Antonella Marchetti

Antonella Marchetti
Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | UNICATT · Department of Psychology

PhD

About

294
Publications
55,479
Reads
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2,126
Citations
Introduction
RESEARCH FOCUS: ToM in typical and atypical conditions in the life-span; Mental Language; Irony Understanding; Decision-making and ToM; ToM, attachment and Trust
Additional affiliations
November 2003 - present
Catholic University of the Sacred Heart
Position
  • Full Professor of Developmental and Educational Psychology Head of the Research Unit on Theory of Mind Coordinator of the PhD Programme in Person and Formation Sciences

Publications

Publications (294)
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This study aimed to evaluate the impact of face masks used for COVID-19 prevention on emotion recognition in facial expressions. Seventy-two (72) adult participants (48 females, 24 males) attempted to correctly identify different emotions displayed by a female and a male actor's facial expressions. Simulated emotions included neutrality, happiness,...
Data
Section A -> Study protocol additional details. Section B -> Study results: secondary outcomes. Section C -> In-depth analysis and further discussion of our study findings.
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic and the measures to face it have placed children and their caregivers in front of many challenges that could represent sources of stress. This work aims to explore the point of view of children through drawing, as a spontaneous means of expression, relating it to parents’ perceptions of children’s difficulties, strengths, and...
Article
Full-text available
Theory of Mind (ToM), a high-order human social cognition skill, is relevant for mental health and wellbeing and frequently impaired in many clinical conditions. To detect ToM difficulties, validated and standardized measures need to be adopted in clinical practice. The Yoni task provides a comprehensive evaluation of first-order, second-order, aff...
Preprint
The paper, based on an experiment in which human subjects are paired with either another human or an anthropomorphic robot, when playing an iterated prisoner’s dilemma, investigates whether (and how) the level of mental state attributed to an anthropomorphic robot by subjects depends on the the “earnestness” of the robot, i.e. the correspondence of...
Article
Mentalization is a key social ability that develops from infancy to adulthood, starting from early familiar attachment relationships. Children experience several contexts, in particular, educational ones such as school, where they build new attachment relationships with teachers. Although the amount of research on the links between mentalization an...
Article
Mentalization is a useful ability for social functioning and a crucial aspect of mentalizing is emotion regulation. Literature suggests programmes for children and adults to increase mentalizing abilities useful both for emotional and social competences. For this reason, the issue of how to prompt children's mentalization has started to attract res...
Book
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The new humanoid robots not only perform ta­sks, but also can activate interactions and so­cial relationships with other robots and with humans. In this view, the diffusion of humanoid robots with a physical structure reminiscent of the human body, endowed with decision-ma­king abilities, and capable of externalizing and generating emotions, is ope...
Article
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The term “mentalized affectivity” describes the ability to reflect on, process, modulate and express emotions through the prism of autobiographical memory. It represents a bridge concept that integrates previous contributions on emotion regulation and mentalization, offering a quite unique perspective on affective and reflective functioning. The ov...
Article
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Individual economic competence is important but increasingly challenging to manage due to the growing complexity of the nature of economic decisions people must make and the substantial impacts of some of these decisions on their lives. Decision-making ability develops from childhood and is closely related to specific economic components and prosoc...
Article
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Although neural hubs of mentalizing are acknowledged, the brain mechanisms underlying mentalizing deficit, characterizing different neurological conditions, are still a matter of debate. To investigate the neural underpinning of Theory of Mind (ToM) deficit in Multiple Sclerosis (MS), a region of interest (ROI)-based resting-state fMRI study was pr...
Article
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Among the cognitive functions affected by Multiple Sclerosis (MS) disease, recent literature has focused on Theory of Mind (ToM), the ability of recognition and the attribution of mental states to predict future behaviors. To our knowledge, despite the ToM deficit is well recognized in MS, there is no training established for the treatment in this...
