Abstract

Traditionally, techniques for disgust conditioning involve presenting two stimuli (one disgusting, one neutral) at the same time in order to create an association between them. We developed a new technique in which we presented participants with two stimuli in the same place, with a neutral image that morphed into a disgusting image. We then showed participants the neutral images alone to extinguish the conditioned association. To measure conditioning and extinction, we tracked participants’ eye movements. We predicted that conditioning would cause them to look away from the neutral images, and extinction would reduce this effect slightly. We also had the participants self-report whether they considered the neutral images disgusting before and after conditioning. Preliminary data follow the predicted pattern, in line with research on conditioned taste aversion. These findings validate our technique and may promote research on disgust conditioning in anxiety disorders.

Faculty Sponsor

Tom Armstrong

Sponsor Department/Programs

Psychology

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Poster Session

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Location

Cordiner Hall

Presentation Type

Poster

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Apr 19th, 1:00 PM Apr 19th, 12:00 AM

Disgust Conditioning and Eye Tracking

Cordiner Hall

Traditionally, techniques for disgust conditioning involve presenting two stimuli (one disgusting, one neutral) at the same time in order to create an association between them. We developed a new technique in which we presented participants with two stimuli in the same place, with a neutral image that morphed into a disgusting image. We then showed participants the neutral images alone to extinguish the conditioned association. To measure conditioning and extinction, we tracked participants’ eye movements. We predicted that conditioning would cause them to look away from the neutral images, and extinction would reduce this effect slightly. We also had the participants self-report whether they considered the neutral images disgusting before and after conditioning. Preliminary data follow the predicted pattern, in line with research on conditioned taste aversion. These findings validate our technique and may promote research on disgust conditioning in anxiety disorders.

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