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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
Yongchun Wang, Yonghui Wang, Peng Liu, Meilin Di, Yanyan Gong, Mengge Tan
This study investigated the role of representation strength of the prime in subliminal visuomotor priming in two experiments. Prime/target compatibility (compatible and incompatible) and preposed object type (jumbled lines, strong masking; and rectangular outlines, weak masking) were manipulated in Experiment 1. A significant negative compatibility effect (NCE) was observed in the rectangle condition, whereas no compatibility effect was found in the line condition. However, when a new variable, prime duration, was introduced in Experiment 2, the NCE was reversed with an increase in the prime duration in the rectangle condition, whereas the NCE was maintained in the line condition...
November 2017: Experimental Psychology
Luisa Lugli, Stefania D'Ascenzo, Roberto Nicoletti, Carlo Umiltà
The Simon effect lies on the automatic generation of a stimulus spatial code, which, however, is not relevant for performing the task. Results typically show faster performance when stimulus and response locations correspond, rather than when they do not. Considering reaction time distributions, two types of Simon effect have been individuated, which are thought to depend on different mechanisms: visuomotor activation versus cognitive translation of spatial codes. The present study aimed to investigate whether the presence of a distractor, which affects the allocation of attentional resources and, thus, the time needed to generate the spatial code, changes the nature of the Simon effect...
November 2017: Experimental Psychology
Justine Magnard, Gilles Berrut, Christophe Cornu, Thibault Deschamps
Using an original conflict task paradigm, Nassauer and Halperin (2003) argued that inhibition ability can be classified into two distinct perceptual and motor inhibitory processes. The current study examined the robustness of this paradigm by raising two major methodological points: the amount of information that needs to be processed and the task order (fixed vs. random). Sixty young adults performed the original or modified tasks. Overall, a decrease in the amount of information had the effect of removing the stimulus conflict on some subtests...
November 2017: Experimental Psychology
Kerstin Dittrich, Lydia Puffe, Karl Christoph Klauer
In the social Simon task, two participants perform a spatial compatibility task together, each of them responding to only one stimulus (e.g., one participant reacts to red, the other to green stimuli). Participants show joint spatial compatibility effects (SCEs), that is, they respond faster when their go-stimulus appears on their half of the screen. Effects are absent when the same go/no-go task is performed without a coactor. Joint SCEs were originally explained in terms of shared task representations, but recent research suggests that effects result from spatial response coding: in joint go/no-go tasks, participants perceive themselves as the right/left participant operating a right/left response key...
November 2017: Experimental Psychology
Rebecca Weil, Tomás A Palma, Bertram Gawronski
Priming effects in the Affect Misattribution Procedure (AMP) have been explained by a misattribution of prime-related affect to neutral targets. However, the measure has been criticized for being susceptible to intentional use of prime-features in judgments of the targets. To isolate the contribution of unintentional processes, the present research expanded on the finding that positive affect can be misattributed to familiarity (i.e., positivity-familiarity effect). To the extent that prime-valence is deemed irrelevant for judgments of target-familiarity, positivity-familiarity effects in the AMP could potentially rule out intentional use of the primes...
November 2017: Experimental Psychology
Sebastian Dummel, Ronald Hübner
Recent research has shown that even non-salient stimuli (colored circles) can gain attentional weight, when they have been loaded with some value through previous reward learning. The present study examined such value-based attentional weighting with intrinsically rewarding food stimuli. Different snacks were assumed to have different values for people due to individual food preferences. Participants indicated their preferences toward various snacks and then performed a flanker task with these snacks: they had to categorize a target snack as either sweet or salty; irrelevant flanker snacks were either compatible or incompatible with the target category...
