Poster B106, Sunday, March 25, 8:00-10:00 am, Exhibit Hall C
Teens care more about their friends: An ERP study of social reward learning in adolescents and adults
Xingjie Chen1, Youngbin Kwak1; 1University of Massachusetts Amherst
Adolescents spend a significant amount of time with their friends and peer relationships are particularly valued during adolescence. We investigated how adolescents and adults made decisions during the social gambling task (SGT) in which they earned money for themselves and their best friend. EEG was continuously recorded. Outside the task, participants were also asked how much they would share with the friend if they were given $50 (intended share). Behavioral results suggested that adolescents (N=34, 10-17 yrs), compared to adults (N=30, 21-32 yrs), earned relatively more money for their friend than themselves during SGT. They also showed greater intended share with friend compared to adults. ERP analyses were focused on the fronto-central feedback-related negativity (FRN) and the attention-related P2 and P3, time-locked to choice outcomes. A three-way ANOVA with age groups (adolescents vs. adults), outcome valence (gain vs. loss) and recipient (self vs. friend) was used to compare the ERP magnitudes. For FRN, adolescents showed greater difference in gain vs. loss for friend than self, while the adults showed no difference across recipients. For early attention-related P2, adolescents showed greater P2 for friend than self during losses, while adults showed no difference across recipients. For late attention-related P3b, adults showed greater P3b for self than friend during gains, while adolescents showed a similar P3b for self and friend. Moreover, within adolescents, greater loss – gain FRN was associated with greater intended share with friend. Collectively these results highlight how peer relationships shape adolescent’s brain and influence their decisions involving friends.
Topic Area: THINKING: Decision making