Background: In order to see whether schizophrenia patients can concentrate on more than one task-cue bi-conditional discrimination task used to exploring context processing in relation with schizotypy. The study conducted by Haddon et al (2011) conveyed that high schizotypy participants showed impaired bi-conditional performances than the low schizotypy participants.
Research Aim: The aim of this study is to replicate and generalise the study conducted by Haddon et al and produce the same results.
Method: The participants discriminated using both simple and bi-conditional stage, and then O-LIFE was used to measure the schizotypy traits.
Results: Levenes Test have shown that there were no significant differences in variance between groups (F=1.424, df=3, p>0.05). Tukey post-hocs shown that performance levels were significantly higher in the 1st quartile compared to the 2nd, 3rd and 4th quartile.
Conclusion: participants with low schizotypy personality traits performed better than the participants with high schizotypal personality traits.
Previously, schizotypy has been described as the initial phase of schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is an illness which is associated with abnormal behaviour and cognitive impairments which includes delusional beliefs, hearing voices which not real and seeing things that are not there. It has been researched that schizophrenia affects around 1% of the population. It is not a distinct illness but the symptoms of schizophrenia are more psychotic and different from normal behaviour, (Jon & Vans 2001). Meehl (1962) have reported that, the first set of relatives of patients with schizophrenia has characteristics of schizophrenia. He argued that it is not an illness but it is genetic and schizotypal behaviour is useful but because of weak construction individuals can develop schizophrenia from it.
Vulnerability to schizophrenia can be examined beforehand by the measures of various attributes by which defines the schizotypal personality (Rodo 1953). O-LIFE is largest single dataset to measure schizotype (Claridge et al 1996). Oxford-Liverpool inventory of feeling and experiences (O-LIFE 1995) has been used in previous studies (Mason et al, 1995); it maintained its high consistency, also test and retest reliability (Burch et al, 1998).
The study by Barch et al (2008) explored the relationship among schizophrenia and schizophrenic disorder. The researcher used three versions of continuous performance test and an N-back working memory test on 63 participants. Among the participants some had schizotypal personality disorder (SPD), 25 participants had other personality disorder and 42 participants were healthy. The results from the study indicate that the participants with SPD performed poorly on the continuous performance test and N-back working memory. The researchers have found out that the participants with SPD had more negative schizotypal characteristics.
It has been observed that cognitive impairments are common in schizophrenia. It has been found that impairment in frontal lobe prevent the brain functioning as normal because frontal lobe contains all the information about multitasking, (Nancy et al 1993). This maybe the reason why patients with schizophrenia have deficit and less ability to carry out tasks that relies on prefrontal cortex. This can be seen from the results of Richard and Wayne’s (2007) study; they found that nearly all schizophrenia patients cognitive processing was decreasing. The researchers have found that the cognitive impairments are the earliest sign of schizophrenia. Bi-conditional discrimination is a task that explores the context processing in relation to schizotypy. This is to see if schizophrenia patients can attend to more than one task cue. The study by Haddon et al (2010) used simple discrimination in parallel with bi-conditional discrimination. There results indicate that patients