The determinants of metamemory beliefs: the effect of Self-relevance and Friend-relevance. How important is anxiety?
More details
Hide details
Submission date: 2014-06-16
Acceptance date: 2014-06-19
Online publication date: 2014-07-02
Publication date: 2014-07-02
Health Psychology Report 2014;2(2):99–104
Metacognitive beliefs (beliefs about one’s own possibilities) are an object of research in several clinical groups. Personality characteristics determine the contents of such beliefs.

Participants and procedure
In the study of the general population, judgment of learning (JOL) techniques were used. This technique is based on estimating the level of material (words) memorized, then learning and memorizing. There were two types of tasks used: for Self-relevance and Friend-relevance. The task was to express judgments about a friend’s (he/she) beliefs (I think he/she thinks...) and about the friend’s performance (I think he/she will perform...) in the described task.

A higher level of trait anxiety led to negative self-evaluations of one’s capabilities. Higher levels of state anxiety promoted more positive assessment of the friend’s possibilities.

Anxiety analyzed as an isolated variable does not explain the character of metacognitive self-beliefs and beliefs regarding a friend. Both our findings and the results of previous studies (3) suggest that the tendency to under-evaluate one’s abilities is a frequent characteristic of metacognitive beliefs, being independent of anxiety levels. Future research should center around similar analyses of persons diagnosed with specific types of anxiety-related disorders.
Beck, A. T., & Clark, D. A. (1997). An information processing model of anxiety: automatic and strategic processes. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 35, 49-58.
Brzeziński, J., Gaul, M., Hornowska, E., Jaworowska, A.,Machowski, A., & Zakrzewska, M. (2004). Skala Inteligencji D. Wechslera dla dorosłych. Wersja zrewidowana – re normalizacja WAIS – R (PL) [WAIS-R (PL) – revised version. Renormalization]. Warszawa: PTP.
Cisler, J. M., & Koster, E. H. (2010). Mechanisms of attentional biases towards threat in anxiety disorders: An integrative review. Clinical Psychology Review, 30, 203-216.
Coles, M. E., & Heimberg, R. G. (2002). Memory biases in the anxiety disorders: current status. Clinical Psychology Review, 22, 587-627.
Comijs, H. C., Deeg, D. J., Dik, M. G., Twisk, J. W., & Jonker, C. (2002). Memory complaints: the association with psycho-affective and health problems and the role of personality characteristics. A 6-year follow-up study. Journal of Affective Disorders, 72, 157-165.
Cosenza, M., Pedona, R., Labella, A., & Nigro, G. (2007). Metamemory and personality traits. Rivista di Psicologia Clinica, 2, 136-146.
Dalgleish, T., & Cox, S. (2002). Memory and emotional disorders. In: A. D. Baddeley, M. Kopelman, & B. Wilson (eds.). The Handbook of Memory Disorders (pp. 437-457). London: Wiley and Sons.
Dunlosky, J., Serra, M., & Baker, J. (2007). Metamemory. In: F. Durso (ed.). Handbook of Applied Cognition (2nd ed., pp. 137-161). London: John Wiley and Sons.
Everaert, J., Koster, E. H., & Derakshan, N. (2012). The combined cognitive bias hypothesis in depression. Clinical Psychology Review, 32, 413-424.
Gawda, B., & Szepietowska, E. M. (2013). Impact of unconscious emotional schemata on verbal fluency – sex differences and neural mechanisms. NeuroQuantology, 11, 443-450.
Gino, S., Mendes, T., Maroco, J., Ribeiro, F., Schmand, B. A., de Mendonca, A., & Guerreiro, M. (2010). Memory complaints are frequent but qualitatively different in young and elderly healthy people. Gerontology, 56, 272-277. doi: 10.1159/000240048.
Hertzog, C. H., Dixon, R., & Hultsch, D. (1990). Relationship between metamemory, memory predictions, and memory task performance in adults. Psychology and Aging, 5, 215-227.
Holmen, J., Langball, E., Midthjell, K., Holmen, T., Fikseaunet, A., Saltvedt, I., & Tambs, K. (2013). Gender differences in subjective memory impairment in a general population: the Hunt study, Norway. BMC Psychiatry, 1, 19.
Jonker, C., Smits, C., & Deeg, D. (1997). Affect-related metamemory and memory performance in a population-based sample of older adults. Gerontology, 23, 115-128.
Levy, B. (1996). Improving memory in old age through implicit self-stereotyping. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 71, 1092-1102.
Lima-Silva, T., & Yassuda, M. (2009). The relationship between memory complaints and age in normal aging. Dementia and Neuropsychologia, 3, 94-100.
Mathews, A., & Mackintosh, B. (1998). A cognitive model of selective processing in anxiety. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 22, 539-560.
Mathews, A., & MacLeod, C. (2005). Cognitive vulnerability to emotional disorders. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 1, 167-195.
Metternick, B., Schmidtke, K., & Hull, M. (2009). How are memory complaints in functional memory disorder related to measures of affect, metamemory and cognition. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 66, 435-444.
Mogg, K., & Bradley, B. (1999). Selective attention and anxiety: a cognitive-motivational perspective. In: T. Dalgleish & M. Power (eds.). Handbook of Cognition and Emotion (pp. 145-170). London: John Wiley and Sons.
Neckar, J. (2009). Lepszy od innych, a może wciąż taki sam. Tendencyjność w budowaniu samowiedzy [Better than others, and may still the same. Bias in the construction of self-knowledge]. In: A. Niedźwieńska & J. Neckar (eds.). Poznaj samego siebie czyli o źródłach samowiedzy [Know yourself: on the sources of self-knowledge] (pp. 194-212). Warszawa: Academica SWPS.
Nelson, T. O., Kruglanski, A. W., & Jost, J. T. (1998). Knowing thyself and others: progress in metacognitive social psychology. In: V. Y. Yzerbyt, G. Lories & B. Dardenne (eds.). Metacognition: Cognitive and Social Dimensions (pp. 69-89). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Paulus, M. P., & Stein, M. B. (2010). Interoception in anxiety and depression. Brain Structure and Function, 214, 451-463.
Righi, S., Mecacci, L., & Viggiano, M. P. (2009). Anxiety, cognitive self-evaluation and performance: ERP correlates. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 23, 1132-1138.
Samson, A., Lackner, H., Weiss, E., & Papousek, I. (2012). Perception of other people’s mental states affect humor in social anxiety. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 43, 625-631.
Strober, J., & Esser, K. (2001). Test anxiety and metamemory: general preference for external over internal information storage. Personality and Individual Differences, 30, 775-781.
Szepietowska, E. M. (2013). Metapamięć. Perspektywa psychologiczna i kliniczna [Metamemory. The psychological and clinical view]. Warszawa: Wyd. Difin.
Szepietowska, E. M., & Gawda, B. (2013). Metapamięć: jakie są uwarunkowania sądów o własnej pamięci? Badania pilotażowe [Metamemory: what are the determinants of beliefs about one’s own memory?]. Psychologia-Etologia-Genetyka, 27, 41-57.
Wisco, B. E., & Nolen-Hoeksema, S. (2010). Interpretation bias and depressive symptoms: The role of self-relevance. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 48, 1113-1122.
Wrześniewski, K., Sosnowski, T., & Matusik, D. (2002). Inwentarz Stanu i Cechy Lęku [State and Trait Anxiety Inventory]. Warszawa: Pracownia Testów Psychologicznych PTP.