Date of Award

Spring 2-4-2020

Author's School

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

Author's Department


Degree Name

Master of Arts (AM/MA)

Degree Type



Poverty and maltreatment predict deficits in emotion regulation (ER). Effective cognitive ER is supported by (1) cognitive processes implicated in generating and implementing cognitive reappraisal, supported by activation in brain regions involved in cognitive control (e.g., frontal, insular and parietal cortices) and, (2) emotional recognition and response, involving identification, encoding, and maintenance of emotional states and related variation in brain activity of regions involved in emotional reactivity (i.e., amygdala). Poverty is associated with deficits in cognitive control, and maltreatment with deficits in emotion identification and reactivity. Our goal was to identify dissociable emotional and cognitive pathways to ER deficits from poverty and maltreatment. Measures of cognitive ability, emotional identification, sensitivity, and responsivity, ER, and fMRI data during a sadness ER task were examined from a prospective longitudinal study of youth at risk for depression (n=149). Both cognitive ability and left anterior insula activity during a sadness reappraisal task additively mediated the relationship between poverty and ER. Emotional identification, sensitivity, and responsivity did not mediate the relationship of maltreatment to ER. Findings support a cognitive pathway to ER deficits from poverty and underscore the importance of dissociating mechanisms contributing to ER impairments associated with early childhood exposures.


English (en)

Chair and Committee

Deanna M Barch

Committee Members

Tammy English, Lori Markson

Available for download on Sunday, September 01, 2047