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Schizotypy, Autobiographical Memory, and Theory of Mind: Sex Differences

Deptula, Andrew E. MS; Bedwell, Jeffrey S. PhD

Journal of Nervous & Mental Disease: February 2015 - Volume 203 - Issue 2 - p 96–100
doi: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000242
Brief Reports

Abstract: Individuals with schizophrenia exhibit a range of cognitive impairments, including tasks assessing theory of mind (ToM) and autobiographical memory (AM). This study appears to be the first to examine how ToM and AM abilities interact in relation to schizotypy. Forty-seven undergraduate students reporting a wide continuous range of scores on the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ) completed a measure of ToM and a measure assessing various phenomenological qualities of AM. Female participants exhibited a negative correlation between the ToM score and the SPQ total score and a positive correlation between enhanced phenomenological qualities of AM and the SPQ disorganized factor score. No statistically significant relationships were found for male participants. ToM was negatively correlated with AM across the entire sample, which was not moderated by sex or schizotypy. It is possible that distinct underlying mechanisms account for the observed sex differences on ToM and AM performance in schizophrenia-related conditions.

Department of Psychology, University of Central Florida, Orlando.

Send reprint requests to Jeffrey S. Bedwell, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Central Florida (UCF), 4111 Pictor Lane, Orlando, FL 32816-1390. E-mail: jeffrey.bedwell@ucf.edu.

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