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ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R
主办:中国科学院心理研究所
出版:科学出版社

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    Research Method
    The status quo, challenges, and recommendations of pre-registration in psychological science
    ZHAO Jiawei, XIA Tao, HU Chuanpeng
    2024, 32 (5):  715-727.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00715
    Abstract ( 574 )   PDF (668KB) ( 697 )   Peer Review Comments
    Reproducibility serves as a critical criterion for determining the scientific validity of research findings (Platt, 1964; Schmidt, 2009). However, empirical investigations in psychological science revealed a low rate of reproducibility (Open Science Collaboration, 2015), which has been referred to as the “replication crisis”. Over the past decade, researchers have reflected on this issue and found that many research practices may inflate the false positive rate of published studies and compromise the reproducibility. These practices include p-Hacking, HARKing, small sample size, publication bias, and lack of data sharing and replication studies (Munafò et al., 2017).
    In response to the replication crisis and the need to enhance the credibility of psychological science, researchers introduced a series of methodological innovations. Among these, pre-registration and registered reports (RRs) have attracted a lot of attention. There are three types of pre-registration: 1) pre-registration without peer review; 2) peer-reviewed registered reports (RRs); and 3) registered replication reports (RRR) that replicate previous studies. Of these, pre-registration, in its narrow sense, refers to the process wherein researchers register a study before initiating data collection. In contrast, RRs and RRR require researchers to submit their registration to a specific journal or platform for peer review. This evaluation examines the protocol and decides whether to accept it in principle before data collection begins.
    To facilitate the adaptation of pre-registration, researchers have developed templates tailored to specific research sub-fields (e.g., studies with neuroimaging techniques or cognitive modeling). This article summarizes 18 pre-registration templates and 11 registration platforms for different research purposes. A typical pre-registration template includes basic study information, design plan, sampling plan, variable settings, and analysis plan. Usually, registration platforms or journals also provide their own recommended templates. As for RRs, the review process is different from traditional research articles and consists of two stages (Chambers, 2019; Chambers et al., 2014). In the first stage, authors are required to submit their protocol, usually following a certain template and including some pilot data and scripts for data analysis. After a peer-review process, the journal decides whether to accept the stage 1 protocol in principle. If accepted, the journal is committed to publishing the final paper, provided the authors adhere to the approved protocol while conducting the study. In the second stage, after the authors have completed the study according to the original protocol, the authors submit the full manuscript. The journal would invite the previous reviewers to review the full manuscript again. Upon successful completion of the peer review process, the manuscript would be accepted and published by the journal regardless of the significance of the results (Chambers, 2013). Recently, the Peers-Community-In Registered Report (PCI-RR) emerged as a new development of RRs and authors can choose a journal after stage 2 recommended by the platform PCI-RR.
    Since pre-registration (or RRs) significantly differs from traditional research practices, it has been hotly debated since its initial introduction to the field (Pham & Oh, 2021; Szollosi et al., 2020). Unfortunately, much of the criticism arises from misconceptions about pre-registration. Some misunderstand its working, assuming that no changes are permitted once the pre-registration is made public, while others misconstrue its objectives, erroneously arguing that pre-registration does not prevent fraudulent practices. Some critics also pointed out pragmatic challenges associated with pre-registration, noting, for instance, that it tends to be more time-consuming compared to conventional research methodologies (Allen & Mehler, 2019; Spitzer & Mueller, 2021).
    The effect of pre-registration has also been questioned. However, some recent meta-researchs have provided answers to these questions. Empirical findings revealed that RRs reduce the proportion of positive results and alleviate publication bias. Also, RRs outperform non-pre-registration on almost every metric, e.g., novelty, innovation, and rigor (Soderberg et al., 2021). Yet, pre-registration without peer review did not show the same pattern as RRs, which may be due to lack of comparison between the registry and the final manuscript (Macnamara & Burgoyne, 2023; Syed, 2023).
    To encourage broader adoption of pre-registration and RRs, all stakeholders should work together to change the research culture. For example, individual researchers can plan their next project as a registered report, or they can integrate preregistered replicated experiments into the courses they are teaching so that the next generation of researchers would be familiar with the workflow of registered reports. On the other hand, academic institutes could develop policies to prioritize quality over quantity of publications and incorporate transparency as a criterion for quality, which will encourage researchers to adopt pre-registration and RRs. Publishers can also contribute by promoting pre-registration and RRs, offering RRs as a new article type, providing templates for preparing RRs, and implementing a streamlined review process for RRs.
