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Electrophysiological correlates of equivalence relations in elderly

Grant number: 15/22947-5
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2016
Effective date (End): December 31, 2016
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Psychology - Experimental Psychology
Principal Investigator:Natalia Maria Aggio
Grantee:Tais Francine de Rezende
Host Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


Considering the accelerated growth of the elderly population in Brazil and the lack of investigations in behavior analysis to cognitive aspects related to aging, the present study plans on move forward in a new line of research within behavior analysis, that allows assessing cognitive aspects of participants using electrophysiological record while they perform tasks involving stimuli from equivalence classes. To this end it is proposed to replicate a study by Bortoloti, Pimentel and Rose (2014) with participants between 60 and 70 years and without cognitive impairment. In Phase 1 participants will learn two equivalence classes, using a computerized delayed matching to sample tasks. Each class will be composed of four familiar stimuli (four pictures of faces expressing happiness and four pictures of faces expressing anger in each class) alternating as stimuli of set A, and four abstract stimuli. In Phase 2 the electrophysiological activity of the participants will be recorded while they perform a computerized task of semantic categorization. The task will be to identify whether the pairs of stimuli presented are related or not. The performances of participants in the equivalence classes formation and in the semantic categorization task will be analyzed individually. Will be considered as related pairs, stimuli that were part of the same equivalence class, and not related, stimuli from different classes. Performance data on equivalence classes formation, performance on the semantic categorization tasks and the average of evoked potentials will be analyzed.

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