Advancing understanding of executive function impairments and psychopathology: Bridging the gap between clinical and cognitive approaches

Hannah R. Snyder, Akira Miyake, Benjamin L. Hankin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Executive function (EF) is essential for successfully navigating nearly all of our daily activities. Of critical importance for clinical psychological science, EF impairments are associated with most forms of psychopathology. However, despite the proliferation of research on EF in clinical populations, with notable exceptions clinical and cognitive approaches to EF have remained largely independent, leading to failures to apply theoretical and methodological advances in one field to the other field and hindering progress. First, we review the current state of knowledge of EF impairments associated with psychopathology and limitations to the previous research in light of recent advances in understanding and measuring EF. Next, we offer concrete suggestions for improving EF assessment. Last, we suggest future directions, including integrating modern models of EF with state of the art, hierarchical models of dimensional psychopathology as well as translational implications of EF-informed research on clinical science.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number328
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Volume6
Issue numberMAR
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Executive function
  • Inhibition
  • Methods
  • Psychopathology
  • Shifting
  • Transdiagnostic
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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