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Intra-individual variations in the mentalizing capacity of adolescents: An exploratory study

Hirsch, Nicola G; (1998) Intra-individual variations in the mentalizing capacity of adolescents: An exploratory study. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Intra-individual variation in mentalising capacity was explored in a study of 39 adolescent school children. Representations of the self and others (liked and disliked teachers and student peers) were assessed across a range of conditions, using an experimental semi-structured interview. The relationship between mentalising capacity and social functioning was also investigated using measures of peer relations, academic self concept and depression. Intra-individual variations in mentalising were observed, with adolescents demonstrating higher levels of mentalising about a peer than about themselves, in relation to a disliked teacher. In addition, adolescents demonstrated higher levels of mentalising about a liked teacher, than a disliked teacher in relation to themselves. Mentalising was found to be related to levels of social functioning, with higher levels of mentalising correlating with lower levels of depression and more positive peer relations. Conversely, higher levels of mentalising were also found to be related to poorer academic self concept. The results from the present study support the view that metacognitive processes are influenced by the social relationships in which interactions occur, and findings are discussed in relation to attachment and social cognition literature.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: Intra-individual variations in the mentalizing capacity of adolescents: An exploratory study
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Psychology; Mentalizing capacity
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10099773
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