Understanding the Constellation of Adolescent Emotional Clarity and Cognitive Response Styles when Predicting Depression: A Latent Class Analysis
Adolescence is a period of human development associated with increased emotional intensity and heightened vulnerability to developing psychopathology. This study used Latent Class Analysis to identify subgroups of youth based on emotional clarity and cognitive response styles. Participants were 436 adolescents (51.8% female; 48.2% African-American/Black, 47.4% Caucasian/White) who completed measures of emotional clarity, cognitive response styles, and depression at baseline (M = 13.02 years, SD = .83), and at a 1-year and 4-year follow-up. Four classes were identified and used to predict depression outcomes. Overall, youth with above average emotional clarity who reported using a variety of adaptive cognitive response styles also had the lowest level of depressive symptoms at baseline. Class membership did not predict depressive symptoms at any follow-up. The results suggest that the unique profiles based on youth reported levels of emotional clarity and use of problem solving, distraction, and rumination, may not be more predictive of depression outcomes, beyond earlier assessments of depression or by examining these facets in isolation.
KeywordsLatent class analysis Adolescence Cognitive coping Emotional clarity Psychopathology
This research was supported by National Institute of Mental Health Grants MH79369 and MH101168 to Lauren B. Alloy. Brae Anne McArthur was supported by a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. Taylor A. Burke was supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Student Research Fellowship.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Brae Anne McArthur, Liza M. Haas, Taylor A. Burke, Lisa E. Johnson, Thomas M. Olino, Lyn Y. Abramson and Lauren B. Alloy declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.
- Alloy, L. B., & Abramson, L. Y. (2007). The adolescent surge in depression and emergence of gender differences: A biocognitive vulnerability-stress model in developmental context. In D. Romer & E. F. Walker (Eds.), Adolescent psychopathology and the developing brain: Integrating brain and prevention science. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Alloy, L. B., Black, S. K., Young, M. E., Goldstein, K. E., Shapero, B. G., Stange, J. P., et al. (2012). Cognitive vulnerabilities and depression versus other psychopathology symptoms and diagnoses in early adolescence. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 41, 539–560.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Beck, A. T. (1967). Depression: Clinical, experimental, and theoretical aspects. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press.Google Scholar
- Brinthaupt, T. M., & Lipka, R. P. (2002). Understanding early adolescent self and identity: An introduction. In R. P. Lipka & T. M. Brinthaupt (Eds.), Understanding early adolescent self and identity: Applications and interventions (pp. 1–21). Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.Google Scholar
- Chang, E. C., D’Zurilla, T. J., & Sanna, L. J. (Eds.). (2004). Social problem solving: Theory, research, and training. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
- Denham, S. A. (2007). Dealing with feelings: How children negotiate the worlds of emotions and social relationships. Cognition, Brain, Behavior, 11(1), 1.Google Scholar
- Ge, X., Lorenz, F. O., Conger, R. D., Elder, G. H., & Simons, R. L. (1994). Trajectories of stressful life events and depressive symptoms during adolescence. Developmental Psychopathology, 30, 467–483.Google Scholar
- Gross, J. J., & Thompson, R. A. (2007). Emotion regulation: Conceptual foundations. In J. J. Gross (Ed.), Handbook of emotion regulation (pp. 3–24). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
- Kovacs, M. (1992). The children’s depression inventory: Manual. North Tonawanda, NY: Multi-Health Systems.Google Scholar
- Muthén, L. K., & Muthén, B. O. (1998–2015). Mplus user’s guide (7th ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Muthén & Muthén.Google Scholar
- Rubenstein, L. M., Hamilton, J. L., Stange, J. P., Flynn, M., Abramson, L. Y., & Alloy, L. B. (2015). The cyclical nature of depressed mood and future risk: Depression, rumination, and deficits in emotional clarity in adolescent girls. Journal of Adolescence, 42, 68–76.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Salovey, P., Mayer, J. D., Goldman, S. L., Turvey, C., & Palfai, T. P. (1995). Emotional attention, clarity, and repair: Exploring emotional intelligence using the trait meta-mood scale. In J. Pennebaker (Ed.), Emotion, disclosure, and health. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
- Stange, J. P., Alloy, L. B., & Fresco, D. M. (2017). Inflexibility as a vulnerability to depression: A systematic qualitative review. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 24, 245–276.Google Scholar
- Steinberg, L. (2017). Adolescence (11th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill Education.Google Scholar