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Featural selective attention, exemplar representation, and the inverse base-rate effect

Johansen, Mark K., Fouquet, Nathalie and Shanks, David R. 2010. Featural selective attention, exemplar representation, and the inverse base-rate effect. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 17 (5) , pp. 637-643. 10.3758/PBR.17.5.637

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Selective attention plays a central role in theories of category learning and representation. In exemplar theory, selective attention has typically been formalized as operating uniformly across entire stimulus dimensions. Selective featural attention operating within dimensions has been recognized as a conceptual possibility, but relatively little research has focused on evaluating it. In the present research, we explored the usefulness of selective featural attention in the context of exemplar representation. We report the results of embedding the feature-to-category relations typically associated with the inverse base-rate effect—a classic and paradoxical category-learning result— perceptual category-learning task using a category structure with three multivalued feature dimensions. An exemplar model incorporating featural selective attention accurately accounted for the inverse base-rate effect that occurred but failed to do so with only dimensional attention.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Additional Information: This research was supported in part by the United Kingdom Economic and Social Research Council Grant RES-000-23-0024 to D.R.S.
Publisher: Springer
ISSN: 1069-9384
Funders: ESRC
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 02:44

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