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Confidence and varieties of bias

Heathcote, A ORCID: 0000-0003-4324-5537, Holloway, E and Sauer, J ORCID: 0000-0002-0872-3647 2018 , 'Confidence and varieties of bias' , Journal of Mathematical Psychology , doi: 10.1016/j.jmp.2018.10.002.

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Abstract

We test the proposition that response bias can have two different bases; reflecting eitherdiffering beliefs about the a priori likelihood of competing response alternatives, or theirrelative utilities. In evidence accumulation models, these two types of bias are thought tomanifest as variations in the starting point for accumulation and threshold for responding,respectively. Although these two mechanisms are indistinguishable for linear accumulators interms of accuracy and RT, Vickers’ (1979) balance-of-evidence hypothesis predicts theyhave dissociable effects on confidence. We derived ten ordinal predictions from these modelsand confirmed them at the level of group averages using traditional ANOVA analyses ofresults from a new experiment that manipulated the probability of correct responses and therewards associated with them. However, individual effects were more variable, particularlywith respect to the reward manipulation. We then used Bamber’s (1979) state-trace analysisto test the predicted dissociations using Bayes factors developed by Prince, Brown andHeathcote (2012) and Davis-Stober, Morey and Heathcote (2016). Once again, we foundsupport at the aggregate level but more equivocal results for individuals. We discuss whyindividual results are to be preferred over aggregate results in state-trace analysis and drawthe lesson that tailored designs are needed to obtain clear results from individual state-traceanalyses.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Heathcote, A and Holloway, E and Sauer, J
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Mathematical Psychology
Publisher: Academic Press
ISSN: 0022-2496
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.jmp.2018.10.002
Copyright Information:

© 2018 Elsevier Inc.

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