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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Do positive memories change over time? : an examination of memory and social anxiety Glazier, Brianne


Cognitive theorists suggest that individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD) display negative memory biases when recalling social events. However, evidence for memory bias has proved elusive. This study builds on recent work on post-event processing of negative events and extends this research to investigate whether positive memories change over time. Undergraduate participants engaged in an unexpected speech task with free choice of topic. After rating their own performance, participants were randomly assigned to receive either positive or neutral feedback. Following a distractor task, participants reported their memory of the feedback they received and completed brief measures of mood and affect. One week later, participants rated their memory of the session one feedback, indicated the amount of post-event processing they engaged in during the week, and completed symptom measures. Results indicated a significant interaction between social anxiety and condition predicting change in memory valence. This relationship was not mediated by post-event processing. This study provides evidence for biased memory of social performance feedback among socially anxious individuals.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada