Article Abstract

Image reprocessing via wearable cameras: effects on memory recall and rumination after a social-stress task

Authors: Klaudia Murzyn, Alishia D. Williams


Background: Video feedback has been used in the context of social anxiety disorder (SAD) to help modify individuals’ perceptions about performance during exposure tasks. A novel way to capture both the observer and field perspective is through the use of wearable cameras. Compared to video feedback, which only provides information from the observer perspective and hence addresses concerns regarding the individual’s own performance, field/first-person image capture has the advantage that it can direct attention to external information during social situations. We aimed to develop a paradigm to capture both field and observer perspective images generated during a social stress task, to manipulate the mode of memory re-processing, and to evaluate the impact on state anxiety, memory recall, and negative post-event processing.
Method: A total of 46 participants (22 males and 24 females) with a mean age of 24.30 (SD =8.86) performed a 3-minute speech in front of a pre-recorded audience, after which they reviewed images taken during the speech task either from a field or observer perspective, or mentally reviewed the task or were assigned to the control condition. Twenty-four hours after the speech, they completed follow-up measures of memory recall and ruminative post-event processing.
Results: Participants in the field perspective condition recalled more factual memories of the speech task compared to those in the mental review and control conditions. Observer perspective re-processing (akin to video feedback review) was associated with higher post-event processing at 24-hour follow-up relative to control, but only for the negative Self subscale.
Conclusions: Results indicate that wearable cameras can facilitate recall of corrective information during exposure-based tasks and could be integrated into behavioural experiments for SAD. Ethical consideration and future direction are discussed.