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Psychological Review
Journal Prestige (SJR): 4.64
Citation Impact (citeScore): 7
Number of Followers: 191  
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ISSN (Print) 0033-295X - ISSN (Online) 1939-1471
Published by APA Homepage  [86 journals]
  • Conceptualization in reference production: Probabilistic modeling and
           experimental testing.
    • Abstract: In psycholinguistics, there has been relatively little work investigating conceptualization—how speakers decide which concepts to express. This contrasts with work in natural language generation (NLG), a subfield of artificial intelligence, where much research has explored content determination during the generation of referring expressions. Existing NLG algorithms for conceptualization during reference production do not fully explain previous psycholinguistic results, so we developed new models that we tested in three language production experiments. In our experiments, participants described target objects to another participant. In Experiment 1, either size, color, or both distinguished the target from all distractor objects; in Experiment 2, either color, type, or both color and type distinguished it from all distractors; In Experiment 3, color, size, or the border around the object distinguished the target. We tested how well the different models fit the distribution of description types (e.g., “small candle,” “gray candle,” “small gray candle”) that participants produced. Across these experiments, the probabilistic referential overspecification model (PRO) provided the best fit. In this model, speakers first choose a property that rules out all distractors. If there is more than one such property, then they probabilistically choose one on the basis of a preference for that property. Next, they sometimes add another property, with the probability again determined by its preference and speakers’ eagerness to overspecify. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)
      PubDate: Mon, 25 Mar 2019 04:00:00 GMT
  • The construct-behavior gap revisited: Reply to Hertwig and Pleskac (2018).
    • Abstract: The most eye-catching feature of Hertwig and Pleskac’s (2018) comment is their virtual silence about Regenwetter and Robinson’s (2017) core message. Regenwetter and Robinson warn of a logical disconnect between some psychological constructs and certain types of theoretical predictions about human behavior. Scientific “predictions” that do not actually follow from the underlying theory can, in turn, lead to completely uninformative behavioral measures. Regenwetter and Robinson trace this construct-behavior gap to logical reasoning fallacies that seem common in behavioral decision research. They also document how a logically flawed line of scientific reasoning is often immune to discovery by replication. Hence, ‘successful’ replication can perpetuate unwarranted conclusions and, consequently, obfuscate science. Hertwig and Pleskac’s commentary is striking in that it says almost nothing about the construct-behavior gap, it barely touches on logical reasoning fallacies, and it ignores Regenwetter and Robinson’s core warning that replication and repetition of unsubstantiated conclusions hinder science. In this reply, we also point out errors and misinterpretations in Hertwig and Pleskac’s commentary, and we rebut alleged problems with Regenwetter and Robinson’s approach and findings. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)
      PubDate: Mon, 25 Mar 2019 04:00:00 GMT
  • Thanking, apologizing, bragging, and blaming: Responsibility exchange
           theory and the currency of communication.
    • Abstract: From the time we are children, we are taught to say “thank you” and “I’m sorry.” These communications are central to many social interactions, and the failure to say them often leads to conflict in relationships. Research has documented that, alongside the impact they can have on relationships, apologies and thanks can also impact material outcomes as small as restaurant tips and as significant as settlements of medical malpractice lawsuits. But, it is trivial to utter the words; how can such “cheap talk” carry so much value' In this article, we propose a “responsibility exchange theory” that explains why these communications are not costless, and which draws connections between four forms of communication that have not previously been connected: thanking, apologizing, bragging, and blaming. All four of these communications relay information about credit or blame, and thus introduce image-based costs and benefits for both the communicator and the recipient of communication: Each of the four communications involves a tradeoff between appearing competent and appearing warm. By formalizing these social psychological insights with a utility-based approach to modeling communication, and by applying game theoretic analysis, we offer new insights about social communication. We test several of the model’s novel predictions about strategic communication in two experiments: The first involves hypothetical choices in a scenario study, and the second involves real choices in a live interaction. We end with a discussion of the theory’s place in the literature and consider extended predictions and applications as examples of future directions for research. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)
      PubDate: Thu, 14 Feb 2019 05:00:00 GMT
  • The language of generalization.
    • Abstract: Language provides simple ways of communicating generalizable knowledge to each other (e.g., “Birds fly,” “John hikes,” and “Fire makes smoke”). Though found in every language and emerging early in development, the language of generalization is philosophically puzzling and has resisted precise formalization. Here, we propose the first formal account of generalizations conveyed with language that makes quantitative predictions about human understanding. The basic idea is that the language of generalization expresses that an event or a property occurs relatively often, where what counts as relatively often depends upon one’s prior expectations. We formalize this simple idea in a probabilistic model of language understanding, which we test in 3 diverse case studies: generalizations about categories (generic language), events (habitual language), and causes (causal language). We find that the model explains the gradience in human endorsements that has perplexed previous attempts to formalize this swath of linguistic expressions. This work opens the door to understanding precisely how abstract knowledge is learned from language. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)
      PubDate: Thu, 14 Feb 2019 05:00:00 GMT
  • Retinal spatiotemporal dynamics on emergence of visual persistence and
    • Abstract: Visual persistence (stimulus perception that prolongs for a few milliseconds after the physical disappearance of the stimulus) and afterimages (an illusory percept that lingers after the physical disappearance of the stimulus at the retinotopic location of the preceding stimulus) are classic perceptual phenomena reflecting temporal characteristics of the visual system. These phenomena are modulated by some common stimulus aspects: A longer stimulus generates shorter persistence and a longer afterimage and a lower spatial-frequency stimulus generates shorter persistence and a stronger afterimage. The current study proposes that these spatiotemporal characteristics of visual persistence and afterimages can be explained by a generic retinal processing architecture. Wilson (1997) developed a neural network model of retinal circuitry and demonstrated that afterimages emerge due to a retinal light-adaptive gain control mechanism. In this study, we provide an overview of the retinal physiology to assess the feasibility of his retinal model, and simulate psychophysical experiments on persistence and afterimages in the same model to provide systematic explanations to the stimulus duration and spatial frequency effects. Our results suggest that these characteristics emerge from the spatiotemporal characteristics of each cell (response gain and time course, receptive-field structure) that comprises a part of the feedforward-feedback laminar network in the retina. The retinal circuitry performs short- and long-term adaptive operations as the signal transmission is recurrently regulated by various feedback mechanisms and consequently engenders complicated spatiotemporal dynamics in the ganglion cell responses that match the patterns of the perceptual phenomena. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)
      PubDate: Mon, 28 Jan 2019 05:00:00 GMT
  • The rationality of illusory correlation.
    • Abstract: When presented with 2 samples (a smaller sample from a Minority population and a larger sample from a Majority population), where some rare or frequent features occur at exactly the same rate in both samples, people reliably associate the rare feature with the Minority population and the frequent feature with the Majority population. This pattern is referred to as “illusory correlation,” reflecting the standard assumption that such associations are fundamentally irrational. In this article we show that this assumption is incorrect, and demonstrate that this pattern of association linking rare features with the Minority and frequent features with the Majority (given a sample where those features occurred at the same proportion in both categories, and no further information) is in fact correct and follows a result in epistemic probability theory known as the “Rule of Succession.” Building on this result, we present a new computational model of frequency-based illusory correlation, based on the Rule of Succession. We also discuss the implications of the Rule of Succession for our understanding of various other cognitive biases. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)
      PubDate: Thu, 24 Jan 2019 05:00:00 GMT
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