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    Conceptual Framework
    The effect of scarcity mindset on the executive function in children living in poverty and its mechanisms
    JIANG Ying, HU Jia, FENG Liangyu, REN Qidan
    2024, 32 (5):  728-737.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00728
    Abstract ( 722 )   PDF (565KB) ( 1186 )   Peer Review Comments
    China has now embarked on the new journey of rural revitalization from poverty eradication to the elimination of absolute poverty. Thus, how to comprehensively and effectively measure the rapidly changing environment after poverty eradication, investigate the negative impact of potential poverty on children's cognitive development, and reveal its internal mechanisms have become important scientific issues at present. Therefore, this project intends to systematically examine the impact of experiencing multidimensional poverty on school-age children's executive function and explore its mechanisms based on scarcity mindset. First, with the current income of poverty-stricken families exceeding the poverty line, there are several potential poverty subordinate conditions that require consideration and could construct a dynamic poverty model under the context of rural revitalization. Thus, it is necessary to summarize the meaning of multidimensional poverty comprehensively and examine the impact of the transformation of poverty dimensions on children's executive function over a long time span. Second, as much attention has been paid to the environment or individual characteristics in explaining poverty in previous studies, the perception of poverty has always been ignored despite its leading role in children’s development. In fact, based on the implicit theory, the perception will gradually form a specific mindset which allows individuals to organize and encode information in terms of life experiences and often leads their development. However, the role of scarcity in children is still unclear. Accordingly, this study extends the findings of previous work on scarcity theory in younger Chinese samples to explain the adverse effects of poverty on executive function and reveals the internal mechanisms underlying the scarcity mindset. Specifically, this project includes four studies. Study 1 proposes a multidimensional overlapping deprivation analysis method to assess children's poverty experiences and examines the effect of multi-poverty and its changing patterns over time on executive function using potential transition analysis. Study 2 intends to clarify the moderating role of scarcity on the relation between poverty and executive function in a sample of school-aged children through a moderation-of-process design. Based on the results above, Study 3 ties to explore the multiple attention mechanisms of scarcity between poverty and decreased executive function for confused components (i.e., selective attention and sustained attention) in the attention process. To better understand scarcity mindset, which is a more generalized mindset or primed state for children in poverty, study 4 will use fMRI to explore the neural mechanisms of scarcity under different scarcity priming conditions.
    Overall, considering the profound impact of early child development, education should parallel poverty reduction and sustainable development. China is now still exploring a path at this stage that corresponds with its own national conditions and is suitable for preventing children from returning to poverty when they grow up. This not only requires the improvement of material environments but also the consideration of psychological aspects to ensure the healthy development of children who have experienced poverty. Therefore, this study creatively starts from children’s initiative in understanding and constructing the world, not only broadens the perception of children’s experiences in poverty but also fills the gap that often considers economic background while ignoring the subject’s interaction with the environment. In addition, the results of attention and neural mechanisms of poverty and decreased executive function help distinguish the key attention components of scarcity, providing scientific evidence for precise interventions. Thus, in future education, this study provides a new perspective that changing the scarcity mindset could alleviate the cognitive impairment of children in poverty. Combined with the characteristics of children's development, corresponding intervention courses could be designed for schools that allow impoverished children to experience and grow in actual participation and serve the construction of rural revitalization in China.
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    The outcome of workplace cyberloafing and its feedback effects
    CUI Zhisong, JIA Jianfeng, ZOU Chunlong, LI Ruiqin
    2024, 32 (5):  738-753.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00738
    Abstract ( 518 )   PDF (813KB) ( 882 )   Peer Review Comments
    This research paper aims to discuss the outcome of workplace cyberloafing and its feedback effects through four studies. In Study 1, we propose that workplace cyberloafing varies along two dimensions (norm deviation & subjective intention) and can be classified into four categories (recreative cyberloafing, responsive cyberloafing, addictive cyberloafing and consumptive cyberloafing). Recreative cyberloafing refers to employees’ non-work-related behaviors on the Internet for instrumental purposes, which conform to norms of the reference group. Responsive cyberloafing pertains to employees’ non-work-related behaviors on the Internet in response to external demands that conform to norms of the reference group. Addictive cyberloafing relates to employees’ non-work-related behaviors on the Internet for instrumental purposes, which deviate from norms of the reference group. Consumptive cyberloafing refers to employees’ non-work-related behaviors on the Internet in response to external demands, which deviate from norms of the reference group.
    In Study 2, we adopt an actor-centered perspective to discuss the pros and cons of workplace cyberloafing based on the conservation of resources theory. We argue that recreative cyberloafing will positively influence actors’ work outcomes (performance and well-being) by increasing their vitality at work. Conversely, responsive cyberloafing will negatively influence employees’ work outcomes by inducing their emotional exhaustion. In addition, we propose that job autonomy will moderate the mediation effect of vitality at work such that the mediation effect is stronger for employees perceiving higher job autonomy (vs. lower), and will moderate the mediation effect of emotional exhaustion such that the mediation effect is weaker for employees perceiving higher job autonomy (vs. lower).
    In Study 3, we adopt an observer-centered perspective to discuss the interpersonal effects of actors’ workplace cyberloafing on their leader and coworkers. Specifically, from the perspective of the leader, we base on attribution theory to propose that actors’ cyberloafing will lead to leadership ostracism by inducing leader’s perceived production deviance. Moreover, we propose that actors’ work performance will moderate the mediation effect of perceived production deviance such that the mediation effect is weaker for actors with higher work performance (vs. lower), and leader’s power distance will moderate the mediation effect of perceived production deviance such that the mediation effect is stronger for leaders who have higher power distance (vs. lower). From the perspective of coworkers, we draw on social learning theory to suggest that actors’ cyberloafing will lead to coworkers’ cyberloafing by inducing coworkers’ perceived norm of workplace cyberloafing. In addition, we propose that actors’ status will moderate the mediation effect of perceived norm of workplace cyberloafing such that the mediation effect is stronger for actors with higher status (vs. lower), and coworkers’ moral attentiveness will moderate the mediation effect of perceived norm of workplace cyberloafing such that the mediation effect is weaker for coworkers who have higher moral attentiveness (vs. lower).
