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09:00-11:00 Session 1A: Meta-Cognition (Symposium)

Meta-Cognition (Symposium)

Metacognition – monitoring and controlling one’s own cognitions – is among the most fascinating abilities of the human mind. In recent years, metacognition has received considerable attention in experimental psychology. This symposium presents new findings from this intriguing field of research. In the first talk, Zawadzka and Hanczakowski examine how metacognitive monitoring during repeated study trials benefits learning. In the second talk, Zimdahl and Undorf report research showing that knowledge about retrieval success and failure biases metamemory judgments. The following two talks address social aspects of metacognitive monitoring and control. Undorf presents work indicating that judgments about other persons’ memories are similar to judgments about one’s own memory in that both rely on nonanalytical, experience-based processes. Kuhlmann reports experiments showing that the ability to generate helpful memory cues for oneself is spared from aging, whereas the ability to generate memory cues in order to help other persons to remember is impaired in older age. Finally, Rouault, Dayan, and Fleming report behavioral and neuroimaging data indicating that confidence in single decisions supports the formation of global self-performance estimates. Taken together, the five talks of the symposium offer an up-to-date overview of current research in metacognition.

Beatrice G. Kuhlmann (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Monika Undorf (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Katarzyna Zawadzka (SWPS University, Poland)
Maciej Hanczakowski (SWPS University, Poland)
Metacognition (1)

ABSTRACT. Metacognitive monitoring of repeated study

Mastering study materials often requires repeated learning. However, the strategy of restudying the same materials has been criticized for not giving sufficient opportunity for retrieval in the form of self-assessments that are known to benefit not only learning but also metacognitive monitoring of the learning process. What these criticisms miss, though, is that restudying need not be devoid of retrieval: when relearning previously studied materials, spontaneous retrieval in the form of reminding might occur. Here we demonstrate how metacognitive measures can be used to assess the effects of reminding at restudy. In five experiments (with ns varying between 30 and 59), we manipulated at restudy the environmental context accompanying to-be-learnt materials in order to vary the incidence of spontaneous reminding, and had participants provide judgements of learning (JOLs). JOLs turned out to be sensitive to the occurrence of context-induced reminding, demonstrating their utility as a metacognitive measure of reminding which can complement the existing performance-based measures. We will discuss these results in the context of the difference between the cues that feed into metacognitive assessments of encoding and retrieval effectiveness.

Malte F. Zimdahl (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Monika Undorf (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Metacognition (2)
PRESENTER: Malte F. Zimdahl

ABSTRACT. Is There a Hindsight Bias in Metamemory? The Effect of Outcome Knowledge on Judgments of Learning (JOLs)

Hindsight bias – one of the most prominent judgment illusions – refers to the influence of outcome knowledge on recollected judgments. Typically, recollected judgments are closer to the correct answer than original judgments made before the correct answer is revealed. Two experiments investigated whether outcome knowledge also affects judgments of learning (JOLs). Both experiments contained a learning phase and a test phase. In the learning phase, participants studied 60 word pairs and made a JOL for each word pair. In the test phase, they recollected their original JOLs either after attempting to recall each item (Experiment 1, N = 58) or before vs. after attempting to recall half of the items (Experiment 2, N = 101). Results showed that outcome knowledge produced a hindsight bias on JOLs, with higher recollected JOLs than original JOLs for correctly recalled items and lower recollected JOLs than original JOLs for not recalled items. Thus, the current study supports the idea that outcome knowledge affects JOLs as it does with judgments about the external world.

Monika Undorf (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Metacognition (3)

ABSTRACT. Judgments of Learning for Self and Others: A State-Trace Analysis

Judging others’ knowledge is ubiquitous in social interactions. However, little is known about the basis of judgments about other persons’ memories in general and, more specifically, the contribution of nonanalytical, experience-based processes to these judgments. In the current set of experiments (with ns varying between 40 and 56), people made judgments of learning for themselves (Self JOLs) and others (Other JOLs) under conditions where experience-based processes are known to underlie Self JOLs. State-trace analysis revealed that Self and Other JOLs depended on a single latent variable, thus indicating that experience-based processes contributed to judgments of others’ knowledge. This result was independent of the order in which participants made Self and Other JOLs and replicated across different amounts of study-test practice. Overall, the current research demonstrates a similar basis of metamemory judgments for oneself and others.

Beatrice G. Kuhlmann (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Metacognition (4)

ABSTRACT. Helping Yourself and Others Remember: Characteristics of Self-Generated Memory Cues in Younger and Older Adults

We often rely on self-generated memory cues, for example when naming a file. Memory cues are particularly important for older adults’ successful recall of past information. In two experiments, I examined older adults’ (60-80 years old, N = 64) ability to generate effective memory cues for themselves and (unknown) others. Compared to younger adults (18-30 years old, N =64), older adults’ memory cues for themselves were more idiosyncratic and had lower normative cue-to-target associative strength based. Self-generated cues resulted in better recall than cues generated by another participant of the same age group. This benefit of self-generated cues was comparable in both age groups. Although older adults generated different cues for themselves versus for others more often than younger adults, they failed to increase the normative cue-to-target associative strength of cues for others. When given to another participant of the same age group, older adults’ cues generated for others did not elicit better recall than their cues generated for themselves. In contrast, younger adults’ cues for others elicited better recall in another participant than their idiosyncratic cues for themselves. In Experiment 2, memory cues were additionally exchanged intergenerationally (i.e., between age groups). Younger adults’ cues (both for themselves and others) supported older adults’ recall better than cues from another older adult. Taken together, these results suggest that older adults have difficulties with perspective taking and ignoring idiosyncratic knowledge when generating memory cues for others.

Marion Rouault (Wellcome Centre for Human Neuroimaging, University College London, London, UK, UK)
Peter Dayan (Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen, Germany, Germany)
Stephen Fleming (Wellcome Centre for Human Neuroimaging, University College London, London, UK, UK)
Metacognition (5)
PRESENTER: Marion Rouault

ABSTRACT. Forming global estimates of self-performance from local confidence

Metacognition, the ability to internally evaluate our own decisions, is particularly useful since many real-life decisions lack immediate feedback. Most previous studies have focused on the construction of confidence at the level of single decisions, but little is known about the formation of “global” self-performance estimates (SPEs) aggregated from multiple decisions. Here, we compare the formation of SPEs in the presence and absence of feedback, testing the hypothesis that local decision confidence supports the formation of SPEs when feedback is unavailable. In a series of three behavioral experiments (N=29, N=29 and N=46 subjects), we reveal that humans pervasively underestimate their performance in the absence of feedback, compared to a condition with full feedback, despite objective performance being unaffected. We found that fluctuations in confidence contribute to global SPEs over and above objective accuracy and reaction times. Preliminary neuroimaging results (fMRI) suggest that during SPE formation, prefrontal areas may differently represent local confidence signals according to whether they are congruent or incongruent with global SPEs (N=39 subjects). Our findings create a bridge between local confidence and global SPEs, and support a functional role for confidence in higher-order behavioral control.

09:00-11:00 Session 1B: Psychophysiological Correlates of Effort-related Processes (Symposium)

Psychophysiological Correlates of Effort-related Processes (Symposium)

Recent decades have shown increased interest in physiological measures reflecting effort-related psychological processes. This symposium combines six presentations that showcase the variety of examined topics and employed measures in the field. The first two presentations will elaborate on the association between physiological and behavioural measures of effort. Capa will present research examining behavioural and physiological adaptations to changes in mental workload showing that the association between pre-ejection period and cognitive performance varies as a function of task demand. Bijleveld will then discuss the relationship between feelings of effort and physiological correlates of effort presenting data that reveal a dissociation between task demand-induced changes in self-reported effort and changes in pupil dilation. The following presentations will present applications of motivational intensity theory’s effort-related predictions to different psychological phenomena. Gendolla will elaborate on boundary conditions of implicit priming on effort showing that briefly presented affective pictures only affect effort-related cardiovascular activity if they are processed in an achievement context and without explicit awareness. Lasauskaite will present a study that highlights the impact of light conditions on effort-related sympathetic activity showing that cold, blue light results in weaker pre-ejection period response than warm, red light. Richter will compare two conflicting predictions about the impact of the implicit achievement motive on effort presenting findings that demonstrate that its impact on effort varies as a function of the clarity of task demand. Slade will discuss an application of motivational intensity theory to listening presenting results that suggest that pre-ejection period reactivity reflects listening demand.

Michael Richter (Liverpool John Moores University, UK)
Location: GC1-08
Capa (Federal University of Toulouse, INU Champollion, France)
Richter (Liverpool John Moores Unviersity, UK)
Bijleveld (Behavioural Science Institute at Radboud University, Netherlands)
Gendolla (Université, Switzerland)
Lasauskaite (Université, Switzerland)
Psychophysiological correlates of effort-related processes - 1

ABSTRACT. Title A curvilinear effect of mental workload on mental effort and behavioral adaptability: An approach with pre-ejection period

Abstract We tested Hancock et al.’s mental workload model, which has never been experimentally validated at a global level with the measure of pre-ejection period (PEP), a purer index of beta-adrenergic sympathetic impact. A common idea is that operators adapt to mental workload. When the level of mental workload increases, behavioral and physiological adaptability intensifies to slow down decline in performance. However, if mental workload exceeds an intermediate level, then a decrease of behavioral and physiological adaptability occurs to protect from excessive perturbations. This decrease is associated with change in behavioral strategies and disengagement. The experimental task was based on a modified Fitts’ task used in Hancock and Caird (1993). Five levels of task difficulty were computed. One hundred participants were randomly assigned to one of five difficulty conditions (very easy, easy, intermediate, very difficult, impossible). Performance with speed-accuracy trade-off and PEP reactivity were used as indexes of behavioral and physiological adaptability. Results showed a significant curvilinear effect of task difficulty on PEP reactivity, with high reactivity at intermediate level but low at other levels. We observed a decline in performance (i.e., increase of error rate and of movement time) up to the intermediate level and a speed-accuracy trade-off above this level. In agreement, with the Hancock et al.’s mental workload model, we observed for the first time a behavioral and physiological adaptability as a function of mental workload.

Erik Bijleveld (Radboud University, Netherlands)
Psychophysiological correlates of effort-related processes - 2

ABSTRACT. Title: The feeling of effort during mental activity Abstract: The feeling of effort is familiar to most, if not all, humans. Prior research shows that the feeling of effort shapes judgments (e.g., of agency) and decisions (e.g., to quit the current task) in various ways, but the proximal causes of the feeling of effort are not well understood. In this research, I address these proximal causes. I conducted two preregistered experiments (N = 58 and N = 50, both within-subjects designs) in which participants performed a difficult vs. easy short-term memory task, while I measured effort-related phenomenology (feeling of effort) and physiology (pupil dilation) on a moment-to-moment basis. In both experiments, difficult tasks increased the feeling of effort; however, this effect could not be explained by concurrent increases in physiological effort. To explain these findings, I suggest that the feeling of effort during mental activity stems from the decision to exert physiological effort, rather than from physiological effort itself.

Guido Gendolla (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
David Framorando (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
Psychophysiological correlates of effort-related processes - 3
PRESENTER: Guido Gendolla

ABSTRACT. Implicit affective influences on effort are moderated by prime awareness and task context

Research on the Implicit-Affect-Primes-Effort model (Gendolla, 2012) has revealed ample evidence that implicitly processed facial expressions of emotions influence effort-related responses of the cardiovascular system (especially cardiac pre-ejection period) during cognitive performance: As long as success is possible and justified, processing sadness or fear primes during task performance results in higher effort than implicit activation of the happiness or anger concept. This talk presents the results of recent studies, which revealed that these automaticity effects depend on the unawareness of this affective influence. Results of three studies showed that (1) making people aware of the presentation of affect primes results is a boundary condition of implicit affects’ systematic impact on effort mobilization. (2) Another study found that affect primes only systematically influenced effort when they were processed in an achievement context that called for effort and in which implicit affect could inform about task demand. When the affect primes appeared in a “just watch” context, they had no impact on cardiovascular responses. Implications for understanding the conditions that foster or impair behavioral automaticity are discussed.

Ruta Lasauskaite (Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Basel, Switzerland)
Michael Richter (Liverpool John Moores University, UK)
Christian Cajochen (Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Basel, Switzerland)
'Psychophysiological correlates of effort-related processes - 4
PRESENTER: Ruta Lasauskaite

ABSTRACT. Light and mental effort during an auditive working memory task

Mental effort, defined as mobilization of resources to carry out behaviour, is not only determined by task difficulty, but is also influenced by mood, ability perception, reward, implicit affect, implicit pain. Recently, Lasauskaite and Cajochen (2018) predicted, that also ambient lighting can affect mental effort. Light, beyond visual function, exerts a number of non-visual functions, including effects on circadian entrainment, sleep, hormones, mood, alertness, or attention. Especially the blue components within the light spectrum are important for the non-visual function. In accordance to their predictions, Lasauskaite and Cajochen demonstrated that cool light (containing more blue spectrum components and associated to higher alertness and attention) leads to lower effort in comparison to warm light (containing less blue spectrum components). In the present study, we tested the effects of warmer and cooler light during an auditive n-back task. Participants (N = 77) spent 15 min in either warm or cool ambient lighting before performing an auditive working memory (n-back) task (5 min). The results showed that ambient lighting conditions significantly affected mental effort during the task performance: as predicted, effort-related cardiovascular reactivity was stronger in warm lighting condition compared to cool light. In conclusion, ambient lighting can influence mental effort even during performing a non-visual working memory task.

Michael Richter (Liverpool John Moores University, UK)
Florence Mazeres (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
Kerstin Brinkmann (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
Psychophysiological correlates of effort-related processes - 5
PRESENTER: Michael Richter

ABSTRACT. The impact of the implicit achievement motive on effort-related sympathetic activity depends on the clarity of task demand.

The traditional achievement motive literature and motivational intensity theory differ regarding the predicted impact of the achievement motive on effort. The achievement motive literature suggests that motives are direct determinants of effort—the higher the motive, the higher the effort—whereas motivational intensity theory postulates such a direct impact only if task demand is unclear. Under conditions of clear task demand, motives should exert an indirect impact on effort by determining the maximum amount of effort one is willing to invest. Two studies (N = 60 and N = 68) measured participants’ implicit achievement motive (nAch) and manipulated task demand (only Study 2) to compare the conflicting predictions of the two perspectives. Using a cognitive task with an unclear difficulty, Study 1 found evidence for the predicted direct impact of nAch on effort: Pre-ejection period reactivity—an indicator of changes in effort-related sympathetic impact on the heart—increased with increasing nAch strength. Study 2 demonstrated that nAch indirectly affects effort in a cognitive task with fixed and clear difficulty levels. Pre-ejection period reactivity did not differ as a function of nAch strength if task demand was low. However, if task demand was high, high nAch resulted in higher pre-ejection period reactivity than low nAch. Both studies thus provided supporting evidence for the perspective of motivational intensity theory that the impact of nAch on effort is moderated by the clarity of task demand.

Kate Slade (Liverpool John Moores University, UK)
Michael Richter (Liverpool John Moores University, UK)
Psychophysiological correlates of effort-related processes - 6

ABSTRACT. Sympathetic cardiovascular responses reflect changes in effortful listening

Audiologists recently started to explore the utility of physiological measures to assess the effort that individuals invest to understand speech in noise in difficult listening situations. Motivational intensity theory suggests that measures reflecting sympathetic impact on the heart (like pre-ejection period or systolic blood pressure) might be suitable candidates for this purpose. According to the theory, effort-related myocardial sympathetic activity should increase with increasing task (listening) demand until the task becomes too demanding (either because it is impossible to succeed or because the required effort is not justified by the importance of task success). A study (N = 48) tested this prediction in a within-persons design manipulating listening demand across four levels (low vs. moderate vs. high vs. impossible). Participants performed ten trials of a speech-in-noise task with four different signal-to-noise ratios while their cardiovascular responses (pre-ejection period, respiratory sinus arrhythmia, blood pressure, heart rate) were assessed. As predicted, pre-ejection period reactivity and systolic blood pressure increased with increasing listening demand in the three possible conditions but were low in the impossible condition. These findings suggest that sympathetic-driven measures might be useful tools to assess effort-related processes associated with listening.

09:00-11:00 Session 1C: Priming (Individual Talks)

Priming (Individual Talks)

Michaela Rohr (Saarland University, Germany)
Location: TM1-06
Imke Marilla Gillich (Helmut Schmidt University / University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany)
Thomas Jacobsen (Helmut Schmidt University / University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany)
Mike Wendt (Medical School Hamburg, Germany)
Independent effects of distractor-target SOA and proportion congruency

ABSTRACT. Two different control processes affecting distractor processing have been suggested, (a) inhibition of distractor-related activation during a pre-target interval leading to a reduction of distractor interference when the distractor-target SOA is increased, and (b) strategic adjustment to the proportions of congruent and incongruent target-distractor combinations, eliciting larger distractor interference when the proportion of congruent trials is increased (i.e. Proportion Congruent [PC] Effect). To explore the interplay of PC-based adjustment and the time course of distractor-related activation, we varied the PC as well as the distractor-target SOA. In a first experiment, we controlled for a confound with item-specific priming by keeping distractor-related contingencies constant for a subset of the stimuli. Dismissing accounts of item-specific priming, a PC Effect was found even for these stimuli. The reduction of distractor-related interference did not interact with PC condition, suggesting independent control processes. In a second experiment, we added neutral distractors to disentangle modulations of the facilitatory component and of the interference component of the congruency effect. Both components were increased when the PC was high whereas the SOA-related reduction of the congruency effect was largely confined to the interference component. Our results are consistent with assumption of independent processes of strategic (i.e. PC-related) distractor-based response activation and decreased emergence of response conflict or enhanced conflict resolution, after a long SOA.

Michaela Rohr (Saarland University, Germany)
Dirk Wentura (Saarland University, Germany)
Priming the specific emotion category with individually selected nouns: Evidence for fast processing of emotional connotations
PRESENTER: Michaela Rohr

ABSTRACT. Automatic evaluation, that is, the fast, unintentional activation of the valence associated with an object, is known to be a pervasive phenomenon. It has been extensively studied with diverse implicit behavioral paradigms, probably most popularly with the evaluative priming paradigm (Fazio, Sanbonmatsu, Powell, & Kardes, 1986), and also be shown to have real-life consequences, for example, in prejudiced behavior (Cameron, Brown-Iannuzzi, & Payne, 2012). What has been largely neglected in this field, however, is whether more specific emotional associations can also be automatically activated. We tested this question in two experiments (N = 50 in Exp.1, N = 83 in Exp.2) with the emotion priming paradigm, a four response-option response priming paradigm. Participants classified emotional facial expressions according to the specific emotion category (i.e., happiness, anger, disgust, fear). These targets were preceded (SOA: 140 ms in Exp.1, 60 ms in Exp.2) by shortly presented (i.e., 40 ms) emotion connoted nouns, which were individually pre-selected through an allegedly unrelated “word rating” task. Both experiments yielded emotion category specific priming effects, showing that emotional connotations from task-irrelevant nouns can be activated very fast.

Anton Öttl (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway)
Dawn M. Behne (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway)
Pascal Gygax (University of Fribourg, Switzerland)
Jukka Hyönä (University of Turku, Finland)
Ute Gabriel (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway)
Word-to-image priming of gender information: Beyond binary response designs

ABSTRACT. Paradigms assessing how language activates gendered representations are typically limited to designs in which responses are implemented as binary distinctions between female and male categories. The current study moves beyond this limitation by developing and evaluating a response design which also includes a third response category intended to capture mixed or gender-neutral representations. Written primes associated with gender information preceded a face pair decision task in which participants decide whether two visually presented faces are male, female or both. Successful priming occurs if the presentation of a prime whose associated gender is congruent with the target picture leads to a facilitation in the response relative to when the gender associated with the word is incongruent with the target picture. Since the inclusion of multiple response alternatives increases the number of possibilities as to how these may be implemented, language-to-image priming was assessed in two experiments (N=32; N=34) differing in the extent to which the response layout reflects the structure of the response categories. While increased stimulus-response compatibility is associated with more efficient stimulus processing, the present study is to our knowledge the first assessment of its impact on the detection of priming effects. Results from both experiments show significant effects of gender priming, though larger effect sizes were obtained when stimulus-response compatibility was kept high. These findings demonstrate that language-to-image priming can be successfully investigated using a relatively elaborate set-up (three response categories), and further underline the advantages of considering stimulus-response compatibility when designing experiments.

Nicholas Lange (University of Plymouth, UK)
Christopher J. Berry (University of Plymouth, UK)
Timothy J. Hollins (University of Plymouth, UK)
Investigating the role of recognition in the association of priming and source memory
PRESENTER: Nicholas Lange

ABSTRACT. We have previously presented behavioral data and modeling that links repetition priming, recognition, and source memory. In a series of experiments, the magnitude of the priming effect, as measured with identification response time in a gradual clarification task, was 1) greater for studied items receiving correct source decisions than incorrect source decisions, and 2) tended to increase as confidence in the source decision increased. Building on the framework for modeling recognition and priming proposed by Berry, Shanks, Speekenbrink, and Henson (2012), we developed a single-system signal-detection model in which source memory decisions are driven by the same memory strength signal as recognition and priming. A version of this model that allows source-rating criteria to converge with greater recognition confidence, and allows the variances of old and new item strength distributions to be unequal, provided the best qualitative and quantitative account of the data, and was preferable to a “multiple-systems” version of the model. In new experiments, where participants did not make recognition judgments, the association of priming and source memory persisted, suggesting this association is not driven by overt recognition judgments. While the model, without recognition, can account for the difference in identification RT for correct and incorrect source decisions, it struggles to account for the effect of RT across source confidence. We explore alternative explanations for the pattern of this association.

Timea Folyi (Saarland University, Germany)
Michaela Rohr (Saarland University, Germany)
Dirk Wentura (Saarland University, Germany)
Emotion-specific cross-modal priming with brief prime duration and stimulus onset asynchronies: Testing the cross-modal integration account
PRESENTER: Timea Folyi

ABSTRACT. We investigated the influence of brief auditory emotional context on visual emotional processing in a cross-modal variant of the emotion priming paradigm (e.g., Rohr, Degner, & Wentura, 2012). Participants were instructed to ignore the non-verbal emotional vocalizations and categorize the visually presented facial expressions. While typical cross-modal evaluative priming studies present relatively long sounds with long stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA; > 1000 ms), we used 200 ms long prime duration and 100 and 0 ms SOA, as we expected that brief prime and SOA durations warrant more automaticity in the paradigm. In Experiment 1 (N = 77), we found emotion-specific priming effects that were not moderated by SOA. These results can be explained either by response competition, similarly to unimodal evaluative priming, or by audio-visual integration of facial and vocal emotions. Hence, in Experiment 2 (N = 58), we introduced a manipulation that either hindered or promoted face-voice integration: We presented vocalizations and faces that were produced by expressers of the same versus opposite gender (i.e., natural versus arbitrary gender pairings). If cross-modal integration of vocal and facial emotions underlies the priming effects, we expected that unnatural prime-target pairings eliminate or significantly reduce priming effects. We expected no moderation in the case of response priming. In Experiment 2, we found no moderation of priming effects by natural versus arbitrary prime-target pairings, suggesting that emotional face-voice integration is not likely to explain the remarkable efficiency of the cross-modal emotion priming. Possible mechanisms will be discussed.

Johanna Bogon (Universität Regensburg, Germany)
Katrin Köllnberger (Universität Regensburg, Germany)
Roland Thomaschke (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Gesine Dreisbach (Universität Regensburg, Germany)
Binding Time: Integration of response duration into event files
PRESENTER: Johanna Bogon

ABSTRACT. Reacting to stimuli in the environment creates so-called event files that temporarily bind perceptual and/or action features. Recently, we have shown that also temporal features like stimulus duration are integrated into such event files. Furthermore, there are many situations in which the duration of an action is an important feature. As an example, duration as response feature plays a significant role for braking or acceleration actions. The purpose of the present two experiments was to examine whether the duration of a manual response is integrated into event files. In the first experiment (n = 20) we applied a prime-probe paradigm. Participants responded with short and long key presses to visual prime and probe stimuli (triangles and circles). A response cue (one of two letters) indicated a short or long key press. This key press had to be executed as soon as the prime stimulus appeared. The probe response was a speeded short or long key press that was indicated by the shape of the probe stimulus. Analyses of RT and error data revealed partial repetition costs indicating binding: performance was better when both stimulus shape and response duration repeated or switched relative to partial repetitions (only stimulus shape or only response duration repeated). In a second experiment (n = 20) we adopted a free choice variant of the first experiment. Here, at stimulus shape repetitions the tendency to repeat the response duration was higher than at shape switches. Both experiments indicate the integration of response duration into event files.

09:00-11:00 Session 1D: Perception (Individual Talks)

Perception (Individual Talks)

Lynn Huestegge (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Location: TM2-02
Christian Kaernbach (Institut für Psychologie, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Germany, Germany)
Anna Marie Ulrich (Institut für Psychologie, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Germany, Germany)
Jabin Kanczok (Institut für Psychologie, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Germany, Germany)
Maximilian Brütt (Institut für Psychologie, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Germany, Germany)
Thorsten Bartsch (Klinik für Neurologie, Universitätsklinikum Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, Germany)
Visual sensory pattern separation and completion

ABSTRACT. Two years ago, we presented a test of pattern separation using visual pink noise. We could produce lure stimuli similar to learned target stimuli with any desired degree of physical congruence. We found that for pink noise, similarity seems to be based on the physical correlation of lures and targets. Sensitivity followed roughly r^4.

In the main experiment we tested this functional relationship. We tested 48 participants in two experimental groups. In one group, lures were produced by blending old and new stimuli, in the other group by pixel selection. Blending and selection quotas were selected so as to yield well-defined evenly-spaced values of expected lure sensitivity (r^4). We measured lure sensitivity as a function of lure-target correlation and of production method. Sensitivity values increased about linearly with r^4 and did not differ significantly for the two production methods. Different methods to produce lures led to similar sensitivity values as long as the lure-target correlation was the same.

Studying pattern completion with sensory stimuli requires the ability to learn and retain names of these stimuli. We report on a pilot study. Participants (N=28) learned one-letter names for four old stimuli. During testing with old and new stimuli they had to tell whether the stimulus was old or new, and to name it. This test was repeated after one week. Sensitivity was 1.42±0.16 vs. 1.27±0.15 (1st/2nd test). Naming performance was 61±5% vs. 56±5%. Participants are able to learn names for pink noise stimuli and retain them for at least one week.

Markus Conci (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Hermann J. Müller (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Siyi Chen (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Completion of parts into whole objects: Surface and contour grouping in Kanizsa figures
PRESENTER: Markus Conci

ABSTRACT. A fundamental operation of human vision concerns the identification of coherent perceptual units, or objects in the visual environment. An example for such a mechanism of object integration is the Kanizsa figure, which illustrates that separate parts may be effectively bound to represent an integrated whole. This study was performed to investigate complementary mechanisms underlying object completion, namely the extraction of a bounding contour and its concurrent estimation of the surface area in perceiving a coherent illusory Kanizsa figure. In a series of experiments, observers had to judge whether a briefly presented dot probe was located inside or outside the region demarcated by inducer elements that grouped to form variants of a Kanizsa-type figure. From the resulting psychometric functions, we then determined observers’ discrimination thresholds as a sensitivity measure. Our results showed that sensitivity was systematically modulated by the amount of surface and contour completion afforded by a given configuration. Moreover, the completion of a coherent surface was found to be relatively independent from the estimation of the illusory contours. An additional experiment then used retinotopic mapping during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to locate brain regions that represent the completed objects. The results showed completion-specific processing to be localized in the lateral occipital complex (LOC), revealing a modulation of the neural signals by the configuration’s grouping strength, mirroring the pattern of behavioral performance. Together, these results show that both contour and surface completions are related to activations in LOC and crucially determine illusory figure sensitivity.

