Year

2020

Season

Fall

Paper Type

Master's Thesis

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Science in Psychological Science (MSPS)

Department

Psychology

NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Lori Lange

Second Advisor

Dr. Brian Fisak

Department Chair

Dr. Lori Lange

Abstract

The mood-as-input hypothesis (MAIH) has been consistently examined in relation to worry, but few studies have examined its role in depressive rumination. Fewer studies have examined congruency effects, such that conditions of mood and perseverative task are congruent (i.e., negative mood and negative preservative task vs. positive mood and positive perseverative task). The current study thus examines the MAIH’s applicability to depressive rumination, includes further investigation on mood congruency, and incorporates a newly constructed positive rumination task to further assess the impact of the valency of a ruminative task. Undergraduate students were randomly assigned to one of eight conditions based on the rumination interview type (positive vs. negative), mood (happy vs. sad), and stop-rule (as-many-as-can (AMA) and feel-like-stopping (FL)). It was hypothesized that participants would generate more perseverative steps in mood-congruent conditions, depending on the assigned stop-rules, and that they would default to that assigned stop-rule in mood-incongruent conditions. Results determined that, under mood-congruent conditions, participants generated more perseverative steps. In particular, they ruminated more if assigned to the AMA stop-rule while in the negative rumination interview and primed with sad mood, whereas more rumination also occurred for participants with the FL stop-rule while in the positive rumination interview and primed with happy mood. These findings are consistent with the MAIH. As hypothesized, participants also defaulted to the AMA stop-rule under mood-incongruent conditions. The current study’s findings show support for the body of research relating to the MAIH, but also provides additional findings in the limited studies regarding congruency and the lack of research surrounding positive rumination.

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