Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Spring 2020

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Experimental Psychology

Committee Chair

Ralf Greenwald

Second Committee Member

Mary Radeke

Third Committee Member

Heath Marrs


The present research evaluated the effect of mood and individual differences on the regulatory process of emotions by using a regulation task with negative and neutral images to assess reappraisal and distraction ability. Specifically, this research evaluated the average amplitude of the latent positive potential (latent positivity, LPP) brainwave linked to distraction and reappraisal using an ERP analysis. In addition, the current study compared the modulation of the LPP to the self-reported mood of the participants and their individual differences in regulation ability through scores of a self-report emotion regulation questionnaire. The latent positive potentials from an emotion regulation task of 25 participants (7 males, 18 females) from Central Washington University were examined and compared to current mood state and individual differences in prior practice using reappraisal. The present study supported past evidence that distraction seems to be the most efficient emotion regulation strategy to utilize when quickly assessing negative stimuli. In comparison to distraction, reappraisal seems to be a strategy that requires heightened thought processes, making it valuable in long term but not in short term appraisal situations. The current study also found that current mood produced no change in the efficiency of the two emotion regulation tasks. Additionally, individual differences among the participants showed no relationship to the efficiency of the reappraisal tasks.