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The role of inhibition in task switching: a review


Koch, I; Gade, M; Schuch, S; Philipp, A M (2010). The role of inhibition in task switching: a review. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17(1):1-14.

Abstract

The concept of inhibition plays a major role in cognitive psychology. In the present article, we review the evidence for the inhibition of task sets. In the first part, we critically discuss empirical findings of task inhibition from studies that applied variants of the task-switching methodology and argue that most of these findings—such as switch cost asymmetries—are ambiguous. In the second part, we focus on n—2 task-repetition costs, which currently constitute the most convincing evidence for inhibition of task sets. n—2 repetition costs refer to the performance impairment in sequences of the ABA type relative to CBA, which can be interpreted in terms of persisting inhibition of previously abandoned tasks. The available evidence suggests that inhibition is primarily triggered by conflict at selection of stimulus attributes and at the response level.

Abstract

The concept of inhibition plays a major role in cognitive psychology. In the present article, we review the evidence for the inhibition of task sets. In the first part, we critically discuss empirical findings of task inhibition from studies that applied variants of the task-switching methodology and argue that most of these findings—such as switch cost asymmetries—are ambiguous. In the second part, we focus on n—2 task-repetition costs, which currently constitute the most convincing evidence for inhibition of task sets. n—2 repetition costs refer to the performance impairment in sequences of the ABA type relative to CBA, which can be interpreted in terms of persisting inhibition of previously abandoned tasks. The available evidence suggests that inhibition is primarily triggered by conflict at selection of stimulus attributes and at the response level.

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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
Date:2010
Deposited On:08 Nov 2010 10:12
Last Modified:17 Feb 2018 17:32
Publisher:Psychonomic Society
ISSN:1069-9384
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Related URL. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3758/PBR.17.1.1
Related URLs:http://www.psychologie.uzh.ch/fachrichtungen/allgpsy/Publikationen/Koch_et_al_2010_PBR.pdf (Author)

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