Instructed fear learning, extinction, and recall: additive effects of cognitive information on emotional learning of fear

Arash Javanbakht, Elizabeth R. Duval, Maria E. Cisneros, Stephan F. Taylor, Daniel Kessler, Israel Liberzon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

The effects of instruction on learning of fear and safety are rarely studied. We aimed to examine the effects of cognitive information and experience on fear learning. Fourty healthy participants, randomly assigned to three groups, went through fear conditioning, extinction learning, and extinction recall with two conditioned stimuli (CS+). Information was presented about the presence or absence of conditioned stimulus–unconditioned stimulus (CS–US) contingency at different stages of the experiment. Information about the CS–US contingency prior to fear conditioning enhanced fear response and reduced extinction recall. Information about the absence of CS–US contingency promoted extinction learning and recall, while omission of this information prior to recall resulted in fear renewal. These findings indicate that contingency information can facilitate fear expression during fear learning, and can facilitate extinction learning and recall. Information seems to function as an element of the larger context in which conditioning occurs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)980-987
Number of pages8
JournalCognition and Emotion
Volume31
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 4 2017

Keywords

  • Fear conditioning
  • cognitive information
  • extinction learning
  • psychotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Instructed fear learning, extinction, and recall: additive effects of cognitive information on emotional learning of fear'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this