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Disambiguating a mental model: Influence of social context

Von Hecker, Ulrich ORCID: 2004. Disambiguating a mental model: Influence of social context. The Psychological Record 54 (1) , pp. 27-43.

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To date, little is known about how social context cues influence the processing of information about relations between people, as opposed to information about individual persons. This research addresses the construction of mental clique representations from pairwise sympathy relations. Forty-one participants learned 4 patterns of mutual liking or disliking relations. Patterns were ambiguous in the sense that they allowed integration into either a 2-clique or a 3-clique mental model. Prior to learning each pattern, participants read a story in which a social context was made salient. The context consisted of either 2 or 3 factions, or parties. Participants with good memory for the learned sentiment structure showed evidence for model-based retrieval, and they tended to construct their mental models in line with the context implications. For these participants, specific cues from the social environment influenced how they perceived and recalled interpersonal relationships. Participants with poor memory did not show evidence for mental model construction, but tended to follow a more detail-based memorization process. Context influences were not visible in this group.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Publisher: Southern Illinois University
ISSN: 0033-2933
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2022 09:56

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