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What Intolerance of Uncertainty and Intolerance of Ambiguity Look like

Title: What Intolerance of Uncertainty and Intolerance of Ambiguity Look like: A Construct Validation of Two Transdiagnostic Factors and Their Differential Relationship with Checking Symptoms.
Name(s): Sarawgi, Shivali, author
Cougle, Jesse R. (Jesse Ray), professor directing dissertation
Flynn, Heather A., university representative
Boot, Walter Richard, committee member
Borovsky, Arielle, committee member
Schmidt, Norman B., committee member
Florida State University, degree granting institution
College of Arts and Sciences, degree granting college
Department of Psychology, degree granting department
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Doctoral Thesis
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2016
Publisher: Florida State University
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Florida
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource (61 pages)
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: A growing body of literature has begun to examine the transdiagnostic qualities of a variety of etiological and maintaining factors. Research suggests that intolerance of uncertainty (IU) is one such transdiagnostic factor that has been examined in various disorders including obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), generalized anxiety disorder, as well as other internalizing pathology. A similar construct, intolerance of ambiguity (IA), has also been identified as a potential transdiagnostic factor. To date, IA has not been examined as extensively in clinical research, and while a theoretical distinction between the IA and IU has been made, it has yet to be examined in depth. Research suggests that uncertainty refers to future focused unknown elements while ambiguity relates to present oriented unknown. The present study sought to investigate this time-oriented distinction between IU and IA by examining the role of these constructs in checking behaviors. A student sample (N = 111) was recruited. Following completion of a questionnaire battery assessing OC symptoms, IU, and IA, participants completed a modified eye tracking task that had previously been associated with checking behaviors. This task included three periods; in the first period participants encoded the locations of letters in a grid, followed by the second period of a delay, culminating in a probe in which participants were asked whether or not a letter had appeared in the encoding grid (misleading vs. resolvable trials). This eye tracking task allowed for distinct blocks of trials, in which participants received the same amount of information in order to complete a trial. However, in the second block participants had the potential for future threat (a noise blast) if they responded to trials incorrectly. The difference in blocks provided a manipulation for the time-orientation of the unknown. Results indicated that in an unselected sample and when examined continuously, checking symptoms and intolerance of uncertainty were not significantly associated with most outcome measures from the eye tracking task. Higher intolerance of ambiguity was associated with more fixations and shorter duration of fixations during the encoding period. Limitations and future directions are discussed.
Identifier: FSU_SUMMER2017_Sarawgi_fsu_0071E_13359 (IID)
Submitted Note: A Dissertation submitted to the Department of Psychology in partial fulfillment of the Doctor of Philosophy.
Degree Awarded: Summer Semester 2016.
Date of Defense: June 13, 2016.
Keywords: Intolerance of ambiguity, Intolerance of uncertainty, Obsessive-compulsive disorder
Bibliography Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Advisory Committee: Jesse R. Cougle, Professor Directing Dissertation; Heather Flynn, University Representative; Walter R. Boot, Committee Member; Arielle Borovsky, Committee Member; Norman B. Schmidt, Committee Member.
Subject(s): Psychology
Persistent Link to This Record:
Owner Institution: FSU

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Sarawgi, S. (2016). What Intolerance of Uncertainty and Intolerance of Ambiguity Look like: A Construct Validation of Two Transdiagnostic Factors and Their Differential Relationship with Checking Symptoms. Retrieved from