Constantin Schmidts (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Anna Foerster (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Wilfried Kunde (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Proactive Control of Affective Distraction: Experience-Based but Not Expectancy-Based

ABSTRACT. Affective stimuli disrupt ongoing information processing, even when they are entirely task-irrelevant. We examined whether such affective disturbances can be controlled proactively. In particular, we tested whether experience-based proactive control, triggered by the frequency of affective distractors, and expectancy-based proactive control, triggered by predictive valence cues, can shield the attentional system from affective disturbance. Participants solved a letter classification task while being exposed to neutral or negative distractor pictures. We manipulated whether distractors were predominantly negative or neutral and whether cues were informative or uninformative about the valence of the upcoming distractor. In two experiments (N = 75), we found reduced affective disturbance in predominantly negative compared to neutral contexts, suggestive of experience-based proactive control, whereas announcements of distractor valence were neither helpful nor harmful. There appears to be no explicit top-down influence on immediate attentional control settings of affective distraction, but only sustained adjustments to affective contexts.

Helene Kreysa (Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany)
Dorothee Scheffel (Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany)
Carolin S. Altmann (University Hospital Jena, Germany)
Romi Zäske (Friedrich Schiller University Jena; University Hospital Jena, Germany)
Stefan R. Schweinberger (Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany)
Multimodal effects of differentially attractive faces and voices on rating scores and pupil dilation
PRESENTER: Helene Kreysa

ABSTRACT. First impressions about unfamiliar people are strongly and rapidly influenced by the attractiveness of both their face and voice (e.g., Zuckerman et al., 1991). To assess relative contributions of facial and vocal attractiveness, we combined face photographs and spoken sentences which had individually been rated as attractive or unattractive. 48 participants then rated facial attractiveness of these bimodal face-voice stimuli. We hypothesised that an attractive (vs. unattractive) voice would boost (vs. lower) the rating of an attractive face, and vice versa for unattractive faces. We also recorded pupil size, reasoning that incongruent attractiveness of face and voice could result in enhanced pupil dilation due to the processing of the inconsistency (Laeng et al., 2011). Alternatively, pupil size might align with the predicted rating responses, since it has been reported to reflect the attractiveness of a stimulus (Petit & Ford, 2015; Schweinberger et al., 2014). In fact, the rating responses revealed significant main effects of both face and voice attractiveness (both ps < .001). However, the two factors did not interact, supporting suggestions that attractiveness information from multiple channels is combined additively, at least for explicit ratings (Mileva et al. 2018; Rezlescu et al., 2015). In contrast, a significant interaction was present in the implicit pupil size measure (p = .01), at least for male participants, who showed larger pupil dilation for incongruent, relative to congruent face and voice attractiveness. Overall, the findings demonstrate that explicit ratings and implicit pupillary responses tap into different aspects of multimodal perceptions of speaker attractiveness.

Anna Eiserbeck (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany)
Alexander Enge (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany)
Rasha Abdel Rahman (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany)
Investigating effects of person knowledge and facial trustworthiness on the access to visual awareness
PRESENTER: Anna Eiserbeck

ABSTRACT. The perception and evaluation of a person's face is determined by different visual and non-visual sources of information, including the perceived trustworthiness of the face as well as knowledge about the person’s social behavior. Previous research indicates that these factors might also influence whether a face is consciously perceived at all. To investigate this matter, in study 1 (n = 40), faces differing in facial trustworthiness (low vs. average trustworthy looking faces) were associated with negative or neutral person knowledge and subsequently presented as target stimuli in an attentional blink task. Ratings of trustworthiness and facial expression were affected by both sources of information independently. Under conditions of reduced attentional resources in the attentional blink, participants were better able to detect faces associated with negative as compared to neutral social information. In contrast, facial trustworthiness did not affect detection rates. These findings indicate that affective knowledge is processed on a pre-attentive level and can affect which stimuli are prioritized for access to conscious visual awareness. Study 2 (n = 32) uses a similar experimental design to replicate these behavioral findings and investigate underlying neural correlates through EEG recording.

Annekathrin Schacht (University of Goettingen, Affective Neuroscience and Psychophysiology Laboratory, Germany)
Wiebke Hammerschmidt (University of Goettingen, Affective Neuroscience and Psychophysiology Laboratory, Germany)
Louisa Kulke (University of Goettingen, Affective Neuroscience and Psychophysiology Laboratory, Germany)
Igor Kagan (German Primate Center (DPZ), Decision and Awareness Group, Germany)
Implicit reward associations impact face processing: Time-resolved evidence from event-related brain potentials and pupil dilations

ABSTRACT. To support adaptive behaviour in complex environments, the human brain developed efficient selection mechanisms that bias perception in favour of salient information. The present study aimed at investigating whether associated motivational salience causes preferential processing of inherently neutral faces similar to emotional expressions by means of event-related brain potentials (ERPs) and changes of the pupil size. To this aim, neutral facial expressions were implicitly associated with monetary outcome, while participants (N=44) performed a face-matching task with masked primes that ensured performance around chance level and thus an equal proportion of gain, loss, and zero outcomes. During learning, motivational context strongly impacted the processing of the fixation, prime and mask stimuli prior to the target face, indicated by enhanced amplitudes of subsequent ERP components and increased pupil size. In a separate test session, previously associated faces as well as novel faces with emotional expressions were presented within the same task but without motivational context and performance feedback. Most importantly, previously gain-associated faces amplified the LPC, although the individually contingent face-outcome assignments were not made explicit during the learning session. Emotional expressions impacted the N170 and EPN components. Modulations of the pupil size were absent in both motivationally-associated and emotional conditions. Our findings demonstrate that neural representations of neutral stimuli can acquire increased salience via implicit learning, with an advantage for gain over loss associations.

09:00-11:00 Session 1E: Executive Function: Multi-Tasking (Individual Talks)

Executive Function: Multi-Tasking (Individual Talks)

Michèle Muhmenthaler (University of Bern, Switzerland)
Location: BPLG-02
Michèle Muhmenthaler (University of Bern, Switzerland)
Beat Meier (University of Bern, Switzerland)
Different impact of task switching and response compatibility on long-term memory

ABSTRACT. In three experiments (N = 112), we investigated the impact of task switching and response compatibility on subsequent recognition memory. At study, participants had to classify photographs of animals and easy-to-name objects according to size or to animacy in a AABB task order. As the same set of response keys was used for both tasks, for half of the stimuli the responses for the two tasks were the same (i.e., compatible) and for the other half they were not (i.e., incompatible). At test, which occurred either after a short delay (Experiment 1), after one week (Experiment 2) or, using a within-subject design, at both time points (Experiment 3), participants completed a surprise recognition test. The results of the immediate tests revealed that memory was consistently lower for switch compared to repeat stimuli, while response compatibility did not affect memory performance. In contrast, after one week, the effect of task switching disappeared, but memory performance for incompatible stimuli was significantly lower than for compatible stimuli. Thus, the immediate test depended on the encoding context: in switch trials, attention was drawn away from encoding by task requirements resulting in impaired memory performance. In contrast, consolidation before the delayed test weakened the effect of the encoding context but increased interference due to response incompatibility. Together, the results demonstrate that task switching and response incompatibility impair memory performance differently across different delays.

Mareike Hoffmann (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Iring Koch (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Lynn Huestegge (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Lack of oculomotor dominance while switching among effector systems?
PRESENTER: Mareike Hoffmann

ABSTRACT. In the task switching paradigm, where participants switch between two tasks in a sequence of trials, performance is typically worse in task alternation trials than in task repetition trials. These switch costs are often distributed asymmetrically between tasks, which is usually explained by referring to processes related to task set configuration or inhibitory mechanisms. Previous studies indicated that effector systems associated with two tasks may be considered an integral component for defining a task set. Here, we systematically compared switch costs when combining tasks that differ in their associated effector systems. In Experiment 1, 16 participants switched (in unpredictable sequence) between oculomotor and vocal tasks. In Experiment 2, 72 participants switched among oculomotor, vocal, and manual tasks (in pairwise combinations). Interestingly, the results did not consistently reflect a prioritization of the oculomotor task in task switching. This observation appears to be at odds with previous observations of oculomotor dominance in dual-task paradigms which require two simultaneous actions in different effector systems. Overall, the results demonstrate the importance of temporally overlapping action demands for observing typical effector-based prioritization effects. Implications for the role of effector systems in task set configuration and inhibitory mechanisms in task switching will be discussed.

Jovita Brüning (TU Berlin, Germany)
Marie Mückstein (TU Berlin, Germany)
Dietrich Manzey (TU Berlin, Germany)
Task Organization in Multitasking – Impact of Lowered Between-Task Resource Competition on the Efficiency of Response Strategies in Free Concurrent Dual-Tasking
PRESENTER: Jovita Brüning

ABSTRACT. Recent considerations of task coordination strategies in multitasking revealed that individuals prefer blocking, switching or response grouping strategies to organize their responses in a free concurrent dual-tasking (FCDT) paradigm. In this study, we investigated to what extent such response strategies and their efficiency are influenced by a low vs. high resource competition between two concurrently performed tasks in FCDT. Taking Wickens’ multiple resource theory into account, we designed four simple cognitive tasks requiring different central processing and response types. In a condition of low resource competition, the dual-task included one task involving spatial processing and manual responses, whereas the second task involved verbal processing and vocal responses. In a condition of high resource competition, both tasks involved spatial processing and manual responses. In the low compared to the high resource competition condition the access to different resource types enhances the overall scope of available resources considerably, which should facilitate the efficiency of switching and response grouping strategies. Data of 47 participants showed no differences between all strategies of response organization in case of high resource competition between both tasks. However, clear efficiency advantages of switching and response grouping compared to blocking were observed if resource competition was low. Furthermore, participants preferring a switching strategy of response organization increased their switch rates or even changed to a strategy of response grouping in case of low compared to high resource competition. The study, thus, provides evidence for an interesting interplay between the efficiency of individually chosen response organization strategies and task characteristics.

Erik Friedgen (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Iring Koch (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Denise Nadine Stephan (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Effects of Postural Control in Multitasking
PRESENTER: Erik Friedgen

ABSTRACT. The influence of postural control was examined in a task-switching paradigm in three postural conditions: standing, sitting, and lying. The respective tasks employed in the two experiments (with 48 participants each) were auditory variations of commonly used task-switching setups, the Stroop task and the Meiran paradigm, two tasks that show robust congruency effects: A congruent stimulus requiring the same response in both tasks will lead to faster and more accurate responses than an incongruent one to which a subject must respond differently depending on the task. Based on the strong evidence that postural control requires attention, shielding of the irrelevant task set should be facilitated by lower postural control demands, while higher ones should detract more strongly from attentional resources. Hence, congruency effects were expected to be largest while standing, medium while sitting, and smallest while lying. However, the results revealed a different pattern, with performance in the lying condition being worse than in the other two, and no significant differences between sitting and standing. This suggests that either, there may not be any advantages for cognitive performance arising from reduced postural requirements while lying, or that any potentially existing advantages might be outweighed by other factors specific to lying, such as physiological changes in arousal.

Aleks Pieczykolan (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Lynn Huestegge (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Resource distribution in cross-modal action – challenging the view of separate resource pools for effector systems in multitasking

ABSTRACT. Executing two simultaneous responses usually yields performance costs in form of longer response times compared to single responses. While several theoretical frameworks explain these multitasking costs by assuming limited cognitive resources, multiple-resources theory particularly focuses on the role of effector systems for resource distribution between responses, according to which different effector systems draw on separate resource pools. Therefore, resource distribution between responses involving different response modalities should cause less interference (i.e., fewer multitasking costs) than between responses involving the same modality (Wickens, 2002). We tested this prediction by contrasting performance of the same (right) manual response in two different dual-response conditions: In the intra-modal condition the context response consisted of a (left) manual response, while in the cross-modal condition the context response consisted of an oculomotor response (Experiment 1) or a vocal response (Experiment 2). Surprisingly, manual costs were larger in cross-modal conditions than in intra-modal conditions in both experiments, a finding that contradicts the assumption of separate resource pools for effector systems. Additionally, the total amount of dual-response costs (i.e., the sum of manual and context-response costs) was larger in cross-modal conditions, indicating that the increase of manual costs in cross-modal compared to intra-modal conditions was not compensated for by a cost decrease for the context response. The present results suggest that stronger dual-response interference is not the result of drawing on common effector-system resource pools. Instead, selection or activation of effector systems appears to require additional cognitive resources, eventually rendering cross-modal dual-actions cognitively more demanding.

09:00-11:00 Session 1F: Decision-Making 1 (Individual Talks)

Decision-Making 1 (Individual Talks)

Momme von Sydow (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Muenchen, Germany)
Location: GCG-08
Momme von Sydow (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Muenchen, Germany)
Christoph Merdes (Zentralinstitut für Wissenschaftsreflexion und Schlüsselqualifikationen, FAU, Germany)
Ulrike Hahn (Birkbeck, University of London, UK)
Belief-Based Assessment of the Reliability of Sources – Light at the End of the Tunnel?
PRESENTER: Momme von Sydow

ABSTRACT. The reliability of sources is normally not an a priori given but rather must be learned. In communication, reading, and witness reports, we are often not provided with a criterion of ultimate truth at a later point. Alternative belief-based models of updating subjective reliability (trust) have been proposed. Using agent-based modelling (ABM), we investigate the accuracy of belief-based models of sequentially updating both beliefs about H and trust, based on reports and current beliefs. We investigate the influential Bayesian model by Eric Olsson (2011, 2013) that explicitly represents anti-reliability. We point out that it is a naïve Bayesian model only, for instance, since it does not account for interactions between sources. We explore the conditions under which this ‘Bayesian heuristic’ truly yields adequacy-improvements over non-communicators or non-trust-updaters. First we sketch quite disastrous results (e.g., Hahn, Merdes, & Sydow, 2018; Hahn, Sydow, & Merdes, 2019). Second, results on situations with prior knowledge are somewhat more positive but remain mixed. The third, new results – our focus here – document the change over time of average accuracy. Trust-updaters appear to have some advantages over fixed-trust agents in the short run but not in the long run (or in the limit). In conclusion, our initial results show that belief-based updating of trust is problematic, but more recent results may be interpreted as" light at the end of the tunnel." However, the utility of the detected speed-effects now depends crucially on auxiliary assumptions.

Anne Schlottmann (University College London, UK)
Improving Children's Understanding of How Substances Mix through Taste Experience and Analogy

ABSTRACT. Many properties of substances/materials are intensive, and children have difficulties reasoning about intensive quantities. Here we reconsidered children’s understanding of sweetness when sugar dissolves in water. We used an IIT approach, eliciting ratings of sweetness for factorial combinations of sugar and water amounts (3 x 3 design), expecting that, as in in other domains, this would allow children (N=139, age 5 to adult) to display early intuitions missed by standard choice methods. Improvements, however, were small, in particular, 5- and 7-year-olds still typically ignored the diluting effect of water, despite additional support during instruction/practice (causal experience of mixing coloured sugar and water, with visual feedback of how water dilutes concentration). These results appear to confirm that understanding of intensive properties is intrinsically difficult for children. However, in everyday life visual information often misinforms about dilution, e.g., diluted orange juice looks unchanged, but tastes very different, which may lead to children ignoring visual information. Accordingly, in Experiment 2 (68 5- to 7-year-olds), children mixed, then tasted the mixtures on 4 initial trials. In Experiment 3, 28 7-year-olds initially mixed 4 coloured bead mixtures -- children typically treat visual concentration feedback in discrete object mixtures as accurate – and were told that the sugar-water was doing something similar. Both interventions produced significant dilution effects for sugar-water mixtures, maintained in follow-up sessions, up to 14 weeks later. Children’s difficulties do not reflect cognitive-developmental limitations, but may reflect that everyday experience of concentration/dilution affects the chemical senses in ways that diverge from visual information.

Mario Herberz (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
Ulf Hahnel (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
Tobias Brosch (Univeristy of Geneva, Switzerland)
Unit familiarity leads to higher sensitivity to attribute differences: An application to attribute translation of car consumption
PRESENTER: Mario Herberz

ABSTRACT. The CO2 emissions of mobility and transportation continue to increase and constitute a major challenge on the way to reaching climate change goals. Nevertheless, consumers are reluctant to adopt new technology, such as electric vehicles (EVs). We argue that this could partially be due to the lack of a common metric to compare levels of consumption across technologies (liter / 100km vs. kWh / 100km). Data from two experiments suggest that the use of the less familiar unit of kWh reduces consumers’ sensitivity to differences in consumption and perceived environmental image when making comparisons between cars. Additionally, we find some evidence for an “environmental bonus” accorded to cars displayed in terms of kWh, which might be due to associations relating the unit with sustainability. We provide converging empirical evidence from car drivers and a student sample to support our findings. Additionally, we identify fluency with a given unit of measurement as an important driver of the effects. This claim is supported by data from an additional condition where participants were presented with gallons / 100 km which did not differ from the results found in the kWh condition. Although there is substantial variation in the numerosity of units (gallons < liter < kWh), we do not find that this has an impact on the perception of differences in consumption. Our findings translate into specific recommendation on how to display the consumption of EVs in order to make their fuel efficiency more salient to the consumer and therefore increase preference.

Marko Tesic (Department of Psychological Sciences, Birkbeck, University of London, UK)
Alice Liefgreen (Department of Experimental Psychology, University College London, UK)
David Lagnado (Department of Experimental Psychology, University College London, UK)
Explaining away: probability interpretations and diagnostic reasoning
PRESENTER: Marko Tesic

ABSTRACT. Explaining away is a pattern of inference that occurs in situations where independent causes compete to account for an effect. Despite being widely addressed in the literature of causal reasoning, the phenomenon of explaining away remains highly elusive. Majority of empirical studies have found that people ‘insufficiently’ explain away.

Several potential explanations of this insufficiency have been put forward thus far. At present, we explore the novel possibility that it may be driven by (i) differential interpretations of probabilities and (ii) an erroneous diagnostic reasoning strategy. In particular, we test for the possibility that some people interpret probabilities as propensities, leading to a lack of probability updating and insufficient explaining away behaviour. Also, we test a ‘diagnostic split’ hypothesis, which predicts that in diagnostic reasoning, people erroneously split the probability space between the two causes, leading to inaccurate explaining away.

We empirically tested (N = 453) in a 3x3 between-subject design these hypotheses by varying (i) the characteristics of scenarios and (ii) prior probabilities of the causes, in an online inference task. Results suggested an overall insufficiency of explaining away. In one large cluster participants did not update their estimates of the causes throughout the task. The proportion of these participants in the sample varied between conditions, which is in accordance with the propensity hypothesis. In another large participants’ diagnostic reasoning responses partially suggested they utilised a specific strategy that fit the diagnostic split hypothesis. Further results are discussed, as well as their implications in relation to the previous literature.

Franziska Bott (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Thorsten Meiser (University of Mannheim, Germany)
Decision Making Based on Pseudocontingencies – A Matter of Information Sampling
PRESENTER: Franziska Bott

ABSTRACT. In a trivariate decision scenario, with two contexts, two options, and two outcomes, decisions should depend on the probability of a positive outcome. However, statistically inappropriate information, i.e. skewed base rates of options and outcomes varying across contexts, may determine choice in terms of a pseudocontingency. While past research has investigated the effect of pseudocontingencies overriding true contingencies by presenting predetermined learning trials, the current project aims at the effects of self-determined information sampling on pseudocontingency inference and choice. In a series of three experiment (N1 = 126, N2 = 76, N3 = 76), we compared predetermined learning to learning from free information sampling. Across the three experiments we manipulated whether participants in the information sampling condition were allowed to select the option, the context, or both for each learning trial. Furthermore, we tested whether pseudocontingencies are still inferred when engaging in self-determined information sampling during learning. The results revealed the inference of pseudocontingencies in a trivariate scenario, even if it led to mistakenly preferring the actually inferior option in a decision phase. When information sampling was self-determined during learning, the choice patterns indicated a preference for the option that was sampled more frequently within a context.

David Huegli (School for Applied Psychology, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland, Switzerland)
Sarah Merks (School for Applied Psychology, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland, Switzerland)
Adrian Schwaninger (School for Applied Psychology, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland, Switzerland)
Human-automation interaction in a simulated cabin baggage screening task with automated explosive detection
PRESENTER: David Huegli

ABSTRACT. This study investigated human-automation interaction with explosive detection systems during cabin baggage screening as a diagnostic aid. We tested three practi-cally relevant EDSCB scenarios that varied systematically in automation reliability.

EDSCB should increase human-machine system performance for detect-ing explosive threats. A diagnostic aid with many false alarms should result in a cry-wolf effect. The positive predictive value should increase compliance with automation alerts and screeners may use the probability matching strategy when making decisions under uncertainty.

We conducted a laboratory experiment with 118 screeners of an international airport where they performed in a simulated screening task. We tested human-machine system performance in four test conditions: no EDSCB as baseline and three EDSCB scenarios differing systematically in the diagnostic aid’s d’ and PPV. Screeners had to detect improvised explosive devices, bare explosives, guns, or knives.

Screeners benefited from automation when the diagnostic aid’s reliability was high in terms of d' and PPV. Poor automation PPV resulted in a cry-wolf effect. A high PPV en-hanced screeners' compliance with the diagnostic aid. Equivalence tests and confidence ratings suggest that screeners are using the probability matching heuristic when making decisions under uncertainty, i.e. bare explosives.

EDSCB increases the detection of explosives when reliability in terms of d’ and PPV are high. Furthermore, many false alarms lead to a cry-wolf effect. A high PPV and thus high compliance with automation can compensate for a less reliable diagnostic aid in terms of d’. Operators use a probability matching heuristic when using a diagnostic aid under uncertainty.

11:30-13:00 Session 2: Prof David Shanks, UCL 'Testing your memory: The many consequences of retrieval on long-term learning and retention'

Welcome and Keynote Speaker

Liz Charman, Pro-Vice Chancellor, London Metropolitan University
Welcome address

Hans-Peter Langfeldt, Goethe University Frankfurt
60 Years of TEAP - In Memoriam Heinrich Dueker

Chris Lange-Kuettner (London Metropolitan University, UK)
14:00-16:00 Session 3A: POSTER SESSIONS: Perception and (Working) Memory

POSTER SESSIONS: Perception and (Working) Memory

Location: BPLG-01
Sebastian Mach (Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany)
Marisa Roßner (Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany)
Franziska Schmalfuß (Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany)
Josef Krems (Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany)
I feel you – Tactile notifications via wearable devices in the industrial environment of the future
PRESENTER: Sebastian Mach

ABSTRACT. Wearable technology for support of the workers is a widely discussed and investigated topic in today’s research and industry. As an interface between human and automation, the advantage of wearable devices, such as smartwatches, lies in the possibility of a location independent, direct worker-machine communication and allows fast as well as personalized notification in case of an important work-related event. Smartwatches provide the options to alert the user via vibration, sound or visual signals. This study contributes to current research by examining, which modality is suitable in an industrial environment. We hypothesized that a combination of modalities is recognized faster and evaluated as more useful than using a single mode. Additionally, compared to other modalities, the vibro-tactile notification can also be recognized faster and is evaluated more useful in an industrial environment with industry noise. In a 3 x 3 factorial within-subject design laboratory experiment, 40 participants conducted a building task and simultaneously received a notification (visual, auditive, or vibro-tactile) in one modality or a combination of the modalities. Response times retrieved from video recordings were analyzed and usability was rated via questionnaire. The results showed that the response time was lower for all combinations of modalities compared to a single modality notification. The latter was evaluated as less useful. Auditive and vibro-tactile notifications were recognized faster and evaluated as more useful. In conclusion, important notifications via wearable devices in an industrial environment should use a combination of modalities and the auditive and vibro-tactile modality should be preferred.

Leif Johannsen (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Annika Kuck (Technical University of Munich, Germany)
Alan Wing (University of Birmingham, UK)
Attentional demands of postural state transitions in older adults: the benefit of preparatory cues
PRESENTER: Leif Johannsen

ABSTRACT. Automatic processes for body balance control are susceptible to aging-related functional degradation, which may be compensated for by the deployment of attention. Adapting to a steady-state postural set to changing task requirements may raise the demands for attentional control further. Will a preparatory cue lower the attentional load of transiting between postural steady states? Ten older adults were compared to twelve younger adults in a continuous voluntary swaying task externally paced by a visual cue. Frequency of swaying (0.3/0.5 Hz) and direction (anteroposterior/mediolateral) or a combination of both could change at random time points. The specific type of a transition was either unknown or known by the presentation of a preparatory transition cue. In order to probe the concurrent attentional load, a manual trigger response to an auditory signal was requested randomly before or during a transition. Sway performance measures comprised spatial regularity of Centre-of-Pressure movements during a 4 s transition period. Older adults expressed greater attentional load in terms of longer manual response latencies and showed reduced position variability as well as swaying amplitude during a postural state transition. They benefitted from being able to anticipate a transition, however, specifically when required to speed up from 0.3 to 0.5 Hz. Preparatory cues also made their swaying trajectories resemble a sinusoidal oscillation more closely thereby approaching the performance of the younger adults. Our findings are discussed in the context of the task switching literature with a generalization to postural set switching.

Annika L. Klaffehn (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Roland Pfister (University of Würzburg, Germany)
David Dignath (University of Freiburg, Germany)
Andreas Kalckert (University of Reading Malaysia, Malaysia)
Wilfried Kunde (University of Würzburg, Germany)
How to lose a hand: The temporal structure of disembodiment

ABSTRACT. Much research has been conducted investigating the embodiment of body-external entities (e.g., a rubber hand). By now, compelling evidence that the self is flexible and can readily be expanded to external corpora has been amounted. In contrast, the fading or disappearance of such recently acquired feelings of embodiment has received little attention. Precisely this process of disembodiment, however, may reveal critical properties of minimal self-identification. In our experiment, participants (N = 42) were to embody a moving rubber hand, and we then explored the temporal dynamics of this hand’s subsequent disembodiment. Participants first established the moving rubber hand illusion. Then they were exposed to each of three intervention conditions in a complete within-subjects design. They either (a) continued to actively operate the rubber hand, thus maintaining synchronous visuo-tactile feedback (active condition), or (b) passively left their hand in the apparatus, thus receiving no more synchronous visuo-tactile feedback (passive condition), or (c), the rubber hand was struck by a hammer which imposed diverging visual and tactile information (disruption condition). After the intervention, subjective embodiment ratings declined slowly in the passive condition relative to the active condition and showed an abrupt drop following the disruption. Proprioceptive drift estimates also differed between intervention conditions despite similar pre-intervention baselines, but were overall subject to considerable variability. These findings suggest that (dis-)embodiment is driven by mechanisms of multisensory integration which require continuous synchronized input to maintain a recently acquired entity as part of the self.

Nandor Hajdu (ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary)
Barnabas Szaszi (ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary)
Balazs Aczel (ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary)
Social, psychological and environmental factors influencing staircase use
PRESENTER: Nandor Hajdu

ABSTRACT. We argue that the proper assessment of influencing environmental, social and psychological factors is key in designing and executing successful choice architecture interventions. Staircase use is an ideal field of study to show the advantages of prior assessment since numerous studies exist with different intervention methods, but only a few influencing factors have been considered so far. Our aim was to explore which factors (e.g., fatigue, environmental consciousness) influence people when deciding whether to use the stairs or the elevator. In our survey, we asked 392 university students, as well as 10 researchers of the topic to give as detailed answers as possible about the assumed factors. During the evaluation of the responses, categories of influencing factors were created based on the collected answers and each time a certain type of influencing factor was mentioned, it was registered as a new category. We found 14 categories: Speed, Comfort/Laziness, Health/Sports, Goal height, Fatigue, Physical limitations, Luggage, Claustrophobia, and technical problems, Number of people in the elevator, Elevator availability, Company, Environmental Consciousness, Elevator/Stair placement, and Temperature. In order to adequately measure the explored influencing categories and develop a structure of influencing factors, a questionnaire was created. To explore the common underlying factors behind the different categories and see which items measure the same factors an exploratory factor analysis was conducted. We suggest that for the most effective choice architecture interventions regarding staircase use, these factors should be considered and measured.