    In Study 4, we adopt the perspective of interaction between actor and observer to explore the change trajectory of workplace cyberloafing. First of all, we consider the outcomes of workplace cyberloafing under the actor perspective as internal feedback. We use the mood maintenance model to propose that actors’ work outcomes will moderate the relationship between actors’ recreative cyberloafing and their subsequent recreative cyberloafing such that the better the actors’ work outcomes are, the more likely they are to continue engaging in recreative cyberloafing. Secondly, we consider the outcomes under observer perspective as external feedback. We employ correspondent inference theory to propose that leadership ostracism (coworkers’ workplace cyberloafing) will moderate the relationship between actors’ recreative cyberloafing and their subsequent recreative cyberloafing such that the more leadership ostracism (coworkers’ workplace cyberloafing) actors perceive, the more likely actors’ recreative cyberloafing negatively (positively) relates to their subsequent recreative cyberloafing.
    The four studies connect with each other and progress gradually, constituting a complete closed-loop system to unveil the whole process of workplace cyberloafing from its functions to its adjustment in response to feedback. The results are expected to promote the development and innovation of the field of workplace cyberloafing research, and provide practical guidance for organizations to deal with workplace cyberloafing.
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    Segmentation or integration? The managerial approach to work-family balance in the age of virtual team work
    YAN Ming, ZHENG Shi
    2024, 32 (5):  754-770.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00754
    Abstract ( 215 )   PDF (619KB) ( 325 )   Peer Review Comments
    The virtual team work mode has become an inevitable trend for the organization work, resulting in a significant characteristic, “boundarylessness”, with a high overlap between the work and family domains. Such boundaryless trend changes the premise of previous research and practice that work and family can be distinguished. Responding to this problem, some scholars suggested to follow this boundaryless trend and promote work-family integration. However, the managerial practice based on this principle resulted in a series of negative effects. This raises an important research question needed to be resolved under the trend of virtual team work mode: is the traditional work-family differentiation principle or the current work-family integration principle more suitable to enhance work-family balance? Do we need other new perspective to resolve this problem? In order to resolve this important research question, the current project comprising two studies relies on social identity theory to assist the insufficient explanatory logic of conservation of resources theory, discussing the mechanism of team virtuality on employees’ work-family integration behavior, as well as the managerial intervention principle to achieve work-family harmony.
    First, based on conservation of resources theory and social identity theory, respectively, this project explores the dual mechanisms of team virtuality on employees’ work-family integration behaviors and their work-related and family-related outcomes, which offers a theoretical understanding of the work-family balance strategies preferred by employees in virtual team work mode. Specifically, informed by the conservation of resources theory, team virtuality enhances employees’ control and utilization of resources (e.g., sense of control, psychological availability, and vitality), thereby contributing to an increase in employees’ work-family integration behavior, wherein they use work-available resources for family activities and family-available resources for work activities. This integration behavior, while beneficial for enhancing work-related outcomes, may be detrimental to family-related outcomes. informed by the social identity theory, team virtuality decreases employees’ identification with the team while increasing their identification with the family. Consequently, employees are inclined toward family-to-work integration behavior (i.e., using work-available resources for family activities), thereby enhancing family-related outcomes. Moreover, although employees also reduce their work-to-family integration behavior (i.e., using family-available resources for work activities), which is detrimental to work-related outcomes, the improved family-related outcomes offset this negative effect. Through the dual mechanisms of resources and identity, it is evident that as the degree of team virtuality intensifies, employees may not prefer mutual integration of work and family; instead, they may lean towards family-to-work integration. This implies that in the trend of virtual team work mode, employees seek a distinction between work and family, showing a preference for allocating resources to the family domain.
    Second, this project extends its investigation into the moderating role of family identity on the impact of employees’ control and utilization of resources on work-family integration behavior, thus bridging the research perspectives of conservation of resources theory and social identity theory to form an integrative theoretical framework for the field of work-family balance research. Specifically, identification with the family (e.g., family identity, family identity salience) directs employees to allocate resources to the family domain rather than the work domain. Therefore, when employees possess a certain degree of control over resources (e.g., sense of control, psychological availability, and vitality), it further motivates them to engage in family-to-work integration behavior while reducing work-to-family integration behavior. Ultimately, this dynamic results in divergent impacts on work-related and family-related outcomes. By investigating this moderating effect, the study provides insights into which strategies are more suitable for work-family balance in the trend of virtual team work mode. This also addresses the apparent contradiction between the resource and identity perspectives, integrating previous resource-focused viewpoints into a unified identity-focused research framework, thus building a holistic theoretical framework for investigating work-family balance in the context of virtual team work mode.
    This project contributes to the literature on work-family balance in the context of virtual team work mode by constructing a novel and integrative theoretical framework for understanding the mechanisms of team virtuality on employees’ work-family balance. By integrating the previous perspective of conservation of resources theory into social identity theory, this project provides a new theoretical perspective for research in the field of work-family balance and extends the current research logic of conservation of resources theory in the context of work-family balance. In addition, the project assists organizations in reevaluating their managerial approaches to work-family balance in the age of virtual team work, offering new management strategies to achieve work-family harmony.
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    Meta-Analysis
    A three-level meta-analysis of the relationship between family dysfunction and mental health of children and adolescents
    WEN Siyan, YU Xuchen, JIN Lei, GONG Junru, ZHANG Xiaohan, SUN Jinglin, ZHANG Shan, LYU Houchao
    2024, 32 (5):  771-789.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00771
    Abstract ( 572 )   PDF (665KB) ( 913 )   Peer Review Comments
    Family dysfunction, characterized by a family's failure to fulfill its roles or the lack of positive characteristics, is a critical factor influencing the mental health of children and adolescents. The nature of this relationship, however, remains a topic of debate. This three-level meta-analysis, grounded in family system theory and the two-factor model of mental health, aimed to explore the relationship relatively comprehensively between family dysfunction (both subjective and objective) and mental health (both positive and negative) in children and adolescents. Literature published up to March 1, 2022, was meticulously reviewed and screened, resulting in the inclusion of 97 studies encompassing 173 effect sizes and a total of 130,227 participants.
