Article

"Depressive Realism" Revisited: Depressed Patients are Realistic when they are Wrong but are Unrealistic when they are Right

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Citation

Wood J, Moffoot APR & O'Carroll R (1998) "Depressive Realism" Revisited: Depressed Patients are Realistic when they are Wrong but are Unrealistic when they are Right. Cognitive Neuropsychiatry, 3 (2), pp. 119-126. https://doi.org/10.1080/135468098396198

Abstract
A previous report indicated that depressed patients were significantly less confident in their responses when they were correct, in comparison with a matched control group. There were no significant differences between the groups in confidence ratings when the subjects answered the questions incorrectly. In the present study, the replicability of this finding was tested using new samples and a different experimental procedure. In Experiment 1, 10 depressed inpatients were compared with 10 healthy controls. Self-confidence was rated in a face-recognition experiment. Depressed patients were significantly less confident than controls when they performed the face-recognition correctly. However, there were no differences between the groups in self-confidence ratings when they made recognition errors. In Experiment 2, the procedure was repeated in a comparison of 10 dysphoric versus 10 nondysphoric healthy young adults. No between-group differences in self-confidence ratings emerged when performing the facerecognition task correctly or incorrectly. It is concluded that: (a) depressed patients appraise their abilities realistically when they are wrong, but unrealistically when they are right; and (b) dysphoric students may not provide valid models from which to extrapolate to clinically depressed patients.

Journal
Cognitive Neuropsychiatry: Volume 3, Issue 2

StatusPublished
Publication date31/12/1998
PublisherTaylor and Francis
ISSN1354-6805

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Professor Ronan O'Carroll
Professor Ronan O'Carroll

Professor, Psychology

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