Rumination moderates the effects of cognitive bias modification of attention

Kimberly A. Arditte, Jutta Joormann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Whereas research on cognitive bias modification of attention has produced promising results, it remains unclear how and for whom such techniques may be most effectively implemented. This study examined how trait rumination moderated the effects of two attention training tasks on biased attention, assessed via eye tracking, and subsequent stress reactivity. Using a modified dot-probe task, participants were trained to develop a negative attention bias, a positive attention bias, or no attention bias. Though neither the train-negative nor the train-positive conditions produced significant main effects on attention biases or emotional reactivity, rumination was found to moderate training efficacy, such that train-positive participants reporting high levels of rumination demonstrated greater early-stage positive attention biases at post-training, as compared to controls. Further, train-negative and train-positive participants who reported low levels of rumination demonstrated greater positive affect following an acute stressor as compared to controls. Theoretical and clinical implications of results are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-199
Number of pages11
JournalCognitive Therapy and Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • Attention bias
  • Attention bias modification
  • Cognitive bias modification
  • Emotional reactivity
  • Eye tracking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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