    The main effect analysis revealed that single-parent families adversely affect the mental health of children and adolescents, exacerbating mental health issues. Other factors such as parental divorce, incarceration, substance abuse, mental illness, and subject family dysfunction also contribute to worsening mental health issues in this demographic. Additionally, the moderating effect analysis indicated that the negative impact of single-parent families is more pronounced in boys. Furthermore, in collectivist cultures, the detrimental effects of parental incarceration on children's and adolescents' mental health are more significant.
    Firstly, this study thoroughly investigated the relationship between both subjective and objective family dysfunction and the varied mental health states (positive and negative) of children and adolescents. The inclusion criteria for family dysfunction encompassed subjective indicators measured through research tools and objective indicators reflecting actual situations. This approach minimized biases and limitations associated with considering subjective or objective factors in isolation. Additionally, the study evaluated both positive and negative indicators of mental health, offering a more comprehensive understanding of the changes in mental health among children and adolescents. The findings indicated a moderate positive correlation between subjective family dysfunction and negative mental problems. Objective family dysfunction, including single parenting, was linked to the positive mental health of children and adolescents, while parental divorce, incarceration, substance abuse, and mental illness were associated with negative mental health statuses. These results suggested that family dysfunction may impair positive mental health and exacerbate negative health conditions, thus intensifying mental problems in children and adolescents.
    Secondly, the study found that children and adolescents face increased risks of mental problems regardless of the form of family dysfunction, and these risks may vary depending on gender and cultural differences. This finding underscored the importance of addressing and enhancing the mental health of children and adolescents in the context of family dysfunction. The implications for maintaining and improving their mental health include: (1) Encouraging children and adolescents to seek social support and adopt appropriate methods for emotional regulation and expression, such as seeking help from teachers or peers, or using cognitive reappraisal strategies to alleviate negative emotions; (2) Urging parents to establish and maintain healthy marital and parent-child relationships to prevent or mitigate family dysfunction; (3) Calling on schools, society, and governments to provide more support to children and adolescents from dysfunctional families, including high-quality psychological assistance and life support.
    Finally, the study's findings on how family dysfunction impacts the mental health of children and adolescents, along with the observed gender and cultural differences, highlighted the need to focus not only on reducing negative mental health conditions but also on enhancing positive mental health. This approach should consider cultural backgrounds and provide targeted interventions for gender differences.
    For future empirical research, it would be beneficial to simultaneously explore the relationship between family dysfunction (both subjective and objective) and mental health (both positive and negative). In meta-analytical research, models could include external family factors, such as peer relationships, as moderating variables. Additionally, considering situations where multiple family dysfunctions coexist could provide insights into cumulative effects and enhance our understanding of the relationship between family dysfunction and the mental health of children and adolescents.
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    Regular Articles
    The cross-modal integration process in facial attractiveness judgments
    WANG Yuling, LU Xiaowei, WU Zongjie, LI Guogen, ZHANG Lin
    2024, 32 (5):  790-799.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00790
    Abstract ( 348 )   PDF (442KB) ( 456 )   Peer Review Comments
    Facial attractiveness research has traditionally centered on visual cues, sidelining the contribution of non-visual information. This review, through a retrospective analysis, reveals that in the process of evaluating facial attractiveness, individuals not only depend on visual information but also consider auditory and olfactory cues. These diverse sensory inputs collectively participate in the judgment of facial attractiveness, as demonstrated. However, due to differences in the content and conveyance of auditory and olfactory stimuli, factors influencing their integration with visual facial cues may exhibit variations. In contrast to audio-visual integration, visual-olfactory integration may be more susceptible to the influence of familiarity.
    Through a retrospective review, this study finds that cross-modal integration in facial attractiveness judgments largely aligns with general cross-modal integration processes, adhering to similar integration mechanisms. Sensory information and prior experiences play crucial roles in this process. Sensory inputs, acting as top-down stimuli, capture individual attention and consolidate diverse sensory information onto the target face. The standard face, formed based on perceptual experiences, serves as top-down prior knowledge, deepening connections between different sensory information and promoting integration. However, from a more nuanced perspective, the cross-modal integration process in facial attractiveness judgments also exhibits unique characteristics. Due to the inherently social and individual nature of facial attractiveness judgments, factors such as emotions, sensory thresholds, and familiarity exert significant influences on the cross-modal integration process of facial attractiveness judgments. However, the impact of these factors is limited in the general cross-modal integration processes.
    In addition, this review integrates the Face-space Model and the Bayesian Causal Inference model, proposing a cross-modal integration process for facial attractiveness judgments. Facial attractiveness judgment is based on the deviation between the target face and a standard face. The formation of the standard face involves not only visual information but also other sensory modalities. Individuals, when exposed to multiple sensory inputs, naturally connect various information based on the standard face, achieving cross-modal integration. When individuals infer that different sensory cues originate from the same target face, they naturally integrate these cues in the brain, forming a unified perception of the target face for attractiveness judgment.
