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Psychological Research

Maayan Pereg, Nachshon Meiran
The cognitive system can be updated rapidly and efficiently to maximize performance in cognitive tasks. This paper used a task-switching task to explore updating at the level of the plausible task-sets held for future performance. Previous research suggested a "fadeout effect", performance improvement when moving from task-switching context to single-task context, yet this effect could reflect passive learning rather than intentional control. In a novel "informed fadeout paradigm", one of two tasks was canceled for a certain number of trials and participants were informed or uninformed regarding task cancelation...
February 16, 2017: Psychological Research
Caitlin E V Mahy, Katharina Schnitzspahn, Alexandra Hering, Jacqueline Pagobo, Matthias Kliegel
The current study examined the impact of length and difficulty of the delay task on young adult's event-based prospective memory (PM). Participants engaged in either a short (2.5 min) or a long (15 min) delay that was filled with either a simple item categorization task or a difficult cognitive task. They also completed a questionnaire on whether they thought about the PM intention during the delay period and how often they thought about it. Results revealed that participants' PM was better after a difficult delay task compared to an easy delay task...
February 2, 2017: Psychological Research
Zipi Rhein, Eli Vakil
The present study attempts to characterize the contextual conditions (i.e., addition versus omission of elements) that enable or prevent transfer of an acquired skill. The effect of learning and transfer from part-to-whole and from whole-to-part was studied with the serial reaction time (SRT) task. In this study, two alternative sequences of the SRT task were utilized, a short (i.e., 'part') sequence consisting of six elements (ADBACD), and a long (i.e., 'whole') one consisting of 12 elements (BDCADBACDABC) in which the short sequence was embedded...
January 30, 2017: Psychological Research
Jovana Bjekić, Marko Živanović, Danka Purić, Joukje M Oosterman, Saša R Filipović
There is a growing body of evidence that a higher level of cognitive inhibition is associated with lower experimental pain sensitivity. However, a systematic examination of the association between executive functions, which include not only inhibition but also updating and shifting, and experimental pain sensitivity is lacking. This study aimed to overcome this limitation by exploring the relationship between a range of executive functions and different measures of experimentally induced cold pain in healthy participants...
January 25, 2017: Psychological Research
Gal Namdar, Tzvi Ganel
Recent literature has established a directional influence of irrelevant numerical magnitude on actions performed toward neutral objects. For example, fingers' aperture during grasping is larger when associated with large compared with small numerical digits. This interaction between symbolic magnitude and visuomotor control has been attributed to the planning stage of the action prior to motor execution. However, this assumption has not been directly tested. In two experiments, we tested whether the effects of numerical magnitude on grasping derive from action planning or from action execution...
January 20, 2017: Psychological Research
Mohamad El Haj, Xavier Saloppé, Jean Louis Nandrino
This study investigates whether deceivers demonstrate high memory of the person to whom lies have been told (i.e., high destination memory). Participants were asked to tell true information (e.g., the heart is a vital organ) and false information (e.g., the moon is bigger than the sun) to pictures of famous people (e.g., Barack Obama) and, in a subsequent recognition test, they had to remember to whom each type of information had previously been told. Participants were also assessed on a deception scale to divide them into two populations (i...
January 20, 2017: Psychological Research
Ruojing Zhou, Weimin Mou
Previous research (Zhou, Mou, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition 42(8):1316-1323, 2016) showed that learning individual locations relative to a single landmark, compared to learning relative to a boundary, led to more accurate inferences of inter-object spatial relations (cognitive mapping of multiple locations). Following our past findings, the current study investigated whether the larger number of reference points provided by a homogeneous circular boundary, as well as less accessible knowledge of direct spatial relations among the multiple reference points, would lead to less effective cognitive mapping relative to the boundary...
January 19, 2017: Psychological Research
Zahira Z Cohen, Daniela Aisenberg, Avishai Henik
Subitizing is a fast and accurate process of enumerating small quantities. Whether subitizing carried out in the tactile modality is under debate. We previously found a moderately increasing RT slope from one to four stimuli and a large decrease in RT for five stimuli when using one hand. Yet, a high error rate was observed, making it difficult to determine if the RT pattern found was indeed subitizing. To increase accuracy, we carried out training of the tactile enumeration task using one hand for 6 days...
December 26, 2016: Psychological Research
Riccardo Brunetti, Claudia Del Gatto, Clarissa Cavallina, Benedetto Farina, Franco Delogu
The Corsi Block Tapping Task is a widespread test used to assess spatial working memory. Previous research hypothesized that the discrepancy found in some cases between the traditional and the digital (touchscreen) version of the Corsi block tapping task may be due to a direct motor resonance between the experimenter's and the participant's hand movements. However, we hypothesize that this discrepancy might be due to extra movement-related information included in the traditional version, lacking in the digital one...
December 21, 2016: Psychological Research
Andreas Meyer, Benedikt Hackert, Ulrich Weger
The manifestation of psychology as an academic discipline more than a 100 years ago was accompanied by a paradigm shift in our understanding of psychological phenomena-with both its light and shadow sides. On the one hand, this development allowed for a rigorous and experimentation-based approach to psychological phenomena; on the other, it led to an alienation from the experiential-or qualia-facets as the topics under inquiry were researched increasingly through third-person (e.g., behavioral or physiological) measures...
