Background: Metacognition refers to the ability to evaluate and control our cognitive processes. While studies have investigated metacognition in schizophrenia and clinical high risk for psychosis (CHR), less is known about the potential mechanisms which result in metacognitive deficits.
Aims: We aimed to investigate whether neurocognitive functions including attention, working memory, verbal learning and executive functions predicted the tendency to focus on one's thoughts (cognitive self-consciousness) and beliefs in the efficacy of one's cognitive skills (cognitive confidence).
Method: Participants (130 CHR individuals) were recruited as part of the multi-site PREDICT study. They were assessed using the Metacognitions Questionnaire (MCQ) as well as measures of executive function (WCST), attention (N-Back), working memory (LNS) and verbal learning (AVLT).
Results: Cognitive competence was negatively correlated with N-Back while cognitive self-consciousness was positively correlated with N-Back and LNS. Linear regression analysis with N-Back, AVLT, LNS and WCST as predictors showed that neurocognition significantly predicted cognitive self-consciousness, with N-Back, LNS and WCST as significant predictors. The model accounted for 14% of the variance in cognitive self-consciousness. However, neurocognition did not result in a significant predictive model of cognitive competence.
Conclusions: Neurocognition was associated with an increased focus on one's thoughts, but it was not associated with higher confidence in one's cognitive skills. Neurocognition accounted for less than one-sixth of the variance in metacognition, suggesting that interventions that target neurocognition are unlikely to improve metacognitive abilities.
Keywords: clinical high risk; metacognition; neurocognition.
Association of Neurocognition With Transition to Psychosis: Baseline Functioning in the Second Phase of the North American Prodrome Longitudinal StudyLJ Seidman et al. JAMA Psychiatry 73 (12), 1239-1248. PMID 27806157.Neurocognitive impairment, especially in attention and working memory abilities and declarative memory abilities, is a robust characteristic of CHR participants, especial …
Metacognition as a Mediating Variable Between Neurocognition and Functional Outcome in First Episode PsychosisG Davies et al. Schizophr Bull 43 (4), 824-832. PMID 27590844.The present study findings identify that metacognition may be critical to translating cognitive and functional skills into real-world contexts, and this relationship is f …
Metacognition Within Narratives of Schizophrenia: Associations With Multiple Domains of NeurocognitionPH Lysaker et al. Schizophr Res 93 (1-3), 278-87. PMID 17407806.Research has suggested many with schizophrenia experience impairments in metacognition, or difficulties apprehending their own thoughts and the thoughts of others, and th …
Neurocognition in Clinical High Risk Young Adults Who Did or Did Not Convert to a First Schizophrenic Psychosis: A Meta-AnalysisA De Herdt et al. Schizophr Res 149 (1-3), 48-55. PMID 23830855. - ReviewBased on the current meta-analytic data we might conclude that it is possible to differentiate between CHR-C and CHR-NC with respect to working memory and visual learning …
[Characteristics and Impact of Metacognitive Deficits in Schizophrenia]C Quiles et al. Encephale 39 (2), 123-9. PMID 23219408. - ReviewThese data suggest that remediation programs specifically targeting metacognitive deficits have to be further developed.