Truth table task: Working memory load, latencies, and perceived relevance

Aline Sevenants, Kristien Dieussaert, Walter Schaeken
<span title="">2013</span> <i title="Informa UK Limited"> <a target="_blank" rel="noopener" href="" style="color: black;">Journal of Cognitive Psychology</a> </i> &nbsp;
The aim of the present study is to uncover the relation between cognitive ability and the answer patterns yielded by the truth table task. According to the Classical Mental Models Theory, people with high working memory capacity answer according to two-valued or 'logical' answer patterns. The Suppositional Theory and the Revised Mental Models Theory predict that the answer patterns given by the most intelligent ones are three-valued or 'defective'. Correlations are examined, and in three
more &raquo; ... ents it is tested with a dual task paradigm whether a differential working memory load alters participants' answer patterns. A positive correlation is observed between cognitive ability and three-valued answer patterns, but no effect of the working memory load manipulation is revealed. With an inspection of the classification times we shed light on the processes underlying truth table judgments. We conclude that the Revised Mental Models Theory provides the best account for our results. . The meaning of 'If' The word "if" is everywhere in our daily language and in all thinkable contexts: promises, threats, commitments, etc. It enables us to engage in hypothetical thinking, to reflect on the implications of what may come, could have been or will be. We are very used to conditionals in our daily communication and seem to have no problem at all understanding them. When a little boy is told by his mother at the doctor's examination table: "If you're quiet now, you'll get an ice cream when it's over", even at young age he is able to grasp the meaning of this. Mothers tend to keep their promises, so being quiet now leads to ice cream later. But what happens when the boy starts screaming? Is there a chance that he might get an ice cream anyway? Since conditionals are extremely widely used in our communication and make up a key factor of our reasoning and decision making, it's very important to know exactly how people understand and interpret them. Conditionals are sentences with the following grammatical construction: 'If A then C', with A being the antecedent and C the consequent of the clause. E.g.: If the letter is a T, then the number is a 5. Combining the truth-value of the antecedent and the consequent, four possibilities or cases arise: True-antecedent -True-consequent (TT): a T and a 5 True-antecedent -False-consequent (TF): a T and a 3 False-antecedent -True-consequent (FT): a B and a 5 False-antecedent -False-consequent (FF): a B and a 3 The TT case and the TF case (1 and 2) are referred to as the true-antecedent cases and the FT and FF case (3 and 4) as the false-antecedent cases (FA cases in the remainder of the text). In the experiments described in the present manuscript we will only make use of socalled basic conditionals, comparable to the one in the example above. Such conditionals concern abstract relationships and are indicative in form, making claims that could apparently be empirically verified and in which content effects and the influence of background knowledge are controlled for.
<span class="external-identifiers"> <a target="_blank" rel="external noopener noreferrer" href="">doi:10.1080/20445911.2013.775131</a> <a target="_blank" rel="external noopener" href="">fatcat:x5mipeye2bel3lnv7cwkaxuaya</a> </span>
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