Relationship of Metacognitive Beliefs and Strategies to Severity of Depressive Symptoms in a Population Sample



The prevalence of depressive disorders indicates the relevance of studying the factors of their formation and course, including in cognition process features and regulation. The aim of the study was to study the differences in the severity of the metacognitive experience (mental structures allowing for involuntary and voluntary regulation of intellectual activity) components of in people with symptoms of depression compared with people without symptoms of depression. Sample: 84 individuals aged 19 to 60 years (M = 25,3; SD = 6,6). Methods: self-rating depression scale by W. Zung (adaptation by T.I. Balashova), a short version of the questionnaire of metacognitive beliefs (MSQ30, adaptation by N.A. Sirota, etc.), differential reflexivity test by D.A. Leont’ev, LaCosta metacognitive behavior self-assessment scale (adaptation by A.V. Karpov). Results. The persons with symptoms of depression expressed introspection (immersion in self-observation) (p ≤ 0,001) and quasi-reflection (going into extraneous thoughts not directly related to life here and now) (p ≤ 0,05), as well as a high frequency of the use of metacognitive beliefs: opinion in the uncontrollability of their negative state (p ≤ 0,001), the need to monitor their thoughts (p ≤ 0,001), self-assessment of their cognitive functions as not working adequately (p ≤ 0,001). The resulting correlations of introspection with a range of metacognitive strategies (conscious decision-making, mental modelling — predicting the consequences of decisions made and building mental models of their knowledge in verbal or figurative form) and dysfunctional metacognitive beliefs (belief in uncontrollable anxiety, cognitive failure) are considered as potential risk factors for depressive disorder, its resistance and instability in remission.

General Information

Keywords: metacognitive strategies, depression, introspection, reflection, metacognitive beliefs

Journal rubric: Empirical Researches

Article type: scientific article


Received: 27.01.2022


For citation: Provorova A.N., Korjova E.Y. Relationship of Metacognitive Beliefs and Strategies to Severity of Depressive Symptoms in a Population Sample. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya = Counseling Psychology and Psychotherapy, 2022. Vol. 30, no. 2, pp. 146–162. DOI: 10.17759/cpp.2022300209. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Anastasiya N. Provorova, MA in Psychology, Postgraduate at the Department of General and Sosial Psychology, Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia, St.Petersburg, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Elena Y. Korjova, Doctor of Psychology, Professor, Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia, St.Petersburg, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:



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