Hierarchical models of emotional disorders and emotion-congruent cognitive biases

Iftah Yovel*, Susan Mineka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Based on hierarchical models of emotional disorders, relationships between higher- and lower-order components of anxiety and depression and emotion-congruent cognitive biases were examined. Two groups of participants (n=189) were selected based on their scores on General Distress (the nonspecific factor of anxiety and depression). They performed an explicit memory test of incidentally-learned selfreferenced material and an emotional Stroop interference task, using three types of stimuli: anxiety-related, depression-related and neutral non-valenced words. It was hypothesized that an attentional bias for anxiety-relevant words and a memory bias for depression-relevant words would be best predicted by anxiety-related and depression-related measures, respectively. Strengthening the notion that demonstration of these types of biases is not reliable in subclinical populations, both a correlational analysis as well as a more powerful extreme group analysis could not detect the existence of any emotion-related cognitive biases.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)679-694
Number of pages16
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Anxiety
  • Cognitive processes
  • Depression (Emotion)
  • Memory
  • Models
  • Selective attention


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