Category: Adult Anxiety

Symposium

Application of Novel Processing Stream to Tradition Probe Detection Task: Reliability and Validity in Clinical Practice

Friday, November 17
10:15 AM - 11:45 AM
Location: Sapphire Ballroom B, Level 4, Sapphire Level

Keywords: Anxiety | Information Processing
Presentation Type: Symposium

The probe detection task is by far the most commonly used paradigm in Attention bias modification (ABM) research.  However, the reliability of the traditional methods of measuring bias in this task is less than satisfactory.  Despite the growing popularity of the probe detection task as an assessment and training instrument in clinical populations, until recently few studies have systemically examined the reliability of this measure in a large clinical population.   Research that has examined the effects of changing outlier handling methods on reliability in smaller sample has only resulted in modest improvement.


 In the current study we applied modern analytical techniques of data cleaning and analysis to the reaction time data collected as part of a large study of ABM delivered At-home for youth with an anxiety disorder. The youth were seeking treatment for clinically diagnosed anxiety disorders that were confirmed via research evaluation to have social phobia (SP), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), and/or separation anxiety disorder (SAD).


 We collected data from 337 teens and obtained 320372 observations over the course of the study up to this point.  Preliminary results suggest that the application of the new data analytic techniques including: low pass filtering the data, examining regression based estimate of bias measures resulted in significant improvement in reliability of the measures.  Moreover, these new bias scores correlated with standard measure of anxiety in this sample.  As this is the largest sample to date to examine the psychometric properties of the bias measure in a clinical sample it provides a guide for application of these measures in clinical settings.

Nader Amir

Professor
San Diego State University

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