Errorless learning and memory performance in schizophrenia.

Ciaran C Mulholland, Donna O'Donoghue, Ciaran Meenagh, Teresa M Rushe

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    8 Citations (Scopus)


    There is evidence that patients with schizophrenia have impaired explicit memory and intact implicit memory. The present study sought to replicate and extend that of O'Carroll et al. [O'Carroll, R.E., Russell, H.H., Lawrie, S.M. and Johnstone, E.C., 1999. Errorless learning and the cognitive rehabilitation of memory-impaired schizophrenic patients. Psychological Medicine 29, 105-112.] which reported that for memory-impaired patients with schizophrenia performance on a (cued) word recall task is enhanced using errorless learning techniques (in which errors are prevented during learning) compared to errorful learning (the traditional trial-and-error approach). Thirty patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia and fifteen healthy controls (HC) participated. The Rivermead Behavioural Memory Test was administered and from their scores, the schizophrenic patients were classified as either memory-impaired (MIS), or memory-unimpaired (MUS). During the training phase two lists of words were learned separately, one using the errorless learning approach and the other using an errorful approach. Subjects were then tested for their recall of the words using cued recall. After errorful learning training, performance on word recall for the MIS group was impaired compared to the MUS and HC groups. However, after errorless learning training, no significant differences in performance were found between the three groups. Errorless learning may play an important role in remediation of cognitive deficits for patients with schizophrenia.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)180-8
    JournalPsychiatry research
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2008


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