Participants struck 500 golf balls to a concealed target. Outcome feedback was presented at the subjective or objective threshold of awareness of each participant or at a supraliminal threshold. Participants who received fully perceptible feedback learned to strike the ball onto the target, as did participants who received feedback that was only marginally perceptible . Participants who received feedback that was not perceptible showed no learning. Upon transfer to a condition in which the target was unconcealed, performance increased in both (...) the subjective and the objective threshold condition, but decreased in the supraliminal condition. In all three conditions, participants reported minimal declarative knowledge of their movements, suggesting that deliberate hypothesis testing about how best to move in order to perform the motor task successfully was disrupted by the impoverished disposition of the visual outcome feedback. It was concluded that sub-optimally perceptible visual feedback evokes implicit processes. (shrink)
This study examines the relation of language use to a person’s ability to perform categorization tasks and to assess their own abilities in those categorization tasks. A silent rhyming task was used to confirm that a group of people with post-stroke aphasia (PWA) had corresponding covert language production (or “inner speech”) impairments. The performance of the PWA was then compared to that of age- and education-matched healthy controls on three kinds of categorization tasks and on metacognitive self-assessments of their performance (...) on those tasks. The PWA showed no deficits in their ability to categorize objects for any of the three trial types (visual, thematic, and categorial). However, on the categorial trials, their metacognitive assessments of whether they had categorized correctly were less reliable than those of the control group. The categorial trials were distinguished from the others by the fact that the categorization could not be based on some immediately perceptible feature or on the objects’ being found together in a type of scenario or setting. This result offers preliminary evidence for a link between covert language use and a specific form of metacognition. (shrink)
Three experiments explore the role of working memory in motor skill acquisition and performance. Traditional theories postulate that skill acquisition proceeds through stages of knowing, which are initially declarative but later procedural. The reported experiments challenge that view and support an independent, parallel processing model, which predicts that procedural and declarative knowledge can be acquired separately and that the former does not depend on the availability of working memory, whereas, the latter does. The behaviour of these two processes was manipulated (...) by providing or withholding visual (and auditory) appraisal of outcome feedback. Withholding feedback was predicted to inhibit the use of working memory to appraise success and, thus, prevent the formation of declarative knowledge without affecting the accumulation of procedural knowledge. While the first experiment failed to support these predictions, the second and third experiments demonstrated that procedural and declarative knowledge can be acquired independently. It is suggested that the availability of working memory is crucial to motor performance only when the learner has come to rely on its use. (shrink)
Do philosophic views affect job performance? The authors found that possessing a belief in free will predicted better career attitudes and actual job performance. The effect of free will beliefs on job performance indicators were over and above well-established predictors such as conscientiousness, locus of control, and Protestant work ethic. In Study 1, stronger belief in free will corresponded to more positive attitudes about expected career success. In Study 2, job performance was evaluated objectively and independently by a supervisor. Results (...) indicated that employees who espoused free will beliefs were given better work performance evaluations than those who disbelieve in free will, presumably because belief in free will facilitates exerting control over one’s actions. (shrink)
Throughout the biological and biomedical sciences there is a growing need for, prescriptive ‘minimum information’ (MI) checklists specifying the key information to include when reporting experimental results are beginning to find favor with experimentalists, analysts, publishers and funders alike. Such checklists aim to ensure that methods, data, analyses and results are described to a level sufficient to support the unambiguous interpretation, sophisticated search, reanalysis and experimental corroboration and reuse of data sets, facilitating the extraction of maximum value from data sets (...) them. However, such ‘minimum information’ MI checklists are usually developed independently by groups working within representatives of particular biologically- or technologically-delineated domains. Consequently, an overview of the full range of checklists can be difficult to establish without intensive searching, and even tracking thetheir individual evolution of single checklists may be a non-trivial exercise. Checklists are also inevitably partially redundant when measured one against another, and where they overlap is far from straightforward. Furthermore, conflicts in scope and arbitrary decisions on wording and sub-structuring make integration difficult. This presents inhibit their use in combination. Overall, these issues present significant difficulties for the users of checklists, especially those in areas such as systems biology, who routinely combine information from multiple biological domains and technology platforms. To address all of the above, we present MIBBI (Minimum Information for Biological and Biomedical Investigations); a web-based communal resource for such checklists, designed to act as a ‘one-stop shop’ for those exploring the range of extant checklist projects, and to foster collaborative, integrative development and ultimately promote gradual integration of checklists. (shrink)
