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PRA > Volume 1, Number 1, January 2019

An Attentional Bias for Occasional Cellphone Users Assessed with the Emotional Stroop Test

Download PDF  (591.8 KB)PP. 13-21,  Pub. Date:March 26, 2019
DOI: 10.22606/pra.2019.11003

Antonio A. Álvarez* and Lucía Otero
Departamento de Psicología Social, Básica y Metodología, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela, Spain
The use of the cellphone has drastically increased in the last few years, which entails a risk for owners that their excessive use may produce an addiction. When someone develops this dependence, they tend to show an attentional bias to information related to it. The abovementioned hypothesis has been investigated in this study using an addiction Stroop test. In light of this, 43 undergraduates, classified as high or low message senders according to their daily average, were requested to perform a Stroop task including cellphone-related, toothache-related (control condition) and neutral words. No cellphone-related attentional bias was found, but the less frequent users were faster with toothache-related words than with neutral words. Analyzing the whole sample, this Stroop facilitation effect significantly and negatively correlated with cellphone usage frequency. No evidence of a cellphone-related addiction was found, but the results indicate that cellphone use may be associated with attentional biases.
Cellphone use frequency, addiction stroop test, attentional bias, toothache-related stroop facilitation effect.
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