Martina Rieger (Private, Austria)
Stephan F. Dahm (Private, Austria)
Victoria K.E. Bart (Private, Austria)
Motor imagery of bimanual coordination in pianists and non-musicians
PRESENTER: Martina Rieger

ABSTRACT. It has been observed that bimanual coordination constraints are represented in motor imagery. Further, sometimes, but not always, imagination is more similar to execution in experts than in novices, presumably because experts have more precise internal models of the respective action. We investigated whether better performance in symmetric than in parallel bimanual finger coordination is reflected in motor imagery and whether this differs between pianists and non-musicians. Pianists (N = 20) and non-musicians (N = 20) performed bimanual coordination patterns by repeatedly pressing keys on a keyboard. Six different finger combinations (always consisting of two fingers from each hand) were used. With all finger combinations symmetric and parallel patterns were performed. Finger movements were a) executed with both hands, b) executed with the right hand and imagined with the left hand, and c) imagined with the right and executed with left hand. Inter-response intervals were measured. Results showed that in both, imagination and execution, symmetric patterns were performed significantly faster than parallel patterns and that pianists performed coordination patterns significantly faster than non-musicians This indicates that that bimanual coordination constraints and performance ability are represented in motor imagery. Data did not indicate that non-musicians are less precise than pianists in their imagination (the respective interactions were not significant). In conclusion, bimanual coordination constraints and performance ability are represented in motor imagery regardless of expertise.

Barbara E. Marschallek (Experimental Psychology Unit - Helmut Schmidt University/ University of the Federal Armed Forces, Germany)
Selina M. Weiler (Experimental Psychology Unit - Helmut Schmidt University/ University of the Federal Armed Forces, Germany)
Mona Jörg (Experimental Psychology Unit - Helmut Schmidt University/ University of the Federal Armed Forces, Germany)
Thomas Jacobsen (Experimental Psychology Unit - Helmut Schmidt University/ University of the Federal Armed Forces, Germany)
An inverse correlation between Need for Uniqueness (NfU-G) and Visual Aesthetic Sensitivity (VAST*)

ABSTRACT. The present study investigated the need for uniqueness, visual aesthetic sensitivity, and their correlation. To date, no studies concerning this correlation have been conducted. To investigate these variables, we asked 71 participants to complete the German adaptation of the Need for Uniqueness scale (NfU-G) and the Visual Aesthetic Sensitivity Test (VAST)- including the VAST-Revised (VAST-R). The NfU-G measures the need to set oneself apart from others, whereas the VAST(-R) tests the ability to discover the objective aesthetic goodness of a figural composition. The findings of this study are significantly compliant with theoretical considerations: the higher a participant scores on the NfU-G scale, the lower the percentage of correctly identified drawings on the VAST(-R), with the unrevised VAST being a stronger predictor than the VAST-R. Thus, the results suggest that participants who strive for individuality have lower visual aesthetic sensitivity since they tend to violate norms in order to assert their uniqueness. Possible explanations and limitations regarding this outcome are discussed.

Felice Tavera (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hilde Haider (University of Cologne, Germany)
Prediction effects in the interaction of scene and object processing
PRESENTER: Felice Tavera

ABSTRACT. The dissociation or interaction of scene versus object processing is a highly debated topic. There is behavioral and neuropsychological evidence that scene and object processing are dissociated. However, several studies find context effects in object judgement tasks. Following that, it is argued that objects are perceived in terms of their usage, suggesting that objects ‘afford’ potential actions. In this study, we tested the opposite relation: Do scenes of humans performing actions activate congruent object representations? From a much-used scene stimuli database of complex real-life scenes of humans performing actions with congruent or incongruent objects (e.g. drinking from a bottle vs. from a potato; Mudrik et al. 2010) we cut out the critical objects and used the scenes as primes in an object identification task. We manipulated intactness of the scene (intact/scrambled), and object congruity (scene-congruent/scene-incongruent) within-subject. Priming should occur only between intact scenes and congruent objects. The analysis over all 95 scenes (n=26) did not reveal an interaction between intactness and congruity. As specified in the pre-registration, we relativized the congruity effect (RTintact(incongruent-congruent)) with the baseline RT difference (RTscrambled(incongruent-congruent)), and selected only scenes for which the effect remained with a Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Including only these scenes, we found a significant interaction effect of congruity and intactness, but not in the direction hypothesized. Overall, the results are illuminative for a methodological approach to scene-object processing, and the future use of the scene stimuli data-base by Mudrik et al. (2010).

Frederic Göhringer (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Miriam Löhr-Limpens (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Thomas Schenk (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Size representation in the dorsal system seems to be less not more accurate than size representation in the ventral system

ABSTRACT. Ganel et al. (2012) demonstrated that objects which were perceptually equivalent led to significantly different maximum grip apertures (MGAs). They therefore concluded that the visual information used by the motor system is more accurate than the visual information available to the perceptual system. The direct comparison of the accuracy in the perceptual and visuomotor system is however difficult, given that a dichotomous variable is used for perception and a continuous variable to measure accuracy in the visuomotor task. We addressed this problem by dichotomizing the visuomotor measures based on the signal detection theory. These results (n = 93) showed that the visual accuracy based on visuomotor measures is actually inferior to that found in the perceptual discrimination task.

Sebastian Burger (Adolf-Würth-Center for the History of Psychology, University of Würzburg, Germany)
Armin Stock (Adolf-Würth-Center for the History of Psychology, University of Würzburg, Germany)
The aesthetic impression of stereoscopic images
PRESENTER: Sebastian Burger

ABSTRACT. In the middle of the 19th century, stereoscopes were a popular entertainment medium and stereo cards elicited strong fascination among viewers all around the globe. However, it remains unclear which factors contribute to the aesthetic appraisal of such stereoscopic image cards. A possible parameter is the amount of binocular disparity in each picture, which influences the subjective impression of depth. Following the idea of processing fluency, disparities that are easier to process may facilitate the formation of a positive aesthetic impression. A sample of n = 34 participants judged digitised anaglyph versions of historic stereoscopic image cards on a computer screen according to their aesthetic content in a paired comparison scheme. The stereo cards used were taken from the collection of the Adolf-Würth-Center for History of Psychology. Participants compared different versions of each image with a manipulation of the near point disparity and additionally a single (2D) image version containing no disparity. Furthermore, participants rated the visual comfort of viewing each image on a visual analogue scale and the interpupillary distance (IPD) of each participant was measured. A first analysis revealed that stereoscopic images were in general preferred over their 2D counterparts. In addition, the aesthetic appraisal was higher for smaller values of binocular near-point disparity.

Isabella Kreilinger (UMIT the health & life science university, Austria)
Stephanie Rösch (IWM Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien, Germany)
Silvia Pixner (UMIT the health & life science university, Austria)
Structured quantities like finger patterns or dots of dice are of relevance for arithmetics

ABSTRACT. Children can differentiate quantities early and almost automatically without any aim to practical differentiate a quantity. The usage of their fingers to show quantities or playing games with dices can be seen as an early arithmetic skill. This research would like to investigate how far structured quantities like finger patterns or dots of dice are rather identified correct and quicker than unstructured quantities. This research also investigates the impact of the association with representation of quantities to the later performance in addition tasks. The sample size of the longitudinal study contains 116 preschoolers (58 boy and 58 girls) and took place at the end of the preschool and in first grade. The structured and unstructured quantities were captured with a computer experiment which measured the correct response rate and the reaction time. The acquiring of the data took place in a single setting. The results showed that structured quantities can be recognized significantly more correct and faster than unsorted quantities. The results also showed that there is a positive correlation between structured quantities (finger patterns & dots of dice) and the later performance in addition tasks. In conclusion the association with structured and unstructured quantities during the time of preschool can be seen as important early arithmetic skills which have an intense effect on following mathematical abilities. Especially the handling of structured quantities is associated with arithmetic competencies in first grade.

Ronja Mueller (Medical School Hamburg, Germany)
Sandra Utz (University of Bamberg, Germany)
Claus-Christian Carbon (University of Bamberg, Germany)
Tilo Strobach (Medical School Hamburg, Germany)
Face adaptation effects on local information
PRESENTER: Ronja Mueller

ABSTRACT. Previously inspected faces can affect the perception of faces seen subsequently. The underlying mechanisms of these face adaptation effects have been considered to be based on sensory adaptation processes. More recent studies however also suggest a high level effect and an adaptation on a rather representational, memory basis. Although research on adaptation effects in faces seems to be well-advanced, it still lacks a systematic analysis of its generalizability to different types of face information since most research have focused on configural (i.e., spatial, mostly 2nd-order relations) information. Here, we investigated the mostly neglected adaptation effects on local face information by employing color alterations, actually saturation and brightness manipulations. Results of our studies indicate adaptation effects. We further investigate and discuss these face adaptation aftereffects in the context of pure color adaptation aftereffects using non-face adaptors.

Rebekka Schubert (TU Dresden, Germany)
Maarten Jung (TU Dresden, Germany)
Jens Helmert (TU Dresden, Germany)
Sebastian Pannasch (TU Dresden, Germany)
Size matters: Vergence movements are influenced by familiar size
PRESENTER: Rebekka Schubert

ABSTRACT. Vergence movements are thought to be mainly driven by binocular disparity. However, a number of studies have shown that vergence can be influenced by other depth cues as well as, for example, linear perspective or familiar form. We conducted an experiment to examine whether the depth cue familiar size is used for planning and executing vergence movements. 25 participants (14 female) aged between 19 and 40 years participated. Six different everyday objects were stereoscopically presented one at a time. The distance to the objects as specified by binocular disparity and the distance as specified by familiar size were manipulated. Participants made vergence movements, followed by reaching movements towards the objects. Eye tracking data showed that when familiar size and binocular disparity specified the same distance, participants fairly accurately converged to that distance. When familiar size-specified distance was in conflict with disparity-specified distance, vergence movements largely followed the distance as specified by binocular disparity. However, vergence distance was slightly, but significantly deviated towards the conflicting distance as specified by familiar size. Thus, while vergence is mainly driven by binocular disparity, this is the first experiment to show that familiar size also influences vergence movements - at least to some extent.

Gáspár Lukács (University of Vienna, Austria)
Claudia Kawai (University of Vienna, Austria)
Ulrich Ansorge (University of Vienna, Austria)
The influence of interstimulus-interval types in the response time-based Concealed Information Test
PRESENTER: Gáspár Lukács

ABSTRACT. The response time (RT)-based Concealed Information Test allows the detection of a detail concealed by the examinee based on slower RTs and lower accuracy rate to this potentially concealed detail compared to other, irrelevant details. In our experiment (n = 29; all conditions within-subject), we explored whether the parameters of interstimulus-interval may influence these differences. Specifically, we examined two factors: The length of the interval (100-300 ms vs. 300-800 ms) and the mode of the transition between two stimuli (clear blank screen vs. gradual fading of the first stimulus). We found that neither factor influences the RT differences, and that the length of the interval does not, but the transition mode does significantly influence accuracy rate differences: Gradual fading, as implemented in several previous studies, decreases accuracy rate differences. We conclude that (1) shorter intervals may be preferred because they do not influence the outcome but shorten the duration of the test, and (2) clear, non-gradual transition may be preferred because it provides larger accuracy rate differences, which in turn may be used for the detection of the concealed detail.

Patricia Hirsch (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Iring Koch (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Activation of task representations at the global level of dual-task processing
PRESENTER: Patricia Hirsch

ABSTRACT. According to the task-pair switching logic, at least three tasks (e.g., A, B, C) are combined to task-pairs consisting of two tasks that are performed in a temproal overlap (e.g., task-pair 1: A as Task 1 [T1] and C as Task 2 [T2]; task-pair 2: B as T1 and C as T2). Typically, performance is worse in task-pair switch trials than in task-pair repetition trials, resulting in task-pair switch costs. This cost indicates that the identity of the individual tasks performed in a dual task is jointly represented in a single mental representation, termed task-pair set. To explore when the task-pair set is available during dual-task processing, we combined the task-pair switching logic with a Go/NoGo paradigm and tested 24 subjects. We found comparable task-pair switch costs after Go trials and NoGo trials. This suggests that cues activate the appropriate representation before the subtask-specific task sets are selected. Thus, a task-pair set is not only available after performing a dual-task trial which would indicate that subjects adopted an episodic representation of the specific task-pair of the previous trial.

Lasse Pelzer (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hilde Prof. Dr. Haider (University of Cologne, Germany)
Robert Prof. Dr. Gaschler (University of Hagen, Germany)
Eva Röttger (University of Cologne, Germany)
Learning of across-task-contingencies modulates partial repetition costs in dual-tasking
PRESENTER: Lasse Pelzer

ABSTRACT. Numerous studies investigated dual-task performance and found reaction time costs whenever only one of the task stimuli is repeated from trial t-1 to trial t. These partial repetition costs might occur due to unsuccessful across-task predictions when there is no knowledge about any reliable contingency between the two tasks. Yet, the empirical support for this across-task prediction is rather sparse. Here, we tested whether learning of built-in across-task contingencies could modulate the partial repetition costs. The underlying assumption was that across-task contingencies can substitute t-1-based predictions and by this reduce the partial repetition costs. The study consisted of a dual-task paradigm concurrently presenting a visual-manual and an auditory-vocal task. In the former task, participants had to respond to the location of a cross presented at one of three positions on a screen. In the latter, they had to vocally respond to a randomly presented high or low pitched tone. Across-task contingency was manipulated within-participants by pairing the position either consistently (contingency condition) or randomly (random condition) with one respective tone. We tested a sample of N=30 who completed six dual-task blocks in one single session. The results showed significant learning of the across-task contingencies and a decrease of partial repetition costs with time. These findings support the assumption that in dual-task settings learning of built-in across-task contingencies can substitute t1-based predictions or binding effects. This is in accord with the work on the dissociation between binding effects and learning in single tasking (i.e. Moeller & Frings, 2017).

Miriam Löhr-Limpens (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Frederic Göhringer (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Thomas Schenk (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Constanze Hesse (University of Aberdeen, UK)
Grasping and perception are both affected by irrelevant information and secondary tasks:

ABSTRACT. Goodale & Milner (1992) proposed a model assuming functionally independent and encapsulated processing of visual information for action and perception, called the Perception-Action Model (PAM). The PAM assumes that visual input for action is processed in an automatized as well as analytic fashion, rendering visuomotor behaviour immune to perceptual interferences or dual-task costs. In the present study, we investigate the Garner Interference (GI) effect under dual- and single-task conditions employing a perceptual button-press task as well as grasping. GI arises when stimuli are classified along a relevant dimension (e.g., their length), while another irrelevant dimension (e.g., their width) has to be neglected. Here, participants were presented with differently sized rectangular objects and either grasped them (N = 24) or classified them as long or short (N = 24). We found classical GI effects in perception as reflected in prolonged reaction times when variations occurred also in the irrelevant object dimension. While reaction times in grasping were not susceptible to GI, effects were observed in several measures for grasping accuracy (worse adjustment of grip aperture to object size, prolonged adjustment times, and increased variability of the maximum grip aperture in conditions where irrelevant object dimensions varied). Furthermore, dual-task costs occurred in perceptual as well as in action tasks. In summary, our findings undermine the assumption of automaticity in visuomotor behaviour as proposed by the PAM.

Felix Hekele (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Omar Jubran (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Jan Spilski (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Francisca Rodriguez (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Franca Alexandra Rupprecht (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Andreas Schneider (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Investigating the impact of visual and auditive task environments on cognitive load biomarkers
PRESENTER: Felix Hekele

ABSTRACT. The purpose of this study is to design and validate a robust paradigm capable of identifying granular levels of cognitive load. This paradigm will be used to identify optimal levels of cognitive load in industrial work environments to avoid overload and underload of workers. As a first step to achieve this end, the current study examines whether visual and auditory stimuli influence cognitive load markers differently. A classic cognitive load paradigm is adapted to investigate whether pupil size and other biomarkers of cognitive load such as heartrate and skin conductance depend on presentation modality. A 2x2x5 Within-subjects design is employed, which induces cognitive load by presenting participants with strings of numbers or German pseudowords one digit or letter at a time, with string length ranging from 4-8. Auditory stimuli are presented as sounds generated by text-to-speech software. Visual stimuli are presented in black font on a grey background. The pseudowords are adapted in part from prior research (Klatte et al., 2017) and partly generated using the Wuggy software, version 0.2.0b2 (Keuleers & Brysbaert, 2010). We expect to replicate classic results in cognitive load research such as an increase in load biomarker values and pupil size due to increased word/string length (Baddeley & Hitch, 1974) but expect no significant differences between the auditory and visual presentation modes under the assumption that task difficulty is comparable in a within-subjects design. First results of this ongoing research will be presented and discussed.

Daniele Didino (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany)
Christina Breil (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
André Knops (University Paris Descartes; CNRS UMR 8240, Laboratory for the Psychology of Child Development and Education, France)
The role of semantic processing and response latency in the SNARC effect
PRESENTER: Daniele Didino

ABSTRACT. Relatively small numbers elicit faster left-sided responses and large numbers faster right-sided responses. This Spatial-Numerical Association of Response Codes (SNARC) effect has been traditionally ascribed to the spatial organization of the mental number line (MNL). The MNL is a semantic representation in which numbers are horizontally organized from left (small numbers) to right (large numbers). According to the MNL account, a congruent mapping (small numbers and left-sided responses) generates faster RTs compared to an incongruent mapping (small numbers and right-sided responses), and vice versa for large numbers. This study aimed to test whether, as predicted by the MNL account, the amount of semantic processing required by a task affects the strength of the SNARC effect. Thirty-two participants (22 female; mean age (SD) = 26.7 (4.4)) performed two tasks requiring semantic processing (magnitude classification task and parity judgement task) and two tasks requiring the processing of non-semantic features of the number (phoneme detection task and colour judgement task). According to the MNL account, a stronger SNARC effect should be expected for the semantic tasks compared to the non-semantic tasks. Results showed that the SNARC effect was not modulated by the amount of semantic processing, but was proportional to response latency (RTs). The results provide evidence against the idea that deeper semantic processing generates a stronger SNARC effect, as predicted by the MNL account, and in favour of alternative accounts (dual-route model, working memory account).

Fang Zhao (University of Hagen, Germany)
Robert Gaschler (University of Hagen, Germany)
Olaf Nöhring (University of Hagen, Germany)
Eva Röttger (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hilde Haider (University of Cologne, Germany)
Conflict adaptation effect on n - 4 under dual-tasking

ABSTRACT. According to the conflict-monitoring model (cf. Mayr, Awh & Laurey, 2003), conflict-adaptation effect can be observed by looking at the congruency effect on the previous trial (trial n - 1). Two experiments (N1 = 20; N2 = 26) using a four-choice serial reaction time task (SRTT) accompanied by a random two-choice RT task investigated whether the conflict adaptation effect can be observed in n – 4 under dual-tasking. Under the dual task sequence learning setup, we observed the conflict-adaptation effect on the current trial, which are analogous to the last fourth trial n - 4. CC (was congruent - is congruent) was the fastest compared to CI (was congruent – was incongruent), IC and II. It suggests that the conflict on trial n - 4 tighten the cognitive control, and can reduce the susceptibility to conflict on trial n. As only congruency-level repetitions trigger the quick responses, it also suggests that SRTT and the two-choice RT task can be integrated.

Sara Laybourn (University of Munich - Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Germany)
Anne C. Frenzel (University of Munich - Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Germany)
“How can I not remember five colours? That makes me angry!” – Emotional Experiences during a Visual Working Memory Task
PRESENTER: Sara Laybourn

ABSTRACT. Previous research has demonstrated that emotions, which are induced prior to a visual working memory (VWM) task, can lead to individual differences in VWM performance (e.g. Spachtholz et al., 2014). In a qualitative study, we explored whether the VWM task itself evokes emotions. Specifically, we hypothesised that VWM tasks are viewed as competence-relevant activities, in which one can either fail or succeed (Pekrun et al., 2007), that lead to participants experiencing different achievement emotions. Nineteen participants performed a colour wheel VWM task on which they received no feedback. The task was divided into one practice block and two test blocks. During the last test block of the task participants were required to think aloud, that is verbalise any thoughts and feelings they were having during the task. Qualitative content analysis revealed that participants experienced an array of different achievement emotions, such as anger towards subjective task failure, indicating that participants appraised the VWM task as a performance situation. Further analysis revealed that some participants experienced epistemic emotions, such as frustration about the lack of cognitive skill enhancement during the task. These participants appraised the VWM task as an opportunity for gaining new insights rather than a success vs. failure activity. We conclude that performing a VWM task in itself induces different emotional experiences in participants, which stem from participants’ appraisal of the task situation. This task intrinsic emotion induction may need to be controlled for in future VWM research, as it may lead to individual differences in VWM performance.

Christina Weckwerth (FernUniversität Hagen - Allgemeine Psychologie - LME, Germany)
Anna Conci (FernUniversität Hagen - Allgemeine Psychologie - LME, Germany)
Robert Gaschler (FernUniversität Hagen - Allgemeine Psychologie - LME, Germany)
Visual search in x-rayed hand luggage not harmed by working memory load

ABSTRACT. Airport security checking x-rayed hand luggage need to keep information about prior items in mind while searching for potentially dangerous equipment. The difficulty of finding a second target has been studied in work on the subsequent search misses effect (SSM; Adamo, Cain & Mitroff, 2013). One theory (resource depletion account) suggests that the target found first is stored in working memory and this is what compromises finding the second target. This suggests that even keeping in mind the identity and position of an unrelated (not dangerous) item should harm visual search. However, no general load effect on search time and accuracy was obtained in the current eye tracking experiment with N=20 participants. Thus, content specific processes (rather than general resources) seem to account for the SSM.

Maximilian Stefani (Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany)
Wolfgang Mack (Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany)
Marian Sauter (Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany)
Difficulty: Hard! What we can learn from triple-tasks

ABSTRACT. In most cases, multitasking research focus on interference between two (simultaneous) tasks. But evidence from dual-task performance with and without practice is always restricted to “only” two tasks. Furthermore, a single cognitive models can still not clear each aspect in research. Thus, we introduce a triple-task which is built upon an established simple dual-task from Schumacher and colleagues (2001). 30 participants (Mage= 22.2) from Bundeswehr University München were trained in up to 18 sessions in single-, dual, and triple-tasks, whereas trained and untrained participants were compared at different training sections. The triple-task consisted of one auditory-vocal (voice) and two visual-manual (hand and foot) two-choice tasks. After dual-task training, participants showed significant faster RTs and could eliminate dual-task-costs. In triple-task training, trained participants got worse in RTs but were still faster than untrained participants. Thus, participants didn’t accomplish the RT level reached after dual-task training in trained modalities. Furthermore, the expected bottleneck in motor stage was still there after training. Our results indicated that training in dual-task causes strong stimulus-response bindings which are also beneficial for triple-tasks. Our results fit into Wickens et. al’s (1982) multiple resource theory and are discussed within this context.

Christoph Schütz (Bielefeld University, Germany)
Thomas Schack (Bielefeld University, Germany)
Disruption of spatial working memory performance depends on the fraction of motor re-planning

ABSTRACT. In a sequential motor task, we reuse and modify the previous motor plan to reduce the cognitive cost of planning. This results in a persistence to the previous posture (hysteresis), which is a proxy for the fraction of motor re-planning (FoMR). Motor re-planning has been shown to interfere with spatial memory tasks, as motor and memory tasks seem to share common WM resources. We asked whether disruption of spatial memory performance would depend on the FoMR. Twenty-eight participants (12 male, mean age 23.8 years, right-handed) executed a sequential drawer opening task with a concurrent spatial memory task (memorise one symbol per drawer in a 4x4 matrix). Nine drawers were opened either in an ordered (a/descending) or a randomised sequence. The FoMR in the randomised task (98.0%) was significantly higher than in the ordered task (80.0%), t(27) = 5.967, p < .001. Accordingly, spatial recall performance in the randomised task (32.9%) was significantly worse than in the ordered task (35.8%), t(27) = 2.203, p = .036. The results confirm previous findings that (A) motor plans are partially reused in ordered tasks and that (B) the FoMR in randomised tasks is higher than in ordered tasks. More importantly, our findings imply that a higher FoMR takes up a larger fraction of the available resources in spatial working memory.

Jan Göttmann (Ruprecht-Karls University Heidelberg, Germany)
Gidon Thomas Frischkorn (University of Zurich, Germany)
The Inter-Relation of Processing and Storage in Working Memory cannot be explained by Cognitive Load
PRESENTER: Jan Göttmann

ABSTRACT. Current theories of working memory (WM) such as the Time-Based-Resource-Sharing-Model (Barrouillet & Camos, 2007) assume that the storage and processing (e.g. updating) of memory items in WM are inter-related processes. Specifically, the TBRS-Model assumes that both maintenance of memory items and concurrent processing rely on the same attentional resource, which can only be utilized consecutively. This inter-relation is specified by cognitive load (CL), the ratio of specific task time t-alpha to total time T of a task. Thus, if CL is held constant, there should be no main effect of additional processing steps and no interactions between memory demands. Memory items shouldn‘t suffer from temporal decay, because there is sufficient freetime for attentional refreshing. To test this hypothesis, we conducted an experiment with N = 39 subjects who had to memorize 3 to 7 letters with concurrent working memory updating at a constant CL. We found decreasing accuracies (ACC) and increasing reaction times (RT) for additional processing steps and significant interactions on both measures. To validate the results, we estimated parameters of a Drift-Diffusion-Model (DDM). The most parsimonious model only varied the drift parameter v. According to the results on ACC and RT, there was a significant decrease of drift-rates v for additional processing steps and memory load. We conclude that CL suggested by the TBRS-Model does not describe the interaction between processing and storage sufficiently. 

Juliane Scheil (Leibniz Research Centre for Working Environment and Human Factors, Germany)
Thomas Kleinsorge (Leibniz Research Centre for Working Environment and Human Factors, Germany)
Reduced n – 2 Repetition Costs by Inclusion of Task Repetitions are due to increased Task Shielding
PRESENTER: Juliane Scheil

ABSTRACT. Previous research has shown that n – 2 repetition costs, a marker of inhibitory processes in task switching, are reduced when task repetitions are present. The present study aimed at further investigating processes underlying this interaction. For this purpose, two task switching experiments were conducted in which task repetition proportion was varied for each task separately. In the first experiment (n = 44), the overall amount of task repetitions was held constant while task-specific proportions varied between two groups. Results showed that repetition proportion had a larger effect when specific proportions were easy to detect. Therefore, it seems to be the specific and not the overall repetition proportion that affects n – 2 repetition costs. To examine the hypothesis that this effect is due to differences in task specific preparation, the cue-target interval was varied block-wise in the second experiment (n = 30). However, this factor had no influence on n – 2 repetition costs. Instead, additional combined analyses of both experiments revealed an influence of stimulus congruency: n – 2 repetition costs were highest when repetitions were precluded and the task stimulus was incongruent, whereas no effect of stimulus congruency on n – 2 repetition costs was observed with tasks that possibly repeated. This result is interpreted in terms of task shielding which is reduced for tasks without repetitions, making these tasks more vulnerable to crosstalk from competing tasks when they are still in an inhibited state.

