Journal of Undergraduate Research


depression, suicide, performance monitoring, neuroelectric markers, suicidal behavior


Family, Home, and Social Sciences




From 2000-2009, suicide mortality rates increased by 15% (Rockett, et al., 2012) and 98% of individuals who complete suicide have diagnosable psychopathology (Bertolote, Fleischmann, De Leo, & Wasserman, 2003). Individuals at risk for suicide exhibit cognitive impairments in decision-making and problem-solving abilities (Pollock & Williams, 2004; Jollant, et al., 2005). These cognitive deficits may be related to deficits in performance monitoring. Performance monitoring is the ability to continually assess behavior in order to make adjustments and improve performance. Performance monitoring is mediated by the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), which is related to cognitive control abilities. Furthermore, suicidal thoughts and behaviors are associated with abnormalities in the ACC (Mann, 2003). However, no known studies have examined if suicide risk is related to neuroelectric indices of performance monitoring. Also, neural indices in performance monitoring in individuals with major depressive disorder (MDD) are inconsistent. Suicide risk may moderate the performance monitoring discrepancies seen in individuals with MDD.