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Task conflict in the Stroop task: When Stroop interference decreases as Stroop facilitation increases in a low task conflict context.

Parris BA - Front Psychol (2014)

Bottom Line: In the present study participants completed two blocks of the Stroop task, one in which the response-stimulus interval (RSI) was 3500 ms and one in which RSI was 200 ms.Such a finding would be problematic for models of Stroop effects that predict these indices of performance should be affected in tandem.A crossover interaction is reported supporting these predictions.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Psychology Research Centre, Faculty of Science and Technology, Bournemouth University Poole, UK.

ABSTRACT
In the present study participants completed two blocks of the Stroop task, one in which the response-stimulus interval (RSI) was 3500 ms and one in which RSI was 200 ms. It was expected that, in line with previous research, the shorter RSI would induce a low Task Conflict context by increasing focus on the color identification goal in the Stroop task and lead to a novel finding of an increase in facilitation and simultaneous decrease in interference. Such a finding would be problematic for models of Stroop effects that predict these indices of performance should be affected in tandem. A crossover interaction is reported supporting these predictions. As predicted, the shorter RSI resulted in incongruent and congruent trial reaction times (RTs) decreasing relative to a static neutral baseline condition; hence interference decreased as facilitation increased. An explanatory model (expanding on the work of Goldfarb and Henik, 2007) is presented that: (1) Shows how under certain conditions the predictions from single mechanism models hold true (i.e., when Task conflict is held constant); (2) Shows how it is possible that interference can be affected by an experimental manipulation that leaves facilitation apparently untouched; and (3) Predicts that facilitation cannot be independently affected by an experimental manipulation.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Figure showing how Stroop interference, reverse facilitation and facilitation are modified by high, medium, and low levels of involvement of Informational- and Task-level mechanisms. L, Large; M, Medium; S, Small; Rev, Reverse Facilitation. In this scheme the short RSI manipulation likely results in High to Medium Informational-level involvement and low Task-level involvement. The greater proportion of non-word neutral trials used by Goldfarb and Henik (2007) likely results in Medium to Low Informational-level involvement and High Task-level involvement. Their cueing manipulation likely reduced Task-level involvement to Medium.
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Figure 3: Figure showing how Stroop interference, reverse facilitation and facilitation are modified by high, medium, and low levels of involvement of Informational- and Task-level mechanisms. L, Large; M, Medium; S, Small; Rev, Reverse Facilitation. In this scheme the short RSI manipulation likely results in High to Medium Informational-level involvement and low Task-level involvement. The greater proportion of non-word neutral trials used by Goldfarb and Henik (2007) likely results in Medium to Low Informational-level involvement and High Task-level involvement. Their cueing manipulation likely reduced Task-level involvement to Medium.

Mentions: The present results suggest that the task conflict account of Stroop effects provides a useful and powerful explanatory mechanism. However, the question remains as to whether it can account for the common observance of experimental effects influencing interference but not facilitation (Tzelgov et al., 1992; MacLeod, 1998; Parris et al., 2012) or vice versa in conditions such as Schizophrenia (Barch et al., 1999). Figure 3 shows how different levels of involvement of both of these mechanisms could lead to varying patterns of interference, reverse facilitation and facilitation. An increase in informational and task conflict would both increase RTs to incongruent trials and, assuming a static baseline condition, increase interference. However, an increase in informational convergence and task conflict would have opposing effects on facilitation since the former would decrease RTs to congruent trials and the latter would increase them, effectively canceling each other out. Thus in principle at least, an increase in task and informational level involvement could produce an increase in interference without apparently affecting facilitation. Goldfarb and Henik (2007) created a high task conflict context by increasing the proportion of trials that did not involve task conflict so that when a trial that did involve task conflict was experienced, the participant was not able to deal well with the task level conflict. Should one also increase the number of congruent trials to increase informational-level involvement (whilst keeping the proportion of trials that do not involve task conflict higher, and the number of incongruent trials lower) one might expect to observe an increase in the influence of both informational and task mechanisms on performance and thus the effects described above.