Anne Voormann (University of Freiburg, Germany)
Mikhail S. Spektor (University of Freiburg, Germany)
Karl Christoph Klauer (University of Freiburg, Germany)
Investigating paired-word recognition: A comparison of continuous and discrete-state models
PRESENTER: Anne Voormann

ABSTRACT. In a typical recognition-memory task, individuals learn a list of words and, subsequently, have to categorize test items as previously studied or not. Past research has shown that performance decreases in a setting in which people have to classify two words at the same time. However, the source of this performance difference remains uncertain. In the present study, we investigate this research question using two different model classes: threshold models (Snodgrass & Corwin, 1988) and a version of general recognition theory (GRT; Ashby & Soto, 2015), a multidimensional signal detection theory. We tested 80 participants in a recognition task, presenting both trials with single words and trials with paired words in the recognition test. Behaviourally, we replicated the previous findings and found that both model classes allocate an overall performance difference between single and paired-words to processes of detection and discrimination based on memory evidence. More important, dependencies in recognition decisions observed for paired words are allocated to different sources. According to GRT, the dependencies are attributed to a process influencing the familiarity of the item and thereby to the structure of memory evidence. In contrast, an extended version of the two-high thresholds model locates the dependencies in guessing processes. A final comparison between these models and the results of a validation study (N = 80) will be presented.

Markus Martini (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Pierre Sachse (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Wakeful resting and memory retention: Testing individual differences in children aged 13-14 years
PRESENTER: Markus Martini

ABSTRACT. Evidence exists that a brief period of wakeful rest after encoding verbal information supports the retention of newly acquired information over shorter and longer temporal intervals, while interference induced through task-related cognition has detrimental memory effects. Less is known about this so-called resting effect in children and whether individual differences in the impact of a brief period of wakeful rest exists. In the present study, children encoded a list of words, immediately recalled the word list, and wakefully rested for 10 minutes. Next, children encoded another list of words, recalled the word list, and solved visuospatial problems for 10 minutes. After 7 days, a not instructed free recall test for both word lists took place. For the analysis of individual differences, we calculated a mean immediate memory score and classified children as high, middle or low memory performers. Our results showed that over a period of 7 days only low memory performers retained significantly more words in the wakeful rest compared to the problem-solving condition. No differences in the retention scores between the two conditions were found in high and middle memory performers. These results suggest that labile memory representations in children with a low immediate memory performance profit from a brief period of wakeful rest.

Alexandra Clausen (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Florian Kattner (Technische Universität Darmstadt, University of Hamburg, Germany)
Revisiting the prioritization of emotional information in iconic memory: A pre-registered replication study

ABSTRACT. It has been reported that the read-out of information from iconic memory depends on the emotional significance, with enhanced availability of negative stimuli (Kuhbandner, Spitzer, & Pekrun, 2011). In this replication study (N = 50), we investigated the effect of emotional valence on recall from iconic memory in terms of both the initial availability of information in the iconic memory and the subsequent decay of information. The task, stimuli and experimental design were close to the original study measuring recall from iconic memory as a function of (a) the valence of the target stimulus and (b) the valence of the distractor stimuli (with a neutral target). We found reliable evidence for enhanced initial availability of negative stimuli in iconic memory. In contrast to the original study, read-out from iconic memory was enhanced also for positive targets, as compared to neutral targets. In addition, there was some indication of slower decay for negative information, as compared to both neutral and positive targets. Moreover, emotional distractors of either valence interfered with the read-out of neutral targets. Taken together, the results are consistent with the assumption that both the initial availability and the decay of information in iconic memory are susceptible to emotional semantics.

Yannick Runge (University of Trier, Germany)
Christian Frings (University of Trier, Germany)
Tobias Tempel (Ludwigsburg University of Education, Germany)
Benefits of Memory Offloading for Subsequent Cognitive Performance
PRESENTER: Yannick Runge

ABSTRACT. Using digital devices as our external memory store helps us to deal with the huge amount of information surrounding us at our workplace and at home. Temporarily irrelevant information can be saved and stored on our computer or smartphone and can be accessed at any time, whenever getting relevant again. Storm and Stone (2015) could show that such memory offloading can be beneficial for subsequent memory performance, in a way that saving already encoded items can enhance recall of items encoded after the saving. We examined whether this benefit effect can be generalized to unrelated arithmetic tasks (N = 96). After having learned a first list of words, participants could either offload this list or not. Afterwards they had to solve blocks of arithmetic problems, before and after learning a second list of words. Results showed that participants solved significantly more arithmetic problems after offloading the first word list, compared to trials without offloading possibility. Besides they recalled more words of the second lists in save trials than in no-save trials. In conclusion we did not only replicate saving-enhanced memory but found saving-enhanced performance for unrelated arithmetic tasks. Saving of recently encoded items entailed a general benefit on subsequent cognitive performance, beyond encoding and retrieving word lists. We assume that offloading freed working memory from the need to rehearse and maintain offloaded items. Gained working memory capacity then can be used for subsequent tasks with high cognitive demands.

Rory Spanton (University of Plymouth, UK)
Christopher Berry (University of Plymouth, UK)
The Unequal Variance Signal-Detection Model of Recognition Memory: Investigating the Encoding Variability Hypothesis
PRESENTER: Rory Spanton

ABSTRACT. Despite the unequal variance signal-detection (UVSD) model’s prominence as a model of recognition memory, a psychological explanation for the unequal variance assumption has yet to be established. According to the encoding variability hypothesis, old item memory strength variance (σo) is greater than that of new items because items are incremented by variable, rather than fixed, amounts of memory strength at encoding. Conditions that increase encoding variability should therefore result in greater estimates of σo. We conducted two experiments to test this prediction (N = 40 in each). In Experiment 1, encoding variability was manipulated by presenting items for a fixed or variable duration (sampled from a normal distribution) at study. In Experiment 2, we used an attentional manipulation whereby participants studied items while performing an auditory one-back task in which distractors were presented at fixed or variable intervals. No evidence for the encoding variability hypothesis was found in either experiment; estimates of σo were not greater in any of the conditions designed to increase encoding variability. In contrast, estimates of σo were greater in the fixed than variable condition in Experiment 2, which seems at odds with the hypothesis. Our results suggest that study duration and attention are not suitable proxies for encoding variability, highlighting the issues in testing the hypothesis. Instead, old item variance tended to be linked to overall memory strength in each experiment.

14:00-16:00 Session 3B: POSTER SESSION: Emotion, Agency, and Learning

POSTER SESSION: Emotion, Agency, and Learning

Location: TMG 45
Beatrix Labadi (University of Pécs, Hungary)
Emotion recognition in multiple persons situation

ABSTRACT. During communication, we perceive and express emotional information through many different channels in an interpersonal situation. Although historically the human emotion expression studied on faces without social context. In recent study we investigated the emotion recognition process with multiple persons visual scenes. Our aim was to examine how the partner’s whole body expression as social context influences the way of perceiving a person’s facial expression. In the experiments participants (N=40) saw either body dyads facing each other (seemingly interacting) and nonfacing body dyads (noninteracting) expressing the same or different emotion. Participants were required to categorize facial expressions. Results indicate the recognition of facial expression was influenced by the partner’s bodily expression, when the subjects saw the scene where actors facing each others, recognised faster and more accurately the emotions comparing to the noninteracting condition. A significant interaction was also found between facial expressions and the emotional content of bodily expression, showing a response advantage for facial expressions accompanied by congruent (same) bodily expression. Taken together, the findings illustrate the importance of emotional whole-body expression as contextual information in communication process.

Susana Ruiz Fernandez (FOM-Hochschule für Oekonomie und Management; Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien Tübingen, Germany)
Juan Jose Rahona (Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Sergio Cervera Torres (Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Martin Lachmair (Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Hendrik Godbersen (FOM-Hochschule für Oekonomie und Management, Germany)
The Past Is in the Past but the Future Is Bright: Associating Positive Affects with the Future and Negative Affects with the Past

ABSTRACT. Based on the assumption of a multi-conceptual association of the abstract concept of time, the present study examines if time is associated with other concepts, apart from the concrete concept of space. The study follows the assumption that affects are an important source of experience that can also structure the concept of time, similar to sensory-motor spatial experiences. The Implicit Association Test was used to examine the direct association of time and affect. The participants were asked to allocate affect-related (i.e., happy, sad) and time-related words (i.e., tomorrow, yesterday) to affective categories (positive vs. negative), time-related categories (future vs. past) and to categories combining the two afore-mentioned categories (compatible: future-positive and past-negative vs. incompatible: future-negative and past-positive). It was assumed that the categorisation is easier within the compatible combination of categories than within the incompatible combination. Accordingly, the participants allocated words to the combinations future-positive and past-negative more quickly than to the combinations future-negative and past-positive. Specifically, the results indicate an association of time and affect; the future is associated with positive and the past with negative affect. This association is in line with former findings, showing that people tend to positively view and idealise the future and to avoid negative thoughts about the future.

Sarah Esser (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hilde Haider (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hedwig Eisenbarth (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand)
Learning deficits in psychopathic individuals: A problem of attentional focus or emotion processing?
PRESENTER: Sarah Esser

ABSTRACT. Psychopathic personality (PP) is characterized by a deficit in learning from negative experiences and by low emotional reactivity. Two theoretical accounts aim to explain these impairments: One assumption is that high PP is associated with a specific deficiency in emotion processing. The other explanation assumes a more general attentional deficit leading to neglecting non-goal-relevant information. To differentiate these two assumptions, we manipulated the focus of attention by asking participants (N=400) to either rate the emotional value or the age of the persons shown in a set of 80 different scenes. Second, we manipulated whether the attended or the non-attended dimension (emotion or age) predicted a subsequent stimulus category (object or animal) shown after each scene. Furthermore, we manipulated whether participants were instructed to search for a relation between the scenes and the subsequent stimulus category or whether no specific information about any relation was given (explicit vs. implicit learning situation). Psychopathic personality was assessed with the PPI-R-40. The results show an emotion processing deficit under implicit learning conditions: Associations between age and subsequent stimuli were learned by individuals high on PP when age was the attended dimension. This learning effect was not found for high PP individuals when the emotional value was the attended and predictive dimension. However, under explicit learning conditions, high PP individuals acquired knowledge to the same extent as low PP individuals. The latter result suggests that learning deficits in PP can be bypassed by intentional cognitive control processes.

Anna Dapprich (Radboud University, Netherlands)
Katinka von Borries (Radboud University, Netherlands)
Karin Roelofs (Radboud University, Netherlands)
Wolf-Gero Lange (Radboud University, Netherlands)
The Role of Social Anxiety, Psychopathic Tendencies and Hormones in Approach-Avoidance Behavior towards Emotional Faces
PRESENTER: Anna Dapprich

ABSTRACT. Social anxiety and high levels of psychopathic traits could be conceptualized as the opposing ends of one continuous trait i.e. the extent of caring about social evaluation. Indeed, research found that individuals with clinical social anxiety and psychopathic traits show different automatic social action tendencies, respectively. Besides that, also hormonal levels are involved in both, social anxiety and psychopathy, as well as automatic social action tendencies. The current research examined: 1) the relationship between social anxiety, psychopathic tendencies, cortisol and testosterone and 2) its interactive role in social action tendencies in a non-clinical, female sample. In order to answer these questions, the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale, the Psychopathic Personality Inventory, pre-experimental levels of cortisol and testosterone, as well as the Approach-Avoidance task using emotional faces has been assessed. Indeed, a negative correlation between social anxiety and psychopathic tendencies has been found supporting the continuous approach of caring about social evaluation. Furthermore, by using Structural Equation Modelling significant main effects of psychopathic tendencies, testosterone, and cortisol, and an interaction between cortisol and social anxiety on approach-avoidance tendencies has been found. Most interestingly, individuals with higher psychopathic traits were faster in approaching angry faces. Besides that, individuals with both, higher social anxiety and higher levels of cortisol were slower in approaching happy faces. These results stress the importance of taking both personality and biology, into account when studying automatic social action tendencies.

Joanna Kisker (Osnabrück University, Germany)
Rebecca Sophia Sylvester (Osnabrück University, Germany)
Elise Leila Radtke (Osnabrück University, Germany)
Benjamin Schöne (Osnabrück University, Germany)
Thomas Gruber (Osnabrück University, Germany)
Library for Universal Virtual Realty Experiments: luVRe
PRESENTER: Joanna Kisker

ABSTRACT. VR-based paradigms could substantially increase the ecological validity of psychological research as VR allows submerging into real-life experiences under controlled laboratory conditions. LuVRe is a video database designed to provide a standardized set of virtual reality (VR) clips. Our goal is to provide a growing set of 3D-360° clips enabling researchers to study emotional and cognitive processes under realistic conditions while maintaining experimental control. LuVRe comprises 300 videos and pictures covering a large variety of emotionally-evocative themes. Watching these videos with a head mounted display results in an immersive experience. The preset study systematically investigates differences in emotional experiences between immersive VR experiences (3D-360°) and conventional laboratory experiments (2D). We investigated subjective as well as objective reactions, i.e. electropsychophysiological correlates of the motivational systems and heart rate. As a result, experiences in virtual reality differ from laboratory conditions with respect to heart rate and frontal alpha asymmetries (FAA), but not subjective ratings, indicating a higher emotional saliency of virtual reality. Realistic VR conditions, as well as laboratory conditions, might thus elicit effects which are specific to their domain. We argue that VR allows for a better approximation of real life regarding and thereby bridges the gap between laboratory and real-life conditions.

Sergio Cervera-Torres (Leibniz Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM)-Knowledge Media Research Center, Germany)
Susana Ruiz Fernández (FOM-Hochschule für Oekonomie und Management; Leibniz Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Martin Lachmair (Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien; LEAD Graduate School &Research Network, University of Tübingen, Germany)
Matthias Riekert (Leibniz Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM)-Knowledge Media Research Center, Germany)
Peter Gerjets (Leibniz Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM)-Knowledge Media Research Center, Germany)
Altering emotions near the hand: Approach-Avoidance swipe interactions modulate emotional images judgments

ABSTRACT. Approaching positive objects and avoiding negative ones are general tendencies in human behaviour. Interestingly, arm positions connoting approach (arm flexion) or avoidance (arm extension) have been also shown to influence how the valence of stimuli is processed. However, such bodily influence on valence processing has been typically examined within experimental paradigms that do not involve acting upon objects (e.g., touching and moving them directly by hand). Accordingly, our study attempts to integrate such paradigms with findings suggesting that the hand proximity to visual stimuli modulates their cognitive processing. Sixty participants judged the valence of twenty positive and twenty negative images twice; firstly after observing them on a monitor screen (i.e. baseline) and secondly after swiping them on a touchscreen monitor, either closer to their body or further away. We expected that congruent interactions (approaching positive images – avoiding negative) would raise more positive judgments than incongruent interactions (avoiding positive images – approaching negative). Valence judgments post-interaction (adjusted for baseline) and valence change (valence judgments post-interaction minus baseline judgments) were analyzed with linear mixed models (LMM). Results indicate that swiping positive images closer (vs. away) tended to reinforce more their perceived positive valence but swiping negative images away (vs. closer) attenuated more their perceived negative valence. Indeed, swiping positive images away and negative images closer did not significantly change their perceived valence. We conclude that swiping affective images closer or away might highlight valence-processing asymmetries wherein interactions leading to more desirable effects are better attended (approaching positive and avoiding negative images).

Carolin Schwab (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Anne Frenzel (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Elizabeth Mayer (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Discrete Emotions in Grading Situations: Differentiated Effects of Anger, Enjoyment, and Boredom on Grades
PRESENTER: Carolin Schwab

ABSTRACT. We aimed to test if naturally elicited teacher emotions influence grading, a task that takes up a considerable portion of teachers’ professional lives (OECD, 2014). Previous research showed that externally induced emotions influence grading in emotion congruent ways, that is negative emotions lead to lower and positive emotions lead to higher grades for the same essays (Brackett et al., 2010). We sought to show that a material-inherent cue (handwriting) naturally elicits discrete emotions (anger, enjoyment, and boredom), which influence grades in differentiated ways. Our experiment which involved 74 teacher students (62 female) to grade two essays of similar content quality in varied handwriting quality was supportive of these claims: In two-condition within-participant mediation analyses (Montoya & Hayes, 2017) the unstandardized effect of handwriting on grades was 0.32 (CI [0.03, 0.61]), which equals one third of a letter grade. The relationship was mediated via anger (0.44, CI[0.21, 0.67]) and enjoyment (0.26, CI[0.06, 0.43]) in emotion congruent ways, but not via boredom (0.02, CI[- 0.04, 0.10]). That is, good handwriting predicted a lower level of anger and a higher level of enjoyment, whereas it did not predict boredom. A higher level of anger and enjoyment in turn predicted lower and higher grades, respectively, whereas boredom did not predict grades. Results imply that it is important to further investigate grading as an emotional task, in order to prevent negative consequences for teachers‘ well-being on the one hand and students‘ future careers through biased grades on the other hand.

Tina Braun (Universität der Bundeswehr München, Germany)
Ute Kunzmann (Universität Leipzig, Germany)
Timo von Oertzen (Universität der Bundeswehr München, Germany)
Children show a better empathic accuracy in the presence of their mentor

ABSTRACT. Past evaluations of youth mentoring programs were based nearly exclusively on questionnaires. This led to the neglect of constructs which cannot be investigated properly in this manner, like empathic accuracy. We predicted that the physical presence of the mentor would enhance the mentee’s empathic accuracy in comparison to the mentor’s absence. Further, we explore the effect of mentoring duration on the empathic accuracy of children. 17 mentoring dyads participated in this study. Mentees ranged in age between 7 and 19 years. The mentees watched short film clips in which a person describes an emotional experience. Afterwards, the mentees were asked to rate the protagonists feelings based on 12 adjectives. These scores were then compared to the original scores of the protagonists, using an intra-class-correlation. The results support our hypothesis, as the mentees reached significantly higher scores when their mentor was present than when he was absent. In the absence of their mentor, mentees showed a marginally higher score of empathic accuracy the longer they have been matched with a mentor when age of the mentee was controlled. This extends our knowledge on how children profit from youth mentoring programs. Further, it shows the necessity to investigate mentoring dyads in a laboratory and not solely rely on survey studies.

Knut Drewing (Giessen University, Germany)
Emotional responses to touched materials in young female and male adults

ABSTRACT. In everyday interaction we touch a number of different materials, which can elicit distinctive emotional responses: For instances, touching soft fur feels highly pleasant for most of us, whereas sandpaper typically feels unpleasant. In a recent study (Drewing, Weyel, Celebi, & Kaya, 2018) participants manually explored a representative set of 47 solid, fluid and granular materials and rated them according to 52 sensory and emotional adjectives. Emotional responses were made along three dimensions: Valence (positive, negative), Arousal (arousing - boring), and Dominance (being controlled - controlling), and they were systematically correlated with values on sensory dimensions. Here, we developed a short variant of the task in order to compare sensory-emotional associations for young females and males. 30 participants (18-29 years, half females) explored 25 materials using 18 sensory and 9 emotional adjectives. In covariance-based principal component analyses on the individual emotional and sensory ratings, we extracted 3 emotional (Valence, Arousal, Dominance, explaining 72% variance) and 6 sensory dimensions (Roughness, Fluidity/Stickiness, Granularity, Heaviness, Fibrousness, Deformability, explaining 75% variance). Similar sensory-emotional correlations were significant for young females and males: Less rough and more fibrous (fluffy) materials came along with more positive Valence, more fluid/sticky materials elicited more Arousal, and heavier, less deformable materials with more Dominance. Overall, we replicated the previous results on sensory and emotional dimensions of touched materials using a shorter task, and demonstrated a high consistency in the sensory-emotional associations of young female and male adults.

Irene Sophia Plank (Einstein Center for Neurosciences Berlin, Germany)
Lina-Nel Christiansen (Universität Potsdam, Germany)
Felix Bermpohl (Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany)
Understanding Children. Parents versus Non-Parents

ABSTRACT. Using social competencies to socially understand children is vital for parenting. They not only allow adequate reactions to a child’s behaviour but since parents are important role models, they are also passed on to the children (Kluczniok et al. 2016). Although there are tasks available to measure social understanding of children in adults (e.g. MET-KE; Lemme, 2012), none have different age groups or enough stimuli for multiple test points. Similar to the MET-KE, we measure affective aspects of social understanding (empathy and compassion) by showing either emotional or neutral pictures and asking participants to rate the valence of their feelings and compassion. However, we developed a separate task to measure cognitive aspects of social understanding (affect recognition and affective theory of mind). It uses morphed videos of a neutral face taking on an affect and has been proven to be sensitive with adult stimuli (see Domes et al., 2008). Therefore, the main goal of our study is to develop and evaluate tasks measuring different aspects of social understanding of several age groups of children in adults. We aim for enough stimuli for multiple test points. We want to use the developed tasks to evaluate the effects of mentalisation-based intervention in parents on social understanding of children. Currently, our task to measure cognitive aspects of social understanding works well, however, the task to measure affective aspects needs to be improved before it can be used.

Sara Schmitz (Central Institute of Mental Health Mannheim, Germany)
Johanna Hepp (Central Institute of Mental Health Mannheim, Germany)
Inga Niedtfeld (Central Institute of Mental Health Mannheim, Germany)
Negative affect, emotion processing and distrust – a Daily Life Study
PRESENTER: Sara Schmitz

ABSTRACT. Previous research has demonstrated that inducing negative mood in individuals lead to a biased processing of facial emotional stimuli. The purpose of the present study was to explore this association in the daily life of individuals. Ambulatory Assessment (AA) was used to test whether momentary negative affect contributes to (i) a negatively biased evaluation of emotional faces and (ii) heightened distrust. To this end, self-reports regarding momentary affect were combined with behavioral tasks on emotion processing (evaluation of emotional facial expressions) and distrust (hypothetical Distrust Game). Using multivariate multilevel modeling, we tested relations between those variables in a sample of 42 healthy individuals at six time points over 7 days. Results revealed that there was an effect of tense arousal on distrust ratings. More specifically, momentary tense affect was associated with higher levels of distrust in the Distrust Game. This was in line with our assumption that being in an aversive emotional state goes along with more distrust, which might lead to subsequent interpersonal difficulties. However, there was no effect of momentary negative affect on the emotion evaluation task. Results are discussed, especially regarding the behavioral tasks that we newly implemented in AA.

Simon Sanwald (Universität Ulm, Germany)
Christian Montag (Universität Ulm, Germany)
Markus Kiefer (Universität Ulm, Germany)
Depressive emotionality moderates the influence of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism on unconscious semantic priming
PRESENTER: Simon Sanwald

ABSTRACT. Automatic semantic processing can be assessed using semantic priming paradigms. Interindividual differences in semantic priming have been associated with differences in prefrontal functionality. Additionally, the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism has been shown being associated with altered prefrontal functionality as well as with depression. Depression associated variables like depressed mood moderated the relationship between BDNF Val66Met and prefrontal functionality. In this study, we aimed to investigate whether BDNF Val66Met genotype affects masked and unmasked semantic priming and whether sadness is a moderator of the associations between BDNF Val66Met and semantic priming. We collected data of N = 155 participants measuring reaction times (RT) as well as error rates (ER) in masked and unmasked semantic priming paradigms using a lexical decision task. Moreover, we assessed the primary emotion SADNESS using the Affective Neuroscience Personality Scale (ANPS). Carriers of at least one 66Met allele showed reduced RT priming and increased ER priming in the masked priming paradigm. Further, SADNESS significantly moderated the association between BDNF Val66Met and masked RT priming. Low SADNESS 66Met carriers showed close to no priming, while high SADNESS in 66Met individuals coincided with increased RT priming. These results indicate a more superficial processing style in 66Met individuals, in particular when depressive tendencies were low. Our study thus demonstrates how emotional and moleculargenetic factors exert an interacting influence on higher-level cognition.

Johannes Großer (Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Martina Bientzle (Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Joachim Kimmerle (Institut für Wissensmedien (IWM), Germany)
Learning from digital educational videos: The impact of the source profession on attitude, expectation, and knowledge
PRESENTER: Johannes Großer

ABSTRACT. Digital learning videos are widely used for educational purposes, for example, for conveying health-related information. Videos that present information about particular diseases can be provided by various professions. Information on obesity and depression, for example, can be presented by physicians as well as by psychologists. To what extent has the perceived profession of an expert an impact on how people process the information and what factors influence this process?

In four between-subject online experiments we tested the hypotheses that people’s knowledge acquisition depends on the perceived profession of the expert shown in a video (physician vs. psychologist) and that knowledge acquisition is influenced by the people’s attitude and expectation toward the profession. Two experiments were conducted with obesity as stimulus material, two other experiments dealt with depression.

Using analysis of variance we found that participants learned more about obesity the information was given by an expert labeled as a physician than when the identical information was provided by an expert labeled as a psychologist. For depression the effect was the other way round. Ongoing analysis will shed light on the role of people’s attitude and expectation toward the profession for explaining this effect.

Hannah Schipperges (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Zeliha Sahintürk (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Marion Braun (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Sonja Ehret (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Miriam Ruess (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Roland Thomaschke (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Minimal art museums have restorative effects

ABSTRACT. Previous research has shown that museums can, like natural environments, have restorative effects on visitors. The presented study we aimed at investigating whether a small minimal art museum can also be restorative, and whether its restorative effects are affected by visit duration or preference for minimal art. We hypothesized that the museum would be restorative, that this effect would be amplified by preference for minimal art, and that restoration would be optimal with a medium relative to a short or a long visit duration. In a between-subjects design with 66 participants in total, participants stayed either 10, 45, or 110 min in the museum. Immediately before and after their visit they completed a restoration questionnaire. After the visit they completed a preference questionnaire as well. We found that the museum had overall a profound restorative effect, and that this effect was stronger when participants had a preference for minimal art museums. The effect of visit duration was not significant, but showed a marginal tendency towards stronger restauration with the medium duration relative to both other durations. We conclude that minimal art museums can have a restorative effect and that this effect is modulated by museum preference.

Luisa Prochazkova (Leiden University, Netherlands)
Roberta Sellaro (Leiden University, Netherlands)
Bernhard Hommel (Leiden University, Netherlands)
The effects of performance (Non-)contingent reward on metacontrol policies
PRESENTER: Roberta Sellaro

ABSTRACT. Previous research has shown that the prospect of a reward can modulate the trade-off between persistence and flexibility (two opposite metacontrol policies), and that the direction of these effects varies as a function of the type of reward. Specifically, while performance contingent reward seems to increase persistence at the expense of flexibility, performance non-contingent reward seems to increase flexibility at the expense of persistence. The present study aimed at extending previous observations by testing the effects of (non-)contingent reward on performance of two cognitive tasks that call for persistence and flexibility, respectively: namely, the Simon task and the Attentional Blink task. Participants (N=180) were randomly and equally assigned to one of three groups differing for the type of reward (i.e., performance contingent reward, performance non-contingent reward, and no reward) and asked to perform the two cognitive tasks, whose order was counterbalanced across participants. Consistent with our expectations, we observed better Simon task performance in the group of participants who received performance contingent reward, whereas a less pronounced attentional blink effect was observed in the group of participants who received performance non-contingent reward. Taken together, these results corroborate and extend previous observations suggesting a relationship between performance (non-)contingent reward and metacontrol policies.

David Dignath (University Freiburg, Germany)
Robert Wirth (University Würzburg, Germany)
Jan Kühnhausen (University Tübingen, Germany)
Caterina Gawrilow (jan.kuehnhausen@uni-tuebingen.de, Germany)
Wilfried Kunde (Universiyt Würzburg, Germany)
Andrea Kiesel (University Freiburg, Germany)
Motivation drives conflict adaptation
PRESENTER: David Dignath

ABSTRACT. When facing difficulties, most people have the remarkable ability to persist and overcome obstacles. But how do people cope with deterrents in goal pursuit? Theoretical accounts have suggested that it is indeed the difficulty of an action which motivates additional investment of effort in the near future People often expend more effort and get better at overcoming obstacles in situations where they face difficulties. For instance, the conflict monitoring model predicts that conflict between incompatible responses reduces susceptibility to future conflict. This conflict-adaptation effect has been explained in terms of motivational control: Conflict in the past triggers negative affect, which can be reduced by increasing control – as a consequence future and accompanying negative affect is reduced. While evidence supports that conflict-adaptation serves a motivational purpose (e.g., affect regulation), it remains to be shown that conflict-adaptation is actually triggered by motivational mechanisms. Therefore, the present research tested the hypothesis of a motivational conflict-adaptation effect. Continuous finger movements towards target stimuli and away from distractor stimuli were recorded. Motivational conflict was instigated by assigning reward and penalty to targets or distractors, respectively. To index motivational vigor and increased precision due to motivation, we measured initiation times and movement deviation from the shortest path to the target. Both a re-analysis of published data and data from a new replication study established a motivational conflict-adaptation effect. Together, the results extend a motivational control framework, showing that motivational dynamics (i.e., motivational conflicts) can be the driving force of control.

