First Advisor

Suzanne Mitchell

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Biology and University Honors




Smoking cessation -- Psychological aspects, Cognitive psychology




In decision-making tasks, individuals who prefer smaller, immediate rewards over larger, delayed rewards (delay discounting) are less likely to quit smoking. Indeed, decision-making tasks with delayed reward costs are sensitive to many aspects of substance use disorders. However, other reward costs might also be important. Our study focused on one of these other reward costs, which was cognitive effort (CE). 22 current smokers who were anticipating quitting in the near future were recruited to validate if more CE discounting predicted shorter abstinence times in reinforced smoking lapse period. Each participant had to be aged 18-45, and smoke 10-20 cigarettes daily. It was suspected that participants with larger values of the areas under the curve (AUC) of the CE discounting task would have shorter abstinence times. The results show that there was no correlation between performance on the CE discounting task and abstinence times of the lapse periods. The area under the curve values for delay discounting showed no correlation to smoking lapse times just as the CE discounting. This reinforces the suggestion for improvements needed for the lapse period and not the discounting tasks.


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