Explore the Intricacies of Cognitive Control with our Executive Function Quiz



9 Questions

Which of the following is NOT a basic executive function?

What are higher-order executive functions?

What is the role of the cerebellum, ventral tegmental area, and substantia nigra in executive functions?

What is the Miyake and Friedman theory of executive functions?

What is the Banich 'cascade of control' model?

What is the Yerkes-Dodson curve?

Which disorders are executive functions impaired in?

What is the role of the medial part of the prefrontal cortex in executive functions?

What is the major change that occurs in the brain in adulthood?


Cognitive processes necessary for control of behavior:

  • Executive functions are cognitive processes necessary for the cognitive control of behavior.

  • Basic executive functions include attentional control, cognitive inhibition, inhibitory control, working memory, and cognitive flexibility.

  • Higher-order executive functions require the simultaneous use of multiple basic executive functions and include planning and fluid intelligence.

  • Executive functions develop and change across the lifespan of an individual and can be improved at any time.

  • Neuropsychological tests and rating scales are used to measure executive functions as part of a comprehensive assessment to diagnose neurological and psychiatric disorders.

  • The prefrontal cortex is necessary but not solely sufficient for executive functions.

  • Cognitive control is impaired in addiction, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism, and other central nervous system disorders.

  • The cerebellum, ventral tegmental area, and substantia nigra are also involved in mediating certain executive functions.

  • Executive functions are necessary to override prepotent responses that might otherwise be automatically elicited by stimuli in the external environment.

  • The major change that occurs in the brain in adulthood is the constant myelination of neurons in the prefrontal cortex.

  • Executive functioning skills are important for children's academic success and social emotional development.

  • Teaching children self-regulation strategies is a way to improve their inhibitory control and their cognitive flexibility.Theories of executive functions propose that cognitive control is the primary function of the prefrontal cortex (PFC), and that control is implemented by increasing the gain of sensory or motor neurons that are engaged by task- or goal-relevant elements of the external environment. The Miyake and Friedman theory proposes that there are three aspects of executive functions: updating, inhibition, and shifting. The Banich "cascade of control" model integrates theories from other models, and involves a sequential cascade of brain regions involved in maintaining attentional sets in order to arrive at a goal. Assessment of executive functions involves gathering data from several sources and synthesizing the information to look for trends and patterns across time and settings. The executive system has been traditionally quite hard to define. Neurologically, this behavioural repertoire clearly requires a neural system that is able to integrate the stimulus (the road) with a context (US or UK) to cue a behaviour (look left or look right). A growing body of research demonstrates that bilinguals might show advantages in executive functions, specifically inhibitory control and task switching. The study of executive function in Parkinson's disease suggests subcortical areas such as the amygdala, hippocampus and basal ganglia are important in these processes.Executive Functions and the Prefrontal Cortex

  • Dopamine modulation of the prefrontal cortex is responsible for the efficacy of dopaminergic drugs on executive function.

  • The Yerkes-Dodson curve represents decreased executive functioning with excessive arousal or decreased executive functioning with insufficient arousal.

  • The low activity polymorphism of catechol-O-methyltransferase is associated with a slight increase in performance on executive function tasks in healthy persons.

  • Executive functions are impaired in multiple disorders including anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, schizophrenia, and autism.

  • Lesions to the prefrontal cortex may result in deficits of executive function, motivation, and social functioning.

  • The medial part of the PFC plays a role in situations where executive functions are likely to be engaged.

  • Posterior medial frontal cortex signals the need for increased executive functions and sends this signal on to areas in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex that actually implement control.

  • Dorsomedial monitoring/error-feedback may be in the reverse direction.

  • The anterior PFC, dorsolateral PFC, and premotor cortex guide behaviour in accordance with past context, present context, and current sensorimotor associations, respectively.

  • Neuroimaging techniques have allowed studies of genetic links to executive functions.

  • More research is required to develop interventions that can improve executive functions and help people generalize those skills to daily activities and settings.


Test your knowledge on the cognitive processes necessary for the control of behavior with this quiz! Explore the different types of executive functions, their development across the lifespan, and the role of various brain regions in mediating these functions. Learn about the impact of neurological and psychiatric disorders on cognitive control and discover strategies for improving inhibitory control and cognitive flexibility. This quiz covers a wide range of topics, from theories of executive functions to neuroimaging techniques, and is perfect for anyone interested in understanding the complex mechanisms behind

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