Monday, 13 February 2023

Optimal Conditions for Observational Learning

Optimal Conditions for Observational Learning

Observational learning, also known as social learning or modelling, refers to the process of acquiring new information or behaviours through observing others. The following conditions have been identified as optimal for observational learning:

  1. Attention: The observer must observe and learn from the modelled behaviour by paying attention. (Bandura, 1977)
  2. Retention: The observer must be able to retain the information observed to use it in the future. (Bandura, 1977)
  3. Reproduction: The observer must have the physical and cognitive abilities necessary to reproduce the observed behaviour. (Bandura, 1977)
  4. Motivation: The observer must be motivated to perform the observed behaviour. This can include intrinsic motivation (e.g., personal interest in the behaviour) and extrinsic motivation (e.g., rewards or punishments associated with the behaviour). (Bandura, 1977)
  5. Relevance: The observer must perceive the behaviour as relevant to their own life to be motivated to learn from it. (Bandura, 1977)


  1. Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

Sunday, 5 February 2023

Leeds Dependence Questionnaire

Leeds Dependence Questionnaire

Raistrick, Bradshaw, Tober, Weiner, Allison, Healey | 1994 

A self-report instrument called the Leeds Dependence Questionnaire (LDQ) assesses the level of dependence in people with substance use disorders. The questionnaire was created by a research team at the University of Leeds in the UK and released for the first time in 1994.

The LDQ has 20 questions that look at many aspects of drug dependence, such as how much a person's drug use gets in the way of their daily lives, how strong their need is, how important the drug is to them, and how much they can control how much they use.

Usually given as a self-report questionnaire, the LDQ takes between 10 and 15 minutes to complete. The responses are evaluated from "not at all" to "always." The overall score, which reflects the intensity of the reliance, is created by adding the scores from each item.

The LDQ has been used in numerous research to evaluate the degree of dependence in people with substance use disorders and has been shown to have strong reliability and validity. The questionnaire has also been utilised in international studies and translated into several languages.

To sum up, the Leeds Dependence Questionnaire can help people with substance use disorders figure out how much they depend on a substance. It is a reliable and valid tool that gives useful information about the type and severity of addiction and can help with treatment planning and making decisions.


Raistrick, D.S., Bradshaw, J., Tober, G., Weiner, J., Allison, J. & Healey, C. (1994) Development of the Leeds Dependence Questionnaire, Addiction, 89, pp 563-572. 

Hypofrontality in Schizophrenia

Hypofrontality in Schizophrenia

Hypofrontality, or reduced activity in the brain's frontal lobes, is a well-established feature of schizophrenia. The frontal lobes are responsible for various executive functions, such as planning, decision-making, working memory, and inhibitory control, which are often impaired in individuals with schizophrenia.

Proposed mechanisms

Several studies using neuroimaging techniques, such as positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), have shown reduced activation or metabolism in the frontal lobes of individuals with schizophrenia compared to healthy controls. This hypofrontality has been linked to the negative symptoms and cognitive impairments commonly observed in schizophrenia.
  • reduced blood flow
  • reduced dopaminergic activation
  • reduced metabolism
However, it is important to note that hypofrontality's exact nature and causes in schizophrenia are not yet fully understood and require further research. Additionally, hypofrontality is not specific to schizophrenia and may also be present in other psychiatric conditions.


  1. Lawrie, S. M., & Abukmeil, S. S. (1998). Brain abnormality in schizophrenia: a systematic and quantitative review of volumetric magnetic resonance imaging studies. British Journal of Psychiatry, 172(05), 110-120.
  2. Peltier, S., & Casanova, M. F. (2015). The anatomy of schizophrenia: A review of structural brain imaging studies. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 21(4), 235-255.

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