Pavlovian conditioning of an approach bias in low-dependent smokers
In the present study, it was investigated whether smokers can acquire a behavioural approach bias through Pavlovian conditioning.
More specifically, it was tested whether pairing neutral stimuli with either smoking availability or unavailability would lead to both differential urge responding to these stimuli and a corresponding shift in approach bias.
Materials and methods
Thirty-nine low-dependent smokers performed a stimulus–response compatibility (SRC) task with which one can determine an approach bias. Next, participants received a conditioning session in which one cue (either a blue or yellow background screen colour) was paired with the opportunity to smoke (CS+) and another cue was paired with the absence of the opportunity to smoke (CS−). After conditioning, all participants again performed the SRC task.
Evidence for the conditioning of an approach bias but not smoking urges was found. This effect, although, was only apparent when smokers had been prompted to determine the contingency between the cues and smoking outcome.
It is concluded that one can differentially condition an approach bias in low-dependent smokers.
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- Pavlovian conditioning of an approach bias in low-dependent smokers
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Volume 194, Issue 1 , pp 33-39
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- Urge to smoke
- Smoking availability
- Incentive motivation
- Differential conditioning
- Contingency awareness
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- Author Affiliations
- 1. Department of Medical, Clinical and Experimental Psychology, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands
- 2. Department of Experimental Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Maastricht University, P.O. Box 616, 6200 MD, Maastricht, The Netherlands
- 3. Department of Clinical Psychology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands