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An orienting response is not enough: Bivalency not infrequency causes the bivalency effect


Rey-Mermet, Alodie; Meier, Beat (2013). An orienting response is not enough: Bivalency not infrequency causes the bivalency effect. Advances in Cognitive Psychology, 9(3):146-155.

Abstract

When switching tasks, occasionally responding to bivalent stimuli (i.e., stimuli with relevant features for two different tasks) slows performance on subsequent univalent stimuli, even when they do not share relevant features with bivalent stimuli. This performance slowing is labelled the bivalency effect. Here, we investigated whether the bivalency effect results from an orienting response to the infrequent stimuli (i.e., the bivalent stimuli). To this end, we compared the impact of responding to infrequent univalent stimuli to the impact of responding to infrequent bivalent stimuli. For the latter, the results showed a performance slowing for all trials following bivalent stimuli. This indicates a long-lasting bivalency effect, replicating previous findings. For infrequent univalent stimuli, however, the results showed a smaller and shorter-lived performance slowing. These results demonstrate that the bivalency effect does not simply reflect an orienting response to infrequent stimuli. Rather it results from the conflict induced by bivalent stimuli, probably by episodic binding with the more demanding context created by them.

Abstract

When switching tasks, occasionally responding to bivalent stimuli (i.e., stimuli with relevant features for two different tasks) slows performance on subsequent univalent stimuli, even when they do not share relevant features with bivalent stimuli. This performance slowing is labelled the bivalency effect. Here, we investigated whether the bivalency effect results from an orienting response to the infrequent stimuli (i.e., the bivalent stimuli). To this end, we compared the impact of responding to infrequent univalent stimuli to the impact of responding to infrequent bivalent stimuli. For the latter, the results showed a performance slowing for all trials following bivalent stimuli. This indicates a long-lasting bivalency effect, replicating previous findings. For infrequent univalent stimuli, however, the results showed a smaller and shorter-lived performance slowing. These results demonstrate that the bivalency effect does not simply reflect an orienting response to infrequent stimuli. Rather it results from the conflict induced by bivalent stimuli, probably by episodic binding with the more demanding context created by them.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2013
Deposited On:05 Mar 2014 15:50
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 17:44
Publisher:Vizja Press & IT
ISSN:1895-1171
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.2478/v10053-008-0142-9

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