Background: Jumping to conclusions (JTC) is a reasoning bias in which persons arrive at conclusions with relatively little data. It is prevalent in schizophrenia and tied to outcomes. To understand the correlates and the roots of this phenomenon, this study explored whether deficits in mastery, a domain of metacognition which reflects the ability to use knowledge about oneself and others to cope with psychological problems, was linked to a heightened tendency to jump to conclusions. Sampling and Methods: Participants were 40 adults with a schizophrenia spectrum disorder in a nonacute phase being treated in an outpatient setting. JTC was assessed using the Beads Test, and mastery was measured as an element of metacognition using the Metacognition Assessment Scale. To rule out the possibility that results were the effect of impairments in memory or executive function, the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test and Hopkins Verbal Learning Test were included. Results: Partial correlations controlling for memory and executive function revealed that lower levels of mastery were correlated with a lower average number of beads requested before reaching a conclusion, or a greater tendency to jump to conclusions (r = 0.39, p < 0.05). Conclusions: Results are consistent with the possibility that deficits in metacognition influence or are influenced by reasoning biases.

1.
Moritz S, Woodward TS, Jelinek L, Klinge R: Memory and metamemory in schizophrenia: a liberal acceptance account of psychosis. Psychol Med 2008;38:825–832.
2.
Broome MR, Johns LC, Valli I, Woolley JB, Tabraham P, Brett C, Valmaggia L, Peters E, Garety PA, McGuire PK: Delusion formation and reasoning bias among those at risk for clinical high risk for psychosis. Br J Psychiatry Suppl 2007;51s:38–42.
3.
Garety PA, Freeman D: Cognitive approaches to delusions: a critical review of the evidence. Br J Clin Psychol 1999;38:113–154.
4.
Van Dael F, Versmissen D, Janssen I, Myin-Germeys I, van Os J, Krabbendam L: Data gathering: biases in psychosis? Schizophr Bull 2006;32:341–351.
5.
Lincoln TM, Ziegler M, Mehl S, Rief W: The jumping of conclusions bias in delusions: specificity and changeability. J Abnorm Psychol 2010;119:40–49.
6.
Warman DM, Lysaker PH, Martin JM, Davis LW, Haudenschield SL: Jumping to conclusions and the continuum of delusional beliefs. Behav Res Ther 2007;45:1255–1269.
7.
Langdon R, Ward PB, Coltheart M: Reasoning anomalies associated with delusions in schizophrenia. Schizophr Bull 2010;36:321–330.
8.
Woodward TS, Mizrahi R, Menon M, Christensen BK: Correspondences between theory of mind, jumping to conclusions, neuropsychological measures and the symptoms of schizophrenia. Psychiatry Res 2009;170:119–123.
9.
Semerari A, Carcione A, Dimaggio G, Falcone M, Nicolo G, Procacci M, Alleva G: How to evaluate metacognitive function in psychotherapy? The metacognition assessment scale and its applications. Clin Psychol Psychother 2003;10:238–261.
10.
Bateman A, Fonagy P: Treatment of borderline personality disorder with psychoanalytically oriented partial hospitalization: an 18-month follow-up. Am J Psychiatry 2001;158:36–42.
11.
Moritz S, Woodward TS: Metacognitive control over false memories: a key determinant of delusional thinking. Curr Psychiatry Rep 2006;8:184–190.
12.
Moritz S, Woodward TS, Burlon M, Braus D, Andresen B: Attributional style in schizophrenia: evidence for a decreased sense of self-causation in currently paranoid patients. Cogn Ther Res 2007;31:371–383.
13.
Lysaker PH, Carcione A, Dimaggio G, Johannesen JK, Nicolò C, Procacci M, Semerari A: Metacognition amidst narratives of self and illness in schizophrenia: associations with insight, neurocognition, symptom and function. Acta Psychiatr Scand 2005;112:64–71.
14.
Lysaker PH, Clements CA, Plascak-Hallberg CD, Knipscheer SJ, Wright DE: Insight and personal narratives of illness in schizophrenia. Psychiatry 2002;65:197–206.