Article
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The borderline intellectual functioning (BIF) is a neurodevelopmental condition characterized by a borderline intelligence quotient (range 70–85) with difficulties in cognitive and social domains. Children with BIF often live in adverse conditions and show academic and behavioral difficulties. Rehabilitation programs for these children focus mainly...
Article
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The investigation of emerging adults' expectations of development of the next generation of robots is a fundamental challenge to narrow the gap between expectations and real technological advances, which can potentially impact the effectiveness of future interactions between humans and robots. Furthermore, the literature highlights the important ro...
Article
Aesthetic perception plays a significant role in social behavior. The ability to recognize and perceive beauty is important for social situations in that it can create different expectations about human behavior. It has been hypothesized that the aesthetic experience is characterized by emotional and hedonic responses to the stimuli. People with sc...
Article
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In the past years, the field of collaborative robots has been developing fast, with applications ranging from health care to search and rescue, construction, entertainment, sports, and many others. However, current social robotics is still far from the general abilities we expect in a robot collaborator. This limitation is more evident when robots...
Article
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This study proposes a psychometric validation of the Italian version of the Mentalized Affectivity Scale (MAS) developed by Greenberg and colleagues in 2017. The mentalized affectivity construct integrates mentalization ability in the process of emotional regulation. An adult sample (N = 506) completed the 60-items MAS online version. In contrast t...
Article
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The present study evaluated: i) the effects of two training programs designed for promoting Theory of Mind (ToM) skills in children aged 7/8, and ii) the relations between second-order recursive thinking (II-order-RT), advanced-ToM (Adv_ToM) and metacognition. Ninety-one 7- to 8-year-old children were assigned to one of three training conditions: a...
Article
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The effectiveness of social robots has been widely recognized in different contexts of humans’ daily life, but still little is known about the brain areas activated by observing or interacting with a robot. Research combining neuroscience, cognitive science and robotics can provide new insights into both the functioning of our brain and the impleme...
Article
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The COVID-19 pandemic is showing troubling othering demographic discourses. For older adults in particular, there are concerning thematics that should be shined light on. In this editorial, we provide perspectives from three countries: Norway, Italy and the United States. We provide four topics of discussion that can be utilized to further understa...
Article
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The human physical resemblance of humanoid social robots (HRSs) has proven to be particularly effective in interactions with humans in different contexts. In particular, two main factors affect the quality of human-robot interaction, the physical appearance and the behaviors performed by the robot. In this study, we examined the psychological effec...
Article
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The relationship between humans and robots is increasingly becoming focus of interest for many fields of research. The studies investigating the dynamics underpinning the human–robot interaction have, up to date, mainly analysed adults’ behaviour when interacting with artificial agents. In this study, we present results associated with the human–ro...
Article
People with schizophrenia disorder show the presence of a deficit in social cognition (SC). Several proposals of intervention for social cognitive deficits in schizophrenia have been raised. The present study aimed to provide an update to the state-of-the-art of SC training in schizophrenia, with specific analysis on their efficacy on ToM, which is...
Article
Full-text available
Recent technological developments in robotics has driven the design and production of different humanoid robots. Several studies have highlighted that the presence of human- like physical features could lead both adults and children to anthropomorphize the robots. In the present study we aimed to compare the attribution of mental states to two huma...
Chapter
Full-text available
Robots are among us in several contexts. This chapter deals with the state of the art of the use of Socially Assistive Robots (SARs) for development and clinical purposes, considering all the main phases of the life cycle. The reflection on this type of “artificial assistants” is accompanied by some considerations on the use of the “Relational Agen...
Article
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Several studies have shown that the human gaze, but not the robot gaze, has significant effects on infant social cognition and facilitate social engagement. The present study investigates early understanding of the referential nature of gaze by comparing-through the eye-tracking technique-infants' response to human and robot's gaze. Data were acqui...
Article
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Background: The capacity to evaluate beauty plays a crucial role in social behaviour and social relationships. It is known that some characteristics of beauty are important social cues that can induce stereotypes or promote different behavioural expectations. Another crucial capacity for success in social interactions is empathy, i.e. the ability...
