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Title: Learned helplessness in chess players: The importance of task similarity and the role of skill
Authors: Gobet, F
Keywords: Learned helplessness;Cognition;Noncontingency;Similarity;Skill;Expertise;Veridical feedback;Seligman;Depression;Similarity;Uncontrollability;Chess
Issue Date: 1992
Publisher: Springer Verlag
Citation: Psychological Research, 54: 38-43
Abstract: The effects of noncontingency between subjects' responses and outcomes were examined with respect to treatment/posttest similarity and skill in the task. The experimental design consisted of three groups. The first group had to solve chess problems with objective solutions and received veridical feedback; each member of the second group faced problems with no objective solutions, and received the same feedback as the member of the first group he was yoked with, but without any control on it; the control group received a waiting task. It was found that the group with unsolvable problems was more depressed than the two other groups at the end of the experiment. The mid-strength players were the most sensitive to the manipulation, and the weakest players showed little effect of learned helplessness. It was also found that the effects were proportional to the degree of similarity between the treatment and the posttest. The results limit the domain of applicability of the learned helplessness model.
Appears in Collections:Psychology
Dept of Life Sciences Research Papers

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