Home > Support > Emotional Processing in Youth

CUtraitsWe are studying youth in and out of incarceration to better understand how different patterns of emotional processing affect the development of callous and uncaring traits and aggressive behaviours.  

We use the emotional pictures dot-probe task to measure patterns of attentional orienting to emotional images from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS). The dot-probe task is a spatially oriented motivated attention task that is administered via computer to capture attentional bias toward emotional cues. It has primarily been used to assess the relation between anxiety and biased attention, with more recent use to investigate the relation between emotional processing and child aggressive behavior (e.g., Shippell, Vasey, Cravens-Brown, & Bretveld, 2003) and psychopathic traits (Kimonis, Frick, Fazekas, & Loney, 2006; Kimonis, Frick, Muñoz, & Aucoin, 2008). The emotional pictures dot-probe task presents a series of picture pairs of varied emotional content, such as threat (e.g., vicious dog attacking), distress (e.g., crying child), positive emotion (e.g., kittens), and neutral (e.g., book) emotion. The dot-probe task is typically modified in terms of specific emotional content based on the focus of a given investigation.

Please contact Dr. Kimonis if you are interested in obtaining a copy of the emotional pictures dot-probe task.