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    Perception and identification of random events

    Zhao, J. and Hahn, Ulrike and Osherson, D. (2014) Perception and identification of random events. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance 40 (4), pp. 1358-1371. ISSN 0096-1523.

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    The cognition of randomness consists of perceptual and conceptual components. One might be able to discriminate random from nonrandom stimuli, yet be unable to identify which is which. In a series of experiments, we compare the ability to distinguish random from nonrandom stimuli to the accuracy with which given stimuli are identified as “random.” In a further experiment, we also evaluate the encoding hypothesis according to which the tendency of a stimulus to be labeled random varies with the cognitive difficulty of encoding it (Falk & Konold, 1997). In our experiments, the ability to distinguish random from nonrandom stimuli is superior to the ability to correctly label them. Moreover, for at least 1 class of stimuli, difficulty of encoding fails to predict the probability of being labeled random, providing evidence against the encoding hypothesis.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Birkbeck Knowledge Lab
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 02 Jun 2015 08:31
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:16


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