Effects of alcohol on attention in alcoholics
Muller, James Julius
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This study is an investigation of the effects of alcohol ingestion on attention in alcoholics. Alcoholism is herein defined as alcohol ingestion, over which the individual exercises no control, in association with deterioration in marital or family relations, social status, or vocational activity for five or more years. Attention is defined as heightened accuracy in recognizing stimuli congruent with expectancies, where equally available incongruent material is less well recognized. Higher recognition of congruent than of incongruent signals is "narrow" focus of attention. Uniform accuracy in recognizing congruent and incongruent signals is "broad," or unfocused attention. Existing data indicates that relative narrowness of attention depends on the distinctiveness of stimulus qualities, and on personal capacities to develop and maintain attention-setting expectancies. Recent findings indicate alcoholics as a group may fail to narrow attention when directive qualities are lacking in the stimulus environment, and may therefore depend more on external stimulation than inner initiative for focusing attention [TRUNCATED]
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Boston University
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