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Experimental Psychology

Hidehito Honda, Itsuki Fujisaki, Toshihiko Matsuka, Kazuhiro Ueda
The modern Japanese writing system comprises different scripts, such as Kanji, Hiragana, and Katakana. These scripts differ greatly in both typicality and frequency of usage. In two experimental studies using names of cities or prefectures in Japan as target stimuli, we examined two hypotheses, the typicality hypothesis and fluency hypothesis, in order to assess effects of Japanese script on psychological processes. It was found that Kanji names induced typical thinking in a participant's description of a location, whereas Katakana names induced rather nontypical thinking...
June 27, 2018: Experimental Psychology
Jiushu Xie, Xiao Zhong, Yanhui Xiang, Ruiming Wang, Jun Zhang, Jiawei Xie, Lei Mo
The Theory of universal grammar suggests that human languages may share some similarities at the phonological level. Based on this hypothesis, we further propose a language generalization effect (LGE) and hypothesize that people may inherit the universal phonological features from their native languages and then transfer them to foreign languages. To test this hypothesis, in two experiments, participants listened to a pair of normal and syllable reversed recordings (Experiments 1a-1d) or normal and phonemic reversed recordings (Experiments 2a-2d) in unknown and native languages and reported their similarities...
June 27, 2018: Experimental Psychology
Sung-Ho Kim, Jeong-Yoon Choi
Here we report a new ambiguous continuous motion display, in which two objects appear at the diagonally opposite corners of an imaginary square, move along the diagonal axis toward each other, and after meeting in the center, shift their trajectories to the other two diagonal corners. This display can be seen as two objects' colliding and bouncing off each other, with two competing interpretations of trajectory configuration requiring either vertical or horizontal integration of trajectory segments. Despite the fact that both percepts are equally plausible, the current study revealed a perceptual preference toward a vertical integration interpretation...
June 27, 2018: Experimental Psychology
Anja Franziska Ernst, Rink Hoekstra, Eric-Jan Wagenmakers, Andrew Gelman, Don van Ravenzwaaij
As a research field expands, scientists have to update their knowledge and integrate the outcomes of a sequence of studies. However, such integrative judgments are generally known to fall victim to a primacy bias where people anchor their judgments on the initial information. In this preregistered study we tested the hypothesis that people anchor on the outcome of a small initial study, reducing the impact of a larger subsequent study that contradicts the initial result. Contrary to our expectation, undergraduates and academics displayed a recency bias, anchoring their judgment on the research outcome presented last...
May 2018: Experimental Psychology
Antonia Krefeld-Schwalb
It is well established in the working memory literature, that performance can be improved by cueing attention toward the position of a to-be-tested item, even after that item's presentation. This retro-cue benefit is often characterized as the joint outcome of two different effects: facilitation of recall and memory strengthening at the cued position. While the latter has been mainly explained by increased context-content binding, competing hypotheses exist to explain the facilitation of recall. The present study focuses on two of these hypotheses: the removal of non-cued information and the protection of cued information against interference...
May 2018: Experimental Psychology
Tom Mercer
Retroactive interference occurs when new information disrupts the retention of an existing representation, but its effects on visual short-term memory remain poorly understood. The present study examined three factors predicted to influence domain-specific retroactive interference, including the type of distractor, its temporal position, and the length of the retention interval. Participants compared target and test objects over a brief interval that either was unfilled or contained a similar or dissimilar distractor occurring 200 ms or 1...
May 2018: Experimental Psychology
Kit W Cho
Words rated for their survival relevance are remembered better than when rated using other well-known memory mnemonics. This finding, which is known as the survival advantage effect and has been replicated in many studies, suggests that our memory systems are molded by natural selection pressures. In two experiments, the present study used a visual search task to examine whether there is likewise a survival advantage for our visual systems. Participants rated words for their survival relevance or for their pleasantness before locating that object's picture in a search array with 8 or 16 objects...
May 2018: Experimental Psychology
Rocío Linares, Santiago Pelegrina
Focus switching in working memory involves accessing an object in the focus of attention in order to retrieve its content. Objects in working memory can be viewed as consisting of two types of information: contents (e.g., numerical information) and contexts (e.g., cues to retrieve the contents). This study examined the extent to which content retrieval and context access may be separated. Three experiments were carried out in which object switching and content retrieval were manipulated. In addition, the alternation between the retrieval operations was also manipulated...
May 2018: Experimental Psychology
Attila Krajcsi, Gábor Lengyel, Ákos Laczkó
Interference between number magnitude and other properties can be explained by either an analogue magnitude system interfering with a continuous representation of the other properties or by discrete, categorical representations in which the corresponding number and property categories interfere. In this study, we investigated whether parity, a discrete property which supposedly cannot be stored on an analogue representation, could interfere with number magnitude. We found that in a parity decision task the magnitude interfered with the parity, highlighting the role of discrete representations in numerical interference...
March 2018: Experimental Psychology
Francesco Margoni, Janet Geipel, Constantinos Hadjichristidis, Luca Surian
Younger (21-39 years) and older (63-90 years) adults were presented with scenarios illustrating either harmful or helpful actions. Each scenario provided information about the agent's intention, either neutral or valenced (harmful/helpful), and the outcome of his or her action, either neutral or valenced. Participants were asked to rate how morally good or bad the agent's action was. In judging harmful actions, older participants relied less on intentions and more on outcomes compared to younger participants...