Lars König (University of Münster, Germany)
Developing Podcasts to Teach Psychology: Teacher Enthusiasm Increases Students’ Excitement, Interest, Enjoyment, and Learning Motivation

ABSTRACT. Teacher enthusiasm can be defined as the occurrence of distinct behavioral expressions, such as nonverbal (e.g., gestures) and verbal (e.g., tone of voice) behaviors. It has been shown that teacher enthusiasm is linked to various positive outcomes: It is linked to students’ enjoyment, interest, achievement, motivation and vitality. However, most teacher enthusiasm research is based on correlational data and therefore no causal inferences can be drawn. To overcome this limitation, a between-subject experimental design was used to analyze the effects of teacher enthusiasm on instructional quality. Two versions of an evolutionary psychology podcast were developed: A neutral and an enthusiastic version. While the wording was kept identical between both versions, the speaker was instructed to read the podcast script either in a neutral or in an enthusiastic manner. It was hypothesized that listening to the enthusiastic version would result in more positive instructional quality ratings. 163 university students with diverse majors listened to the podcast. To test the hypothesis, independent sample t-tests were conducted. Overall, the results show that listening to the enthusiastic version resulted in more positive instructional quality ratings: Participants who listened to the enthusiastic version of the podcast rated it as more interesting and exiting; they enjoyed the listening process more; had a higher motivation to learn more about the topic; evaluated the podcast host as more trustworthy; and gave the podcast a higher overall rating. The results demonstrate that teacher enthusiasm can be a powerful instructional tool when developing educational podcasts.

Thomas Maran (University of Liechtenstein, Liechtenstein)
Simon Liegl (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Marco Furtner (University of Liechtenstein, Liechtenstein)
Tilman Grünbaum (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Nils Bergau (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Pierre Sachse (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Chiara Dietz (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Lucas Haraped (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Abolished associative learning in states of lust
PRESENTER: Tilman Grünbaum

ABSTRACT. Being able to react to environmental cues in an adequate way is indispensable in everyday life. To do so we heavily rely on sequential information, which informs us about the chronological order of events, allowing us to predict future occurances of similar events, thus enabling us to act with foresight. This contrasts with simple stimulus-response learning, which only enables us react to the last preceding cue. Based on recent findings on the impact of increased arousal on cognitive processes and hippocampal activity, we aimed to assess whether experimentally induced positive arousal restrains associative context processing. We designed a 2 (arousal state) × 3 (predictive associations) factorial experiment, expecting restricted associative learning abilities in the arousal condition as compared to a control group. A sample of N = 56 participants completed the Learned Irrelevance Paradigm as a measure of their ability to process sequential context, after either being exposed to a neutral or a sexually arousing stimulus video. Our results show a decreased sensitivity for predictive cues, indicating a disruption of implicit sequential learning. This finding yields evidence for a perseveration of cognitive resources by a switch to less demanding stimulus-response learning.

Michael Sprengel (Helmut Schmidt University / University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany)
Miriam Tomat (Helmut Schmidt University / University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany)
Mike Wendt (Medical School Hamburg, Germany)
Sven Knoth (Helmut Schmidt University / University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany)
Thomas Jacobsen (Helmut Schmidt University / University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany)
Attention or temporal learning: what explains the PCE?
PRESENTER: Michael Sprengel

ABSTRACT. In experimental conflict protocols, participants typically respond more slowly and less accurately if the learned response associations for target and distractor stimuli are incongruent (i.e. contradictory) than when they are congruent. This congruency effect is weaker the more the frequency ratio of congruent to incongruent trials is skewed towards the latter. This proportion congruency effect (PCE) has often been explained in terms of a more selective attentional setting under conditions of frequent interference by distractor information (attentional account). However, temporal learning can account for the data just as well. It assumes that performance benefits from a match between the expected and actual time of response execution. Therefore, performance in trials featuring the more frequent, and therefore more expected, congruency level benefits - which is a different but equally valid description of the data constituting the PCE.

We demonstrate two ways to address this issue. Firstly, we illustrate a general experimental approach which allows for a direct juxtaposition of the attentional and the temporal learning account. By experimentally introducing a simple contextual manipulation it is possible to derive exactly opposing predictions for two outcomes: While the attentional account predicts a PCE under Condition A but no PCE under Condition B, the temporal learning account predicts exactly the opposite pattern. Secondly, we introduce a new and flexible way to quantify potential temporal expectations. We show how these expectations can be statistically controlled in a mixed-effects model and thus how a more "pure" PCE can be derived.

Christian Böffel (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Jochen Müsseler (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Automatic Response Activation in the Avatar Compatibility Task

ABSTRACT. When people are forced to take the perspective of an avatar to complete a stimulus-response compatibility task, they generally show the same compatibility effects that we would expect from the avatar’s position instead of their own. In this study, we investigated if these effects are caused by the automatic activation of responses that are spatially corresponding from the avatar’s perspective. We asked 24 participants to perform a compatibility task from the avatar’s point of view but contrary to similar experiments in the past, we introduced a delay (0 vs. 750 ms) between the stimulus and avatar presentation. As a result, the participants had to wait until the avatar appeared to select the correct response in the delayed condition. Because the automatic response activation is known to decay quickly, we aimed to eliminate its influence with this delay. Well-known theories of stimulus-response compatibility argue that the automatic activation of spatially corresponding responses is a key factor in stimulus-response compatibility. Based on this, we expected a reduction of the compatibility effects in the 750 ms condition compared to the 0 ms condition. However, in contrast to these predictions, we observed a slightly larger compatibility effect from the avatar’s point of view in the delayed condition. We believe that this calls the role of automatic response activation for perspective-based compatibility effects into question and could underline the importance of general mapping advantages instead.

Janine Jargow (TU Dresden, Germany)
Christina Pfeuffer (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany)
Hannes Ruge (TU Dresden, Germany)
Top-down modulation of experience-based and instruction-based stimulus-category and stimulus-response associations
PRESENTER: Janine Jargow

ABSTRACT. Responding to a stimulus according to the current task demands is often a two-staged process, involving semantic categorization (e.g., small/large) followed by category-specific response selection (e.g., small-left; large-right). This leads to the formation of stimulus-category associations (e.g. car-large) as well as stimulus-response associations (e.g. car-right; see e.g., Pfeuffer, Moutsopoulou, Pfister, Waszak, & Kiesel, 2017). When stimuli are presented twice and the stimulus-category (size vs. mechanism categorization) and stimulus-response (right vs. left) mappings orthogonally repeat or switch between the first (prime) and second (probe) stimulus presentation, participants respond slower in the probe when mappings switched rather than repeated. This seems to be the case both after active execution as well as after passively listening to verbal instructions (e.g., car: “large-right”) in the prime. We tested whether such item-specific priming effects are under voluntary control by manipulating participants’ expectations regarding the probability with which a specific stimulus would require same or different categorization or response in subsequent probe trials (N=73). In reality, however, actual probe trial probabilities were constant at .5. We hypothesize that expectation of low / high prime-probe consistency should lead to weaker / stronger priming effects due to less efficient prime encoding and/or probe retrieval of stimulus-category or stimulus-response associations. The basic results of the original studies were replicated (e.g., Pfeuffer et al., 2017). More importantly, the retrieval of stimulus-response and stimulus-category associations was differently affected by the expectancy manipulation. Stimulus-response but not stimulus-category retrieval was modulated by participants´ expectations, suggesting a complex interplay of automatic and controlled processes.

Marvin Liesner (Julius Maximilians University of Würzburg, Germany)
Dissociating the role of compatibility and predictability of action-effect relations for explicit measures of the active self

ABSTRACT. Events that are perceived as being predictably affected by one’s own actions can become integrated into the self-representation in terms of experienced agency and ownership. An agent’s actions typically lead to body related perceptions, so called resident effects, but also to the perception of changes in the environment, so called remote effects. These two different sources of information can however contradict each other, for example when hand movements produce tool movements in opposite directions. The influence of such incompatible action-effects on explicit measures of agency and body ownership had been studied before, however (in)compatible action effects were in these studies never produced in a perfectly predictable manner. Therefore, in the present study we manipulated predictability and compatibility of action effects independently in a sample of 32 participants. Our results showed reduced experience of agency and ownership with unpredictable relative to predictable, and incompatible relative to compatible action effects, but also larger reductions in ratings for incompatible compared to compatible trials when action effects were not predictable. Thus, compatibility of actions and their effects is a way more important cue for experienced agency and ownership, when these effects are actually not controllable (unpredictable) than when they are controllable (predictable) suggesting predictability as having the more pronounced impact on those measures. Future research should extend this research to more implicit measures of agency and ownership as well as performance measures which might help to shed light on the mechanisms agents use to deal with incompatible action effects.

Bianca Jovanovic (University of Giessen, Germany)
Gudrun Schwarzer (University of Giessen, Germany)
Considering comfort in a social context: how children give different tools to confederates
PRESENTER: Bianca Jovanovic

ABSTRACT. When adults are asked to hand over a tool to another person, they take into account the other person’s starting comfort, e.g. by orienting the handle towards the other person. In contrast, first studies suggest that children might consider other people’s comfort to a much lesser degree or even not at all, even though being able to consider their own comfort. The present study tested to what extent 5- to 7-year-old children are able to consider another person’s comfort when handing over different tools and in how far the type of tool (novel or habitually used) has a differential impact on their grasp choices. 32 children (18 girls) were first required to use each one of three tools (bar, brush, hammer) themselves, and subsequently to pass the tools to a collaborator for his use. The tools were presented either with the handle facing towards or away from the child. In order to enable their own or the collaborator’ s comfort, children had to adapt their grip postures flexibly. For analysis, children’s rates of comfortable and uncomfortable grips in the different conditions were calculated. The analyses indicate that the extent to which own comfort was considered was much higher than the extent to which the collaborator’s comfort was considered. Furthermore, in both conditions, significant effects of tool identity on grip choice were found. This speaks in favor of the assumption that efficient planning is no all-or none phenomenon but context-dependent, and that habitual tool-use affects grasp planning

Lara Kirfel (University College London, UK)
David Lagnado (University College London, UK)
The impact of action frequency on causal judgements
PRESENTER: Lara Kirfel

ABSTRACT. The frequency with which we engage in actions in our daily actions can vary greatly: Some things we do very often, while we do other things only rarely. How do we perceive the causal contribution of frequent vs. infrequent actions? Literature in causal cognition has suggested that infrequent, atypical or unlikely actions are seen as more causal for an outcome than actions that have been performed frequently (Hart & Honoré, 1959; Kahneman & Miller, 1986; Hitchcock & Knobe, 2009). In contrast, others have argued that a frequently acting agent will be judged more causal if their actions increase the likelihood of the outcome to occur (Systma et al., 2015). In this paper, we will present a systematic set of experiments that investigates how the frequency of an action shapes our perception of the agent’s causal contribution to an outcome. In three online experiments, participants watched animated video clips in which agents jointly cause an outcome (conjunctive causation), but differ in how often they have performed this action before. Experiment 1 (N=133) shows that people judge the infrequently acting agent as more causal and responsible for the jointly caused outcome. Experiment 2 (N=156) shows that this is also the case when the agents have no knowledge about each other’s behaviour. Experiment 3 (N=137) shows that people stop preferring the ‘abnormally’ acting agent if the action is ‘token’ abnormal, but not ‘type’ abnormal. We conclude by suggesting the integration of action frequency into current models of causality and responsibility.

Katharina A. Schwarz (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Lisa Weller (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Annika L. Klaffehn (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Wilfried Kunde (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Roland Pfister (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Implicit and explicit measures capture distinct facets of human agency

ABSTRACT. The sense of agency, i.e., the feeling of control over one’s own actions and their consequences in the environment, is an integral and crucial part of action taking. In experimental studies, agency is most commonly measured either directly via explicit agency ratings or indirectly via implicit measures, e.g., relating to temporal binding (or intentional binding). Indeed, both types of measures, explicit and implicit, are often discussed synonymously and inferences about the participants’ explicit sense of agency are regularly made on the basis of implicit measures alone. However, recent evidence suggests that both measures might not be directly related. To shed further light on this question, in this study, we employed a high-powered classic temporal binding paradigm with free and forced choice conditions in combination with agency ratings (N = 90). We found no evidence of a relation between agency ratings and temporal binding, neither in the free nor in the forced choice condition, and even trial-wise correlations revealed only small effect sizes. This suggests that both explicit agency ratings and temporal binding measures are not as strongly interlinked as previously thought.

Anna Foerster (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Lisa Weller (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Pfister Roland (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Katharina Schwarz (University of Würzburg, Germany)
None of my business: Reduced agency for the consequences of lies
PRESENTER: Anna Foerster

ABSTRACT. People tell lies for the sake of anticipated benefits, risking harmful consequences of their dishonest actions elsewhere. An open question is how much agents feel responsible for the consequences of their dishonest actions. Although lying is an integral part of the behavioral repertoire, truthful responding is predominant in human interactions and an obstacle that has to be overcome to respond dishonestly. We hypothesized that this inherent conflict and mental effort would diminish the feeling of responsibility (i.e., agency) for the consequences of dishonest compared to honest responses. We employed a paradigm with temporal binding as an implicit agency measure of (dis)honesty, i.e., interval estimates between an honest vs. dishonest response and their sensory effects. The data of forty participants supports the assumption of reduced agency for lies and their consequences as dishonest compared to honest responses produced longer estimates of response-effect intervals. This can only be a first step toward understanding agency in lying. Future endeavors should explore agency for different instances of lies or in the presence of affective consequences.

Beatrix Lábadi (University of Pécs, Hungary)
Orsolya Inhóf (University of Pécs, Hungary)
András Zsidó (University of Pécs, Hungary)
Gergely Darnai (University of Pécs, Hungary)
Lateralisation of sense of body ownership
PRESENTER: Beatrix Lábadi

ABSTRACT. A growing body of the research shows that the body ownership has mainly been linked to the right hemisphere and larger interhemispheric connectivity. However recent findings of the laterality effect of rubber hand illusions (RHI) are controversial. The objective of our study was to determine the weighting of right and left hemispheric contributions to individual differences in susceptibility to body illusory percepts such as the RHI. Sinistrals-, dextrals-, and mixed- handed individuals (n = 90) were participated in RHI which was elicited at both the left and the right hand, in randomized order. Immediately after each trial, a visual line bisection task was also conducted to investigate the shifting the subjective body midline (bisection bias). Additional questionnaire measured which interoceptive abilities affect the integration of multiple source of sensory information about the body. It was found that individuals with a lower degree of lateralization and less interoceptive awareness were more susceptible to the RHI. However performance on left and right hand did not differ in strength of the illusion. Furthermore, the line bisection performance was also unaffected by the RHI induction. The results will be discussed in relation to factors that influence the RHI and hemispheric differences.

Erik Lang (University of Cologne, Germany)
Angela Mariele Brands (University of Cologne, Germany)
Markus Peters (University of Cologne, Germany)
Tatyana Thye (University of Cologne, Germany)
The Role of Cognitive Flexibility in the Emergence of Explicit Knowledge in a Serial Reaction Time Task

ABSTRACT. Implicit knowledge results from an unconscious and effortless experience and internalization of statistical regularities inherent to the learned material (implicit learning). Despite a wide range of approaches to evoke implicit learning, one commonality among them is that a subset of participants develops explicit knowledge about the regularities inherent to the task. However, it remains unclear which factors actually contribute to these inter-individual differences. The Unexpected Event Hypothesis assumes explicit knowledge to result from detecting changes in response fluency while performing implicit learning tasks. These detection processes may depend on the ability to incorporate environmental cues into one’s current mental set (cognitive flexibility). However, thus far this link has not been empirically verified. A total of N = 60 healthy university students, participated in this study. Spontaneous eye blink rate (sEBR) - commonly used as a proxy for baseline central dopaminergic functioning- was recorded, followed by a Number-Letter Task, assessing cognitive flexibility via switch-costs. Lastly, six blocks of a Serial Reaction Time Task, with an inherent motor sequence, followed by a block including Post Decision Wagering trials, were employed as measures of implicit and explicit knowledge. Results will be discussed in light of the underlying cognitive mechanisms implicated in the emergence of explicit knowledge in implicit learning paradigms and their possible neurobiological underpinnings. To our knowledge, this is the first experimental investigation assessing the relationship between inter-individual differences in shifting abilities and declarative knowledge.

Denise Stephan (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Iring Koch (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Multimodal Sequence Learning
PRESENTER: Denise Stephan

ABSTRACT. Learning is multimodal, guided by a multisensory environment. Nevertheless, the different influences that sensory modalities (e.g., vision and sound) may have upon sequence learning have largely been neglected, as have the mechanisms behind learning multimodal action sequences. Thus, at present we know very little about multimodal aspects of sequence learning. The idea our studies was to examine the effects of multimodal sequence learning by implementing multisensory stimulation (i.e., visual and auditory) on the one hand, and by using multimodal actions (i.e., manual and vocal) on the other hand. Our experiments demonstrate the important influence of modality-specific mechanisms in sequence learning. Specifically, we will show the beneficial effect of employing multisensory stimulation and multimodal actions for sequence learning. The presented research could contribute to the field of learning research by demonstrating optimized conditions for the acquisition of novel motor skills.

Kyungwan Kim (Institute of Physiology and Anatomy, German Sport University Cologne, Germany)
Otmar Bock (Institute of Physiology and Anatomy, German Sport University Cologne, Germany)
Stage-wise versus parallel acquisition of landmark, route and survey knowledge in a virtual city
PRESENTER: Kyungwan Kim

ABSTRACT. Acquisition of spatial knowledge has been explained by two conflicting accounts. One posits the existence of three sequential stages: first landmark knowledge, then route knowledge, then survey knowledge. The other account posits parallel development of the three types of knowledge. The present study was conducted to distinguish between these two alternatives (n = 60). A virtual city was displayed on three wide-angle screens in front of a passive treadmill. Participants progressed forwards through the city by walking on the treadmill, and turned left or right by clicking a left or right button. They had to explore three routes through the city (= one experimental block) ten times. After each block, participants carried out four tests of landmark knowledge, route knowledge and survey knowledge. We found that performance on all tests improved continuously from the first block on. One-way ANOVA with repeated-measures on “block” revealed significant effects and significant linear trends. Factor analysis of learning rates in the four tests yielded one single factor explaining 53.3% of total variance. Our findings support parallel rather than stage-wise acquisition of spatial knowledge.

Lena M. Wollschlaeger (Jacobs University Bremen, Germany)
Adele Diederich (Jacobs University Bremen, Germany)
A “psychophysical” preferential choice study of context effects with real consequences

ABSTRACT. Context effects are changes of choice probabilities due to changes of choice set composition. Three such effects, similarity, attraction, and compromise effects, have been originally observed after adding a third alternative to a two-option set. Explaining the three effects simultaneously has become a benchmark for computational cognitive process models of multi-alternative multi-attribute preferential choice. However, very few experiments actually study them simultaneously. And if so, different variants of the effects are used or data are averaged across subjects. We propose a preferential choice paradigm with real consequences that allows for many repetitions of the same choice problem with the same subject (“psychophysical” approach). Choice alternatives are described by three common attributes: (1) The number of points to be won or lost that determine the final monetary payoff (5 levels), (2) the loudness of an annoying sound that subjects hear over headphones after making their choice (5 levels), and (3) the waiting time before the next trial starts (5 levels), which affects the overall duration of the experimental session. Uncertainty or risk are added to the task by drawing the attribute values from distributions that are either learned from experience prior to the decision task or presented to the subjects in the form of pie charts. We show first results using this within-subject design with four experimental factors.

Mike Wendt (Medical School Hamburg, Germany)
Imke Gillich (Helmut Schmidt University, Germany)
Thomas Jacobsen (Helmut Schmidt University, Germany)
Cue-based preparation of non-perceptual stimulus-response translation processes: evidence from a probe task approach

ABSTRACT. Various processes have been suggested to account for preparation benefits in task switching situations, including attentional tuning to perceptual stimulus attributes or enhancing the readiness of task-specific stimulus-response (S-R) translation. To investigate preparation of non-perceptual S-R translation we asked participants to switch between responding to a stimulus digit by applying one of two S-R mapping rules, which were exact reversals of each other, and added trials of another (probe) task. On each trial, a cue preceded the stimulus digit by 800 ms. It indicated which of the two reversed S-R mapping rules had to be applied. On probe task trials, this cue was “overruled” by another cue. The probe task required a different stimulus categorization (and, thus, the application of a third S-R mapping rule) and occurred occasionally instead of the task indicated by the cue. Using the same set of motor responses for all tasks allowed us to assess response congruency effects. Because the cued S-R mappings were reversals of each other each stimulus presented in the probe task was congruent regarding one of the rules and incongruent regarding the other one. In two experiments, involving different stimulus categorizations (i.e., magnitude vs. parity judgements), probe task performance was facilitated if the stimulus was congruent with the S-R mapping rule indicated by the cue/incongruent with the reversed rule. Since application of the two cued S-R mappings did not differ in terms of perceptual processing these findings provide evidence for cue-based preparation of S-R translation processes unrelated to stimulus selection.

Eva Röttger (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hilde Haider (University of Cologne, Germany)
Fang Zhao (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
Robert Gaschler (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
Implicit sequence learning as an indicator of the adopted dual-task processing mode?
PRESENTER: Eva Röttger

ABSTRACT. Many findings suggest that implicit sequence learning is impaired when a serial reaction time task (SRTT; Nissen & Bullemer, 1987) is presented simultaneously with a random secondary task. However, learning is preserved with long SOAs (Schumacher & Schwarb, 2009) – potentially due to serial- instead of parallel processing. Thus, the amount of implicit sequence learning could serve as an indicator of the dual-task processing mode participants adopt when experiencing varying SOAs. Evidence suggests that only one processing mode is globally preferred: serial processing (Israel & Cohen, 2011) or parallel processing (Lehle & Hübner, 2009). Sequence learning should be preserved in the former case and hampered in the latter. In three experiments, we paired a SRTT with a random tone-discrimination task. In Experiment 1 (N=50), we trained participants with either consistently short or long SOAs (0ms / 800ms) and found sequence learning only in the SOAlong condition. In Experiment 2 (N=50), short vs. long SOAs were associated with certain SRTT-positions within-blocks (75%). We found an overall significant learning effect suggesting that the tasks were indeed processed generally serially – or that a minimum of 25% long SOAs sufficed to learn both position-types. Experiment 3 (N=25), implementing 100% SRTT-SOA contingencies, revealed that the (again) overall significant learning effect resulted exclusively from SRTT-positions consistently paired with long SOAs. The findings suggest that the experience of mixed SOAs does not result in generalized (serial) processing – but rather indicate some kind of switching between processing modes that will be further investigated in future research.

Clarissa Lustig (University of Cologne, Germany)
Hilde Haider (University of Cologne, Germany)
Differences of experienced fluency in implicit sequence learning
PRESENTER: Clarissa Lustig

ABSTRACT. An important question in the field of implicit learning is whether explicit knowledge about a task results from strengthening the representation of the acquired knowledge (e.g., Cleeremans & Jiménez, 2002). Alternatively, Frensch et al. (2003) proposed that explicit knowledge results from experiencing an unexpected event. This event triggers an attribution process, whose content becomes consciously aware. In previous experiments, we found that participants develop a feeling of fluency within the serial reaction time task (Nissen & Bullemer, 1987) when trained with short blocks of either regular or random trials. Here, we tested whether this feeling triggers the development of explicit sequence knowledge. For this purpose, participants were trained with Stroop-like material. In the experimental group (n=30), all blocks contained 50% congruent stroop-trials. In the control group (n=30), the regular blocks contained 50% and the random blocks 70% congruent trials. Thus, strengthening between the conditions was identical, but the chance of experiencing differences in fluency differed. In a subsequent test-phase, all participants received two additional regular blocks with 50% congruent trials. Explicit sequence knowledge was assessed by using the post decision wagering task. Results: During training, the two conditions did not differ. In the test-phase, participants in the experimental group developed significantly more sequence knowledge than participants in the control group. Thus, the differences of experienced fluency as an unexpected event might have triggered the development of sequence knowledge.

Ann-Katrin Hosch (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Janina A. Hoffmann (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Now categorize again! - Forced strategy change does not help to discover the category structure in unsupervised categorization
PRESENTER: Ann-Katrin Hosch

ABSTRACT. Real-world tasks, such as sorting emails, often demand people to create their own classification system without getting feedback. It has been argued that people prefer to categorize natural objects based on familiarity in real-world unsupervised categorization tasks (Rosch). However, studies in unsupervised categorization rarely find evidence that people detect more complex patterns or use categorization strategies other than unidimensional sorting when not receiving feedback. This study investigated to what degree asking participants to change their categorization strategy facilitates the detection of category structures that are more difficult to learn: an information integration structure and a high within-category variance structure. We hypothesized that participants first employ unidimensional strategies and later develop two-dimensional strategies. To test this prediction, participants repeatedly categorized stimuli either following an information integration or a high within-category variance structure and had to change their strategy after every 90 trials. In a final test block, participants had to categorize the objects in a manner that “fits the underlying structure best”. Although the proportion of participants considering two-dimensional strategies was high, the number of participants who considered two dimensions in their categorization did not increase in later blocks. However, many participants were also classified as guessing. In the final test block, only 4 participants categorized the stimuli based on the relevant dimension in the high-within category variance structure; no participant used an optimal strategy in the information integration structure. Without feedback, participants were not able to detect the underlying structure even when familiarized with the stimulus set during repeated categorization.

Christine Blech (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
Robert Gaschler (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
Michael Kriechbaumer (FernUniversität in Hagen / University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany)
Felix Henninger (University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany)
Marc Jekel (University of Cologne, Germany)
Nicolas W. Schuck (Max Planck Research Group NeuroCode / Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin,, Germany)
Dorit Wenke (Private University of Applied Sciences, Göttingen / Humboldt-Universität Berlin, Germany)
Acquiring a covariation and controlling when to apply it
PRESENTER: Christine Blech

ABSTRACT. Whenever two stimulus features are presented together, containing equivalent information, responses can be based on either feature. For example, at a traffic light the feature color (red = stop) co-varies systematically with the feature position (upper light = stop). Yet, many everyday covariations are not perfect. People might at the same time acquire the covariation and learn when (not) to apply this knowledge. For instance, in trials in which the instructed feature cannot be discriminated, the best strategy is to select a response based on what the covarying feature suggests. Yet, on trials were the link between the uninstructed feature and the responses is broken, the instructed feature should be used. We studied the race between covariation learning and learning to control when (not) to use it in an online study with N=70 participants (two sessions per day, ten days). This allowed to study learning as well as comparing interindividual variability (persons differing in how well they control application of covariation knowledge) and intraindividual variability (i.e., good vs bad days within person). Despite instructions on the imperfect covariation, with practice participants increasingly used the covariation in trials where this was valid as well as in trials where this lead to an error.

