering stimuli (particularly those associated with anger) compared to neutral and positive interfering stimuli. Furthermore, when confronted with negative interfering stimuli, they tend to experience overactivation of the ventral attention system, hindering the goal-oriented processing of the dorsal attention system. This renders them to be more vulnerable to the interference of negative stimuli, which then requires increased cognitive resources for effective executive control. Hence, future studies could focus on the emotional characteristics of interfering stimuli and compare the effects of interference across different types of emotions. Secondly, negative stimuli elicit excessive emotional arousal in people with IGD, yet they encounter difficulties in effective emotional regulation. In terms of the brain mechanism of emotional arousal, the activation of the bilateral insula and right ventral anterior cingulate cortex is enhanced when IGD individuals are exposed to negative stimuli. Moreover, the brain mechanisms related to emotional regulation in people with IGD are also abnormal. For instance, when experiencing a negative event during gaming, IGD individuals show weaker activation of the left middle frontal gyrus (MFG) and decreased functional connections between the left MFG and the right amygdala than recreational gamer users. Additionally, the theoretical models of IGD emotional regulation are evolving. In the early stage of addiction, individuals with IGD often turn to online gaming as a coping mechanism to alleviate negative emotions. This process establishes a connection between internal triggers of negative emotions and online gaming-generated reinforcing experiences. Subsequently, this linkage tends to intensify over time. In the late stage, an automatic response to game cues and a heightened craving for gaming will appear in response to triggers. Consequently, non-adaptive emotional regulation might play a more direct role in the early development of IGD.
In a word, the emotional processing abnormalities among people with IGD have certain internal connections. Specifically, IGD individuals who exhibit processing biases towards negative emotional stimuli display heightened sensitivity to such stimuli in terms of brain activity. Moreover, people with IGD tend to experience more intense emotional arousal when confronted with negative stimuli. Hence, effective emotional regulation is crucial for people with IGD to maintain a normal emotional state. However, people with IGD find it difficult to effectively regulate negative emotions and tend to adopt a non-adaptive emotional regulation strategy—online gaming. Then, the negative reinforcement generated in this process may further aggravate addiction and form a vicious circle.
Future research could focus on the following aspects: First, pinpointing the gender ratio of the participants and the effects of the participants' long-term and short-term emotional states on the results of the emotional processing studies. Second, diversifying the design of emotional stimuli to investigate various facets of IGD emotional processing. For example, exploring the processing of dynamic facial expressions, the intonation in emotional expressions, and body expressions. Third, it would be beneficial to present cross-channel emotional information, examining the integrated processing of multi-sensory emotional stimuli in individuals with IGD. Fourth, incorporating the event-related potentials (ERP) technique can be instrumental in exploring the temporal dynamics of emotional processing in IGD, given its high time resolution. Fifth, to further clarify the relationship between IGD and impaired social function, it is important to investigate the group emotional processing of IGD individuals, particularly focusing on group facial expression processing. Sixth, exploring ways to effectively enhance the emotional regulation ability of IGD individuals. Therefore, investigating more representative methods according to the structural relationship of general emotional regulation strategies warrent furture exploration. Finally, the emotional processing of adolescents with IGD remains a largely understudied area. Existing theoretical models suggest that emotional regulation may have a more direct impact on early IGD. Therefore, in terms of the time course, intervention in the emotional regulation of adolescents with IGD may have a better effect.
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Visual perception in individuals with autism spectrum disorder: Bayesian and predictive coding-based perspective
FU Chunye, LI Aixin, LYU Xiaokang, WANG Chongying
2024, 32 (7):  1164-1178.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01164
Abstract ( 401 )   PDF (1025KB) ( 464 )   Peer Review Comments
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental condition characterized by various sensory processing abnormalities, particularly in the visual domain. In recent years, Bayesian and predictive coding theories have been widely applied to explain these aberrations in visual processing. These theories propose that the brain constantly generates predictions about incoming sensory information based on prior knowledge and updates these predictions based on the discrepancy between the predicted and actual sensory input. However, the application of Bayesian and predictive coding theories to ASD has generated significant debate within the scientific community. This debate highlights the need for a comprehensive examination of the nuances of these theories and a consolidation of empirical evidence to assess their validity in the context of ASD.
