Retrieval-induced forgetting deficits in high anxious individuals

Jo Saunders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Previous research has indicated that high anxious individuals exhibit a memory bias for self-threatening material. This memory bias may be partly due to an inhibitory deficit whereby there is a failure to inhibit self-threatening information leading to an increase in anxious thoughts and memories. To investigate this issue, high and low anxious participants chose 10 neutral and 10 negative personality traits that were self-descriptive. In Experiment 1, participants performed retrieval practice on the neutral traits, and in Experiment 2 participants performed retrieval practice on the negative traits, while control participants completed an unrelated task. Participants then recalled all neutral and negative traits using a cued-recall procedure. Low anxious participants demonstrated a typical retrieval-induced forgetting effect (i.e., inhibition) for both types of trait, whereas high anxious participants failed to show the effect for negative traits but did so for neutral traits. The findings are discussed in terms of an inhibitory deficit in high anxious individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Early online date21 Aug 2012
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Aug 2012


  • retrieval-induced forgetting
  • deficits
  • high anxious individuals


Dive into the research topics of 'Retrieval-induced forgetting deficits in high anxious individuals'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this