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False Belief Reasoning Ability and Empathy: Evidence of a Relationship From the N400

Cane, James E., Ferguson, Heather J., Douchkov, Michelle, Wright, Daniel (2014) False Belief Reasoning Ability and Empathy: Evidence of a Relationship From the N400. In: 2014 Psychonomic Society Annual Meeting. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:46023)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided.

Abstract

Interpreting others’ actions

relies on an understanding of their current mental state. Here

we report a false belief study using ERPs where participants

(N=28) read contexts that described a character having a true

(TB) or false belief (FB) about an object’s location. A target

sentence described where that character would look for

the object - including a sentence-final noun that was either

consistent or inconsistent with the character’s belief. When

the character held a TB about the object’s location, the N400

waveform was more negative-going for belief inconsistent

vs. consistent critical words [t=2.79, p<.01]. However, the

opposite pattern was found when the character held a FB

about the object’s location [t=-2.39, p<.03]. Intriguingly,

analyses between the N400 inconsistency effect and empathy

scores showed a significant correlation for FB (r=-.51, p<.003)

but not TB, indicating that high empathisers successfully

interpreted events according to the character’s FB, while low

empathisers interpreted events egocentrically.

Item Type: Conference or workshop item (Poster)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Heather Ferguson
Date Deposited: 12 Dec 2014 20:14 UTC
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2022 10:58 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/46023 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Ferguson, Heather J.: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1575-4820
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