The problem of disease definition is related to theproblem of proving that a certain agent is thenecessary cause of a certain disease. Natural kindterms like ‘rheumatoid arthritis’ and ‘AIDS’ refer toessences which are discoverable rather thanpredeterminate. No statement about such diseases isa priori necessarily true. Because theories onnecessary causes involve natural kind semantics,Koch's postulates cannot be used to falsify or verifysuch theories. Instead of proving that agent A is thenecessary cause of disease D, we include A in atheoretical definition of (...) D, take this to representthe real meaning of ‘D’, and discard thepretheoretical definition. This is illustrated byKoch's own attempt to prove he had discovered thenecessary cause of tuberculosis. Methodologicalarguments about disease causation require a clear viewof our use of diagnostic terms. Medical lexicographersshould do more to provide such a view. (shrink)
This article rebuts Ramsey's earlier theory, in 'Universals of Law and of Fact', of how laws of nature differ from other true generalisations. It argues that our laws are rules we use in judging 'if I meet an F I shall regard it as a G'. This temporal asymmetry is derived from that of cause and effect and used to distinguish what's past as what we can know about without knowing our present intentions.
Children and adults may not realize how much they depend on external sources in understanding word meanings. Four experiments investigated the existence and developmental course of a “Misplaced Meaning” effect, wherein children and adults overestimate their knowledge about the meanings of various words by underestimating how much they rely on outside sources to determine precise reference. Studies 1 and 2 demonstrate that children and adults show a highly consistent MM effect, and that it is stronger in young children. Study 3 (...) demonstrates that adults are explicitly aware of the availability of outside knowledge, and that this awareness may be related to the strength of the MM effect. Study 4 rules out general overconfidence effects by examining a metalinguistic task in which adults are well calibrated. (shrink)
Research on the division of cognitive labor has found that adults and children as young as age 5 are able to find appropriate experts for different causal systems. However, little work has explored how children and adults decide when to seek out expert knowledge in the first place. We propose that children and adults rely on “mechanism metadata,” information about mechanism information. We argue that mechanism metadata is relatively consistent across individuals exposed to similar amounts of mechanism information, and it (...) is applicable to a wide range of causal systems. In three experiments, we show that adults and children as young as 5 years of age have a consistent sense of the causal complexity of different causal systems, and that this sense of complexity is related to decisions about when to seek expert knowledge, but over development there is a shift in focus from procedural information to internal mechanism information. (shrink)
Does law matter regarding public health outcomes? Regardless of what one may think about the answer to this age-old question, in recent years the public health community has increasingly demonstrated and recognized the roles that public health laws and policies play in effectuating long-lasting and broad-based population-wide changes. Public health laws and policies have been instrumental in the following ways: reducing smoking prevalence; reducing underage alcohol-related drinking, driving, crashes, and fatalities; reducing exposure to second-hand smoke; eliminating vaccine–associated paralytic poliomyelitis ; (...) increasing seat-belt use and reducing traffic fatalities; reducing dental carries; and reducing access to and consumption of unhealthy foods and beverages sold in schools and to reductions in caloric intake and overweight. In fact, in a review of the ten greatest public health achievements in the 20th century, all were influenced by policy change. (shrink)
Haack, S. Is truth flat or bumpy?--Chihara, C. S. Ramsey 's theory of types.--Loar, B. Ramsey 's theory of belief and truth.--Skorupski, J. Ramsey on Belief.--Hookway, C. Inference, partial belief, and psychological laws.--Skyrms, B. Higher order degrees of belief.--Mellor, D. H. Consciousness and degrees of belief.--Blackburn, S. Opinions and chances.--Grandy, R. E. Ramsey, reliability, and knowledge.--Cohen, L. J. The problem of natural laws.--Giedymin, J. Hamilton's method in geometrical optics and Ramsey 's view of theories.