Graduation Year

2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ph.D.

Degree Granting Department

Psychology

Major Professor

Jonathan Rottenberg

Keywords

affect, cognition, mood, motivation, self-regulation

Abstract

Despite the theoretical importance of goal-related deficits in individuals with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), relatively empirical research has examined goal generation and perceived goal attainment in depression vulnerable individuals. The

current project sought to examine the impact of depressive status on perceived goal attainment in currently depressed, remitted depressed, and never-depressed women. In addition, perceived problem-solving skills, a construct thought to be critical for goal

striving and in goal attainment was also examined. Unexpectedly, no effects of depressive status on perceived goal attainment or overall perceived problem-solving skills were observed. Results did however reveal group differences in perceived control in problem-solving, and this was associated with perceived goal attainment. These surprising results suggest that developing positive expectations for goal pursuit may serve to aid in goal pursuit among depression-vulnerable populations. Limitations and future

directions are discussed.

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