Paul Verhaeghen

Paul Verhaeghen
Georgia Institute of Technology | GT · School of Psychology

PhD

About

134
Publications
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Publications

Publications (134)
Article
Full-text available
Background We investigated the relationship between mindfulness and compassion in a broader way than is typically done by (a) using a recent, comprehensive conceptualization of mindfulness as a manifold of self-awareness, self-regulation, and self-transcendence, and (b) by casting a wide net of compassion measures [i.e., the Compassionate Love for...
Article
Police officers partially rely on implicit and explicit stereotypes in their interactions with the public. We investigated if these attitudes are reciprocated, specifically, if people of color implicitly fear police, and whether the events of the summer of 2020 changed the public's attitudes about police. Seven hundred and fifty‐nine college studen...
Article
If one friend confidently tells us to buy Product A while another friend thinks that Product B is better but is not confident, we may go with the advice of our confident friend. Should we? The relationship between people’s confidence and accuracy has been of great interest in many fields, especially in high-stakes situations like eyewitness testimo...
Article
Full-text available
Many but not all cognitive abilities decline during ageing. Some even improve due to lifelong experience. The critical capacities of attention and executive functions have been widely posited to decline. However, these capacities are composed of multiple components, so multifaceted ageing outcomes might be expected. Indeed, prior findings suggest t...
Article
Episodic memory deficits have increasingly been recognized as a cognitive feature of depression. To quantify these deficits and determine how they are moderated by various tasks (e.g., stimulus valence) and participant (e.g., age, depression diagnosis) variables, we conducted a three-level meta-analysis on 995 effect sizes derived from 205 studies...
Preprint
If one friend confidently tells us to buy product A while another friend thinks that product B is better but is not confident, we may go with the advice of our confident friend. Should we? The relationship between people’s confidence and accuracy has been of great interest in many fields, especially in the context of high-stakes situations like eye...
Article
This correlational study of 346 college students examined how mindfulness (broadly construed as a manifold of self-awareness, self-regulation, and self-transcendence) is related to the three Values in Action (VIA) virtues (inquisitiveness, caring, and self-control) and to eudemonic wellbeing (personal growth, self-acceptance, purpose in life, and p...
Article
Better sleep quality has been associated with better episodic memory performance in young adults. However, the strength of sleep-memory associations in aging has not been well characterized. It is also unknown whether factors such as sleep measurement method (e.g., polysomnography, actigraphy, self-report), sleep parameters (e.g., slow wave sleep,...
Article
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Older adults are known to have difficulty with tests of formal reasoning. Inspired by previous work suggesting an influence of participants’ living ecology on reasoning ability, we examined in a group of 270 younger, middle-aged, and older adults whether presenting transitive reasoning problems (i.e., A > B, B > C, hence A > C) as informal narrativ...
Article
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Objectives To examine whether mindfulness training is associated with changes in objective attention performance. Methods Three meta-analyses were conducted: (a) a meta-analysis comparing the effects of mindfulness interventions with those of control treatments (109 effect sizes from 40 studies); (b) a meta-analysis comparing attention performance...
Article
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The original version of the article has contained some errors in text and tables.
Chapter
This chapter reviews evidence that practicing meditation positively impacts attention. Functional and structural enhancements in parts of the salience and executive networks are described. At the behavioral level, the effect of meditation on tasks of controlled attention (such as Stroop and go/no-go tasks) is found to be about 0.4 SD; a smaller eff...
Article
Full-text available
This correlational study of two independent samples (260 college students and 173 Mechanical Turk workers aged 21–74) examined whether and how mindfulness (broadly construed as a manifold of self-awareness, self-regulation, and self-transcendence), influences wisdom about the self (Adult Self-Transcendence Inventory and Self-Assessed Wisdom Scale)...
Article
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Objectives The goal of the current study was to investigate the universality of the five-factor model of mindfulness and the measurement equivalence of the Five-Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ).Methods The study used FFMQ data from published and unpublished research conducted in 16 countries (total N = 8541). Using CFA, different models, prop...
Article
Top-down modulation underlies our ability to focus attention on task-relevant stimuli and ignore irrelevant distractions. Although age-related differences in neural correlates of top-down modulation have been investigated in multiple studies using variety of tasks (Gazzaley et al., 2005; Störmer et al., 2013), the effect of age on top-down modulati...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives We examined whether and how habitual mindfulness (defined as a broad manifold of self-awareness, self-regulation, and self-transcendence) relates to ethical sensitivities, operationalized as moral attitudes (as measured by the Moral Foundations Questionnaire) and prejudice. Methods This is a cross-sectional study using factor analysis a...
