The Use of Base Rate Information as a Function of Experienced Consistency

Theory and Decision 59 (4):307-344 (2005)

Abstract
Three experiments examine the effect of base rate consistency under direct experience. Base rate consistency was manipulated by blocking trials and setting base rate choice reinforcement to be either consistent or inconsistent across trial blocks. Experiment 1 shows that, contrary to the usual finding, participants use base rate information more than individuating information when it is consistent, but less when it is inconsistent. In Experiment 2, this effect was replicated, and transferred in verbal questions posed subsequently. Despite experience with consistent base rates increasing sensitivity to base rates in word problems, verbal responses were far from normative. In Experiment 3, participants’ use of base rates was once again moderated by its consistency, but this effect was itself moderated by the diagnosticity of base rate information. Participants were highly accurate in estimating experienced base rates. These studies demonstrate that base rate usage is complex and a function of how base rates are presented (experienced versus summary statistics) and response format (choice proportions versus probability estimates). Knowledge of base rates was insufficient for proper usage in verbal word problems. Although choice proportions showed a sophisticated sensitivity to experienced base rate information, participants seemed unable to demonstrate a similar sophistication when given typical word problems indicating that base rate neglect is a function of information representation and not an inherent processing bias
Keywords base rate neglect  decision making  learning  choice  direct experience  diagnosticity
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11238-005-0946-8
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 47,350
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

From Conditioning to Category Learning: An Adaptive Network Model.Mark A. Gluck & Gordon H. Bower - 1988 - Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 117 (3):227-247.

View all 9 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Neglect of the Environment by Cognitive Psychology.Philip T. Dunwoody - 2006 - Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 26 (1-2):139-153.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Direct Experience is Ecologically Valid.Adam S. Goodie - 1997 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 20 (4):777-778.
Base Rates and Randomness.Ranald R. Macdonald - 1997 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 20 (4):778-778.
Ordinary People Do Not Ignore Base Rates.Donald Laming - 2007 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (3):272-274.
Implications of Natural Sampling in Base-Rate Tasks.Gernot D. Kleiter - 2007 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (3):270-271.
Base-Rate Respect Meets Affect Neglect.Paul Whitney, John M. Hinson & Allison L. Matthews - 2007 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (3):285-286.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2013-12-01

Total views
60 ( #148,633 of 2,291,116 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #399,576 of 2,291,116 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature