On the evening of 24 June 2021, The 86th Gao Juefu Psychological Lectures and Expert Forum for the Centennial Celebration of the Department of Psychology was successfully held through Tencent Conference. Guo Xiuyan, Professor of Department of Psychological and Behavioural Sciences, Zhejiang University, Distinguished Professor of Changjiang Scholars, Ministry of Education, Vice President of Chinese Psychological Society and Associate Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Psychology, gave a lecture entitled "An fMRI study of regretful emotions in continuous risky decision-making situations and their effects on subsequent behavior" to students and teachers of School of Psychology, Nanjing Normal University. The lecture was given by the head of the School of Psychology. The lecture was hosted by Professor Wang Fengyan, head of the School of Psychology, and was attended by Dean Chen Qingrong, teachers Su Jinlong and some undergraduate and postgraduate students. Professor Guo Xiuyan's research areas are learning and memory psychology, social cognitive neuroscience, etc. She has published more than 100 papers and written three national planning textbooks, and hosted more than 10 national and provincial research projects.
At the beginning of the lecture, Professor Guo Xiuyan introduced a social emotion that is often experienced in daily life - "regret". When you have multiple choices but can only choose one of them and give up the other possibilities, the emotion of 'regret' arises if the outcome of the chosen option is worse than the outcome of the unchosen option. This is a negative and painful emotional experience, and prolonged exposure to regret can have a negative impact on mental health. However, it has also been shown that regret can lead to learning from previous experiences to optimise and guide subsequent behavioural decisions, which is of great relevance to individuals. Secondly, Professor Guo Xiuyan introduces three studies in which her group uses a continuous risky decision-making experimental paradigm combined with fMRI technology to explore the regret induced by people in continuous risky decision-making situations in depth in terms of psychological feelings, subsequent behavioural effects and related brain activity: Study 1, a behavioural experiment on the separation of regret and relief using a continuous risky decision-making experimental paradigm, and fMRI to The results showed that regret was mainly influenced by missed opportunities, that the behavioural patterns following regret were more risky, and that the degree of regret was negatively correlated with ventral striatum activation; Study 2 further demonstrated that pre-decisional attention allocation strategies may also influence regret by circling "The results of this study showed that the level of regret was lower when focusing on gains, and subsequent behavioural patterns were more conservative, with stronger activation of the ventral striatum, middle frontal gyrus and superior frontal gyrus. Study 3, which modulates subjects' attention to gains or losses of experimental material, demonstrates that attention allocation training that focuses on gains and positive information is effective in modulating regret, and that this training method is highly valuable for use in life.
During the Q & A session, Professor Guo had an in-depth discussion with the audience on the different types of regret, cognitive regulation of regret, and social comparison and regret. In addition, Professor Guo also answered students' questions about the experimental design process and experimental results. The presentation enriched everyone's understanding of regret theory, and also provided some inspiration and reference to the management of regretful emotions in life and individual mental health.
(Written by Zhang Ziyan)