Sascha Schneider (Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany)
Günter Daniel Rey (Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany)
The more options, the better we learn? The influence of choice options on learning with digital media

ABSTRACT. Previous studies showed that an increase in choice options foster learning by an increase in the perception of autonomy and intrinsic motivation, whereby three to five choice options are assumed to be optimal. In contrast, too many choice options might lead to a choice overload effect, which could reverse learning-enhancing effects. However, such an effect was not yet experimentally analyzed. In detail, this study examined the effects of an increasing number of choice options on the learners’ retention and transfer performance as well as autonomy and intrinsic motivation. Beneficial effects of choice were supposed to end when more than three to five options are shown in a digital learning material. Overall, 208 secondary students (M = 13.66 years, SD = 1.01, 61.1 % male) from class 7 to 9 were assigned to one group of a one-factorial, between subject design with six groups (one to six choice options), while linear and quadratic regression models were compared in the analyses. Results showed that the number of choice options has a significant impact on the learners’ perceptions of autonomy and intrinsic motivation as well as their learning performance. Both learning scores, retention and transfer, revealed an optimum of three to five choice options (preference of the quadratic model). While perceptions of autonomy linearly increased with a higher number of choice options, perceptions of intrinsic motivation did not increase when at least two choice options were given.

14:00-16:00 Session 3C: POSTER SESSION: Attention


Location: TMG 47
Devon Allcoat (The University of Warwick, UK)
Adrian von Muhlenen (The University of Warwick, UK)
Does the frequency of video game play affect performance in visual attention tasks?
PRESENTER: Devon Allcoat

ABSTRACT. Previous research has shown that video game players perform better on a multitude of visual attention tasks than non-video game players. However, more recent research questioned these findings, showing no or only a limited benefit of video game playing. The aim of this study was to further investigate this discrepancy with four different attention tasks: The Attention Network Task (ANT), the visual marking task, the enumeration task, and the emotional Stroop task. A total of eighty participants completed each task before filling in a questionnaire about their past video game experience. For the analysis, participants were divided into three groups depending on whether they played never/rarely, occasionally, or frequently. The results showed that participants playing frequently had overall faster response times than those playing only occasionally or never/rarely. Those playing never/rarely had a much stronger alerting effect in the ANT than those playing occasionally or frequently. All three groups had the same preview benefit in the visual marking task and the same interference effect in the emotional Stroop task. In the enumeration task no difference was found between the three groups in the deflection points, but differences occurred in the error rates (those playing never/rarely did more error). The groups were also equivalent in terms of other control measures, such as personality. We conclude that the conflicting results in previous research can be partially attributed to the type of task used to measure visual attention.

Sophia von Salm (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Katharina Bolzius (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Jochen Müsseler (RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
Seeing the World through the Eyes of an Avatar? Comparing Perspective Taking and Referential Coding.
PRESENTER: Sophia von Salm

ABSTRACT. Previous studies have shown that users spontaneously take the position of a virtual avatar and solve spatial tasks from avatar’s perspective. The common impression is that users develop a spatial representation that allows them to “see” the world through the eyes of the avatar, that is, from its virtual perspective. In the present paper, this perspective taking assumption is contrasted with the referential coding assumption that allows the users to act on the basis of changed reference points. Using a spatial compatibility task, Experiment 1(n = 24) demonstrates that the visual perspective of the avatar is not the determining factor for taking avatar’s spatial position, but that its hand position (as the reference point) is decisive for the spatial coding of objects. However, participant’s own hand positions can overwrite this referencing (Experiment 2, n = 48).

Martin E. Maier (Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Germany)
Roman Liepelt (Deutsche Sporthochschule Köln, Institut für Psychologie, Germany)
Marco Steinhauser (Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Germany)
Post-conflict and post-error adjustments in the Joint Simon task
PRESENTER: Martin E. Maier

ABSTRACT. To optimize goal-directed behavior, it is pivotal to flexibly adjust behavior if response conflicts or errors occur. Here, we used the Joint Simon task to investigate whether adjustments following conflict and errors depend on whether oneself or a partner in a shared task has experienced the conflict or committed the error. Pairs of participants sat side by side in front of one computer screen. One partner responded to one of two possible target colors, while the other responded to the other target color. Targets could either appear on the left or on the right of the screen center. Across three experiments, RT and error rates were lower if the location of the stimulus and the side of the respective actor corresponded than if they did not correspond indicating response conflict. Conflict adaptation was stronger following the partners' responses than following one's own responses indicating stronger control of task-irrelevant spatial information following high conflict. Post-error adjustments showed a different picture. Following one's own responses, post-error slowing of correct responses and post-error decrease of error rates were observed. Following the partners' responses, post-error speeding and post-error increase of error rates were observed. Although the Joint Simon effect was increased in a cooperative setting as compared to a competitive setting, neither conflict adaptation nor post-error adjustments were modulated by the type of setting. These results show that post-conflict adjustments and post-error adjustments are flexibly and differentially implemented according to the context in which conflicts and errors occur.

Annabelle Walle (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Michel D. Druey (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Ronald Hübner (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Disentangling saliency, value association and valence of a stimulus on its ability to capture attention
PRESENTER: Annabelle Walle

ABSTRACT. The aim of the present study was to disentangle the different influences of saliency, value association, and valence of a stimulus on its power to capture attention. To address this issue, we used a modified Simon task. Participants (N = 25) had to respond to a target stimulus, presented on the left or right side of the display, by pressing either a left or a right key under time pressure depending on a specific feature of the target. Simultaneously, a distractor stimulus was presented on the opposite side. Crucially, the distractor was presented either in grey or in one of three colors to manipulate its saliency. The color also indicated, whether a participant could win, lose or get no money in the current trial, thus manipulating distractor value (money vs. no money) and valence (positive vs. negative). As a result, responses were faster for colored distractors compared to grey distractors. There was, however, no difference in response time between distractors associated with monetary gains or losses, and distractors associated with no monetary gains / losses. Regarding valence, for gain-associated distractors, participants were slower in the congruent conditions (target and response on the same side), and faster in the incongruent condition (target and response on opposite sides) compared to loss-associated distractors. These results suggest, that task-irrelevant positive and negative stimuli distract attention differently. The inverse saliency effect and the lack of a value effect can be accounted for by participants’ strategies in dealing with the time pressure.

András Matuz (Institute of Behavioural Sciences, University of Pécs, Hungary, Hungary)
Bence Schwarcz (Institute of Psychology, University of Pécs, Hungary, Hungary)
Kristóf János Topa (Institute of Psychology, University of Pécs, Hungary, Hungary)
Tárek Magyar (Institute of Psychology, University of Pécs, Hungary, Hungary)
Árpád Csathó (Institute of Behavioural Sciences, University of Pécs, Hungary, Hungary)
Perceived Duration of Cognitively Demanding Tasks: the role of Cognitive Load and Time-on-Task
PRESENTER: András Matuz

ABSTRACT. Perceived duration of periods spent with cognitively demanding activities might depend on several factors including motivation, fatigue, and the required cognitive effort. Consequently, subjective duration of cognitive tasks assessed in experimental studies might be considerable varied across the levels of cognitive load and type of cognitive operations required. However, there is a little knowledge about the associations of task-specific cognitive operations and perceived duration of prolonged tasks. We addressed this issue in three studies. We investigated how participants estimate the time passed in prolonged – Time-on-Task – experiments demanding working memory (N = 20, Study 1), attentional switch (N = 23, Study 2), and time-loaded cognitive responses (N = 20, Study 3). In Study 1 and Study 2, participants performed a bimodal 2-back, and a bimodal task-switching task, respectively, for 1.5 hours without rest. In Study 3 participants performed a prolonged dual task under two different time-load conditions. In each study, reaction time, error rates, and electrocardiogram were continuously recorded. In addition, participants estimated task duration, and reported subjective fatigue. Duration of each task was significantly underestimated by 57% (Study 1), 36.8% (Study 2) and 26.8% (Study 3). Each study showed increasing heart-rate variability (HRV) and fatigue as a function of Time-on-Task whereas performance was compromised. In Study 1 higher increment in HRV associated with higher underestimation of time. Our results suggest that task duration is consistently underestimated in various cognitive tasks, but it also depends on the type of cognitive operations.

Cemre Baykan (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Adrian Von Mühlenen (The University of Warwick, UK)
Attentional biases towards threatening stimuli in social anxiety and the role of empathy

ABSTRACT. Many studies have claimed that when individuals observed threatening stimuli, they would demonstrate some attentional biases, such as attention maintenance or avoidance, which might be either a useful emotion regulation strategy or a cause of increased anxiety. In the current study, it was hypothesized that people with social anxiety would demonstrate a longer viewing time to angry face than other faces and an avoidance behavior which would lead them to look faster away from the threat. We used a face recognition task to reveal different attentional biases in participants viewing threatening (e.g., angry) and non-threatening (e.g., happy, sad and neutral) face photographs. Since the attentional biases and expression recognition processes are affected by social anxiety and empathy level of individuals, participants were grouped by these measures. Seventy participants were asked to find a target face in a 2 x 2 display while they could view only one face at a time. Their viewing time to each face was used as an index of attention maintenance and the gap duration between faces were analysed to reveal attentional avoidance after viewing threatening or non-threatening stimuli. Social anxiety and empathy levels of the participants were measured with questionnaires. The results indicated that individuals viewed non-threatening faces longer than angry face and showed shorter gap duration after viewing angry face regardless of their anxiety level. These findings are discussed in terms of the effects of the severity of social anxiety and/or emotional stimuli on individuals’ attentional processes.

Pamela Baess (University of Hildesheim, Germany)
Steve Janssen (Nottingham University Malaysia Campus, Malaysia)
Christina Bermeitinger (University of Hildesheim, Germany)
Cultural influences on spatial cognition: Evidence from egocentric and allocentric Simon Effects
PRESENTER: Pamela Baess

ABSTRACT. We recently developed a variant of the Simon task using multiple reference frames (Baess & Bermeitinger, submitted). Stick-figure manikins were used holding a colored ball on either hand (allocentric reference frame). Stimuli occurred on the left or right side of the screen’s center (egocentric reference frame). Moreover, the amount of stimuli simultaneously shown on the screen varied between blocks introducing a non-spatial, perceptual reference frame. In the 1-manikin condition, one stimulus was shown on different spatial positions. In contrast, in the 9-manikin condition, a set of nine identical manikins was shown. In the current study, we used this paradigm in a German and Malaysian sample. Both countries differ in some spatial aspects in daily life, e.g., their side of driving on the road (right vs. left side) or their experience with other reading directions (only left/right vs. also up/down). By comparing these two cultures, the influence of environment is assessed. Differences between the Malaysian and German group were found in the formation of the allocentric Simon Effects (SE) based on the manikin’s ball position. Larger allocentric SE was obtained in the 9-manikin condition in the Malaysian sample compared to the 1-manikin condition. No such difference in allocentric SE was yielded for the German sample. Taken together, the results show that the allocentric reference frame is particularly shaped by the different culture of the participants.

Sven Panis (University of Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Rani Moran (University College London, UK)
Maximilian Wolkersdorfer (University of Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Thomas Schmidt (University of Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Studying the dynamics of visual search behavior using RT hazard and micro-level speed-accuracy tradeoff functions: A role for recurrent object recognition and cognitive control processes

ABSTRACT. When testing quantitative predictions of cognitive models of the processes underlying behavior such as visual search, measures like mean correct response time (RT) and percent error do not suffice to select between different models. Recently, to move beyond mean performance measures in visual search, RT histograms have been plotted, theoretical waiting time distributions have been fitted, and cognitive models have been developed that can simulate whole RT and error distributions. Here we promote and illustrate the general application of discrete-time hazard analysis to response times, and micro-level speed-accuracy tradeoff analysis to timed response accuracies. The results of an analysis of published benchmark search data from feature, conjunction, and spatial configuration search tasks reveal new features of visual search behavior, such as a relatively flat hazard function in the right tail of the RT distributions for all tasks, and individual differences in the presence of a systematic pattern of early errors. Furthermore, we illustrate that previous fits of two state-of-the-art cognitive search models – the competitive guided search model and a flexible parallel race model – fail to account for certain qualitative patterns in the shapes of the empirical RT and accuracy distributions. Our findings strongly suggest that the temporal dynamics of visual search behavior is resulting from recurrent object recognition and cognitive control processes.

Janina Balke (University of Tuebingen, Germany)
Verena Seibold (University of Tuebingen, Germany)
Temporal preparation facilitates bottom-up processes in spatial selection
PRESENTER: Janina Balke

ABSTRACT. Temporal preparation improves our perception by helping us to bundle our resources on a specific future event. This holds also true for visual search where temporal preparation has been shown to facilitate spatial selection of targets. The question how temporal preparation improves spatial selection is still open: It could operate in a bottom-up manner by accelerating perceptual processing speed or raising local feature contrast non-selectively. Otherwise, it could operate top-down by selectively preactivating known target features. These two hypotheses were tested in a visual search experiment (N = 32): Participants searched for a pop-out target defined by a unique feature (color or shape). We manipulated temporal preparation by presenting a warning signal before each search display and varying the duration of the preparatory interval (blocked foreperiods of 800 and 2,400 ms). Furthermore, to separate bottom-up from top-down effects, we manipulated local feature contrast (high or low contrast via a setsize manipulation) and we manipulated the degree of prior knowledge (by informing participants about the target-defining pop-out feature or not). We observed that reaction times to targets were accelerated by temporal preparation and that this preparatory effect was larger when local feature contrast was low. In contrast, prior knowledge about the target-defining feature did not modulate the effect of temporal preparation. These results indicate that temporal preparation facilitates bottom-up processes in spatial selection, presumably by increasing local feature contrast if it is initially low.

Nadiia Makarina (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Janina Hoffmann (University of Konstanz, Germany)
Attentional processes in multiple-cue judgments.
PRESENTER: Nadiia Makarina

ABSTRACT. To make accurate judgments, individuals need to distinguish between aspects that are relevant for the task at hand and aspects that can be ignored. This study addresses the question of how attention interacts with the importance people assign to different aspects and thereby allows individuals to detect and adapt to changes in the features’ importance. Past research suggests that individuals pay more attention to salient information, when no prior knowledge is available, but learning shifts attention towards more predictive features. However, it is still unclear if individuals adjust their hypotheses about each features’ importance because new, salient information is introduced or previously learned information becomes irrelevant. To contrast these two attentional mechanisms, 50 participants learned to predict in an initial learning phase which feature was important for making a correct judgment. In two subsequent relearning phases, the feature that best predicted the judgment changed, while at the same time another feature became salient. We manipulated salience by increasing the dispersion on the respective feature. After each judgment, participants rated how important each feature was for their judgment. As predicted, judgment accuracy declined after the predictive feature changed. However, people still rated the previously important feature as important for their judgment, but neglected salient new information. The importance weights inferred from participants’ judgments matched the explicit importance ratings remarkably well. These findings suggest that people attribute judgments errors more strongly to a previously important feature than a currently more salient one.

Verena Seibold (University of Tübingen, Germany)
Does alertness bias attention towards salient stimuli? Evidence from stimulus-driven attentional capture

ABSTRACT. Alertness is known for having a paradoxical effect in cognitive control tasks such as the Flanker task and the Global-Local task: It reduces overall reaction time, yet it increases congruency effects. According to one hypothesis, this increase in congruency effects arises because alertness biases attention towards salient stimuli. In two experiments (N = 20 and N = 24), I tested the scope of this salience hypothesis by investigating whether alertness also increases stimulus-driven attentional capture. Participants performed a visual search task in which they had to search for a singleton target defined by a unique feature (shape in Exp. 1; color in Exp. 2). To induce alertness, I presented an auditory alerting signal before the search display in half of the trials. To induce attentional capture, I presented an additional singleton (color singleton in Exp. 1; onset singleton in Exp. 2) within the search display in half of the trials. This additional singleton was completely task-irrelevant so that it should capture attention solely due to its salience. I observed that responses to targets were indeed slower in the presence of the additional singleton, suggesting that it captured attention. Yet, this effect was not increased by alertness as I would have expected on grounds of the salience hypothesis. These results suggest that alertness does not necessarily bias attention towards salient stimuli. Instead, this effect may depend on the type of conflict and on whether the salient stimuli are completely task-irrelevant or not.

Christina Breil (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
Anne Böckler-Raettig (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
From eye to arrow: Influences of nonsocial and social cues on attention capture
PRESENTER: Christina Breil

ABSTRACT. Previous research suggests that direct eye contact and motion are two independent and powerful cues for attention capture. In the present study, we investigated whether the direct gaze effect varies in relation to the level of social information represented by the stimuli. The task was to classify a target letter that appeared on one of four simultaneously presented stimuli. Initially, two of the stimuli directly addressed the participant (direct), while the other two stimuli pointed away from the participant (averted). One direct stimulus changed to averted and one averted stimulus changed to direct (motion) at the same time the target was presented, while the other two stimuli remained static (no motion). Stimuli were real eyes looking at or away from participants (experiment 1), comic eyes (experiment 2), real hands pointing at or away from participants (experiment 3), comic hands (experiment 4), or arrows pointing at or away from participants (experiment 5; N = 20 for each experiment). We hypothesized that the effect of being addressed (approach effect) is stronger for social cues, i.e. strongest in experiment 1 and weakest in experiment 5. This pattern would indicate that the approach effect relies on the available level of social information.

Anna Conci (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
Robert Gaschler (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
Merim Bilalić (Northumbria University, UK)
Attentional capacity in multimodal change

ABSTRACT. Previous research on inattentional blindness has focused almost entirely on the visual modality. This study extends the paradigm by pairing visual with auditory stimuli. New visual and auditory stimuli were created to investigate the phenomenon of inattention in visual, auditory and paired modality. The goal of the study was to investigate to what extent paired visual and auditory stimuli influence the detection of change. The results show that the inattentional blindness and inattentional deafness occur in about 40 percent of participants while the attention is engaged by a difficult (auditory) counting task. Most significantly, the results demonstrate that the inattentional blindness is significantly reduced when the change has been presented visually and auditorily. One possible reason for the drastic reduction of inattentional changes in a multimodal context is that attention of the various sensory modalities is processed separately. If this assumption applies, then we can assume that the capacity of attention multiples in different modalities.

Anja Kühnel (MSB Medical School Berlin, Germany)
Meditation and Attention

ABSTRACT. The experiment researched the influence of eight weeks of a short daily meditation on attentional processes. Research showed that meditation enhances attentional processes (Bilican, 2016; Hodgins & Adair, 2010; Lippelt, Hommel & Colzato, 2014; Lutz, Slagter, Dunne & Davidson, 2008; Tang et al., 2007; Zanesco et al., 2016). The efficient allocation of attention is especially important given the restricted capacity of the attentional system. One paradigm which relies on the restricted visual attentional system is the change blindness paradigm. Change blindness is the relativ inability to detect changes between scenes if the change signal is occluded (Rensink, 2005; Simons, 2000). The detection of changes highly depends on the allocation of attention to the object or spatial position which is changing (Shankin, Bergmann, Schubert, & Hagemann, 2016). It is thus hypothesized that meditation enhances the detection of changes and reduces the time to do so. 50 subjects completed two change blindness tasks. The experimental group (25 subjects) meditated in the eight weeks between the two change blindness test, whereas the control group (25 subjects) did not. The repeated measures ANOVAs showed that meditation significantly increases change detection and decreases reaction times. This seems to be the effect of the training of the monitoring and focussing aspect of attention through meditation (Lippelt et al., 2014, Lutz et al., 2008).

Ulrich Pomper (University of Vienna, Faculty of Psychology, Austria)
Ulrich Ansorge (University of Vienna, Faculty of Psychology, Austria)
Impact of continuous, lateralized auditory stimulation on visual spatial attention
PRESENTER: Ulrich Pomper

ABSTRACT. Sounds in our environment can easily capture our visual attention. Previous studies have investigated the impact of spatially localized, brief sounds on concurrent visuospatial attention. However, little is known on how the presence of a continuous, lateralized auditory stimulus (e.g. listening to a person next to you while driving a car) impacts visual spatial attention (e.g. detection of critical events in traffic). Here, we investigated whether a continuous auditory stream presented from one side biases visual spatial attention toward that side. In four experiments, participants (each experiment N = 16), had to detect targets within a stream of lateralized visual stimuli. At the same time, a continuous auditory stream was presented via loudspeakers in a lateralized fashion. Auditory stimuli were either tone-pips, requiring a target detection response, or a spoken story, followed by a comprehension questionnaire. During a passive condition, auditory stimuli were presented from one side only. During an active condition, auditory stimuli were presented bilaterally, while participants had to actively listen to one target relevant side and ignore the other. We observed a small but significant cross-modal bias from auditory to visual spatial attention, which depending on the condition, encompassed decreases in response time and/ or increases in hit-rate for visual targets presented spatially congruent with the relevant auditory stream. Our results indicate that the presence of or attention toward a continuous auditory stimulus biases visuospatial processing. However, this effect is not as substantial as the previously reported impact of brief auditory stimuli upon immediately following visual stimuli.

Shiau-Chuen Chiou (Neurocognition and Action Group, Center of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC), Bielefeld University, Germany)
Thomas Schack (Neurocognition and Action Group, Center of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC), Bielefeld University, Germany)
Integration or separation? Effects of visual attention on temporal and spatial processing of whole-body movement sequences

ABSTRACT. Temporal information of human movements, such as rhythm, is physically conveyed through spatial information, i.e., trajectory. However, whether the temporal and the spatial information are integrated during action observation or are processed separately as individual features remains unclear. To address this issue, we used a dual-task paradigm, in which participants (n = 31) performed a change detection task on whole-body movement sequences with three foci of attention: (a) temporal-only, (b) spatial-only and (c) both. Movement sequences, all without action semantics, could be different in either temporal (rhythm) or spatial (trajectory) domain in accordance with respective attention requirements of each condition. The results showed that participants’ performance was significantly impaired when both temporal and spatial information were attended to as compared to only temporal or spatial information was in focus. Furthermore, a comparable dual-task cost in temporal and spatial domains, respectively, indicated that there was no trade-off or prioritization between the processing of temporal and spatial information. In conclusion, although temporal processing may rely on a certain level of spatial processing during action observation, no further integration was observed in the current study. A mutual interference suggests that these two information streams are processed separately and compete for a common pool of cognitive resources.

16:30-19:00 Session 4A: Recent Findings from Experimental Studies on the Re-occurence of Repetitive Negative Thoughts (Symposium)

Recent Findings from Experimental Studies on the Re-occurence of Repetitive Negative Thoughts (Symposium)

The experience of getting stuck in one’s own negative thoughts is extremely common and its pathological forms have been discussed as maintaining factors in several mental disorders. In this symposium, repetitive negative thoughts (RNT) is an umbrella term for negative, repetitive, and uncontrollable thoughts, images or memories that are intrusive and difficult to disengage from. Five presentations address either factors that influence RNT, such as negative appraisals, or factors that are influenced by RNT, such as positive affect. The first study investigates whether rumination – in comparison to distraction - has an imminent effect on unwanted intrusive thoughts about a car accident of a beloved person in undergraduate students. The second presentation addresses the question whether in high worriers, a positive interpretation training reduces levels of worry, compared to an active control group. The third study predicts that mode of rumination (abstract vs. concrete) and type of emotion (sadness vs. anger) have an interactive effect on affect. The fourth presentation shows that positive reappraisal training results in lower intrusion distress from negative autobiographical events than negative reappraisal training. Finally, the last presentation addresses the influence of positive memory elaboration training compared to control training on repetitive negative thoughts in daily life and concludes that positive memory elaborations are helpful in reducing RNT.

Michelle Moulds (The University of New South Wales (UNSW Sydney), UK)
Karina Wahl (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Martin Mazanec (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Carlotta V. Heinzel (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Patrizia D. Hofer (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Roselind Lieb (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Karina Wahl (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Recent findings from experimental studies on the re-occurence of repetitive negative thoughts (Submission: 110, talk number 1)
PRESENTER: Martin Mazanec

ABSTRACT. Effects of rumination on unwanted intrusive thoughts: A replication and extension

Recent studies indicate that rumination might play a role in obsessive-compulsive disorder. In a previous experimental study, rumination about unwanted intrusive thoughts (UITs) maintained the urge to neutralize these thoughts and affected the perceived likelihood of UIT coming true. It did not, however, affect distress, depressed mood, or UIT frequency. Our aim was to replicate the results of the previous study and to extend them by including measures of behavioral and mental neutralizing. We activated the UIT by asking students (N = 105) to write down a sentence stating that they wished a loved person would die in a horrible car accident. Participants were then randomly allocated either to rumination about UIT, rumination about negative mood, or distraction. Manipulation checks indicated that we successfully induced either rumination or distraction. However, our experimental manipulation did not lead to two distinct types of rumination. We therefore combined the rumination groups for the analyses. Rumination lessened the decrease of urge to neutralize the UIT when compared to distraction, but did not affect the perceived likelihood of UIT coming true. Surprisingly, rumination also maintained distress and depressed mood. There was no change in UIT frequency. Regarding behavioral neutralizing, we detected a trend with participants who ruminated showing a neutralizing behavior more often than those who were distracted. There was no effect of rumination on mental neutralizing. The present findings support the view that rumination might indirectly contribute to the UIT maintenance.

Ya-Chun Feng (Department of Psychology, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, UK)
Charlotte Krahé (School of Psychology, Institute of Psychology, Health and Society, University of Liverpool, UK)
Frances Meeten (School of Psychology, University of Sussex, UK)
Alexander Sumich (Division of Psychology, School of Social Sciences, Nottingham Trent University, UK)
Colette Hirsch (Department of Psychology, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, UK)
Recent findings from experimental studies on the re-occurence of repetitive negative thought (110-2) — Understanding the interpretation bias in worry and the effect of cognitive bias modification for interpretation (CBM-I) on reducing worry.

ABSTRACT. Worry is a stream of negative thoughts about future events and can be maintained by the consistent tendency to generate interpretations (i.e. interpretation bias). Interpretations can be generated at the moment the ambiguity is first encountered (online) or later on reflection (offline). At present, it is unclear which specific types of interpretation are related to worry, and which can be modified by cognitive bias modification for interpretation (CBM-I) and therefore reduce the levels of worry. To address these questions, high worriers (n=28) and low worriers (n=27) were compared on different interpretation bias measures. “Offline” tasks assessed interpretations after the opportunity of reflection; while “online” tasks assessed initial interpretations when encountering ambiguity. Event-related potentials were also employed to exam neural activity when encountering ambiguous information. In line with our prediction, high worriers lacked benign interpretation biases that can be found in low worriers across different types of interpretation. In our second study, we investigated whether enabling high worriers to generate more positive interpretations can reduce the levels of worry. High worriers were randomly allocated into single session CBM-I training (n=35) or an active control group (n=31). Both online and offline interpretation biases were assessed post CBM-I. Consistent with our predictions, the training group showed greater online and offline benign interpretation biases and lower levels of worry compared to the control group. However, only the offline interpretation bias mediated the relationship between groups and levels of worry. These studies show that the benign interpretations high worriers lack can be promoted by CBM-I.

Carlotta V. Heinzel (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Martin Mazanec (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Roselind Lieb (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Karina Wahl (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Recent findings from experimental studies on the re-occurence of repetitive negative thoughts (Submission 110, talk number 3)

ABSTRACT. Effects of mode of rumination and type of emotion on negative affect after recall of a sadness or an anger provoking social situation

In the context of depression, concrete rumination is seen as a more adaptive mode of rumination than abstract rumination. However, opposing findings have been reported in the context of anger. The aim of the present study was to investigate the differential effects of ruminative modes on two different types of emotion in an experimental study. We predicted an interaction between rumination mode and type of emotion. N = 101 participants were asked to recall either a sadness- or an anger-provoking social situation (between-subjects factor, random allocation). Subsequently, they were instructed to ruminate about this event in a concrete and abstract mode (within-subjects factor, order randomly allocated). Self-reported positive and negative affect (PANAS) and hostility (MAACL) were measured before and after rumination. Order effects resulted in an analysis focus on the first rumination period. We did not find the predicted interactions of rumination mode and type of emotion on negative affect. However, for participants recalling an anger-provoking social event, concrete rumination led to a stronger increase in hostility than abstract rumination. Our findings partially support the notion that rumination mode has differential effects on the emotion it is applied to. Further research directions are discussed.