15.
Lysaker PH, Dimaggio G, Daroyanni P, Buck KD, LaRocco VA, Carcione A, Nicolò G: Assessing metacognition in schizophrenia with the Metacognition Assessment Scale: associations with the Social Cognition and Object Relations Scale. Psychol Psychother 2010;83:303–315.
16.
Lysaker PH, Erickson MA, Ringer J, Buck KD, Semerari A, Caricione A, Dimaggio G: Metacognition in schizophrenia: the relationship of mastery to coping, insight, self-esteem, social anxiety and various facets of neurocognition. Br J Clin Psychol, in press.
17.
Huq SF, Garety PA, Hemsley DR: Probabilistic judgments in deluded and non-deluded subjects. Q J Exp Psychol 1988;40A:801–812.
18.
Phillips LD, Edwards W: Conservatism in a simple probability inference task. J Exp Psychol 1966;346–354.
19.
Dudley REJ, John CH, Young AW, Over DE: Normal and abnormal reasoning in people with delusions. Br J Clin Psychol 1997;36:243–258.
20.
Garety PA, Hemsley DR, Wessley S: Reasoning in deluded schizophrenic and paranoid patients: biases in performance on a probabilistic inference task. J Nerv Ment Dis 1991;179:194–201.
21.
Fraser J, Morrison A, Wells A: Cognitive processes, reasoning biases and persecutory delusions: a comparative study. Behav Cogn Psychother 2006;34:421–435.
22.
Menon M, Pomarol-Clotet E, McKenna PJ, McCarthy RA: Probabilistic reasoning in schizophrenia: a comparison of the performance of deluded and non-deluded schizophrenic patients and exploration of possible cognitive underpinnings. Cogn Neuropsychiatry 2006;11:531–536.
23.
Brandt J: The Hopkins Verbal Learning Test: development of a new memory test with six equivalent forms. Clin Neuropsychol 1991;5:125–142.
24.
Heaton RK: The Wisconsin Card Sorting Test Manual. Odessa, Psychological Assessment Resources, 1981.
25.
Kay SR, Fiszbein A, Opler LA: The positive and negative syndrome scale for schizophrenia. Schizophr Bull 1987;10:388–398.
26.
Spitzer R, Williams J, Gibbon M, First M: Structured Clinical Interview for DSM IV. New York, Biometrics Research, 1994.
27.
Moritz S, Woodward TS: Plausibility judgment in schizophrenic patients: evidence for a liberal acceptance bias. German J Psychiatry 2004;7:66–74.
28.
Lysaker PH, Dimaggio G, Carcione A, Procacci M, Buck KD, Davis LW, Nicolò G: Metacognition and schizophrenia: the capacity for self-reflectivity as a predictor for prospective assessments of work performance over six months. Schizophr Res 2010;122:124–130.
29.
Lysaker PH, Shea AM, Buck KD, Dimaggio G, Nicolò G, Procacci M, Salvatore G, Rand KL: Metacognition as a mediator of the effects of impairments in neurocognition on social function in schizophrenia spectrum disorders. Acta Psychiatr Scand 2010;122:405–413.
30.
Dimaggio G, Semerarci A, Carcione A, Nicolò G, Procacci M: Psychotherapy of Personality Disorders: Metacognition, States of Mind and Interpersonal Cycles. London, Routledge, 2007.
31.
Buck KD, Lysaker PH: Addressing metacognitive capacity in the psychotherapy for schizophrenia: a case study. Clin Case Stud 2009;8:463–472.
32.
Lysaker PH, Buck KD, Ringer J: The recovery of metacognitive capacity in schizophrenia across thirty-two months of individual psychotherapy: a case study. Psychother Res 2007;17:713–720.
33.
Moritz S, Vitzthum F, Randjbar S, Veckenstedt R, Woodward TS: Detecting and defusing cognitive traps: metacognitive intervention in schizophrenia. Curr Opin Psychiatry 2010;23:561–569.
Copyright / Drug Dosage / Disclaimer
Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.
You do not currently have access to this content.