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MARCH 29 , 2023

Abstract: Preschool children show neural responses and make behavioral adjustments immediately following an error. However, there is a lack of evidence regarding how neural responses to error predict subsequent behavioral adjustments during childhood. The aim of our study was to explore the neural dynamics of error processing and associated behavioral adjustments in preschool children from unsatisfied basic needs (UBN) homes. Using EEG recordings during a go/no-go task, we examined within-subject associations between the error-related negativity (ERN), frontal theta power, post-error slowing, and post-error accuracy. Post-error accuracy increased linearly with post-error slowing, and there was no association between the neural activity of error processing and post-error accuracy. However, during successful error recovery, the frontal theta power, but not the ERN amplitude, was associated positively with post-error slowing. These findings indicated that preschool children from UBN homes adjusted their behavior following an error in an adaptive form and that the error-related theta activity may be associated with the adaptive forms of post-error behavior. Furthermore, our data support the adaptive theory of post-error slowing and point to some degree of separation between the neural mechanisms represented by the ERN and theta.

Pietto, M.L., Giovannetti, F., Segretin, M.S., Lipina, S.J., Kamienkowski, J.E. (2023). “EEG dynamics of error processing and associated behavioral adjustments in preschool children”. Brain Sciences, 13, 575. https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci13040575

Access to the article here.

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