Publication Summary and Abstract
Tom Stafford, Leanne Ingram and Kevin N. Gurney (2011), Pieronís Law holds during Stroop conflict: insights into the architecture of decision making, Cognitive Science 35, 1553Ė1566.
Pieronís Law describes the relationship between stimulus intensity and reaction time. Previously (Stafford & Gurney, 2004) we have shown that Piīeronís Law is a necessary consequence of rise-to-threshold decision making, and thus will arise from optimal simple decision making algorithms (e.g. Bogacz, Brown, Moehlis, Holmes, & Cohen, 2006). Here we manipulate the colour saturation of a Stroop stimulus. Our results show that Pieronís Law holds for colour intensity and colour-naming reaction time, extending the domain of this Law, in line with our suggestion of the generality of the processes that can give rise to Piīeronís Law. In addition, we find that Stroop condition does not interact with the effect of colour saturation; Stroop interference and facilitation remain constant at all levels of colour-saturation. An analysis demonstrates that this result cannot be accounted for by single-stage decision making algorithms which combine all the evidence pertaining to a decision into a common metric. This shows that human decision making is not information-optimal and suggests that the generalisation of current models of simple perceptual decision making to more complex decisions is not straightforward.
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