September 2017: Experimental Psychology
Pieter Van Dessel, Gaëtan Mertens, Colin Tucker Smith, Jan De Houwer
The mere exposure effect refers to the well-established finding that people evaluate a stimulus more positively after repeated exposure to that stimulus. We investigated whether a change in stimulus evaluation can occur also when participants are not repeatedly exposed to a stimulus, but are merely instructed that one stimulus will occur frequently and another stimulus will occur infrequently. We report seven experiments showing that (1) mere exposure instructions influence implicit stimulus evaluations as measured with an Implicit Association Test (IAT), personalized Implicit Association Test (pIAT), or Affect Misattribution Procedure (AMP), but not with an Evaluative Priming Task (EPT), (2) mere exposure instructions influence explicit evaluations, and (3) the instruction effect depends on participants' memory of which stimulus will be presented more frequently...
September 2017: Experimental Psychology
Jonna Loeffler, Markus Raab, Rouwen Cañal-Bruland
Embodied cognition frameworks suggest a direct link between sensorimotor experience and cognitive representations of concepts ( Shapiro, 2011 ). We examined whether this holds also true for concepts that cannot be directly perceived with the sensorimotor system (i.e., temporal concepts). To test this, participants learned object-space (Exp. 1) or object-time (Exp. 2) associations. Afterwards, participants were asked to assign the objects to their location in space/time meanwhile they walked backward, forward, or stood on a treadmill...
September 2017: Experimental Psychology
Xu Xu, Chunyan Kang, Kaia Sword, Taomei Guo
The ability to identify and communicate emotions is essential to psychological well-being. Yet research focusing exclusively on emotion concepts has been limited. This study examined nouns that represent emotions (e.g., pleasure, guilt) in comparison to nouns that represent abstract (e.g., wisdom, failure) and concrete entities (e.g., flower, coffin). Twenty-five healthy participants completed a lexical decision task. Event-related potential (ERP) data showed that emotion nouns elicited less pronounced N400 than both abstract and concrete nouns...
September 2017: Experimental Psychology
Roberta Capellini, Simona Sacchi, Paolo Cherubini
The information search process is a critical cognitive activity in many domains, such as in legal investigations and criminal judgments. Previous research focused on leading strategies, in particular on the use of open and matching questions. The present research aimed to explore the use of asymmetric questions, namely dichotomous queries for which the "yes" and "no" answers are not equally diagnostic, during social hypothesis testing. In Study 1 (N = 253) participants were asked to select questions to assess a social target on some moral and nonmoral attributes...
September 2017: Experimental Psychology
Raoul Bell, Jan P Röer, John E Marsh, Dunja Storch, Axel Buchner
Deviant as well as changing auditory distractors interfere with short-term memory. According to the duplex model of auditory distraction, the deviation effect is caused by a shift of attention while the changing-state effect is due to obligatory order processing. This theory predicts that foreknowledge should reduce the deviation effect, but should have no effect on the changing-state effect. We compared the effect of foreknowledge on the two phenomena directly within the same experiment. In a pilot study, specific foreknowledge was impotent in reducing either the changing-state effect or the deviation effect, but it reduced disruption by sentential speech, suggesting that the effects of foreknowledge on auditory distraction may increase with the complexity of the stimulus material...
September 2017: Experimental Psychology
Anna Soveri, Eric P A Karlsson, Otto Waris, Petra Grönholm-Nyman, Matti Laine
In a randomized controlled trial, we investigated the pattern of near transfer effects of working memory (WM) training with an adaptive auditory-visuospatial dual n-back training task in healthy young adults. The results revealed significant task-specific transfer to an untrained single n-back task, and more general near transfer to a WM updating composite score plus a nearly significant effect on a composite score measuring interference control in WM. No transfer effects were seen on Active or Passive WM composites...
July 2017: Experimental Psychology
Eleonore Batteux, Eamonn Ferguson, Richard J Tunney
There is growing evidence that decisions made on behalf of other people differ from the decisions we make for ourselves because we are less affected by the subjective experience of their outcome. As a result, the decisions we make for other people can be more optimal. This experiment investigated surrogate decision making using a probability discounting task where participants made choices between risky and sure options. Psychological distance between the decision maker and the recipient was manipulated by having participants make decisions for themselves, their friend, and another unknown participant...
July 2017: Experimental Psychology
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