    Based on existing research, this review suggests three future research directions. In the first aspect, current studies often focus on the pairwise integration of visual, olfactory, and auditory cues, neglecting the role of tactile cues. Future research should explore the integration of facial stimuli in a broader, multisensory environment, employing deep learning and machine learning techniques to analyze extensive multisensory data, aiming to construct a more comprehensive cross-modal integration process model. In the second aspect, concerning the cross-modal integration process in facial attractiveness judgments, current research has not unearthed reliable evidence for unconscious integration processing. Stimuli presented unconsciously do not necessarily reflect real-life situations. Additionally, the extent to which the visual system can guide and allocate attention based on unconscious perceptual cues and subsequent targets remains an unresolved question. Future research should pivot towards investigating the degree to which the integration process relies on conscious perception, rather than whether this process can occur in unconscious conditions.In the third aspect, considering the complexity and dynamism of cross-modal integration in facial attractiveness judgments, future research could employ EEG techniques to examine different stages of integration mechanisms during social interactions. Additionally, using more ecologically valid materials and environments could enhance our understanding of cross-modal integration in real-world social interactions, facilitating a more accurate and rapid comprehension of the external world and promoting social engagement.
    In conclusion, this comprehensive review synthesizes existing knowledge and outlines promising avenues for future research in the realm of facial attractiveness and multisensory integration. By unraveling the intricate interplay of sensory modalities, this research aims to provide a deeper understanding of how individuals perceive and evaluate facial attractiveness, paving the way for advancements in facial attractiveness and cross-modal integration studies.
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    The effect of high-altitude exercise on cognitive function
    SU Rui, WANG Chengzhi, LI Hao, MA Hailin, SU Yanjie
    2024, 32 (5):  800-812.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00800
    Abstract ( 255 )   PDF (804KB) ( 357 )   Peer Review Comments
    High-altitude (HA) environments are characterized by significant hypobaric hypoxia, and are both physiologically challenging and frequently associated with cognitive impairment. Conversely, aerobic exercise is documented to enhance cognitive function by the promotion of neural plasticity and improvement in brain functioning, thus enhancing overall cognitive performance. However, it is not clear whether the positive effects of exercise on cognition extend to the complex conditions associated with HA environments. Furthermore, the potential modulation of these effects by the type of cognitive task, exercise duration and intensity, and different altitudes and exposure types (real HA environment vs. simulated HA condition; acute exposure vs. long-term exposure) warrants further investigation.
    This comprehensive review explores the influence of aerobic exercise on cognitive performance under conditions of both acute and long-term HA exposure. It is proposed that factors, such as hypoxia dose, specific cognitive function, exercise intensity, and type of exposure, modulate the interactive effects of HA hypoxia and exercise on cognitive function. The potential physiological mechanisms are also discussed, suggesting that changes in cerebral oxygenation, levels of neurotrophic factors, oxidative stress, and neuro-immunity may account for the combined effects of HA hypoxia and exercise on cognitive performance.
    The findings indicate that HA exercise has a positive influence on psychomotor abilities, attention, working memory, and inhibitory control, and that these effects are modulated by the type of exposure, hypoxia dose, and exercise intensity. Specifically, while exercise may enhance cognitive performance under conditions of acute hypoxia exposure, positive effects during chronic HA exposure require adaptation to the hypoxic conditions of HA environments. While exercise influences cognitive function positively under low levels of hypoxia, it has little effect or even adverse effects on cognitive function when the hypoxia level is high. Furthermore, the intensity of exercise has a variable influence on cognitive function under HA conditions, seen in an inverted U-shaped relationship between exercise intensity and cognitive performance in acute HA exposure conditions, where moderate intensity maximizes cognitive performance. Both moderate and high exercise intensities under conditions of long-term HA exposure positively affect executive control, although the latter can lead to a reduction in aerobic exercise capacity.
    Although HA exercise can improve cognitive function by upregulating the expression of neurotrophic factors, it may also reduce brain oxygenation and thus contribute to oxidative stress and neuroimmune responses that could adversely affect cognitive function. Increased expression of BDNF induced by hypoxic exercise can ensure adequate neuronal capacity and improve cognitive function. Nevertheless, exercise undertaken under acute HA exposure could reduce both blood and brain oxygen saturation, potentially impairing cognitive function. Moreover, high intensity exercise can intensify the levels of oxidative stress, disrupting the redox balance, and triggering an inflammatory response affecting the immune activity in the central nervous system and thus influencing cognitive performance.
    Although this review provides substantial evidence of the relationship between HA exercise and cognitive performance, several controversial issues, contradictory conclusions, and unexplored topics remain. To formulate a specific "HA exercise prescription" for mitigating cognitive impairment under HA conditions, several directions for future research are proposed. These are 1) further clarification of the modulating effects of exposure type, hypoxia dose and exercise intensity, 2) consideration of demographic factors such as sex and age, 3) the application of advanced scientific techniques to explore the underlying neurological and molecular mechanisms, and 4) investigation of the effects of aerobic exercise on cognitive function in patients with chronic mountain sickness.
    In conclusion, this review discusses the effects of HA exercise on different cognitive functions, summarizes the moderating variables and potential physiological mechanisms, and offers future perspectives. As the influx of individuals to HA areas for various purposes rises, addressing the adverse effects of HA on cognitive function has become crucial. This review indicates the significance of understanding the potential effects of HA exercise on cognitive function and provides insights into future research directions for the effective prevention of cognitive impairment.
