Atypical meta-memory evaluation strategy in schizophrenia patients.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


Previous research has reported that patients with schizophrenia would regard false memories with higher confidence, and this meta-memory deficit was suggested as a neurocognitive marker of schizophrenia. However, how schizophrenia patients determine their memory decision confidence has received scant consideration. This study, therefore, aimed to characterize the extent to which meta-memory evaluation strategy differs between schizophrenia patients and healthy individuals, and how such difference contributes to the patients' meta-memory performance.


27 schizophrenia patients and 28 matched healthy controls performed a temporal-order judgement (TOJ) task, in which they judged which movie frame occurred earlier in an encoded video, and then made retrospective confidence rating. Mixed effect regression models were performed to assess the between-group metacognitive evaluation strategy difference and its relationship to clinical symptoms.


Compared to the control group, the patients' confidence ratings were correlated more with the recent confidence history and less with the TOJ-related evidence. The degree of dependence on recent history of confidence was negatively correlated with the severity of positive symptoms. Furthermore, by controlling for the first-order TOJ performance, we observed that the patients discriminated correct memory decisions from the incorrect ones as accurately as the controls.


The present investigation revealed that schizophrenia patients tend to use more heuristics in making meta-memory evaluations, and such atypical strategy is related to their clinical symptoms. This study provides new insights into how schizophrenia patients perform meta-memory processes. Future research could consider examining such metacognitive deficits in light of other cognitive domains in psychosis.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Zheng, Y; Wang, L; Gerlofs, DJ; Duan, W; Wang, X; Yin, J; Yan, C; Allé, MC; Berna, F; Wang, J; Tang, Y; Kwok, SC

Published Date

  • March 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 27 /

Start / End Page

  • 100220 -

PubMed ID

  • 34646754

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8501761

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2215-0013

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2215-0013

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.scog.2021.100220


  • eng