Marcella Woud (Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany)
Felix Würtz (Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany)
Recent findings from experimental studies on the re-occurence of repetitive negative thoughts (Symposium 110), 4
PRESENTER: Felix Würtz

ABSTRACT. Title: Effects of re-appraisal training on responses to a distressing autobiographical event

Negative appraisals are a key factor suggested to be involved in the development and maintenance of PTSD. Research has shown that experimental induction of a positive or negative appraisal style before or after a laboratory stressor affects analogue posttraumatic stress symptoms such as intrusions and distress arising from experiencing intrusions. The present study aimed to extend previous findings by investigating the effects of experimentally induced re-appraisals on reactions to a naturally occurring analogue trauma. We expected that positive training, compared to negative training, would lead to a greater reduction in negative appraisals of the negative autobiographical event from pre to post-training, and lower intrusiveness of the memory over the subsequent week. Further, we hypothesized that positive training would lead to a greater reduction in implicit negative appraisals from pre to post-training, compared to negative training. Participants who had experienced a distressing life event (N=65) were asked to imagine themselves in the most distressing moment of that event and then received either positive or negative re-appraisal training. Results showed that the training indeed induced training-congruent appraisals, but group differences in changes in appraisals over training were only seen for explicit and not implicit appraisals. However, participants trained positively reported less intrusion distress over the subsequent week than those trained negatively, and lower levels of overall posttraumatic stress symptoms. These data support the causal relationship between appraisals and trauma distress, and further illuminate the mechanisms linking the two.

Michelle Moulds (The University of New South Wales (UNSW Sydney), Australia)
Recent findings from experimental studies on the re-occurence of repetitive negative thoughts (symposium 110)

ABSTRACT. The experience of getting stuck in one’s own negative thoughts is extremely common and its pathological forms have been discussed as maintaining factors in several mental disorders. In this symposium, repetitive negative thoughts (RNT) is an umbrella term for negative, repetitive, and uncontrollable thoughts, images or memories that are intrusive and difficult to disengage from. Five presentations address either factors that influence RNT, such as negative appraisals, or factors that are influenced by RNT, such as positive affect. The first study investigates whether rumination – in comparison to distraction - has an imminent effect on unwanted intrusive thoughts about a car accident of a beloved person in undergraduate students. The second presentation addresses the question whether in high worriers, a positive interpretation training reduces levels of worry, compared to an active control group. The third study predicts that mode of rumination (abstract vs. concrete) and type of emotion (sadness vs. anger) have an interactive effect on affect. The fourth presentation shows that positive reappraisal training results in lower intrusion distress from negative autobiographical events than negative reappraisal training. Finally, the last presentation addresses the influence of positive memory elaboration training compared to control training on repetitive negative thoughts in daily life and concludes that positive memory elaborations are helpful in reducing RNT.

16:30-19:00 Session 4B: Neuro-cognitive Control Mechanisms in Human Multi-tasking (Symposium)

Neuro-cognitive Control Mechanisms in Human Multi-tasking (Symposium)

Multitasking, i.e. performing more than one task concurrently, has become an ubiquitous and inevitable aspect of our modern life. Although it might seem that we do not have any difficulties with performing temporally overlapping tasks, usually severe performance decrements emerge in these multitasking situations. In the last decades, a vast body of theories from behavioral research has explained the persistent occurrence of performance decrements in multitasking and the role of cognitive control mechanisms in dealing with these. Based on these profound conceptions, in this symposium we aim to further advance the understanding of the neural mechanisms involved in specific aspects of human multitasking, focusing on neuro-cognitive control mechanisms involved in concurrent task processing. For this purpose, a series of empirical studies employing various neuroscientific research methods will be presented. These studies cover the role of different brain regions such as the basal ganglia or the lateral prefrontal cortex for enabling multitasking performance. Furthermore, the studies address how structural as well as functional brain differences can account for individual differences in cognitive as well as cognitive-motor multitasking performance. Also, they will shed light on neuro-cognitive subprocesses that are required for multitasking, such as executive control or error-monitoring. In addition to these studies, in a concluding discussion we will integrate the findings and provide perspectives for future research.

Sebastian Kübler (Humboldt-Universität zu berlin, Germany)
Christine Stelzel (International Psychoanalytic University Berlin, Germany)
Location: GC1-08
Christian Beste (TU Dresden, Germany)
Neuro-cognitive control mechanisms in human multitasking 1

ABSTRACT. The relevance of striatal and white matter anatomical microstructure for multi-tasking and related functions

Multitasking and related processes play an essential role to achieve long-term goals. However, we are currently only at the beginning to understand the neural mechanisms underlying these processes. This is particularly the case for the role of subcortical structures showing close connections to prefrontal regions that have traditionally been implicated in action control. Yet, the basal ganglia play an essential role in these processes. I present a series of studies detailing the role of the GABAergic striatal system and the structural aspects of the basal ganglia for multi-tasking. I show that efficient multi-tasking critically depends on striatal function. A high level of GABAergic tone and a high integrity of even small microstructural elements of the basal ganglia (i.e. the striosomes) is essential for efficient multi-tasking. The same is the case for seemingly miniscule variations in white matter integrity as measured using novel single-molecule immune-assay approached. I show how these grey and white matter neuroanatomical aspects have clear-cut effects on distinct physiological (EEG) correlates of cognitive subprocesses involved in multi-tasking.

Hannah Bohle (International Psychoanalytic University, Germany)
Gesche Schauenburg (Universität Potsdam, Germany)
Henrik Walter (Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany)
Urs Granacher (Universität Potsdam, Germany)
Stephan Heinzel (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)
Michael Rapp (Universität Potsdam, Germany)
Christine Stelzel (International Psychoanalytic University, Germany)
Neuro-cognitive control mechanisms in human multitasking 2
PRESENTER: Hannah Bohle

ABSTRACT. Cognitive-motor multitasking – individual differences in lateral frontal control

Dual-task decrements in concurrent working memory and balance performance have critical outcomes such as falls. Concurrent performance of two cognitive tasks is associated with additional processing demands in the lateral prefrontal cortex (lPFC; D’Esposito et al., 1995; Schubert and Szameitat, 2003). Also postural control seems to involve higher cortical processes (Jacobs and Horak, 2007; Papegaaij, 2014), particularly in old adults. However, little is known about the role of the lPFC in the concurrent processing of cognitive-postural tasks.

Twenty-nine young adults (age 19-30 years, M = 24.8) and 21 old adults (age 63-83, M=72.04) performed single- and dual one-back tasks during fMRI. In addition, they performed these tasks on a force plate in semi-tandem stance outside the scanner (postural task), resulting in cognitive-postural dual and triple tasks. Individual differences in postural control (‘center of pressure displacements’) were then used as covariates in the fMRI analysis. Behavioral performance costs in postural sway during dual-one back performance differed largely between and within age groups and so did lPFC recruitment during cognitive dual-tasking. Most importantly, even young individuals who recruited the right mid-lPFC to a larger degree also showed greater postural sway.

The findings suggest a crucial role of the right lPFC in allocating resources during cognitive-motor interference and provide further insight into the mechanisms underlying cognitive-motor multitasking.

Sebastian Kübler (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany)
Alexander Soutschek (University of Zurich, Switzerland)
Tilo Strobach (MSH Medical School Hamburg, Germany)
Torsten Schubert (Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Germany)
Neuro-cognitive control mechanisms in human multitasking 3

ABSTRACT. Investigating the causal role of the lateral prefrontal cortex for task-order coordination in dual-task situations

Dual-tasks are characterized by the requirement for additional task-order coordination processes that schedule the processing order of two temporally overlapping tasks. Data from functional imaging studies suggest that lateral prefrontal cortex (lPFC) may be recruited for implementing these task-order coordination processes. So far, however, it is unclear whether the lPFC is indeed causally involved in coordinating task-order in dual-task situations. We addressed this open issue by applying online transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) during dual-task performance. Participants performed a dual-task consisting of two choice reaction time tasks in fixed-order blocks with a constant order of both component tasks, and in random-order blocks, in which the order of tasks varied randomly and, thus, demands on task-order coordination were increased. While in fixed-order blocks stimulation had no effect on dual-task performance, TMS of the lPFC slowed reaction times compared to two control conditions in random-order blocks when demands on task-order coordination were increased. These results provide evidence for the causal involvement of the lPFC in task-order coordination during dual-task situations.

Robert Steinhauser (Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Germany)
Marco Steinhauser (Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Germany)
Neuro-cognitive control mechanisms in human multitasking 4

ABSTRACT. Adaptive Rescheduling of Error Awareness in Dual-Tasking

The concurrent execution of two temporally overlapping tasks leads to considerable interference between the subtasks, which is overcome by a bottleneck mechanism that establishes central processing of only one task at a time. Here, we show that such a serialization mechanism can also be found on the level of response monitoring. In the present study, a psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm was used, in which we compared neural correlates of error monitoring to errors in Task 1 in a dual-task condition (stimulus onset asynchrony, SOA = 300 ms) and a baseline condition with sufficient time for separated task execution (SOA = 1200 ms). While we found the error-related negativity (ERN), an early correlate of preconscious error processing, to be unaffected in the dual-task condition, the error positivity (Pe), a correlate of conscious error awareness, was considerably reduced immediately after the erroneous response in Task 1. However, a distinct Pe emerged after the response to Task 2 although the response to this second task itself was correct. Single-trial analysis showed a negative correlation of the amplitudes of the immediate and the deferred Pe. The occurrence of such a deferred Pe was confirmed in a second experiment, which furthermore showed that the deferred Pe did not result from Task 1 errors being falsely assigned to Task 2. We interpret this finding as an adaptive mechanism that defers conscious error processing until both tasks have been completed to reduce interference.

Andre Szameitat (Brunel University, UK)
Pauldy Otermans (Brunel University, UK)
Neuro-cognitive control mechanisms in human multitasking 5
PRESENTER: Andre Szameitat

ABSTRACT. Does the central attentional bottleneck in multitasking demand executive functions of working memory? An fMRI study.

When two speeded choice response tasks have to be performed simultaneously or in close succession (paradigm of the psychological refractory period, PRP) the second task is usually severely deferred (PRP effect), indicating a central attentional bottleneck. There is growing evidence that such a bottleneck demands additional mental processes, such as inhibition, switching, updating, and monitoring. Interestingly, these are the same processes typically used to describe executive functions of working memory, such as the Central Executive System of Baddeley and Hitch’s model. However, currently it is unclear whether just the nomenclature is the same, or whether the control of simultaneous choice response tasks actually demands the executive functions of working memory. To test this, participants underwent fMRI scanning while performing (a) a PRP dual-task and (b) a complex working memory span task. We proposed that additional (i.e., over-additive as compared to the summed component tasks) activation in (a) would be linked to bottleneck coordination and in (b) to executive functions of working memory. Imaging results showed that both tasks activated virtually identical areas in lateral-prefrontal cortices, suggesting that the underlying mental processes are similar as well. We conclude that coordination of task processing at a central attentional bottleneck demands the executive functions of working memory.

16:30-19:00 Session 4C: Advances in Auditory Distraction Research (Symposium)

Advances in Auditory Distraction Research (Symposium)

It is a well-established finding that working memory processes are disrupted by distractor speech. Different theories have been proposed about the mechanisms that are responsible for the disruptive effect. The symposium will bring together researchers with divergent theoretical positions who will present novel findings about the acoustic and semantic properties that cause auditory distraction and the types of processes that are susceptible to it. The talks will broaden our knowledge about why it is so difficult to ignore irrelevant speech and provide new insights on how cognitive processing can be shielded from its detrimental effects. These advances in auditory distraction research are not least driven by methodological improvements such as rigorous power analyses, preregistered replications, Bayesian meta-analyses and precise (mathematical) formulations of hypotheses.

Raoul Bell (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Jan Philipp Röer (Universität Witten/Herdecke, Germany)
Location: TMG-58
Jan Philipp Röer (Witten/Herdecke University, Germany)
Raoul Bell (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Axel Buchner (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Symposium: Advances in auditory distraction research (Talk 1)

ABSTRACT. Semantic processing of auditory distractor speech: What we know and what we still need to find out

In this talk, I will give an overview of our research program on the semantic mismatch effect which refers to the finding that auditory distractor sentences with semantically unexpected endings (e.g., “In autumn, the leaves change colour and fall from the bed.”) are more disruptive to serial recall than sentences with semantically expected endings (e.g., “In autumn, the leaves change colour and fall from the trees.”), suggesting that to-be-ignored words are not only processed at the level of individual word meanings, but also at the level of their match to the preceding semantic context. I will present data from experiments that have explored the roles of attentional capture, foreknowledge, and individual differences in working memory capacity, and conclude with a discussion of theoretical implications and avenues for future research.

Raoul Bell (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Jan Philipp Röer (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Albert-Georg Lang (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Axel Buchner (Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany)
Symposium: Advances in auditory distraction research (Talk 2)

ABSTRACT. What determines auditory distraction? Evidence from the token set size effect

Serial recall is disrupted by to-be ignored auditory distractor sequences consisting of one-syllable words or brief instrumental sounds. The dominant theoretical explanation of this effect implies that distraction is determined by mismatches between immediately successive auditory distractor objects. The token set size effect is a label for the claim that one-token distractor sequences consisting of a single repeated distractor object (e.g., AAAAAAAA) disrupt recall less than two-token distractor sequences consisting of alternating distractor objects (e.g., ABABABAB)whereas there is no further increase in disruption when token set size is further increased to more than two (e.g., ABCDEFGH). Furthermore, one-token sequences should cause no disruption relative to quiet. As yet, the evidence seemed to support these predictions, but conclusions were based on studies with insufficient sample sizes. With sufficient statistical power, distraction increases not only when the token set size is increased from one to two, but also when it is increased from two to eight, and there is also robust disruption by one-token sequences relative to quiet. These findings are consistent with a graded attentional model according to which auditory distraction increases monotonically as a function of token set size.

Philip Beaman (University of Reading, UK)
Symposium: Advances in auditory distraction research (Talk 3)

ABSTRACT. Auditory distraction as a case study in domain-general vs domain-specific cognition. What have we learned?

Theories of the “irrelevant sound effect” can be broadly divided into domain-general accounts making reference to divided attention and/or orienting and habituation (Bell et al. 2012; Cowan, 1995; Neath, 2000) and domain-specific accounts positing interference between the distractors and specific cognitive processes or representations (Jones, 1993; Page & Norris, 2003; Salamé & Baddeley, 1982). To date, such theories have generated only qualitative predictions – e.g., effect X should be present or not – and domain-general accounts in particular suffer from logical circularities in their application (Allport, 1980). A failing of all accounts is a lack of specificity and the degrees of freedom they allow researchers when deriving specific predictions. Here the mathematical function a particular quantitative manipulation – the token set-size effect (Tremblay & Jones, 1998) – might be expected to take (given particular implementations of domain-general and domain-specific accounts) is considered. A Bayesian meta-analysis is then applied to the results of published studies identified as examining token set-sizes of three or more and the likelihood ratios calculated for hypotheses labelled “strong changing-state”, “token-saturation” and “orienting-hypothesis”. These hypotheses are considered to predict auditory distraction as a mathematical function of token set-size in the following three ways: thresholded, a broken power-law and a linear function. As per Newell (1973) it is concluded that if researchers wish to “play 20 questions with nature and win”, they must first define what they regard as a “correct answer”.

Tatiana Kvetnaya (Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany)
Kristina Schopf (University of Tübingen, Germany)
Florian Wickelmaier (University of Tübingen, Germany)
Symposium: Advances in auditory distraction research (Talk 4)
PRESENTER: Tatiana Kvetnaya

ABSTRACT. Irrelevant Background Speech Disrupts Serial Short-Term Memory for Verbal but not for Spatial Information: A Pre-Registered Replication Study

The irrelevant speech effect (ISE)—the phenomenon that background speech impairs serial recall of visually presented material—has been widely used for examining the structure of short-term memory. Jones, Farrand, Stuart, and Morris (1995) employed the ISE paradigm to challenge modularity as a fundamental principle of working memory. In Experiment 4, they observed an ISE in both verbal and spatial serial memory tasks, thereby demonstrating that changing-state characteristics of the material, rather than its modality of origin, may determine the impairment of memory performance. The present study constitutes a cumulative, pre-registered replication of Experiment 4 with 80 German participants (n = 40 per memory task condition). In line with Jones et al. (1995), a main effect of sound condition was observed for the verbal domain (F(2, 78) = 20.66, p < .001, η2p = .35), with disruption being more marked for a changing sequence of spoken syllables than for a steady sequence. However, no such cross-modal effect was replicated for the spatial domain (F(2, 78) = 0.81, p = .450, η2p = .02). Contrary to the original findings, this resulted in an interaction of sound condition and task domain (F(2, 156) = 8.96, p < .001, η2p = .10). These results do not support a model of functional equivalence of verbal and spatial information in serial short-term memory.

Florian Kattner (Technische Universität Darmstadt, University of Hamburg, Germany)
Wolfgang Ellermeier (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Symposium: Advances in auditory distraction research (Talk 5)
PRESENTER: Florian Kattner

ABSTRACT. Does training in auditory filtering reduce the irrelevant speech effect on serial recall?

Task-irrelevant speech is known to interfere with the short-term retention of verbal information in serial order. While this phenomenon is usually very robust, there is evidence that blind individuals (who are more efficient at auditory processing) are resistant to the irrelevant speech effect, and that other forms of auditory distraction can be reduced via cognitive control. In the present study, we test whether the interference produced by irrelevant speech can be reduced by enhancing auditory filtering abilities via training. Therefore, we developed a dichotic filtering task in which participants practiced to memorize verbal information presented to one ear and by a particular speaker (male or female) while auditory distractors were presented simultaneously both to the other ear and by a different speaker. The memory span was increased with the participant’s performance throughout five training sessions, indicating enhanced filtering of the task-irrelevant verbal information in a dichotic listening situation. More importantly, the disrupting effects of irrelevant free-running speech on the serial recall of both visually and acoustically presented digits was reduced from pre- to post-test, whereas no decrease in the irrelevant speech effect was found in an active control group that was trained in an auditory duration discrimination task (using non-speech stimuli). The results suggest that training-related enhancement of the filtering mechanism of verbal short-term memory may help to reduce the interference produced by irrelevant speech, which is typically assumed to gain obligatory access to verbal short-term memory.

John E. Marsh (University of Central Lancashire, UK)
Jan Philipp Röer (Witten/Herdecke University, Germany)
Emma Threadgold (University of Central Lancashire, UK)
Linden J. Ball (University of Central Lancashire, UK)
Symposium: Advances in auditory distraction research (Talk 6)
PRESENTER: John E. Marsh

ABSTRACT. Can Background Speech Prime Solutions to Verbal Problems?

Research has shown that background speech reaches semantic levels of analysis, despite instructions to ignore it. Words presented as auditory distracters during serial recall, are subsequently produced more frequently than non-primed words (Röer, Körner, Buchner, & Bell, 2017). We investigate if priming could manifest in the context of compound remote associate (CRA) (Experiments 1 & 3) and anagram problem solving (Experiment 2). We presented solution words to problems within streams of to-be-ignored auditory distracters while participants memorised visual targets for serial recall. In Experiments 1 and 2, solution words were either embedded within streams of changing (e.g., g, q, cheese, v, l, m) or repeated distracters (e.g., g, g, cheese, g, g, g). In Experiment 3, solution words were embedded within streams of other words. In Experiments 1 – 3 this was contrasted with streams of distracters presented without solution words. Participants were then required to solve CRAs (Experiments 1 and 3) or anagrams of CRA solutions (Experiment 2), pitched as a ‘norming’ study. When the solution words had been previously presented as distracters, they were solved with higher probability than problems from a parallel non-presented set. This priming effect was contingent on the distracter sequence context. Priming occurred for solution words embedded within streams of changing but not repeated distracters or sequences of other words, and for CRAs (Experiment 1), but not anagrams (Experiment 2). Findings are discussed in terms of the fate of unattended speech, and processes underpinning problem solving.

16:30-19:00 Session 4D: Motivation and Interest (Individual Talks)

Motivation and Interest (Individual Talks)

Andreas Eder (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Location: TM1-06
Annika Boldt (University College London, UK)
Sam Gilbert (University College London, UK)
Confidence Guides Spontaneous Cognitive Offloading
PRESENTER: Annika Boldt

ABSTRACT. Recent research into prospective memory has begun to acknowledge the important role reminders play when fulfilling delayed intentions. Here, we study under which circumstances such 'cognitive offloading' can be observed.

Most previous studies that investigate offloading explicitly instruct participants to set reminders and then allow them to freely choose whether or not to adopt this strategy. This procedure makes it difficult to determine whether people would have spontaneously adopted similar offloading strategies or whether they are just compliant with the instructions. We developed a paradigm that is sensitive to a more spontaneous form of offloading: People were instructed to move disks to the bottom of the screen in a certain order. In addition, they had to remember to move a subset of the circles elsewhere. Half of the participants were instructed about an offloading strategy, whereas the others had to generate this strategy spontaneously.

We find that both the instructed and the spontaneous group set reminders, but that the instructed group showed a higher propensity to offload their intentions. Reminder setting improved performance in both groups compared to unaided memory performance. Critically, in both groups offloading was guided by metacognition, that is people’s insight into their own performance: People set more reminders when they were less confident.

Taken together, our findings have important implications for the development of interventions to improve fulfilment of delayed intentions by targeting metacognitive insight.

Anand Krishna (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
Andreas B. Eder (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
From pre-training evaluations to motivational states - determinants of the effectiveness of approach-avoidance training
PRESENTER: Anand Krishna

ABSTRACT. Although approach-avoidance training (AAT) has been suggested by previous research as an intervention to help limit problematic consumption, its effects have not always proven easy to replicate. We present research that attempts to address this problem by: (a) systematically testing methodological influences on the effect; (b) improving our theoretical understanding of AAT by identifying circumstances in which differing theoretical accounts might be empirically distinguished; and (c) presenting the results of exploratory moderator analyses. Four studies (N = 300) failed to show an AAT effect on consumption or attitudes with unfamiliar soft drink targets despite varying the induction of the approach/avoidance goal, the order of dependent measurement and despite obtaining a modification of the response tendency towards the drinks. A further two studies (N = 132) obtained a moderation of the AAT effect on post-training implicit liking towards familiar soft drinks by pre-training implicit liking. The pattern of results implied that AAT effects may be driven by the congruency of the approach/avoidance response to the evaluation of the target. Finally, exploratory analyses conducted on the latter studies suggest that target-relevant motivational states may influence the encoding of training effects and that trait reactance and attitude ambivalence may play an important role in determining explicit judgments of AAT targets.

Demian Scherer (University of Münster, Germany)
Annika Verkühlen (University of Münster, Germany)
Stephan Dutke (University of Münster, Germany)
The influence of decorative pictures on learning, interest, and metacognition
PRESENTER: Demian Scherer

ABSTRACT. Decorative pictures are frequently incorporated in schoolbooks, science magazines, and instruction materials. Recent research on decorative pictures and seductive details mainly addressed effects on immediate learning outcomes. However, in educational settings, effects on learners’ interest and metacognition are also of importance. Therefore, in two experiments, we assessed (besides retention and transfer performance) measures of triggered situational interest, maintained interest, and metacognitive measurements (based on the correctness of confidence judgments). Experiment 1 was conducted with a sample of pre-service teachers and demonstrated that materials with decorative pictures facilitated retention performance (but not transfer performance), although decorative pictures did not increase interest. Results further indicated that decorative pictures fostered metacognition. Materials with decorative pictures enhanced confidence in the correctness of answers to retention items (but not to transfers items) compared to materials without decorative pictures. Participants who learned with decorative pictures discriminated better between correct and incorrect answers. Experiment 2 was conducted in a school setting with 13 to 15 year old students. Again, decorative pictures did not increase interest. As the overall learning performance was comparably low, the planned analyses did not show any effects of decorative pictures on retention, transfer or metacognition measures. However, explorative analyses indicated that more successful learners benefited from decorative pictures with regard to their metacognitive performance. Beneficial effects of decorative pictures on retention and metamemory (but not on transfer and interest) can be explained by the use of the pictures as retrieval cues or by passive maintenance processes.

Valerie A. Erkens (Justus-Liebig Universität Gießen, Germany)
Urs M. Nater (Universität Wien, Austria)
Jan A. Häusser (Justus-Liebig Universität Gießen, Germany)
Contagious Stress: Effects of Social Identification

ABSTRACT. Contagious stress describes the transmission of a physiological stress response in an individual observing a target who is undergoing a stressful situation, while the observer is merely watching the situation. Following previous research, we expected to find a physiologically significant increase in salivary cortisol levels after observing a target in a stressful situation. Additionally, building on the social identity approach, we hypothesize that that a shared social identity moderates contagious stress reactions, that is, contagious stress reactions should occur with greater likelihood when an ingroup member is observed as compared to an outgroup member. We used a 2-factorial mixed design (between subject factor identity salience: social vs. personal) and repeated measurements (six times, within-subject factor) of cortisol and subjective stress. Participants attended the experiment in groups of four or five. After inducing either a shared social or a personal identity, one participant was randomly chosen to undergo the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST) (targets: n = 27) while being observed by the rest of the group in a face-to-face situation (observer: n = 89). Salivary cortisol and affective stress were assessed multiple times before and after the observation of the TSST. A total of 16% of all observers showed a physiologically significant increase in cortisol levels higher than 1.5 nmol/l. As predicted, the ratio of physiologically significant contagious stress reactions was higher in the social identity condition (25%) as compared to the personal identity condition (7%) (Chi²= 5.64, p = .018).

Roland Pfister (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Wilfried Kunde (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Katharina Schwarz (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Lisa Weller (University of Würzburg, Germany)
Something from nothing: Agency for deliberate non-actions
PRESENTER: Roland Pfister

ABSTRACT. Several law systems punish non-actions such as failures to render assistance, although it is unknown if and how people spontaneously experience agency and responsibility for the consequences of their not acting. We will present evidence that events caused by deliberate choices not to act indeed give rise to a vivid sense of agency. This was true not only for subjective judgments (Exp. 1: n = 34) but also for implicit measures of temporal binding (Exp. 2: n = 34), indicating that sense of agency is not confined to overt body movements. These results replicated in two follow-up studies (Exp. 3: n = 34; Exp. 4: n = 40). At the same time, agency was more pronounced when the same event resulted from an action rather than being the consequence of a non-action, highlighting the importance of ascribing different degrees of responsibility for the consequences of acting and not acting.

Anja Berger (University of Regensburg, Germany)
Rico Fischer (University of Greifswald, Germany)
Gesine Dreisbach (University of Regensburg, Germany)
Both shielding and relaxation contribute to conflict adaptation
PRESENTER: Anja Berger

ABSTRACT. According to the prominent conflict monitoring theory (CMT), exertion of cognitive control is triggered by the detection of conflicting response tendencies. Recent research has challenged this widely supported notion and has partly come to different conclusions on whether shielding after incongruent or relaxation after congruent trials mainly drive sequential adaptation of control. To further investigate the rarely commented role of congruent trials, we conducted two experiments using a visual (Experiment 1, N=31) and an auditory (Experiment 2, N=31, preregistered) number-Simon task with digits presented laterally to the left or right (creating response congruent and incongruent trials) or without any particular spatial information (creating neutral trials). We hypothesized that the Simon effect after incongruent and after congruent trials should differ in size from the Simon effect after neutral trials. Both experiments showed converging results: In errors and reaction times, the Simon effect was small following incongruent trials, large following congruent trials, and it was in-between after neutral trials. This suggests that sequential control adaptations in this task origin from two processes: Increased shielding in response to incongruent trials and relaxation in response to congruent trials. With congruent trials obtaining more importance for control adaptation theoretically, we suggest a more general way of fluency monitoring instead of mere conflict monitoring. This extension of the CMT provides answers to the hitherto open questions of how control is relaxed again in response conflict tasks and might be insightful and important impulse for future research on behavioral or even psychophysiological and neural levels.