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    Predictive coding deficits in autism: Abnormalities in feedback or feedforward connectivities?
    JING Wei, CHEN Qi, XUE Yun Qing, YANG Miao, ZHANG Jie
    2024, 32 (5):  813-833.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00813
    Abstract ( 203 )   PDF (1753KB) ( 411 )   Peer Review Comments
    Prediction is a fundamental brain function and a central mechanism by which individuals adapt to their environment. Predictive Coding Theories (PCT) is an essential family of theories of cortical function, providing a conceptual framework that allows us to explain how a brain constantly makes predictions based on prior belief about sensory input. Our behavior, perception, emotion, attention, and learning are all deeply impacted by the brain's prediction systems. The family of theories originated from the studies focusing on brain functions in typical developmental (TD) individuals and was subsequently introduced to understand the neural processes of psychosis, i.e., psychotic symptoms and psychotic disorders. In recent years, researchers have also applied PCT to explain the multi-domain deficits in perceptual-motor, cognitive-learning, and social-verbal domains in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), i.e., the Predictive Impairment in Autism (PIA). This theoretical hypothesis proposes that cognitive dysfunction in individuals with ASD may stem from an inability to build and update internal models to predict future events. As PCT consists of three inference models, including Bayesian inference, hierarchical inference, and active inference, many researchers have proposed different hypotheses based on different inference models. Pellicano and Burr (2012) proposed the Hypo-priors hypothesis according to the Bayesian inference model, which suggests that attenuated Bayesian priors may be responsible for the unique perceptual experience of individuals with ASD, leading them to perceive the world more accurately rather than modulated by prior experience. On the other hand, based on the hierarchical inference model, Vande Cruys et al. (2014) situated the core deficit of individuals with ASD in the high, inflexible precision of prediction errors (HIPPEA) from the perspective of environmental volatility. The reason why the hypothesis has aroused the interest of many researchers is that it could provide a deeper mechanistic account of ASD by integrating the multi-domain deficits with two core symptoms of social impairments and stereotyped behavior into a unified theoretical framework. This could contribute to the development of better therapies, accommodations, and even refined diagnostic criteria and tools. It also has the potential to link the study of ASD with research on the neuroscience of prediction, informing a new understanding of the neurobiological differences that lead to ASD and motivating the exploration of new targets for neuroactive medicines. Although the theory provides a credible and unified explanatory framework for ASD, empirical evidence does not consistently support it. In addition, there is inconclusive information about the underlying mechanism. It is unclear whether it results from an abnormality in bottom-up feed-forward connectivity due to alterations in the neuromodulatory systems, or an impairment in top-down feedback connectivity due to the dysfunction of predictive brain regions.Therefore, based on the theoretical overview of PCT, this paper systematically reviewed the evidence for and against the “Hypo-priors” and “HIPPEA” hypotheses in the three domains of perceptual-motor, cognitive-learning, and social-verbal, presenting the panorama of the current research situation in this field. Then, we explained how abnormal feed-forward and feedback connectivity may lead to predictive deficits in ASD. In addition, we clarified these concepts in the PCT, such as sensory input weight, prior belief weight, prediction error weight, prediction error accuracy, learning rate, sensory input accuracy, and prior belief accuracy. This paper clarified the relationship among these theoretical hypotheses, such as the PCT, Bayesian inference, hierarchical inference, active inference, PIA, Hypo-priors, HIPPEA, and abnormal feed-forward and feedback connectivity. Most importantly, this paper distinguished the abnormality of weight between sensory input and prior belief and the imbalance of precision between them. Although the Hypo-priors and HIPPEA are based on different models, they excessively impoverished the weight of sensory input. The abnormality of weight is due to the imbalance of precision. The latter is the potential mechanism of prediction deficits in ASD.
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    The application of social robots in intervention for children with autism spectrum disorders
    GAO Limei, WANG Kai, LI Dandan
    2024, 32 (5):  834-844.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00834
    Abstract ( 320 )   PDF (776KB) ( 455 )   Peer Review Comments
    Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD): one of the core symptoms in children with ASD is impairment in social interaction. Early intervention is critical for the development of sociability in children with ASD. Traditional rehabilitation interventions have limitations, such as their time-consuming nature, high cost and the shortage of professional rehabilitation therapists. Social robots are a tool designed to help people improve their social skills through social interaction. Social robots are widely used in intervention studies of social competence in children with ASD, with a focus on realizing the effective interaction between robots and users. Current findings of intervention studies using social robots for children with ASD show widespread problems of complex types and inconsistent standards of use, which makes it difficult to evaluate the feasibility and effectiveness of using social robots to help children with ASD.