Article
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In the last ten years, the topic of Computational Thinking (CT) has been gaining increasing attention from researchers in the education field. Starting from kindergarten, increasingly programming activities such as coding and educational robotics are proposed to enhance CT and some cognitive skills, such as problem-solving, spatial and reasoning sk...
Article
The relationship between cognitive and affective Theory of Mind (ToM), clinical variables, and brain tissue injury is still a subject of debate in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). By adopting a ToM Networks model, we investigated ToM performance, and brain imaging correlates in relapsing-remitting (RR) and progressive (Pr) MS. 16RR, 19Pr, and 21 healthy co...
Article
Full-text available
Studying trust in the context of human–robot interaction is of great importance given the increasing relevance and presence of robotic agents in the social sphere, including educational and clinical. We investigated the acquisition, loss, and restoration of trust when preschool and school-age children played with either a human or a humanoid robot...
Article
The study of the psychological aspects related to migratory phenomena moves between highlighting the critical aspects that accompany migrations and identifying possible positive aspects. Apart from this polarization, it is important to focus on core psychological constructs through which to read the psychological dynamics regarding those who migrat...
Conference Paper
Several empirical and theoretical studies have examined the role of robots in child-robot interaction, and they have shown that robotic agents can be perceived as social partners. Nonetheless, studies on moral development in pre-schoolers classically involve a human subject as a violator of moral norms. No studies have ever analysed the situation i...
Article
L’inclusione di agenti artificiali in ambienti in cui essi sono pro- grammati per diventare partner relazionali suggerisce un cambiamento nel nostro paradigma sociale incentrato sull’uomo (Belpaeme, Kennedy, Ramachandran, Scassellati e Tanaka, 2018). In quest’ottica, è essenziale studiare come si costruiscono le relazioni quando queste coinvolgono...
Article
Full-text available
The principal aim of the study was to investigate the role of individual characteristics in decisional conflict of patients with prostate cancer (PCa) in order to identify risk and protective features. An observational study was conducted with 83 PCa patients accessing the multidisciplinary visit of Prostate Cancer Program at Fondazione IRCCS Istit...
Article
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Maintaining social skills such as Theory of Mind (ToM) competences is important to counteract the conversion into dementia in Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). Multidimensional nonpharmacological interventions demonstrated their potential in improving cognitive and behavioral abilities; however, little is known about the long-term effect of such int...
Article
Relations between mothers' mind-mindedness (appropri-ate attunement to their infants' internal states) at 6 and 12 months and infants' early symbolic play during infant-mother pretense at 12 and 18 months were investigated in a sample of 43 mothers and infants. Mothers' appropriate mind-related comments were associated with average level, length, c...
Article
In the last decade considerable attention has been devoted to the possible contribution of social media, and the Internet generally, to instigating adolescents' engagement in self-harm activities, which are considered the result of a combination of multidimensional variables, such as depression and anxiety. This study aimed to identify, using laten...
Article
Recent evidence showed that it is possible to help children's Theory of Mind (ToM) development during preschool and middle childhood. This study aimed to promote advanced mentalizing skills in children attending Year 2 of primary school through a ToM training programme based on narratives followed by multiple‐choice questions and conversations abou...
Preprint
Full-text available
Studying trust within human-robot interaction is of great importance given the social relevance of robotic agents in a variety of contexts. We investigated the acquisition, loss and restoration of trust when preschool and school-age children played with either a human or a humanoid robot in-vivo. The relationship between trust and the quality of at...
Article
The study aims to investigate a) the ability of nutritional labels in pictorial and textual form to guide consumption choices applying the dual-coding theory; b) the effectiveness of a new type of pictorial label (i.e. the body label) that appeals to the self-congruence theory and to positive emotional response. The research hypotheses were tested...
Article
The manipulation of the proposer's description in the ultimatum game (UG) using mentalistic labels might influence the final decision along with the sensitivity toward fairness. The present study aimed to investigate neural changes related to the mentalistic description of the proposer in the UG task. For this purpose, 21 healthy adults played the...