December 20, 2016: Psychological Research
Daniela H Gonzalez, Suzete Chiviacowsky
The present experiment was designed to test the effects of practice with relatedness support on motor learning. Forty-five young adults practiced a task in which they were required to learn to swim the front crawl stroke for one length in an indoor swimming pool (25 m) using 50% of the maximal speed. In the relatedness support condition (RS group), the instructions emphasized acknowledgement, caring, and interest in the participants' experiences, while in the relatedness thwart condition (RTh group), instructions emphasized disinterest in the participant as a person...
December 10, 2016: Psychological Research
Christelle Evrard, Anne-Laure Gilet, Fabienne Colombel, Elodie Dufermont, Yves Corson
Why do some Alzheimer's patients produce fewer false memories than healthy older participants in the Deese-Roediger-McDermott paradigm, which was especially designed for the study of false memories in a laboratory setting? Using a very simple methodology, this study examines a new explanatory factor inherent in the paradigm itself: the order of presentation of the words in the lists. A sample comprising 149 participants (36 younger, 40 middle-aged, 37 healthy older adults, and 36 Alzheimer's patients) performed a DRM task with either a classic descending forward associative strength (FAS) presentation order of the words or an ascending FAS presentation order...
December 3, 2016: Psychological Research
Olga Entel, Joseph Tzelgov
Two types of conflict underlie performance in the Stroop task-informational (between the incongruent word and its ink color) and task (between the relevant color-naming task and the irrelevant word-reading task). We manipulated congruent-to-neutral trial ratio in an attempt to reveal whether task conflict can be monitored and controlled in the absence of an informational conflict. In our first experiment, no incongruent trials were included, thus allowing examination of a pure task conflict situation. The results revealed an impressively large facilitation when most of the stimuli were congruent and a smaller yet significant facilitation when most of the stimuli were neutrals...
December 3, 2016: Psychological Research
Matthew J Crossley, Jessica L Roeder, Sebastien Helie, F Gregory Ashby
Considerable evidence suggests that human category learning recruits multiple memory systems. A popular assumption is that procedural memory is used to form stimulus-to-response mappings, whereas declarative memory is used to form and test explicit rules about category membership. The multiple systems framework has been successful in motivating and accounting for a broad array of empirical observations over the past 20 years. Even so, only a couple of studies have examined how the different categorization systems interact...
November 30, 2016: Psychological Research
Manuel G Calvo, Aida Gutiérrez-García, Mario Del Líbano
We investigated the relative contribution of (a) perceptual (eyes and mouth visual saliency), (b) conceptual or categorical (eye expression distinctiveness), and (c) affective (rated valence and arousal) factors, and (d) specific morphological facial features (Action Units; AUs), to the recognition of facial happiness. The face stimuli conveyed truly happy expressions with a smiling mouth and happy eyes, or blended expressions with a smile but non-happy eyes (neutral, sad, fearful, disgusted, surprised, or angry)...
November 29, 2016: Psychological Research
Giulia Prete, Bruno Laeng, Luca Tommasi
In four experiments, we investigated the presence and strength of perceptual aftereffects to emotional faces, using spatial frequency filtering to manipulate awareness of emotional content. We presented angry and happy faces as adapters and used a control condition without adaptation. Participants were subsequently requested to judge the friendliness level of a neutral target face. We confirmed the well-known aftereffect for unfiltered emotional faces in Experiment 1. In the experiment, friendliness judgments were greater for the angry than the happy or the control condition...
November 26, 2016: Psychological Research
Frederick Verbruggen, Rosamund McLaren
Inhibition of no-longer relevant go responses supports flexible and goal-directed behavior. The present study explored if the interaction between going and stopping is influenced by monetary incentives. Subjects (N = 108) performed a selective stop-change task, which required them to stop and change a go response if a valid signal occurred, but to execute the planned go response if invalid signals or no signals occurred. There were two incentive groups: the punishment group lost points for unsuccessful valid-signal trials, whereas the reward group gained points for successful valid-signal trials...
November 25, 2016: Psychological Research
Niclas Heider, Adriaan Spruyt, Jan De Houwer
While it is widely accepted that the semantic analysis of a stimulus can take place in an automatic fashion, it is typically assumed that non-automatic processes are required to process the relation of one stimulus relative to other stimuli. Nevertheless, there is evidence to support the idea that such relational stimulus processing can also take place under automaticity conditions. We examined this hypothesis further in four sequential priming experiments in which participants were asked to categorize target objects as larger or smaller than a reference object (i...
January 2017: Psychological Research
Shirley Regev, Nachshon Meiran
In task switching, a conflict between competing task-sets is resolved by inhibiting the interfering task-set. Recent models have proposed a framework of the task-set as composed of two hierarchical components: abstract task identity (e.g., respond to quantity) and more concrete task rules (e.g., category-response rules mapping the categories "one" and "three" to the left and right keys, respectively). The present study explored whether task-set inhibition is the outcome of a general control process or whether it reflects multiple inhibitory processes, each targeting a different component of the competing task-set...
January 2017: Psychological Research
Jon B Prince, Leong-Min Loo
We investigated how the surface and structural information of pitch and time in melodies contribute to the perceived expectancy of melodic segments. The contour (pitch surface), tonality (pitch structure), rhythm (time surface) and metre (time structure) were preserved or altered in factorial fashion, either for the full length of a melody (Full condition) or only its last phrase (Last condition). Participants (N = 24) with a range of musical training received instructions to rate how expected the second portion of a melody was, having heard its first part...
January 2017: Psychological Research
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