    The feasibility and effectiveness of the use of social robots for children with ASD can be improved from the following four aspects. First, it is necessary to increase the consistency of the classification and usage standards for social robots. Starting from the two dimensions of flexibility and degree of humanoid appearance, this paper divides social robots into non-humanoid robots and humanoid robots and introduces the application scenarios of different types of social robots. Second, we reviewed the findings of studies on social robot preferences in children with ASD. Children with ASD have a preference for the shape and technology of humanoid robots. When the appearance of a social robot is close to the image of a real person, it may cause the "uncanny valley" effect seen in normal people. To avoid this effect, designers often create robots that do not look like real people. However, individuals with ASD may not have an “uncanny valley” effect but an “uncanny cliff”. Such people do not show negative emotions when robots become more humanoid to a certain extent, but more humanoid robots may trigger social avoidance in individuals with ASD and negative emotions may be induced when the robots are indistinguishable from real people. This reflects the idea that individuals with ASD may have a less sensitive perception of humanoid robots than their healthy peers. Finally, the low sensitivity of individuals with ASD to humanoid robots may be due to their simplifying the complexity of human facial expressions and body movements and suppressing the intensity of influx of social information. Therefore, the negative emotions of ASD individuals may be alleviated to some extent. Moreover, gender, intelligence, and symptom performance in children with ASD may have an impact on the effect of interventions involving social robots. Therefore, researchers need to consider fully the above factors when designing and choosing social robots. The feasibility of using social robots as a tool for intervention in social disorders shown by children with ASD can be understood from psychological theories such as "new ontological category (NOC)" and social motivation theory. Social robots are not only a new entity but also a social reward for children with ASD. Therefore, social robots may have a transitional role in interventions facilitating the social skills of children with ASD.
    Social robots have shown some effects in improving the social skills of children with ASD. The effect of such interventions is mainly reflected in joint attention (JA), self-initiation, verbal and non-verbal communication, empathy and the improvement of motor imitation. By analyzing existing studies, this paper summarizes the advantages of social robots in improving child engagement, improving attention, enhancing positive emotional arousal and making it easier for parents to understand and cooperate with their children. However, the studies also have the limitations of the experimental environment and methods, such as vulnerability to interference by external factors, robotics restrictions, high cost and difficulty in generalization of learning skills.
    In conclusion, interventions involving social robots for children with ASD may have some feasibility and effectiveness. First, social robots could be considered as a "transitional object" in the intervention. However, when assessing the feasibility of the intervention one needs to consider the preference of children with ASD for social robots and its influencing factors, and to carry out intervention research on the basis of further standardizing the design and selection standards for social robots. Second, through in-depth analysis of existing studies, we not only expand understanding of the use of social robots in improving social ability in children with ASD, but also provide further research for reference. In future, research on the use of social robots in children with ASD may involve exploring the characteristics of the human-machine interface, revealing the psychological process of multimodal and brain-science technology, and paying attention to the development of artificial intelligence technology to build a closed-loop system for social robots.
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    When AI learns to empathize: Topics, scenarios, and optimization of empathy computing from a psychological perspective
    HOU Hanchao, NI Shiguang, LIN Shuya, WANG Pusheng
    2024, 32 (5):  845-858.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00845
    Abstract ( 648 )   PDF (890KB) ( 898 )   Peer Review Comments
    Empathy computing is an emerging research field that integrates artificial intelligence (AI) and big data technology to predict, identify, simulate, and generate human empathy. This field builds upon psychological studies in terms of concepts, measurements, neural foundations, and applications of empathy, and employs innovative computing approaches for analyzing and simulating empathy. This article critically reviews current research on empathy computing and discusses its future directions from a psychological perspective, with the aim of facilitating foundational research and practical applications in this field.
    The current research on empathy computing can be categorized into four themes based on different purposes and methods. On one hand, empathy computing primarily aims to analyze and comprehend empathy using computers. This endeavor can be further divided into two categories: (1) individual empathy assessment, which focuses on analyzing individual empathetic traits, and (2) empathetic content classification, which focuses on analyzing empathetic features in texts rather than individuals. On the other hand, research also focuses on simulating and expressing empathy through computing, which includes (3) the design of empathetic response systems and (4) the development of generative empathetic dialogue systems. The former provides users with a limited number of predefined rule-based responses and feedback to express empathy, while the latter utilizes AI to automatically generate a wide range of empathetic dialogues without relying on predefined rules. These four research streams are relatively independent yet complementary. Moreover, as research progresses, new directions will continue to emerge, such as improving the empathic capabilities of computers through brain-computer interface technology.
    Although research on empathy computing is still in its early stages, it has shown potential for innovative applications in scenarios such as mental health, education, business services, and public management. With the increasing prevalence of artificial intelligence, these fields, which involve substantial interpersonal interactions, are positioned to become the primary domains for human-computer interaction. As a result, they emerge as the key application scenarios for empathy computing. In the realm of mental health, empathy computing can assist in automatically evaluating and enhancing therapists' empathetic abilities. Additionally, it can provide personalized empathetic support and guidance through AI-driven chatbots. In the field of education, empathy computing can facilitate the learning process by employing empathetic AI tutors. Within the business sector, it enables organizations to deliver tailored customer experiences, thereby enhancing satisfaction and fostering loyalty through the generation of empathic dialogues. In public management, empathy computing can be used to generate empathetic discourse to counteract negative speech. Additionally, it facilitates policymakers to respond empathetically to citizens' needs and inquiries, thereby fostering trust between the government and the public. These four scenarios illustrate the vast potential applications of empathy computing. However, due to concerns related to safety and ethics, complete reliance on computers to perform empathetic tasks is currently not feasible. Instead, a collaboration between humans and computers is necessary.
    Empathy computing represents a transformative frontier, not only providing methods to measure and analyze empathy automatically on a larger scale but also enriching the theoretical landscape of empathy research. It extends traditional studies on empathy in interpersonal relationships to explore its emerging manifestations in human-AI relationships. This expansion raises novel questions about the universality of empathy and its potential evolution in human-computer interaction. Empathy computing holds the promise of serving as a cornerstone for a unified theory of empathy that encompasses diverse relationship dynamics, ranging from human-human to human-machine interactions and beyond. It is beneficial for comprehensively understanding empathy and effectively promoting it in the context of an intelligent society.
