Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 54, Issue 7, pp 1019–1049 | Cite as

The Relationship of Motivation and Neurocognition with Functionality in Schizophrenia: A Meta-analytic Review

  • Antonia Najas-Garcia
  • Juana Gómez-BenitoEmail author
  • Tania B. Huedo-Medina
Original Paper


The role that neurocognition plays in functionality in schizophrenia has been widely examined, although in recent years increasing attention has been paid to the influence of motivation instead. This study provides a review of the relationship of neurocognition and motivation with functionality in schizophrenia, taking into account objective/subjective functionality assessment, demographic variables, and the different terms used when referring to motivation. A search of electronic databases identified 34 studies that met the inclusion criteria for review. Correlation coefficients between motivation and functionality and between neurocognition and functionality were extracted. For a better understanding, potential moderator variables were also extracted. Meta-analysis showed that both motivation and neurocognition assessments were strongly associated with functioning, with correlations between motivation and functional outcomes being stronger. However, more than three-quarters of the variance in outcome remained unexplained by the moderating factors examined. The paper concludes with recommendations for clinical practice and future research.


Schizophrenia Motivation Neurocognition Functionality Meta-analysis 



This study was supported by Grants PSI2015-67984-R and BES-2010-03762 from the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, and 2017SGR1681 from the Catalan government’s Agency for the Management of University and Research Grants.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors report no other financial or relationship relevant to the subject of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Antonia Najas-Garcia
    • 1
  • Juana Gómez-Benito
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Tania B. Huedo-Medina
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Methodology of the Behavioral SciencesUniversity of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Institute for Brain, Cognition, and Behavior (IR3C)University of BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain
  3. 3.Department of Allied Health SciencesUniversity of ConnecticutStorrsUSA

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