Ann M. Kring's broad interests are in emotion and psychopathology. Specific interests include the emotional features of schizophrenia, assessing negative symptoms in schizophrenia, and the linkage between cognition and emotion in schizophrenia. In addition, Dr. Kring studies emotion in healthy individuals, with a focus on individual differences in expressive behavior, gender differences in emotion, and the linkages between cognition, personality, social context, and emotion.
Dr. Kring and her research group have been studying the nature of emotion disturbance in schizophrenia, observing a couple of emotional disconnections in this population. First, people with schizophrenia show less observable facial expression despite reporting equally intense amounts of experienced emotion compared to people without schizophrenia. Second, people with schizophrenia score higher than people without schizophrenia on clinical measures of anhedonia, indicating a reduction in the experience of pleasure, yet they report experiencing comparable amounts of pleasant emotions in daily life and in the presence of pleasant stimuli. A primary focus of her research program has been to uncover the mechanisms driving these emotion disconnections in schizophrenia. Ongoing studies are designed to assess the nature of anhedonia in schizophrenia, examining anticipatory pleasure (i.e., pleasure in anticipation of future events as well as the ability to predict whether future events will be pleasurable), consummatory pleasure (i.e., pleasure in the moment), and memory for pleasurable events. Other studies are examining emotional responding among women with schizophrenia, an area that has not been well investigated.
Drawing upon this basic work on emotion in schizophrenia, Dr. Kring worked collaboratively with three other investigators (Dr. Jack Blanchard at University of Maryland; Dr. Raquel Gur at University of Pennsylvania, and Dr. Bill Horan at UCLA) to validate a newly developed clinical rating scale for negative symptoms. The Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms (CAINS) was completed in 2013.
An additional focus has been on the ways in which emotion can facilitate different types of cognitive processing in schizophrenia, such as attention and working memory, as well as the ways in which these cognitive processes can facilitate emotional processing. Current work in collaboration with investigators at UC Davis and funded by NIMH is examining the neural underpinnings of the maintenance of emotional responses in schizophrenia using fMRI and how maintenance deficits may be connected to deficits in cognitive control.
Dr. Kring's research also focuses on the origins and consequences of individual differences in emotional expressivity. Ongoing studies seek to answer questions, such as whether anticipating a future emotional event provokes an immediate emotional response, whether the brain responds similarly to the anticipation of social versus monetary reward, how we make decisions in the face of mismatches between behavior and emotional expressions, and how our memory of past emotional events influences our ability to forecast or predict our future emotional responses.
Painter, J. M. & Kring, A. M. (2016). Towards an understanding of anticipatory pleasure deficits in schizophrenia: Memory, prospection, and emotion experience. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 125, 442-452.
Campellone, T. R., Fischer, A., & Kring, A. M. (2016). Using social outcomes to inform decision- making in schizophrenia: Relationships with symptoms and functioning. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 125, 310-321.
Mote, J., Stuart, B. K., & Kring, A. M. (2014). Diminished facial expressivity but not emotion experience in men and women with schizophrenia. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 123, 796-801.
Kring, A. M. & Barch, D. M. (2014). The motivation and pleasure dimensions of negative symptoms: Neural substrates and behavioral outputs. European Neuropsychopharmacology, 24, 725-736.
Elis, O., Caponigro, J. M., & Kring, A. M. (2013). Psychosocial treatments for negative symptoms in schizophrenia: Current practices and future directions. Clinical Psychology Review, 33, 914-928.
Kring, A. M. & Elis, O. (2013). Emotion deficits in people with schizophrenia. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 9, 409-433.
Kring, A. M., Gur, R. E., Blanchard, J. J., Horan, W. P., Reise, S. P., & (2013). The Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms (CAINS): Final development and validation. American Journal of Psychiatry, 170, 165-172. (featured in Feb 2013 AJP Audio online).
Moran, E. K., Mehta, N., & Kring, A. M. (2012). Emotional responding in depression: Distinctions in the time course of emotion. Cognition and Emotion, 26, 1153-1175.
Kring, A. M. & Campellone, T. (2012). Emotion perception in schizophrenia: Context matters. Emotion Review, 4, 182-186.
Ursu, S., Kring, A. M., Germans Gard, M., Minzenberg, M., Yoon, J., Ragland, D., Solomon, M., & Carter, C. S. (2011). Prefrontal cortical deficits and impaired cognition-emotion interactions in schizophrenia. American Journal of Psychiatry, 168, 276-285.
Kring, A. M., Germans Gard, M., & Gard, D. E. (2011). Emotion deficits in schizophrenia: Timing matters. Journal of Abnormal Psychology,120, 79-87. doi: 10.1037/a0021402
Kring, A. M. & Caponigro, J. M. (2010). Emotion in schizophrenia: Where feeling meets thinking. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 19, 255-259.
Fall, 2019: Psychology 292: Introduction to the Profession of Psychology
Ann M. Kring