Socio-emotional Processing in Children, Adolescents and Young Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury
Dendle, Jac Rhys
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
Objective: Research has demonstrated deficits in socio-emotional processing following childhood traumatic brain injury (TBI; Tonks et al., 2009a). However, it is not known whether a link exists between socio-emotional processing, TBI and offending. Drawing on Ochsner’s (2008) socio-emotional processing model, the current study aimed to investigate facial emotion recognition accuracy and bias in young offenders with TBI. Setting: Research was conducted across three youth offender services. Participants: Thirty seven participants completed the study. Thirteen participants reported a high dosage of TBI. Design: The study had a cross sectional within and between subjects design. Main Measures: Penton-Voak and Munafo’s (2012) emotional recognition task was completed. Results: The results indicated that young offenders with a TBI were not significantly worse at facial emotion recognition compared to those with no TBI. Both groups showed a bias towards positive emotions. No between group differences were found for emotion bias. Conclusion: The findings did not support the use of Ochsner’s (2008) socio-emotional processing model for this population. Due to the small sample size, inadequate power and lack of non-offender control groups, it is not possible to draw any firm conclusions from the results of this study. Future research should aim to investigate whether there are any links between TBI, socio-emotional processing and offending.
Doctorate in Clinical Psychology