This paper focuses on non-social visual information processing in ASD and presents a detailed analysis of Bayesian and predictive coding theories across three key dimensions: Bayesian inference, predictive coding processes, and predictive coding precision. The study aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the theoretical nuances and empirical evidence supporting or refuting these theories in the context of visual processing abnormalities in ASD. By examining these dimensions, the paper seeks to shed light on the mechanisms underlying the atypical visual processing observed in individuals with ASD and to evaluate the explanatory power of Bayesian and predictive coding frameworks. The analysis will consider the strengths and limitations of each dimension, assessing their ability to account for the heterogeneity of sensory experiences in ASD and to generate testable predictions. Through this comprehensive approach, the study aims to contribute to the ongoing debate surrounding the application of Bayesian and predictive coding theories to ASD and to provide a foundation for future research in this area.
The hypo-priors and sharper likelihood hypothesis based on Bayesian inference are evaluated for their descriptive insights into visual processing abnormalities in ASD. The descriptive nature of this hypothesis limits its explanatory power and ability to generate testable predictions. The perspectives emphasizing the predictive coding process are examined for their ability to enhance the specificity of visual processing aberrations. These perspectives propose that individuals with ASD have impairments in generating accurate predictions about incoming sensory information and updating these predictions based on prediction errors. While these perspectives provide a more specific account of visual processing abnormalities in ASD, they still fall short of offering a fully explanatory framework that can account for the heterogeneity of sensory experiences in ASD. Finally, hypotheses centered on predictive coding precision are assessed for their theoretical foundations and the need for further refinement and empirical validation. These hypotheses propose that individuals with ASD have an imbalance in the precision of prediction errors, leading to an over-weighting of sensory evidence and a failure to contextualize sensory information. While these hypotheses provide a promising theoretical foundation, they require further refinement of the theoretical details and empirical validation through carefully designed studies.
This comprehensive review of Bayesian and predictive coding theories in understanding visual processing abnormalities in ASD provides a foundation for future research directions. To advance the understanding of predictive coding mechanisms in ASD, future research should adopt a multi-faceted approach. First, researchers should focus on examining predictive processing within specific sensory domains, such as auditory, tactile, or social visual information, to identify the unique characteristics and divergences within each domain. Second, based on the findings from these domain-specific investigations, researchers should conduct comparative analyses and integrate the results to identify commonalities and differences in predictive coding mechanisms across the various sensory domains. This approach will provide a more comprehensive understanding of the predictive processing abnormalities in ASD and help develop a unified framework that accounts for the heterogeneity of sensory experiences observed in individuals with ASD. In addition to this two-pronged approach, incorporating the subjective experiences of individuals with ASD is crucial for gaining a more comprehensive understanding of the lived experience of sensory processing abnormalities and developing ecologically valid models of ASD. Moreover, adopting a developmental perspective is essential for understanding how predictive processing abnormalities in ASD emerge and change over time. Longitudinal studies that track the development of predictive processing in ASD from infancy to adulthood can provide valuable insights into the developmental trajectories of sensory processing abnormalities and inform early intervention strategies.
By addressing these research gaps and integrating findings from multiple approaches, scientists can develop a more comprehensive and explanatory framework for understanding visual processing abnormalities in ASD. This framework will not only contribute to the theoretical understanding of ASD but also have practical implications for developing targeted interventions and support strategies to improve the quality of life for individuals with ASD.
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The influence of music on prosocial behaviors and its mechanisms
LI Junpeng, ZHOU Linshu, JIANG Jun, WANG Danni, JIANG Cunmei
2024, 32 (7):  1179-1194.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01179
Abstract ( 478 )   PDF (552KB) ( 935 )   Peer Review Comments
The value of music in human evolution may stem from its social function. Recent theories suggest that music plays a pivotal role in fostering social bonds throughout human evolution, thereby explaining the biological and cultural evolution of music. The examination of the relationship between music and human prosocial behavior can offer empirical support for this notion. However, it remains uncertain whether musical activities influence prosocial behavior and the underlying cognitive mechanisms and neurobiological foundations. Hence, we conducted a review of research evidence on the association between music activities (including listening and joint music activities) and prosocial behavior. Additionally, we proposed a multi-pathway theoretical framework to elucidate the intricate relationship between music, prosocial skills, cognitive-behavioral mechanisms, and neurobiological underpinnings.