Article
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Several studies with younger adults have examined the degree to which emotion captures attention using the event-related potentials (ERP) technique, but it is unknown whether there are age-related differences on this issue. We examined ERP correlates of age-related differences in processing of task-relevant and task-irrelevant emotional material. P...
Article
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Objectives: Older adults show clear deficits in working memory functioning. Here, we investigate the often-reported decline in focus switching, that is, the ability to shift items from the focus of attention into working memory, and back. Specifically, we examined whether equating subjects on early processing (perception and attention) might amelio...
Article
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In a correlational study (n = 670) using exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis as well as path analysis, evidence for a mindfulness manifold reaching from self-awareness all the way to psychological outcomes was uncovered. Factor analysis of a large number of mindfulness and mindfulness-related scales yielded five interrelated, interpretable...
Article
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We investigated pupil dilation in 96 subjects during task preparation and during a post-trial interval in a visual search task and an auditory working memory task. Completely informative difficulty cues (easy, medium, or hard) were presented right before task preparation to examine whether pupil dilation indicated advance mobilisation of attentiona...
Article
This article argues that familiarity is an important ingredient of the aesthetic brew, potentially more important than the tinge of surprise. Most of the examples are drawn from the psychology of music, pointing at people’s preferences for music from their youth, strong correlations between familiarity and liking of musical excerpts, the Caillebott...
Article
Objectives: Declines in both short- and long-term memory are typical of healthy aging. Recent findings suggest that retrodictive attentional cues ("retro-cues") that indicate the location of to-be-probed items in short-term memory (STM) have a lasting impact on long-term memory (LTM) performance in young adults. Whether older adults can also use r...
Article
Full-text available
We studied visual perspective of three autobiographical memories and three projected future events (i.e. whether the events were experienced from a first-person or third-person perspective, or in between) in 117 undergraduate students. Perspective proved to be a reliable individual-differences variable. The majority of narratives trended toward the...
Preprint
Declines in both short and long-term memory are typical of healthy aging. Recent findings suggest that retrospective attentional cues ("retro-cues") that indicate the location of to-be-probed items enhance both short (STM) and long-term memory (LTM) performance in young adults. Whether older adults can also use retro-cues to facilitate both STM and...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: To provide a systematic review of age-related differences in n-back performance. Method: Meta-analytic data aggregation. Results: Access for items stored within the focus of attention (0-back and 1-back) was very fast and quasi-perfect; when items are held outside the focus (n > 1), an additional cost was accrued in both accuracy a...
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Background: Self-efficacy is an important predictor of performing health behaviors. Purpose: We invoked varying points of view (none, first person, third person) in standard instructions for breast self-exams (BSEs) to examine whether point of view taken would impact self-efficacy for and behavioral intentions regarding BSE. Methods: One hundred tw...
Article
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This study on 138 undergraduate students used path analysis to investigate the relationship between creativity (interest, measured by a creative activities survey; and ability: fluency, originality, and elaboration) and different aspects of thought patterns presumed to influence the preparation and illumination phase of the creative process: habitu...
Article
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One of the core teachings of Buddhism is the doctrine of anattā. I argue that there is good evidence that anattā as understood in early Buddhism should be viewed less as a doctrine and a metaphysical pronouncement (‘no-Self’) than as a soteriological claim (‘not-self’)–an appeal and a method to achieve, or move progressively closer to, liberation....
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter reviews evidence that practicing meditation positively impacts attention. Functional and structural enhancements in parts of the salience and executive networks are described. At the behavioral level, the effect of meditation on tasks of controlled attention (such as Stroop and go/no-go tasks) is found to be about 0.4 SD; a similar eff...
Article
In three experiments, we investigated whether features and whole-objects can be represented simultaneously in visual short-term memory (VSTM). Participants were presented with a memory set of colored shapes; we probed either for the constituent features or for the whole object, and analyzed retrieval dynamics (cumulative response time distributions...
Article
Behavioral research has shown that spatial cues that orient attention toward task relevant items being maintained in visual short-term memory (VSTM) enhance item memory accuracy. However, it is unknown if these retrospective attentional cues ("retro-cues") enhance memory beyond typical short-term memory delays. It is also unknown whether retro-cues...