    Future research should focus on developing integrated theoretical models of empathy computing, establishing reliable psychological and behavioral datasets of empathy-related characteristics, and validating and refining empathy computing research through a human-centered approach. Psychologists play indispensable roles in leading, evaluating, and optimizing research and practice in this field. The collaboration of scholars in psychology and computer science is imperative to ensure that AI learns empathy effectively and ethically, thereby fostering people’s wellbeing in the forthcoming intelligent society.
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    Analysis of consumer medication adherence: Based on two-stage theoretical model
    SHEN Manqiong, LIAO Jiancai, WANG Haizhong
    2024, 32 (5):  859-872.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2024.00859
    Abstract ( 222 )   PDF (614KB) ( 315 )   Peer Review Comments
    Current debates are centered on the controversial question of whether individual health behavior changes occur in stages. Medication adherence, a crucial indicator influencing medical outcomes, significantly impacts the physical and mental health of individuals. Medication adherence refers to the extent to which consumers follow or adopt recommendations from individuals or organizations regarding acquiring (purchasing) and correctly using medications. This includes both prescription and over-the-counter drugs, as well as products or services related to physical health examinations. Previous studies on medication adherence levels have predominantly taken a medical perspective, focusing on adherence behaviors for specific diseases. However, with the increasing marketization of the health care industry, limited research exists from the consumer's perspective investigating the influence of information processing and psychological processes on consumer medication adherence behaviors.
    Current research indicates a growing emphasis on the stage theory of health behavior change for studying and promoting health. Derived from social cognitive theory, stage theory posits that consumer health behavior is not a continuous process but rather a multistage process. Individuals go through inherently different ordered stages in deciding, initiating, and maintaining health-related behaviors. Individuals within the same stage face common obstacles, while those in different stages encounter distinct challenges. In medication adherence research, the health action process theory has demonstrated significant advantages in operability, intervention assessment, and cultural and environmental adaptability. This theory divides the process of changing health behavior into two stages: motivation and volition. In the context of medication adherence, these stages align well with the awareness stage of drug acquisition and the trial and adoption stage of drug usage, offering a comprehensive summary of consumer medication adherence behaviors in these stages. This theory is intuitive and conducive to the targeted design of intervention measures. Therefore, this study is grounded in the two-stage theory of the health action process model, systematically reviewing and summarizing consumer medication adherence behaviors in the identified stages.
    Building upon the health action process theory, this paper categorizes the consumer's medication adherence process into the awareness stage and the trial and adoption stage. In the awareness stage, factors influencing consumer medication adherence, such as inherent beliefs, prior knowledge of medications, and information processing biases, are summarized through a review of past research. In the trial and adoption stage, factors affecting consumer medication adherence, including the effectiveness rate of medication, marketing communication of medications, and after-sales services, are systematically summarized. After the factors influencing medication adherence levels were clarified, this paper further investigates each stage, delineating and elaborating on interventions for consumer medication adherence. The medication awareness stage involves attitude intervention, while the medication trial and adoption stage focus on behavior intervention. Central to attitude intervention is increasing medication willingness, a crucial factor in promoting the initial level of medication adherence. This paper outlines intervention strategies from three perspectives: customer education, enterprise nudging, and media regulation. According to two-stage theory, the focus of intervention in the medication trial and adoption stage is to prolong consumers' will in this stage by increasing medication willingness, thus sustaining medication adherence. Enhancing consumer medication adherence at the behavioral level requires joint efforts from consumers, enterprises, and relevant government health service departments. Combining the review literature, this paper systematically outlines intervention strategies for the medication trial and adoption stage from three aspects: customer empowerment, enterprise incentives, and multiparty collaboration. In the future, this paper proposes several prospects, including exploring the gap between “intention‒behavior,” adopting an integrated approach to investigate the complete process of medication adherence behavior, exploring prefactors influencing medication adherence behavior from a diverse perspective, and delving into the intrinsic mechanisms and influencing factors of (non)adherence to medication.
    In conclusion, nonadherence or low adherence has become a significant constraint on consumer health. This paper, based on the two-stage theory model, integrates the influencing factors of adherence behaviors in these two stages and proposes corresponding intervention measures to promote domestic research development in this field. This study aims to overcome the current fragmented nature of related research by constructing a two-stage integrated model based on the two-stage model of health behavior change, considering both the acquisition and usage stages of medications, and building an integrated model from cognitive and treatment perspectives. Possible contributions include: (1) providing a two-stage integrated model based on the concept and definition of medication adherence, revealing influencing factors of medication adherence behaviors, summarizing intervention strategies for consumer medication adherence, and proposing future research trends and prospects, contributing to exploring, understanding, and intervening in individual medication adherence behaviors from the perspective of health behavior change stages; (2) stepping out of the traditional medical theoretical framework and delving into the consumer group and consumer psychology perspective, revealing the research dynamics and progress of medication adherence behaviors in the consumer behavior domain; (3) advancing and enriching stage theories in the health domain, as researchers in the health field hold inconsistent views on whether behavior is staged or nonstaged. This study categorizes the influencing factors and intervention strategies of medication adherence behaviors in different stages of health behavior change, contributing to advancing and enriching stage theories on health behavior; (4) This study holds significant practical significance. The COVID-19 pandemic has posed a significant threat to the lives and health of people worldwide, sounding an alarm for health behavior. This study contributes to understanding consumer behavior in the postpandemic stage and provides marketing insights for chronic disease management.
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