Aversive conditioning and cognitive mediators with alcoholic respondents

D. P. Rice, L. S. Schoenfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Some theoretical explanations of aversive conditioning posit specific emotional states or 'congnitive mediators' to account for behavior suppression. Although 'anxiety' is widely recognised as much a cognitive mediator, few studies have attempted to obtain measures of 'state anxiety' or of alternative competing hypotheses to test the model. This study probed the effects of two aversive conditioning paradigms on subjective responses to both alcohol related and non alcohol related stimuli to test the anxiety model against other competing alternatives. A strong social desirability response bias obscured measurement on three outcome dimensions; adjective ratings of General Evaluation, Dangerousness, and Appetitiveness. Both paradigms (i.e. Punishment and Mixed) appeared capable of producing increased 'Aversiveness' for alcohol related stimuli; 'Mixed' paradigm in which CS UCS contingencies were unpredictable was capable of increasing state anxiety displayed toward both test stimuli. Due to differential subject attrition, a quasi experimental design was imposed which complicated application of statistical tests. A point prevalence follow up at 90 days suggested that the experimental groups were slightly more successful at avoiding alcohol. An observation was made about a personality dynamic of alcoholics which is thought to engender psychological reactance toward treatment interventions which do not allow opportunity for internal control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)165-174
Number of pages10
JournalBritish Journal of Addiction
Volume70
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1975

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Anxiety
Alcohols
Dangerous Behavior
Social Desirability
Punishment
Alcoholics
Personality
Research Design
Observation
Psychology
Surveys and Questionnaires
Conditioning (Psychology)
Therapeutics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Aversive conditioning and cognitive mediators with alcoholic respondents. / Rice, D. P.; Schoenfeld, L. S.

In: British Journal of Addiction, Vol. 70, No. 2, 1975, p. 165-174.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Rice, D. P. ; Schoenfeld, L. S. / Aversive conditioning and cognitive mediators with alcoholic respondents. In: British Journal of Addiction. 1975 ; Vol. 70, No. 2. pp. 165-174.
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