Chapter
This entry examines the effects of aging on decline in working memory and short-term memory. Several potential causes—general age-related decline, decline in executive control functions, and decline in the substrate, including compensation-related activation—are reviewed. The impact of short-term memory and working memory decline on higher order co...
Chapter
Memory training in older adults has been proven to be effective, with long-term effects on memory performance (noticeable even about five years after training) and smaller but reliable effects on subjective appraisal of memory functioning. Training regimens that include multiple strategies and/or skills and explicitly discuss transfer effects are l...
Chapter
This entry summarizes the basic meta-analytic techniques used in standard, effect-size oriented meta-analysis (effect-size extraction, pooling of effect sizes, homogeneity analysis), as well as the use of allometric analysis (Brinley plots) in aging research. The main advantages and disadvantages of these methods (as compared to narrative reviews)...
Article
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Research with younger adults has shown that retrospective cues can be used to orient top-down attention toward relevant items in working memory. We examined whether older adults could take advantage of these cues to improve memory performance. Younger and older adults were presented with visual arrays of five colored shapes; during maintenance, par...
Article
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This paper examines the viability, in principle, of a secular Buddhist ethics, aimed at Buddhists, in the absence of the traditional, non-secular motivators of the laws of karma and the doctrine of rebirth. I argue that Buddhist ethics can be construed either as a consequentialist or virtue ethics, with anattā or suññatā as grounding metaphysical i...
Article
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This meta-analysis examined the effects of process-based executive-function and working memory training (49 articles, 61 independent samples) in older adults (> 60 years). The interventions resulted in significant effects on performance on the trained task and near-transfer tasks; significant results were obtained for the net pretest-to-posttest ga...
Article
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Past research has shown that creative behavior is associated with a higher risk for depression; our own previous work has shown that rumination lies at the heart of the connection. In a sample of 244 college students, we used path analysis to examine how 2 types of self-focused rumination—brooding and self-reflective pondering—might relate differen...
Article
Full-text available
In the present study, we investigated age-related differences in the processing of emotional stimuli. Specifically, we were interested in whether older adults would show deficits in unbinding emotional expression (i.e., either no emotion, happiness, anger, or disgust) from bound stimuli (i.e., photographs of faces expressing these emotions), as a h...
Article
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We investigated the effects of 10h of practice on variations of the N-Back task to investigate the processes underlying possible expansion of the focus of attention within working memory. Using subtractive logic, we showed that random access (i.e., Sternberg-like search) yielded a modest effect (a 50% increase in speed) whereas the processes of for...
Article
This book provides a qualitative overview (using graphical and classical meta-analysis) of the vast literature on aging and speeded tasks-bringing together, almost everything we know about age and processing speed. The book investigates age-related slowing in elementary tasks (including updated parameters for the Aging Human Information Processor)...
Article
Behavioral evidence from the young suggests spatial cues that orient attention toward task-relevant items in visual working memory (VWM) enhance memory capacity. Whether older adults can also use retrospective cues ("retro-cues") to enhance VWM capacity is unknown. In the current event-related potential (ERP) study, young and old adults performed a...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: In 2 experiments, we examined the oft-replicated finding of age-related differences in accuracy at retrieving items stored in working memory, but outside the focus of attention. Specifically, we investigated whether such differences could be explained by (a) age-related differences in coping with the dual-task nature of swapping items...
Article
Discusses some obstructions to the generation of a unified theory of cognitive aging. Specifically, the problems of issue isolationism, lack of a common metric across different types of research, and peculiarities of the psychometrics of between-group comparisons are examined. It is argued that a solution to the latter 2 problems might be found in...
Article
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The papers in this Special Issue compellingly show that older adults' everyday cognitive life is governed not by the decline in elementary cognitive processes as measured in the lab, but by a multitude of compensatory mechanisms, most of which are of the social/motivational variety. Much of this compensatory behavior can be elicited with no or only...
Article
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Laboratory measures of cognition typically measure cognitive abilities, real life measures should distinguish between portable ability versus cognitive activities, cognitive traits, cognitive skills, cognitive functioning, and ability x environment interactions. This has the potential to analyze the real world environments as training and transfer...
Article
This chapter poses three fundamental questions about cognitive aging, linking them to the directions of research established in the chapters of this section of the book. These questions are: What is the complexity dimension of cognitive aging? What does cognitive aging research tell us about cognitive aging? Do the mechanisms of cognitive aging dep...