Article
Preferring life to death is deeply rooted in our biology. With the present study, we explored two questions: (1) Can this inclination be transposed to aesthetics, so that a living being is valued as more beautiful than a non‐living being? and (2) Are there any differences in the visual exploration of portrayals of a living compared to a dead human?...
Article
The present work investigates the link between attachment relationships, mentalization, and emotional regulation in 10-year-olds children. The aim is to verify if children-teacher attachment relationship could influence children's mentalization style and cognitive/emotional regulation strategies. For this purpose, 110 children were tested with the...
Article
Full-text available
The role of social cognition, including theory of mind (ToM), in affecting quality of life (QoL) along the course of diseases has been reported. This is a considerable aspect in chronic pathologies, such as multiple sclerosis (MS), in which supporting and maintaining QoL is of crucial importance. We aimed to investigate the relation between ToM, cl...
Article
The aim of the study was to explore cognitive and affective dimensions of ToM using the computerized Yoni task in participants with amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI=16), early stage of Parkinson’s Disease (PD=14), and healthy controls (HC=18) Results demonstrated that the Yoni task was effective in discriminating between groups in 1th order...
Article
Full-text available
The study of social cognition involves the attribution of states of mind to humans, as well as, quite recently, to nonhuman creatures, like God. Some studies support the role of social cognition in religious beliefs, whereas others ascribe religious beliefs to an ontological knowledge bias. The present study compares these distinct approaches in 37...
Article
Full-text available
Theory of Mind (ToM) is the lifespan developing ability to attribute mental states. This ability enables the individual to predict and interpret one’s own and others’ behavior. In this respect, beliefs about one’s own capacity to attribute mental states represent a fundamental component of this construct. The present study aims to compare the unidi...
Article
Abstract. This review focuses on some relevant issues concerning the relationship between theory of mind (ToM) and humanoid robots. Humanoid robots are employed in different everyday-life contexts, so it seems relevant to question whether the relationships between human beings and humanoids can be characterized by a mode of interaction typical of t...
Article
This paper proposes a novel approach to interpret the results of a classical second-order false belief task (the ice cream man task) administered to children in order to investigate their Theory of Mind. We adopted a dialogical perspective to study the adult-child discussion in this research setting. In particular, we see the adult-child conversati...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction: Emotion regulation (ER) supports multiple individual functions and promotes mental health and wellbeing. Among the tools that may be used to help people in managing their affective states, videogames are reaching attention and are showing positive effects. Yet, little is known about their effectiveness. Objective: This study aims t...
Article
Full-text available
The ability to experience aesthetics plays a fundamental role in human social interactions, as well as the capacity to feel empathy. Some studies have shown that beauty perception shares part of the neural network underlying emotional and empathic abilities, which are also known to affect sleep quality and duration. In this study, we evaluated for...
Article
During adolescence and early adulthood, individuals deal with important developmental changes, especially in the context of complex social interactions. Previous studies demonstrated that those changes have a significant impact on the social decision making process, in terms of a progressive increase of intentionality comprehension of others, of th...
Article
Sensitivity to canons of beauty as represented in the human body—and as typically defined in the Western Culture—has been poorly studied in children. Current literature shows that infants as young as about three months are sensitive to the human body structure and its parts. Using a sample of 54 three- to five-year-old children, the present study i...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, we seek to widen our understanding of the developmental processes underlying bargaining behaviour in children addressing the concept of prospective thinking. We argue that the emergence of the capacity to think prospectively about future outcomes or behaviours in response to current actions is a required precedent to strategic decisi...
Article
Full-text available
Background Decision making is a complex psychological process driven by emotions. Among the most unpleasant ones are the situations when the obtained outcome is not the one expected. This emotional experience is influenced by sense of agency, i.e. the feeling that we voluntarily control our actions and, through them, events in the world. Negative c...