Latent is defined as a state in which a disorder is present and capable of becoming evident but is not yet obvious or active.

In psychology, the term "latent" can refer to something that is not immediately apparent or visible, but that has the potential to become manifest or to influence behavior or cognition. Latent variables are often used in psychological research to explain the relationships between observed variables or to account for variance in a particular phenomenon.

For example, a researcher might study the relationship between two observed variables, such as anxiety levels and performance on a task. The researcher might propose that a latent variable, such as motivation, might be influencing the relationship between anxiety and task performance. In this case, motivation would be considered a latent variable because it is not directly observable, but it is thought to be influencing the relationship between anxiety and task performance.

Latent variables can also refer to underlying psychological processes or traits that are not immediately visible or apparent, but that are thought to influence behavior or cognition. For example, a researcher might study the relationship between an individual's personality traits and their social behavior, and propose that a latent variable, such as self-esteem, is influencing the relationship.

Overall, "latent" refers to something that is not immediately apparent or visible, but that has the potential to become manifest or to influence behavior or cognition. In psychology, latent variables are often used to explain the relationships between observed variables or to account for variance in a particular phenomenon, and can refer to both underlying psychological processes or traits and to variables that are not directly observable.

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