Robert Schorn (UMIT - Private University for Health Sciences, Medical Informatics and Technology, Austria)
Dagmar Abfalter (mdw - University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, Austria)
It’s all in the smile – the effect of reduced anthropomorphized product presentation
PRESENTER: Robert Schorn

ABSTRACT. Anthropomorphizing products and brands is frequently used to induce automatic behavioral effects in response to brand or product exposure. Our research focuses on the question whether the type of anthropomorphized presentation (positive or negative) on a) the product itself and b) the environment of the product has an influence on consumers’ preferences of the product. In an experimental study, we presented variants of a chocolate bar in anthropomorphized packaging as well as watch straps with an empty anthropomorphized clock face to 208 students. Anthropomorphizing was reduced to a convex (positive) or concave (negative) swoosh resembling a mouth which was represented by the curved lettering or gradients on the chocolate packaging and drawing on the clock faces as the periphery to the watch straps. Results of between-subjects comparisons showed that participants preferred positively anthropomorphized products, both on the product packaging and more peripheral elements of the products. In a second study these results were further tested and confirmed in a real-life environment where participants actively chose between drinks whose anthropomorphized billboard announcements alternated weekly between positively and negatively curved lettering of the brand names. We conclude that anthropomorphized presentation, even when perceived unconsciously, influences consumers in their consumption decisions.

16:30-19:00 Session 4E: Conditioning (Individual Talks)

Conditioning (Individual Talks)

Anne Gast (University of Cologne, Germany)
Location: TM2-02
Anne Gast (Universität Köln, Germany)
Jasmin Richter (Universität Köln, Germany)
Borys Ruszpel (Universität Köln, Germany)
Is There Evidence for Unaware Evaluative Conditioning in a Valence Contingency Learning Task?

ABSTRACT. In this talk, I present three experiments from a project on unaware learning in the valence contingency task. In this task, participants respond to the valence of a target word that is preceded by a nonword that is mostly paired with positive or mostly paired with negative targets. Schmidt and De Houwer (2012) showed that participants are faster and more likely correct on trials that conform to this contingency. In addition, they showed an EC effect on ratings in line with the contingency (i.e., participants indicate that they like nonwords mainly paired with positive words more than nonword mainly paired with negative words). The authors found no moderation of these effects by contingency memory. In Experiments 1a and 1b we replicated the findings on RT and errors but showed no EC effect on ratings. To test whether this dissociation was due to differences in the measurement tasks or due to the differ-ent phases, we designed for Experiment 2 a DV based on responses on neutral targets that was included in both learning and measurement phases. This measure showed an unaware learning ef-fect, but the role of phase was inconclusive. Again, no memory-independent rating effect was found. To conclude, our findings show implicit learning effects in a valence contingency task. We found, however, no unaware EC effect on ratings. We discuss the discrepancies between our results and those of Schmidt and De Houwer and the implications for theories of EC.

Jasmin Richter (University of Cologne, Germany)
Anne Gast (University of Cologne, Germany)
Does implicit misattribution occur during evaluative conditioning?
PRESENTER: Jasmin Richter

ABSTRACT. Evaluative conditioning describes a change in valence of a stimulus (CS) by pairing it with a valent stimulus. Multiple theories revolve around the processes that may underly this effect. According to the Implicit Misattribution Model (IMM; Jones, Fazio, & Olson, 2009), an evaluative response elicited by the US is mistakenly attributed to the CS. However, whether misattribution occurs during conditioning has not yet been investigated. In the current studies, CSs were evaluated directly after being paired with a US in a task similar to an Affect Misattribution Procedure (AMP; Payne et al., 2005). To control for mere priming effects, a stimulus that was never paired was evaluated instead for half of the pairs. We hypothesized that CSs should be evaluated according to the valence of the preceding US and this effect should exceed a mere priming effect. In two studies (N1=60, N2=97), US valence (marginally and significantly) affected CS evaluation directly after each pairing. In Study1, however, this effect tended to be opposite to the preceding US valence. In both studies, this effect was (marginally and significantly) larger for CSs compared to stimuli that were never paired. Changes of CS ratings (pre-post conditioning) were predicted by CS evaluations during conditioning rather than the valence of the paired US. Taken together, we found mixed support for misattribution during conditioning: The contrast effect in Study1 contradicts misattribution, whereas results of higher-powered analyses in Study2 are in line with our hypothesis and the IMM. Possible explanations and open questions will be discussed.

Lea Sperlich (University of Cologne, Germany)
Christian Unkelbach (University of Cologne, Germany)
What is a pairing in Evaluative Conditioning?
PRESENTER: Lea Sperlich

ABSTRACT. Evaluative Conditioning (EC) is defined as the change in the liking of a neutral stimulus (CS) due to its pairing with a positive or negative stimulus (US; De Houwer, 2007). An EC effect usually occurs when the US (e.g. the picture of a kitten) is presented with a CS (e.g. a Kanji).

A so far neglected question in EC research is what constitutes a pairing. We hypothesized the pairings constitute mental episodes that are marked by various internal or external factors. For example, judging a stimulus might close mental episodes, while withholding judgments keeps them open (Zeigarnik, 1927).

In three experiments, we investigated such judgments as a means to parse the stream of potential CSs and USs into a sequence of pairings (Radvansky, 2012). Results showed that judgments of the US in the middle of a pairing prevent the transfer of US valence to the CS, even though judging the US valence validates US valence, which should in turn lead to stronger EC effects. However, according to our reasoning, the judgment closes the mental episode and CS and US are no longer seen as a pairing.

186 words

Fabia Högden (University of Cologne, Germany)
Christian Unkelbach (University of Cologne, Germany)
Relational information affects Attribute Conditioning
PRESENTER: Fabia Högden

ABSTRACT. Attributes can be ascribed to persons through attribute conditioning (AC): the mere co-occurrence of a person (CS) and another person possessing that attribute (US). AC has procedural and theoretical similarities to evaluative conditioning (EC), which is the phenomenon that neutral stimuli’s evaluations assimilate to positive or negative stimuli they co-occurred with. We aimed to distinguish AC from EC on the level of mental processes by introducing a like/dislike relation between CS and US in four experiments. In EC, this relational qualifier has been shown to affect CSs’ evaluation which was interpreted as evidence for the contribution of propositional processes. In AC, however, from a propositional perspective, judgments on an attribute dimension should be unaffected by whether CS and US like each other. Our results from 808 participants in total, however, showed that it did: when the CSs liked each other, we observed a standard AC effect; whereas, when they disliked each other, AC effects were reduced or reversed. In Experiment 4, we measured the degree to which participants interpret the like/dislike relation as similarity between CS and US and tested whether this proposition mediates the effect. We discuss the theoretical implications for AC.

Taylor Benedict (University of Cologne, Germany)
Anne Gast (University of Cologne, Germany)
The Influence of Aversive Unconditioned Stimuli in Evaluative Conditioning
PRESENTER: Taylor Benedict

ABSTRACT. Evaluative conditioning (EC) is a change in the liking or preference of a stimulus (conditioned stimulus or CS) due to its previous pairings with another stimulus (unconditioned stimulus or US). In three preregistered experiments, we conditioned CSs with aversive USs commonly used in fear conditioning, where explicit memory for the pairings may not always be necessary to produce a conditioned fear response. We therefore tested the hypothesis that if CSs paired with negative USs are aversive rather than non-aversive, there will be a larger unaware contribution to the EC effect. Experiment 1 used a between-participants design to manipulate US aversiveness with images, Experiment 2 used a within-participants design to manipulate US aversiveness with auditory stimuli, and Experiment 3 used a variety of US images and auditory stimuli in a design where multiple USs were paired with each CS. All experiments failed to provide evidence that aversive USs lead to larger unaware EC effects than non-aversive USs. Furthermore, we did not find evidence of unaware EC in general. The result patterns of all three studies are in line with the assumption that the found EC effects are based on declarative memory. The results contribute to the larger goal in EC research of determining which conditions contribute to unaware EC effects.

Anja Leue (University of Kiel, Germany)
Katharina Nieden (University of Kiel, Germany)
Vera Scheuble (University of Bonn, Germany)
André Beauducel (University of Bonn, Germany)
Conflict monitoring during reinforcement learning: Individual differences of mock suspect and non-suspect differentiation

ABSTRACT. The present study aims at elucidating the neural processes and the corresponding individual differences that are activated when information about mock suspects and mock non-suspects is processed. In this respect, we investigate individual differences of conflict monitoring and reinforcement learning (i.e., learning that is facilitated by feedback). We report data on N = 100 participants (30 male, mean age: 24.06 years) who performed a go/nogo learning task consisting of 16 face pictures (8 mock suspect vs. 8 non-suspect faces). Performing growth models based on a-priori hypotheses, our data reveal a significant decrease of the frontal N2 amplitude across task blocks (mean beta = .56, p < .01, two-tailed) indicating highest conflict monitoring intensity in the initial task block when participants learned by trial-and-error which faces were pre-defined as mock suspects vs. non-suspects. The Block slope effects demonstrated that individuals with higher Trait-BAS and higher Reasoning sum scores invested more conflict monitoring in the initial vs. latter two task blocks (beta = -.20, p < .05, two-tailed). Individuals with higher Trait-BIS and higher Reasoning sum scores revealed a more intense learning from correct feedback (i.e., more negative Feedback-Negativity) in the initial vs. latter two task blocks (beta = -.26, p < .05, two-tailed). Sensitivity d’ was higher for individuals with higher vs. lower Reasoning scores (beta = .33, p < .05, two-tailed). The interaction of reinforcement-related personality traits and higher Reasoning ability reactively facilitates the investment of conflict monitoring and reinforcement learning in a forensic context.

Maria Pankrath (Bonn-Rhein-Sieg University of Applied Science, Germany)
Cristina Massen (Bonn-Rhein-Sieg University of Applied Science, Germany)
Effects of goal-framing and additional information on perceived information quality, usefulness and behavioural intention in the context of energy saving tips
PRESENTER: Maria Pankrath

ABSTRACT. To curb global warming and climate change, it is necessary to reduce energy-related emissions. Energy saving tips inform consumers about energy-saving behaviours and products, and thus can contribute to energy savings. To formulate effective tips this study explores, how additions to CO2 savings in kg (framing of currency) and variations in framing of consequences (gain or loss) influence perceived information quality, usefulness and behavioural intention. The study also examines if there are differences between behaviour-oriented and investment-oriented tips. For this purpose, a 4 x 4 x 2 online experiment (N=352) was conducted - framing of currency (no addition, additional abstract information, comparison with car use, comparison with laptop use) and framing of consequence (obtained saving, forgone saving, avoided emission, caused emission) as between-subject factors and kind of tip (behaviour-oriented vs. investment-oriented) as within-subject factor. The analysis revealed that the behaviour-oriented tip was evaluated more positive than the investment-oriented tip, and that behaviour-related additions to CO2-savings in kg lead to a higher perceived usefulness and behavioural intention. Framing of consequences had no effect. The results also indicate the relevance to differentiate between behaviour-oriented and investment-oriented tips as well as to consider adding information beyond CO2-savings in kg.

16:30-19:00 Session 4F: Virtual Reality, Simulations and Games (Individual Talks)

Virtual Reality, Simulations and Games (Individual Talks)

Roberta Sellaro (Leiden University, Netherlands)
Location: BPLG-02
Roberta Sellaro (Leiden University, Netherlands)
Bernhard Hommel (Leiden University, Netherlands)
Virtual reality: a paradigm shift to assess cognitive and social functioning
PRESENTER: Roberta Sellaro

ABSTRACT. Recent developments in virtual reality (VR) technologies have led scientists to consider VR as a fruitful tool for carrying out experimental studies in several fields of psychology and neuroscience. Such a proliferation in the use of VR technology in psychological research is mainly due to the limitless advantages that this tool offers over traditional experimental settings such as high control of the environment, the possibility of creating ecologically valid research protocols, and of subtly manipulating features of the environment and/or of the participant to assess their influence on people’s behaviors and decisions. In this talk I will present some recent findings from our lab replicating well-established effects of cognitive and social psychology in immersive VR. Furthermore, I will discuss the unique opportunities and additional advantages that this technology provides over standard lab settings to improve the quality of our research protocols.

Angelika C. Kern (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Wolfgang Ellermeier (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Sandra Baum (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Aziza Khodjaeva (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Hatice Kübra Özcan (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
Are you really up there? The influence of ambient sound and simulated height on experienced ‘presence’ in VR exposure to high altitude
PRESENTER: Angelika C. Kern

ABSTRACT. Presence, the feeling of "being there" in a virtual environment, is essential for virtual realities to achieve close-to-natural user reactions, e.g. in exposure therapy when curing fear of heights. Our goal was to assess the influence of the soundscape presented with the virtual reality (VR) and the effect of the altitude at which observers were placed. Participants wore a head-mounted display rendering a visual environment (Glomberg, Vogel & Geiger, Univ. of Applied Sciences, Düsseldorf) in which they could walk onto a plank extending from a skyscraper rooftop. The study was designed as a 2x3 mixed design: All in all, 110 participants (78 female, age 18 to 56 years, M = 26.18) experienced the VR in three trials involving different building heights (low/ medium/ high) in random order, with half of the subjects being exposed to the soundscape (wind and distant traffic noise). As dependent variables, we measured presence (ITC-SOPI; Lessiter et al., 2001), physiological arousal (EDA and heart rate) and the number of observed fearful behaviors. The results showed that the soundscape enhanced spatial presence while the simulated height only influenced engagement. All presence subscales (spatial presence, engagement, naturalness, and negative effects) and the indicator of fearful behaviors tended to habituate with the progression of trials. That suggests that sound enhances the feeling of actually being in the scene, while multiple exposures reduce the feeling of presence. The physiological indicators, did not show any significant differences in tonic (exposure minus baseline) levels between experimental conditions.

Sarah-Maria Goerlitz (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Patric Schubert (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Christoph Dietz (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Johanna Möller (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Simone Siedler (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Sabine Hammer (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Christian T. Haas (Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Germany)
Keep your distance! Distance behavior after semi-automated truck platoon driving under real traffic conditions

ABSTRACT. Platoon driving is a current branch in the development of automated driving in which two or more vehicles build a convoy. The lead vehicle is controlled manually, while following vehicles are electronically coupled and drive semi-automated with small gaps in order to achieve a better traffic flow and potential fuel savings. The research questions are (1) how different gap sizes are perceived by professional truck drivers under real traffic conditions and (2) whether semi-automated platoon driving leads to changes in distance behavior of subsequent manual driving. In a real road experiment N=10 trained professional truck drivers completed several test drives with a two-truck platoon on German highway A9 with a platoon gap size of either 15m or 21m. The course consisted of 20km manual pre-platoon driving, 80km semi-automated platoon driving and 20km manual post-platoon driving. The results show that (1) the drivers experienced both gap sizes as comfortable but preferred the smaller gap size of 15m. In general (2) both gap sizes led to smaller distance keepings in post- compared to pre-platoon driving for approximately ten minutes. Due to small sample size, only descriptive statistics are presented. Nevertheless, we found clear indications that drivers adapt to the small gaps and show reduced distance keeping in subsequent manual driving. This phenomenon could be eliminated by countermeasures like a distance feedback system or active cruise control usage, which should be further investigated.

Marian Sauter (Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany)
Maximilian Stefani (Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany)
Wolfgang Mack (Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany)
Playing for Science! Real-time Strategy Games as a Tool to Research Human Multitasking
PRESENTER: Marian Sauter

ABSTRACT. Traditionally, human multitasking is investigated in so-called extremely simple paradigms. Participants usually press computer keys in response to simple visual or auditory stimuli. While providing valuable information on cognitive processes, those paradigms are quite disconnected from real-world tasks. Therefore, they provide limited insight into how we multitask in natural environments. In the present studies, we investigated how people learn to coordinate up to four concurrent tasks in a stimulus-rich and challenging environment. Our participants played several rounds of the real-time strategy game StarCraft 2 in a scenario created specifically for this purpose. In particular, we were interested in the question of whether several sub-tasks are learned in parallel (slowly), or whether the participants focused on one sub-task and learn it faster before concentrating on the next sub-task to master. We found that participants prioritized mastering easy tasks over harder tasks and generally learned all tasks in parallel. Interestingly, although we found inter-individual differences in overall success, all participants generally followed the same strategy. Overall, we are sure that such specialized gaming environments can be truly beneficial to research capacities and strategies in human multitasking and bridge the gap between extremely simple paradigms and real-world task settings. In addition, such games provide an engaging research environment that can lead to highly motivated participants.

Alexandra Hoffmann (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Corinna A. Faust-Christmann (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Gregor Zolynski (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
Gabriele Bleser (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Germany)
An experimental approach for the agile development of a gamified stress management app

ABSTRACT. Although gamification has already been shown to increase user adherence in mobile health applications (apps), recent app reviews reveal that available stress management apps hardly make use of gamification approaches. To fill this gap in research, “Stress-Mentor”, a health app that teaches established stress management methods within an extensive gamification framework, has been developed. We present an experimental approach to assure the app’s quality during the iterative and incremental app development. The initial minimum viable product (MVP) of the app was a stress-related health diary. The gamified version of the MVP related diary entries to the appearance of an avatar. In study 1 (N = 47), the initial MVP was compared to the gamified version in a four week longitudinal study to assess user feedback and usage behavior. Based on the user feedback, additional stress management methods and a broader gamification framework were realized. The gamified and the non-gamified version of the extended app were compared in a second four week longitudinal study (N = 40). This approach allowed (a) revealing effects of the gamification framework upon app ratings and app usage (b) collecting feedback and proposed changes from the users to further enhance the app (c) revealing improvements in user ratings compared to the initial MVP. Our results underpin the usefulness of the gamification framework in “Stress-Mentor” and the app’s overall quality.

16:30-19:00 Session 4G: Motor Control (Individual Talks)

Motor Control (Individual Talks)

Wilfried Kunde (Julius-Maximilians-University Wuerzburg, Germany)
Location: GCG-08
Christina Stuhr (University of Rostock, Germany)
Tino Stöckel (University of Rostock, Germany)
Cognitive and motor function development in early childhood
PRESENTER: Christina Stuhr

ABSTRACT. The development of executive functions is of critical importance for the success in many aspects of later life (e.g., school readiness, job success, mental health) as all goal-directed and planned behavior relies on the proficiency of these top-down mental processes. Research during the last decades indicated that sensorimotor and movement experiences may be key to the development of cognitive functions early in life. However, while broad evidence exists that cognitive and motor functions are functionally intertwined, only very few studies dealt with the factors constraining the motor-cognition link and even less work approached the assumed causality, both of which would help to increase our understanding of how to support cognitive development during childhood. Motivated by this gap in literature, in a first step we investigated potential factors (i.e., age, type of the motor task, and task difficulty) influencing the interrelation between cognitive and motor functions. We found that the link between the two domains is task-specific, variability-driven, and influenced by cognitive maturation. In a second step, we used these prior findings for an intervention study in 5-to 6-year-old children to address the assumed causality. Our data provided evidence that motor dexterity training may improve cognitive abilities. However, the positive effect was limited to working memory function. Considering previous and this work, in this talk we are going to present a model that describes the link between cognitive and motor development as a function of cognitive maturation.

Wilfried Kunde (Julius-Maximilians-University Wuerzburg, Germany)
Lisa Weller (Julius-Maximilians-University Wuerzburg, Germany)
Binding Effects in Action Plans
PRESENTER: Wilfried Kunde

ABSTRACT. When we prepare a motor action, we temporarily bind features of the perceptual effects of a motor pattern to an action plan. While such binding has been demonstrated for body-related perceptual effects that relate to moving limbs, the evidence is less clear for body-external effects that occur somewhat remotely of the own body. We suggest that this apparent inconsistency can be reconciled by assuming different degrees of task-relevance of body-related and body-external action effects. In a first study we asked normal young adult participants (n=25) to prepare a certain Action A, which produced different body-external effects (cursor movements on a screen) and body-related effects (tactile/proprioceptive sensations), which were equally task-relevant. While keeping this action prepared, another Action B was requested. As a result, Action B was facilitated if it shared neither or all effect features with Action A as compared to partial feature overlap. A follow-up study (n=25) confirmed that these benefits of full feature repetition/alternation originate from features of the actions’ effects, rather than from features of stimuli that were used to cue the corresponding actions. These results suggest that features of both, body-related and body-external effects can become part of action plans in a similar way.

Nina M. Hanning (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
Heiner Deubel (Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany)
The actions take it all, voluntary attention standing small: Motor preparation overrides endogenous attention
PRESENTER: Nina M. Hanning

ABSTRACT. During motor preparation, eye and hand movements bind visual attention to their targets. We recently demonstrated that the allocation of attention to one effector’s motor goal is unaffected by the concurrent preparation of another effector’s movement, indicating that eye and hand targets are represented in separate, effector-specific maps of action-relevant locations. Since eye movement preparation impairs the voluntary deployment of attention, it is often assumed that endogenous attention is coded in an eye-specific priority map. This raises the question of whether hand movements, presumably coded in a different map, likewise interact with voluntary attention. To investigate potential effector-specific influences of action preparation on endogenous attention, eight participants attended to a specific location while either fixating or preparing an eye-, hand-, or simultaneous eye-hand-movement to the attended location or elsewhere. Visual sensitivity at the motor target(s), and the attended location served as a proxy for the spatial distribution of attention. When no motor action was required, we found increased sensitivity at the attended compared to unattended control locations. However, this benefit sharply decreased whenever an eye- or hand-movement was planned away from the endogenously attended location, and completely vanished during the preparation of a simultaneous eye-hand movement elsewhere. Crucially, we did not observe attentional competition between the eye and hand motor target. These findings indicate that separate priority maps encoding eye and hand targets, though not interacting with each other, similarly affect endogenous attentional selection, with action-related attention overriding voluntary attempts to attend.

William Chapman (School of Psychological Science, University of Bristol, UK)
Casimir Ludwig (School of Psychological Science, University of Bristol, UK)
The effects of perceptual uncertainty in reach and grasp movements.
PRESENTER: William Chapman

ABSTRACT. Detecting user uncertainty from overt actions is potentially highly useful for human performance monitoring; this requires understanding how decisions are made and enacted in ecologically valid contexts. Continuous measurement of effector trajectory (e.g. a mouse cursor on a screen) has proved a popular method for tracking the dynamics of the underlying decision variable. Previous work has shown that we can identify “changes of mind” in deviations of mouse-movement trajectories. Our research seeks to test whether similar effects are present in natural reaching movements. We conducted two experiments (N=32; N=29) using motion capture to record 3D reach and grasp movement trajectories (of hand, wrist orientation and finger aperture). In study 1 participants were requested to pick up the brighter or darker of one of two grey blocks either with a high contrast difference (low uncertainty condition) or a low contrast difference (high uncertainty condition). In study 2 a time limit for movement initiation was implemented. Results indicate increased changes of mind and trajectory deviation in conditions of high uncertainty, particularly when a time limit for movement onset is applied. This demonstrates that naturalistic movement dynamics can be affected by target uncertainty. Moreover, these results can be related to computational models of decision making which account for movement dynamics.

Oliver Herbort (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
Wladimir Kirsch (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
Wilfried Kunde (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany)
Grasp Planning for Object Manipulation without Simulation of the Object Manipulation Action
PRESENTER: Oliver Herbort

ABSTRACT. When an object is grasped, the grasp is usually adapted to the planned object manipulation. We tested the hypothesis that grasp planning for object manipulation is based on simulations of the body movements that could be used to realize the intended object manipulation. In five experiments, participants grasped a circular knob and rotated it to various targets. In Experiments 1-3 (total n = 60+32+21), we selectively manipulated the extents of arm movements associated with various knob rotations by means of a “virtual rotation task”. Although this manipulation should affect potential simulations of knob rotation actions, it did not affect grasp selections. In Experiment 4 (n = 12), we verified that our manipulation in principle sufficed to evoke substantial changes in grasp selections in the knob rotation task. In Experiment 5 (n = 12), we showed asserted that our manipulation affected the amplitude of open-loop knob rotations. Thus, information acquired during the virtual rotation task carried over to the knob rotation task but did not affect grasp selections. In summary, participants adapted their grasps to different intended pointer rotations on a trial-to-trial bases, thus showing the end-state comfort effect. However, whether an object manipulation was associated with a relatively far or short arm movement did not affect grasp selections. This suggests that anticipations of the body movements associated with specific object manipulation play no crucial role during grasp planning.

Aaron C. Zoeller (Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen, Germany)
Knut Drewing (Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen, Germany)
Explicit Prior Information Interferes with Implicit Tuning of Haptic Softness Exploration
PRESENTER: Aaron C. Zoeller

ABSTRACT. In everyday life, humans often explore objects haptically. To effectively gather information through active touch, humans use prior information to adapt their exploratory behavior. A previous study (Zoeller et al., 2018) showed that in softness discrimination participants adapted initial exploratory peak forces to object compliance, but only when prior information was transmitted via specific channels. We hypothesize that only implicit prior information is used to adapt exploration, while explicit prior information interferes with this process. 24 participants performed a 2AFC discrimination task, judging which of two stimuli was softer. In each trial, both stimuli were either rather hard or rather soft. In the test condition participants performed blocks of trials with either hard or soft stimuli only (implicit prior information). In the control condition trials with hard and soft stimuli were presented in random order (no prior information). Participants were split into an implicit-only group, receiving only implicit prior information and an interference group, receiving additional explicit information before each block of the test condition (written: ‘the following stimuli will be hard/soft’). In the implicit only-group, participants adapted their initial peak forces to stimulus compliance when prior knowledge was given, using more force for rather hard stimuli. In the interference group no adaptation was found. We suggest that implicit prior information is used to adjust exploration behavior, while explicit information interferes with the implicit exploration process and inhibits behavior adaptation, even when implicit information is present.

Thomas Camus (Department of Psychology, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany, Germany)
Lionel Brunel (Epsylon Laboratory, Paul Valéry University-Montpellier 3, Montpellier, France, France)
Assessing the integration of motor related components in Stimulus-Response Compatibility effects
PRESENTER: Thomas Camus

ABSTRACT. This study addresses the relation between stimuli and responses when Stimulus-Response Compatibility effects are observed. We designed two experiments to test whether the integration of perceptive and motor components is underlying situations in which compatibility effects are found between an object and a particular type of grasp. In experiment 1 (n = 16), participants had to perform a semantic categorization task on object pictures using a foot pedal device. To trigger the presentation of the object picture, a grasp that could be compatible or incompatible with the object size had to be performed and held throughout the categorization task. Our predictions regarding the impact of the grasp compatibility on stimulus processing were confirmed by evidence of code occupation, which are clear-cut results in favor of an integration of the perceptive and motor components. The procedure in experiment 2 (n = 16) was similar, except that the grasp was no longer carried out while categorizing the stimuli; instead, releasing the grasp triggered the presentation of the stimuli, allowing measurement of the time duration between the grasp and the presentation of the object picture. The pattern of results observed in experiment 1 was found to decrease in experiment 2, as a function of the temporal distance between the grasp and the processing of the object, to the extent of shifting to a classical compatibility effect for the longest durations. Our results highlight the tight coupling between perceptive and motor components in Stimulus-Response Compatibility effects, which most likely result from a sensorimotor integration.

19:15-21:00 Session 5: DGPS Open and Public Meeting of the Cognitive Section

DGPS Open and Public Meeting of the Cognitive Section

Dirk Wentura (Saarland University, Germany)