Prosocial songs or instrumental music with positive emotions both contribute to enhancing prosocial behavior. Compared to conditions with no music or listening to antisocial music, listening to prosocial songs or music with positive emotions can promote voluntary, cooperative, and helpful behaviors, while effectively reducing aggressive behaviors and thoughts. Although most existing studies have not assessed or controlled for acoustic-structural differences between different musical conditions, the related effects may be associated with the acoustic and structural characteristics of music per se and its emotional expressions, interacting with the semantic content of lyrics. Additionally, adults participating in synchronous music activities are more likely to exhibit prosocial behavioral tendencies towards each other compared to those participating in asynchronous music activities or synchronous non-musical activities. These short-term effects may be moderated by factors such as musical complexity, age, familiarity, musical experience, and preferences. Furthermore, there is evidence suggesting that interpersonal music synchronization activities contribute to the prosocial development of infants and children, with the frequency of participation in joint music activities during early childhood positively correlating with prosocial skill performance two to three years later. These findings suggest that joint music activities may promote the development of prosocial skills over a longer time scale, and these long-term effects may benefit from close interpersonal interactions and early exposure to music.
The proposed multi-pathway model suggests that in both music listening and joint music activities, individuals' prosocial behavior can be influenced through two pathways. At the intra-individual level, emotional contagion in music activities can enhance empathy and/or positive emotional experiences, promote attention, prediction, and evaluation of prosocial information, thus shaping prosocial motivations and decisions. This process is primarily facilitated by the stimulation of prosocial hormones and dopamine reward circuits by music. At the inter-individual level, the entrainment effect of music rhythm enhances synchronization between individuals, facilitating self-other integration, supported by coupling mechanisms between auditory and motor cortices. Furthermore, both emotional contagion and rhythm entrainment interact at both intra- and inter-individual levels, jointly encouraging prosocial behavioral tendencies and development through their effects on empathy, positive emotional experiences, and interpersonal synchronization.
We hypothesize that various cognitive-behavioral mechanisms and their neurobiological underpinnings correspond to distinct and overlapping social functions, neural networks, or pathways. Depending on different environmental or prosocial behavioral contexts, these mechanisms may independently or interactively influence specific prosocial skills and their development in mediating the prosocial effects of music. Moreover, given the similarity in social functions and anatomical structures, the interaction between the opioid system and the dopamine reward system could heighten levels of empathy, while the convergence of the oxytocin pathway with dopamine neuron clusters may enhance reward prediction and evaluation. These processes could further bolster predictive and learning abilities related to music. Future research could comprehensively employ various methodologies, including music analysis, behavioral science, neuroimaging, neural modulation, pharmacology, and other interdisciplinary approaches, to investigate the cognitive-behavioral mechanisms and neurobiological basis underlying the influence of music on prosocial behavior, thus providing additional support for the music-social bonding hypothesis.
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The influence of AI awareness on employee's psychological and behavioral outcomes and its theoretical explanation
WANG Tao, ZHAN Xiaojun, YU Wei
2024, 32 (7):  1195-1208.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01195
Abstract ( 486 )   PDF (609KB) ( 745 )   Peer Review Comments
AI awareness refers to an employee's perception that the use of AI affects their work attitude, behavior, well-being, and work environment. The fourth Industrial Revolution has arrived, and while AI improves employee performance, it also brings risks and uncertainties that have a huge impact on employees. Although many studies have explored the impact of AI awareness on employees' psychological and behavioral outcomes, due to scholars' academic background, current studies are more focused on the field of relative segmentation. At the same time, because the concept of AI awareness is relatively new, its name is not unified, and the ambiguity of the concept limits the public's in-depth insight into AI awareness. In addition, the action path and boundary conditions of AI awareness on employees' psychological and behavioral outcomes have not yet been clarified, and the lack of AI awareness research framework has hindered the understanding of how AI application affects employees' psychological and behavioral outcomes. In order to explore the specific impact of AI application on employees and its function explanation mechanism, firstly, the research on AI awareness was systematically reviewed, the concept connotation of AI awareness was clarified, and AI awareness was re-defined as employees' perception of the impact of AI application on their work attitude, behavior, well-being and working environment. This definition highlights the two-sided nature of AI awareness, that is, AI awareness has both positive and negative effects on employees, rather than just negative effects. Second, it reveals the effects of AI awareness, advancing the understanding of how AI awareness affects employee psychology and behavior. The positive and negative effects of AI awareness on employees' psychological state are explained from