Mood as Representation of Momentum

Eran Eldar, Robb B. Rutledge, Raymond J. Dolan, Yael Niv

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

76 Scopus citations

Abstract

Experiences affect mood, which in turn affects subsequent experiences. Recent studies suggest two specific principles. First, mood depends on how recent reward outcomes differ from expectations. Second, mood biases the way we perceive outcomes (e.g., rewards), and this bias affects learning about those outcomes. We propose that this two-way interaction serves to mitigate inefficiencies in the application of reinforcement learning to real-world problems. Specifically, we propose that mood represents the overall momentum of recent outcomes, and its biasing influence on the perception of outcomes 'corrects' learning to account for environmental dependencies. We describe potential dysfunctions of this adaptive mechanism that might contribute to the symptoms of mood disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-24
Number of pages10
JournalTrends in Cognitive Sciences
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience

Keywords

  • Decision making
  • Mood
  • Reinforcement learning

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