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  • 1 School of Psychology, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland
  • 2 Department of Psychology, University of Bournemouth, Bournemouth, UK
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Abstract

Recent research has focused on the role of emotion in decision-making. This study sought to build upon such work by examining whether individual differences in cognitive and emotional processes predict decision-making task performance. Thirty five participants (15 male; 20 female) completed the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), and the following questionnaires: Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Need for Cognition (NFC), Need for Affect (NAQ). Although participants generally demonstrated learning over time, F(4,136) = 11.98, p <.001, with differences (p <.005) between scores on Block 1 and the other Blocks, 28% scored in the impaired range (net score < 10) on the IGT. Participants within the moderately/severely depressed range on the BDI were poorer on the IGT (p <.05) and the BART (p <.05) than those not in this range. Psychological distress was associated with poorer decision-making on the IGT. Furthermore, individual difference variables were related to decision-making task performance. The study provides further evidence of the role of affect and individual differences in decision-making.

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