Article
In three N-Back experiments, we investigated components of the process of working memory (WM) updating, more specifically access to items stored outside the focus of attention and transfer from the focus to the region of WM outside the focus. We used stimulus complexity as a marker. We found that when WM transfer occurred under full attention, it w...
Article
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It has been argued that stereotype priming (response times are faster for stereotypical word pairs, such as black-poor, than for non-stereotypical word pairs, such as black-balmy) is partially a function of biases in the belief system inherent in the culture. In three priming experiments, we provide direct evidence for this position, showing that s...
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I report a series of meta-analyses on aging and executive control. A first set of analyses failed to find evidence for specific age-related deficits in tasks of selective attention (inhibition of return, negative priming, flanker, and Stroop) or tasks tapping local task-shifting costs (reading with distractors is an exception) but found evidence fo...
Article
To investigate age differences in working memory processing, specifically the accuracy of retrieval of items stored outside the immediate focus of attention. Younger and older adults were tested on a modified N-Back task with probes presented in an unpredictable order (implying also that some trials necessitated a switch in the focus of attention a...
Article
Two experiments explored the process of switching items in and out of the focus of attention using a new paradigm, the N-count task (adapted from Garavan, 1998; N varied from 1 to 4). This task yielded a focus size of one, indicated by a substantial focus-switch cost for 2-count. Additionally, the focus-switch costs in response time increased with...
Article
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A meta-analysis of 26 published articles (with 36 independent participant groups) was conducted to analyze the relationship between task-switching effects and aging. Latency served as the dependent measure. Multilevel modeling was used to test for additive and multiplicative complexity effects in local and global switch costs. Global task switching...
Article
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We report data from 4 experiments using a recognition design with multiple probes to be matched to specific study positions. Items could be accessed rapidly, independent of set size, when the test order matched the study order (forward condition). When the order of testing was random, backward, or in a prelearned irregular sequence (reordered condi...
Article
OVERVIEW This chapter presents a critical survey of cognitive changes in later life. It examines speed of processing, changes in cognitive skills, intelligence, assembled cognition and means of coping with cognitive limitations in later life. Introduction Let me start this chapter by letting you in on a little secret. There is no such thing as the...
Article
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In this meta-analysis, we examined the effects of aging on directed forgetting. A cue to forget is more effective in younger (d = 1.17) than in older (d = 0.81) adults. Directed-forgetting effects were larger (a) with the item method rather than with the list method, (b) with longer presentation times, (c) with longer postcue rehearsal times, (d) w...
Article
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Memory sets of N=1 ~ 5 digits were exposed sequentially from left-to-right across the screen, followed by N recognition probes. Probes had to be compared to memory list items on identity only (Sternberg task) or conditional on list position. Positions were probed randomly or in left-to-right order. Search functions related probe response times to s...
Article
Memory sets of N=1 ~ 5 digits were exposed sequentially from left-to-right across the screen, followed by N recognition probes. Probes had to be compared to memory list items on identity only (Sternberg task) or conditional on list position. Positions were probed randomly or in left-to-right order. Search functions related probe response times to s...
Article
Full-text available
In 3 experiments, we investigated the hypothesis that age-related differences in working memory might be due to the inability to bind content with context. Participants were required to find a repeating stimulus within a single series (no context memory required) or within multiple series (necessitating memory for context). Response time and accura...
Article
We investigated focus-switching and search rates in an N-Back task for stimuli presumably encoded either in a phonological/semantic or an abstract-visual format. Experiment 1 used Chinese characters and tested Chinese speakers and non-Chinese speakers; character frequency and visual complexity were also manipulated. Experiment 2 presented Chinese c...
Article
Full-text available
In 2 experiments, the authors investigated age differences in memory search under 4 conditions: forward search, backward search, random search, and fixed irregular search. Both search slopes and serial position curves were investigated. Mixing conditions led to smaller age differences than blocking conditions, suggesting that younger adults have an...
Article
Two experiments used the N-Back task to test for age differences in working memory inside and outside the focus of attention. Manipulations of the difficulty of item-context binding (Experiment 1) and of stimulus feature binding (Experiment 2) were used to create conditions that varied in their demand on working memory, with the expectation that gr...
Article
In this meta-analysis, we investigated whether response inhibition is sensitive to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) status and, if so, what influence maturation has on this attentional symptom of ADHD. We examined 25 studies that reported data on the Stroop color word test in children and adults with ADHD and in age-matched controls;...