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Title: An investigation of self-biases in perception and visual perspective taking
Author: Mattan, Bradley Dale
ISNI:       0000 0004 5370 9283
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis addressed three questions regarding our tendency to prioritise recently learned self-associations. Following an overview of cognitive self-biases in Chapter 1, Chapter 2 explored how novel self-associations impact higher-level social cognition, namely, visual perspective taking (VPT). In Experiments 1–3, we examined how participants respond to third-person perspectives (3PPs) associated with self and other. Participants showed superior performance when explicitly targeting a self-associated (vs. other-associated) 3PP. Chapter 3 extended this line of research by examining whether these self-bias effects are related to social-cognitive ability and executive function. In Experiments 4–5, we found that both individual differences in empathy and putative age-relevant motivations reliably modulated self-bias in third-person VPT. These findings suggest that VPT paradigms draw on domain-specific and domain-general capacities. Chapter 4 examined the extent to which interpersonal dimensions (e.g., day-to-day personal relevance and valence) may explain self-tagging effects. Using behavioural and fMRI methodology, Experiments 6–8 showed that self-processing was largely independent of responses to relevance and valence in others. Finally, Chapter 5 provides a broader discussion of findings from the preceding chapters, offering some possible future research directions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Birmingham
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology ; QP Physiology