Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Dissertation




Clinical-Community Psychology

First Advisor

Jennifer M C Vendemia


The current research examined the impact of negative feedback on event-related potentials associated with error detection and correction in individuals with varying levels of depression. Depression is known to be associated with a number of cognitive effects, including deficits in executive functioning. Beats, Sahakian, and Levy (1996) have suggested that executive deficits in depression may be related to a `catastrophic response to perceived failure,' which can lead to performance deficits subsequent to errors. The current study examined the Feedback-Related Negativity (FRN), an event-related potential (ERP) component observed following errors and in response to error feedback, as a possible index of this depressive response to feedback. Thirty undergraduate volunteer participants with extreme scores on the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression scale (CES-D) completed a challenging two-stimulus deception paradigm that taps a number of executive functions. The paradigm manipulated the allowable reaction time to create easy and difficult conditions.