March 2018: Experimental Psychology
Erik Marsja, Gregory Neely, Jessica K Ljungberg
It has been suggested that deviance distraction is caused by unexpected sensory events in the to-be-ignored stimuli violating the cognitive system's predictions of incoming stimuli. The majority of research has used methods where the to-be-ignored expected (standards) and the unexpected (deviants) stimuli are presented within the same modality. Less is known about the behavioral impact of deviance distraction when the to-be-ignored stimuli are presented in different modalities (e.g., standard and deviants presented in different modalities)...
March 2018: Experimental Psychology
Manuel Perea, Ana Marcet, Marta Vergara-Martínez
Most words in books and digital media are written in lowercase. The primacy of this format has been brought out by different experiments showing that common words are identified faster in lowercase (e.g., molecule) than in uppercase (MOLECULE). However, there are common words that are usually written in uppercase (street signs, billboards; e.g., STOP, PHARMACY). We conducted a lexical decision experiment to examine whether the usual letter-case configuration (uppercase vs. lowercase) of common words modulates word identification times...
March 2018: Experimental Psychology
Demian Scherer, Dirk Wentura
Recent theories assume a mutual facilitation in case of semantic overlap for concepts being activated simultaneously. We provide evidence for this claim using a semantic priming paradigm. To test for mutual facilitation of related concepts, a perceptual identification task was employed, presenting prime-target pairs briefly and masked, with an SOA of 0 ms (i.e., prime and target were presented concurrently, one above the other). Participants were instructed to identify the target. In Experiment 1, a cue defining the target was presented at stimulus onset, whereas in Experiment 2 the cue was not presented before the offset of stimuli...
March 2018: Experimental Psychology
James R Schmidt, Robert J Hartsuiker, Jan De Houwer
In the present manuscript, we investigate the source of congruency effects in a group of Dutch-French bilinguals. In particular, participants performed a color-identification Stroop task, in which both (first language) Dutch and (second language) French distracting color words were presented in colors. The typical finding is impaired responding when the word and color are incongruent (e.g., "red" in blue) relative to congruent (e.g., "red" in red). This congruency effect is observed for both first and second language distracting color words...
January 2018: Experimental Psychology
Lennea R Bower, Zehra F Peynircioǧlu, Brian E Rabinovitz
People show an irrational dislike for objects that were once contaminated or had come into contact with an undesirable person, even if they are currently indistinguishable from other similar objects. To date, such negative contagion within the magical thinking literature has been shown only with inanimate objects. We addressed a boundary condition to see if it also extended to animate targets (dogs and children) while teasing out mere-proximity effects that would predict a similar contagion in the case of children...
January 2018: Experimental Psychology
Judith H Danovitch, Christine K Shenouda
Adults and children use information about expertise to infer what a person is likely to know, but it is unclear whether they realize that expertise also has implications for learning. We explore adults' and children's understanding that expertise in a particular category supports learning about a closely related category. In four experiments, 5-year-olds and adults (n = 160) judged which of two people would be better at learning about a new category. When faced with an expert and a nonexpert, adults consistently indicated that expertise supports learning in a closely related category; however, children's judgments were inconsistent and were strongly influenced by the description of the nonexpert...
January 2018: Experimental Psychology
Ryan P Atherton, Quin M Chrobak, Frances H Rauscher, Aaron T Karst, Matt D Hanson, Steven W Steinert, Kyra L Bowe
The present study sought to explore whether musical information is processed by the phonological loop component of the working memory model of immediate memory. Original instantiations of this model primarily focused on the processing of linguistic information. However, the model was less clear about how acoustic information lacking phonological qualities is actively processed. Although previous research has generally supported shared processing of phonological and musical information, these studies were limited as a result of a number of methodological concerns (e...
January 2018: Experimental Psychology
Stefan Scherbaum, Simon Frisch, Maja Dshemuchadse
Folk wisdom tells us that additional time to make a decision helps us to refrain from the first impulse to take the bird in the hand. However, the question why the time to decide plays an important role is still unanswered. Here we distinguish two explanations, one based on a bias in value accumulation that has to be overcome with time, the other based on cognitive control processes that need time to set in. In an intertemporal decision task, we use mouse tracking to study participants' responses to options' values and delays which were presented sequentially...
January 2018: Experimental Psychology
Joshua Snell, Daisy Bertrand, Martijn Meeter, Jonathan Grainger
Research has suggested that the word recognition process is influenced by the integration of orthographic information across words. The precise nature of this integration process may vary, however, depending on whether words are in temporal or spatial proximity. Here we present a lexical decision experiment, designed to compare temporal and spatial integration processes more directly. Masked priming was used to reveal effects of temporal integration, while the flanker paradigm was used to reveal effects of spatial integration...
January 2018: Experimental Psychology
Michael Greenstein, Alexandra Velazquez
The anchoring bias is a reliable effect wherein a person's judgments are affected by initially presented information, but it is unknown specifically why this effect occurs. Research examining this bias suggests that elements of both numeric and semantic priming may be involved. To examine this, the present research used a phenomenon wherein people treat numeric information presented differently in Arabic numeral or verbal formats. We presented participants with one of many forms of an anchor that represented the same value (e...
November 2017: Experimental Psychology
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