Links of socio-emotional context on performance in categorization task of adults with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities
Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities
Article publication date: 7 June 2021
Issue publication date: 26 July 2021
Studies on intellectual disabilities describe difficulties at the cognitive level but little about the other factors that can impact the individual’s performance. The aim of this research was thus to assess the effects of the socio-emotional context on the performance of adults with intellectual disabilities in a cognitive task. The main hypothesis was that people with intellectual disabilities will not have the cognitive ability to see the socioemotional environment as a potential resource, and that they could not use it to mobilize their cognitive resources to try and improve their performance and adopt more positive behavior.
A total of 32 people with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities were recruited. They performed a categorization task and were then given their results. Throughout the test, the psychologist observed the participants’ behavior and, more specifically, their emotional expressions, their pro-social behavior and their respect for social rules.
The results support the hypotheses, with better performance among participants who adopted pro-social behaviors, respected the rules and displayed positive emotional expressions. These results highlight the central role played by others in the ability of adults with intellectual disabilities to adapt to a given situation.
This study was conducted by a psychologist, which could have biased the relationship with the participants. A complementary study is in progress to measure the effects.
These findings have implications for cognitive remediation tasks aimed at mobilizing the cognitive resources of adults with intellectual disabilities.
To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the only study to evaluate the role of the socio-emotional environment on the performance of adults with intellectual disabilities.
The authors would like to thank ADAPEI 41 and, more specifically, Mr Barragan for his authorization to make the experimentation in his center. The authors would also like to thank all the participants for their help.Ethical: This research is academic, with no restriction on access or publication of data. No financial conflict or interest is declared. All authors have read and approved the manuscript and agree to have their names notified on this page. The authors agree that this manuscript will not be submitted elsewhere. An ethics committee validated the procedure.
Igier, S. and Pennequin, V. (2021), "Links of socio-emotional context on performance in categorization task of adults with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities", Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Vol. 15 No. 2/3, pp. 55-65. https://doi.org/10.1108/AMHID-10-2020-0026
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