Task conflict in the Stroop task: When Stroop interference decreases as Stroop facilitation increases in a low task conflict context.

Parris BA - Front Psychol (2014)

Figure showing how Stroop interference, reverse facilitation and facilitation are modified by high, medium, and low levels of involvement of Informational- and Task-level mechanisms. L, Large; M, Medium; S, Small; Rev, Reverse Facilitation. In this scheme the short RSI manipulation likely results in High to Medium Informational-level involvement and low Task-level involvement. The greater proportion of non-word neutral trials used by Goldfarb and Henik (2007) likely results in Medium to Low Informational-level involvement and High Task-level involvement. Their cueing manipulation likely reduced Task-level involvement to Medium.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4202807&req=5

Figure 3: Figure showing how Stroop interference, reverse facilitation and facilitation are modified by high, medium, and low levels of involvement of Informational- and Task-level mechanisms. L, Large; M, Medium; S, Small; Rev, Reverse Facilitation. In this scheme the short RSI manipulation likely results in High to Medium Informational-level involvement and low Task-level involvement. The greater proportion of non-word neutral trials used by Goldfarb and Henik (2007) likely results in Medium to Low Informational-level involvement and High Task-level involvement. Their cueing manipulation likely reduced Task-level involvement to Medium.
Mentions: The present results suggest that the task conflict account of Stroop effects provides a useful and powerful explanatory mechanism. However, the question remains as to whether it can account for the common observance of experimental effects influencing interference but not facilitation (Tzelgov et al., 1992; MacLeod, 1998; Parris et al., 2012) or vice versa in conditions such as Schizophrenia (Barch et al., 1999). Figure 3 shows how different levels of involvement of both of these mechanisms could lead to varying patterns of interference, reverse facilitation and facilitation. An increase in informational and task conflict would both increase RTs to incongruent trials and, assuming a static baseline condition, increase interference. However, an increase in informational convergence and task conflict would have opposing effects on facilitation since the former would decrease RTs to congruent trials and the latter would increase them, effectively canceling each other out. Thus in principle at least, an increase in task and informational level involvement could produce an increase in interference without apparently affecting facilitation. Goldfarb and Henik (2007) created a high task conflict context by increasing the proportion of trials that did not involve task conflict so that when a trial that did involve task conflict was experienced, the participant was not able to deal well with the task level conflict. Should one also increase the number of congruent trials to increase informational-level involvement (whilst keeping the proportion of trials that do not involve task conflict higher, and the number of incongruent trials lower) one might expect to observe an increase in the influence of both informational and task mechanisms on performance and thus the effects described above.

Bottom Line: In the present study participants completed two blocks of the Stroop task, one in which the response-stimulus interval (RSI) was 3500 ms and one in which RSI was 200 ms.Such a finding would be problematic for models of Stroop effects that predict these indices of performance should be affected in tandem.A crossover interaction is reported supporting these predictions.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Psychology Research Centre, Faculty of Science and Technology, Bournemouth University Poole, UK.

ABSTRACT
In the present study participants completed two blocks of the Stroop task, one in which the response-stimulus interval (RSI) was 3500 ms and one in which RSI was 200 ms. It was expected that, in line with previous research, the shorter RSI would induce a low Task Conflict context by increasing focus on the color identification goal in the Stroop task and lead to a novel finding of an increase in facilitation and simultaneous decrease in interference. Such a finding would be problematic for models of Stroop effects that predict these indices of performance should be affected in tandem. A crossover interaction is reported supporting these predictions. As predicted, the shorter RSI resulted in incongruent and congruent trial reaction times (RTs) decreasing relative to a static neutral baseline condition; hence interference decreased as facilitation increased. An explanatory model (expanding on the work of Goldfarb and Henik, 2007) is presented that: (1) Shows how under certain conditions the predictions from single mechanism models hold true (i.e., when Task conflict is held constant); (2) Shows how it is possible that interference can be affected by an experimental manipulation that leaves facilitation apparently untouched; and (3) Predicts that facilitation cannot be independently affected by an experimental manipulation.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus