Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/138155
Title: The relationship between maternal depression, anxiety and infants’ emotional and non-emotional learning
Authors: Foong, Ivfy Ka Yee
Keywords: Social sciences::Psychology::Affection and emotion
Issue Date: 2020
Publisher: Nanyang Technological University
Abstract: Infants of depressed mothers (IDMs) showed poorer emotional learning (EL) while infants of anxious mothers (IAMs) showed better and poorer outcomes. Maternal mood effects on infants’ EL should not generalise to strangers. If maternal mood affects infants’ EL, then infants will learn differently from strangers. Additionally, maternal mood should not affect infants’ non-emotional learning (NEL). Due to contrasting literature, this study aims to contribute to findings of maternal anxiety and infants’ EL outcomes, and support research on EL with strangers and NEL. Method: In the EL (social referencing) task, infants watched the adult demonstrate positive or negative facial and vocal emotion toward two ambiguous objects. In the response phase, infants interacted with the objects. Infants’ first touch, looking and touching durations were recorded. The NEL task involved infants learning novel languages by listening to pre-recorded syllables (familiarisation phase). In the test phase, familiar and unfamiliar words were given. Familiar and unfamiliar words occur when three syllables occurred together 100% and 33% of the time respectively. Infants’ first looking duration was recorded. Prediction: Maternal mood affects infants’ EL but not NEL. These effects should not generalise to EL from strangers. Results: Maternal mood did not affect infants’ EL and NEL. There was no generalisation to speak of. Discussion: Findings support research on maternal mood effects on infants’ NEL. Small sample size, comorbidity, restricted range of mood scores, adult-infant temperament fit and interactions with strangers before the EL task may have contributed to nonsignificant and unexpected results. Implications and limitations are discussed.
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/138155
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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