Domain-specific enhancement of metacognitive ability following meditation training.

TitleDomain-specific enhancement of metacognitive ability following meditation training.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsBaird B, Mrazek MD, Phillips DT, Schooler JW
JournalJ Exp Psychol Gen
Date Published2014 Oct
KeywordsAwareness, Cognition, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, Humans, Judgment, Male, meditation, Memory, Neuropsychological Tests, Young Adult

Contemplative mental practices aim to enable individuals to develop greater awareness of their own cognitive and affective states through repeated examination of first-person experience. Recent cross-sectional studies of long-term meditation practitioners suggest that the subjective reports of such individuals are better calibrated with objective indices; however, the impact of mental training on metacognitive ability has not yet been examined in a randomized controlled investigation. The present study evaluated the impact of a 2-week meditation-training program on introspective accuracy in the domains of perception and memory. Compared with an active control group that elicited no change, we found that a 2-week meditation program significantly enhanced introspective accuracy, quantified by metacognitive judgments of cognition on a trial-by-trial basis, in a memory but not a perception domain. Together, these data suggest that, in at least some domains, the human capacity to introspect is plastic and can be enhanced through training.

Alternate JournalJ Exp Psychol Gen
PubMed ID24820248
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