2012 Volume 88 Issue 1 Pages 1-12
We examined rule violation behaviour. Student participants (n=44) were asked to always confirm the trial number (the trial number confirmation task) after a perceptual decision task. Half of the students were instructed that omitting the trial number confirmation increased the risk of adding 10 additional trials (the large risk condition), and the other half were instructed that they risked adding one additional trial (the small risk condition). In 4 blocks of all 8 blocks, the trial number message was delayed by 5 seconds in half the trials (the large cost condition), in the other 4 blocks by 2 seconds in half the trials (the small cost condition). Participants could go to the next trial without confirming the delayed message and this behaviour was defined as the violation behaviour. The results indicated that the participants omitted the confirmation of the trial number in the large cost condition, more often than in the small cost condition. This demonstrated the strong effect of task costs in rule violations.