the three aspects of emotion, stress and cognition, and the positive and negative effects of AI awareness on employees' behaviors are explained from the two aspects of active and negative behaviors, so that organizations and academia can more clearly, comprehensively and systematically recognize the important effects of AI application on employees' psychological and behavioral outcomes. Promote research in related fields. Thirdly, the theoretical explanation mechanism of AI awareness is explained based on resource perspective (conservation of resources theory, JD-R model), pressure perspective (cognitive evaluation theory), psychological needs perspective (self-determination theory), and environment perspective (person-environment fit theory). Finally, the paper elaborates on five aspects: exploring the multi-level driving mechanism of AI awareness, enriching the action mechanism of AI awareness, mining the spillover effect of AI awareness and strengthening the interaction impact between AI and employees, and builds an integrated model diagram for future research on AI awareness, which will help promote local relevant research. By answering the above questions, it is expected to provide theoretical reference for the subsequent research of scholars, enhance the academic community's cognition and understanding of how the application of AI affects employees, and provide new ideas for promoting the development of AI research. At the same time, it is revealed that managers in the era of Industry 4.0 should re-examine themselves, understand, learn and trust AI technology, use AI technology to develop new skills to improve their management ability, help organizations adopt AI technology more effectively, prevent risks and promote the healthy development of organizations. Managers must clarify the use of AI technology, allow employees to participate in the process of developing and implementing AI systems, eliminate misunderstandings and mistrust, and conduct AI technology training for employees, so that employees have more understanding of AI, reduce the sense of rejection of AI, and recognize that coexistence with AI is an inevitable development of the times. At the same time, it also informs employees that the purpose of applying AI is to help rather than replace them, relieve employees' anxiety and sense of threat, reduce their fear of unemployment, enhance employees' positive cognition of the application of AI, and then reduce their negative evaluation of the application of AI, and help organizations maximize the positive side of AI and reduce the dark side brought by AI.
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Research Method
Hierarchy model of misinformation identification based on signal detection theory
CAO Chengxu, QI Shisan, JIN Tonglin, ZENG Xiaoye, AN Yeqing, BU Tana
2024, 32 (7):  1209-1220.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.01209
Abstract ( 175 )   PDF (495KB) ( 266 )   Peer Review Comments
While the evolution of internet communication technologies has brought numerous conveniences, it has also fostered certain hazards, among which misinformation stands prominent. Numerous studies and theories have unraveled the determinants that influence individuals' ability to identify information. This paper highlights two significant accounts that inform our understanding of misinformation identification: motivated System 2 reasoning account and classical reasoning account. Some studies consider the two theories as opposing viewpoints, which is a misunderstanding. This confusion may stem from the imprecise correlation between the theoretical constructs and the measurement tools used in research, as well as a tendency to view factors from different categories as contradictory. At the core, the issue lies in the insufficient differentiation of the impact of various factors on misinformation identification.
Adopting a signal detection theory, this paper categorizes the influencing factors of misinformation identification into two pathways: those affecting discrimination sensitivity and those affecting judgment criterion. This approach allows researchers to understand more clearly and deeply the role different factors play in misinformation identification, reconciling existing theoretical discrepancies. Additionally, the paper integrates factors of emotions and information characteristics into the model. The impact of emotions on misinformation identification is twofold: they can influence judgment criterion by strengthening or suppressing individual stances; they can also decrease individuals' discrimination sensitivity by competing with rational thought processes, thereby affecting misinformation identification. Information characteristics serve as cues and bases for misinformation identification, thus affecting individuals' discrimination sensitivity. The smaller the feature difference between misinformation and true information, the lower individuals' discrimination sensitivity, making it harder to distinguish between the two. Conversely, larger feature differences enhance individuals' discrimination sensitivity, facilitating the differentiation of misinformation from true information. Moreover, the paper delves into the deep-seated causes of partisan bias, expanding this specific example into a broader stance applicable across different scenarios and cultural contexts. Specifically, partisan stances merely represent the superficial manifestations affecting judgment criterion, while the underlying motives, such as actual interests and psychological needs behind these stances, are the core elements influencing judgment criterion. By augmenting and refining the hierarchical model of misinformation identification based on signal detection theory, this paper provides a more comprehensive theoretical framework for researchers to understand how individuals identify misinformation, also offering theoretical support for the practical application of information identification and governance.
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