This study investigated the transfer of classically conditioned skin conductance responses through stimulus equivalence classes. Fourteen subjects were taught 4 stimulus relations, A1→B1, A1→C1, A2→B2, and A2→C2 through matching-to-sample training. In subsequent matching-to-sample tests, 13 subjects demonstrated the formation of two stimulus equivalence classes, “A1, B1, and C1” and “A2, B2, and C2.” They then received differential conditioning, in which Stimulus B1 was followed by electric shocks, while B2 was not followed by the shocks. Subsequent transfer tests revealed that skin conductance responses for Stimulus C1 were greater than those for C2, suggesting the transfer of conditioned responses through the stimulus equivalence classes.
We investigated how the physical variables of complex figures had effects on psychological complexity and recognition of complex figures. Complexity was objectively defined by the amount of convex parts and Perimeter/√Area (P/√A), which varied with both the number of convex parts and the length of one convex part. In complexity, judgments the results showed that the judged complexity was not well predicted by P/√A, and that the amount of convex parts rather than P/√A had much influence on the judged complexity. In a recognition experiment, the results showed that performance was dependent on both the number of convex parts and the length of one convex part when P/√A was held constant. When P/√A was low and constant, performance tended to deteriorate with increasing the amount of convex parts. But when P/√A was high and constant, performance peaked at a convex parts value of 8, and deteriorated at higher or lower values of convex parts. The results indicated that both the number of convex parts and the length of one convex part were effective in deteriorating retention in visual short-term memory, and that P/√A had indirect influence on performance.
Three experiments were conducted to investigate letter migration in Japanese Kana word recognition. The participants were presented two brief masked “source” words (e.g., _??__??_ _??__??_) each made up of two components (letters), followed by a “probe” word (e.g., _??__??_). The probe word in the critical trials was a blend of two letters, one each from the two source words. The task was to decide whether the probe was one of the source words. The results indicated that the proportion of false positive responses depends on consistency of positions of the components in probe word with those in source words set (global consistency), and on consistency between the first letter of source and probe words (left local consistency). The results also showed that statistical properties of letters, i.e., the number of companions (adjoining letters) of a letter influenced the false response. These results were compared with those with a Kanji word suggesting that knowledge of conjunctive properties of word-components affects word recognition irrespective of scripts.
Spatial perspective taking ability of two-year-six-month to four-year-five-month old children was investigated, using a newly devised task named the ‘Face Rotation Task.’ In the task one of the two eyes in the face stimulus, which had been rotated 90, 180, or 270 degrees from the upright position, was highlighted and a buzzer sound was simultaneously presented. The subjects were asked to memorize the combination of the highlighted eye and the sound. When the face stimulus was set back to the normal upright position, the buzzer sound was presented and the subjects were asked to look or point at the position of the expected highlighting eye. Children over 3.5 years performed significantly better than chance expectation. The mental strategy employed by the children was also investigated using a modified Face Rotation Task. The result indicated that the mental strategy was perspective taking. The implications of these results were discussed in terms of the appropriate meaning of perspective taking ability.
Two experiments were conducted to investigate the degree of semantic processing for unattended words. In a dichotic listening task, each participant was required to attend selectively to either a word sequence in one ear or a speech passage in the opposite ear. The selective listening was confirmed by attenuated P1-N1 and N400 waves of the event-related brain potential to unattended words. The N400 attenuation with semantic priming was observed only for attended words. In a following recognition test with a booklet and auditory presentation, the percentage of false alarms for “new” words (or lures) semantically related to “old” words was higher when the “old” words were attended in selective listening than when unattended. These findings suggest that selective attention can act before and/or at a level of semantic processing.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the subjective emotional states of ‘feeling of relief (ANDO-KAN), ’ In Study 1, an open-ended questionnaire, with 64 subjects, found 127 concrete situations, in which they experienced feeling of relief. In Study 2, 182 subjects completed a questionnaire, which measured subjective arousal during the time they experienced relief. Results indicated that two distinct type of situation were related to feeling of relief: situation of relief from tension and that of calmness and relaxation. Tension was associated with the former, but not the latter; however, general deactivation characterized both types of situation. We concluded that feeling of relief probably consisted of two discrete subjective emotional states, and that they could be explained in terms of distinct arousal states.
Effects of concreteness and representation mode (kanji/hiragana) of target words on working memory during reading was tested using Japanese version of reading span test (RST), developed by Osaka and Osaka (1994). Concreteness and familiarity of target words and difficulty of sentences were carefully controlled. The words with high concreteness resulted in significantly higher RST scores, which suggests the high efficiency of working memory in processing these words. The results suggest that high concrete noun-words associated with visual clues consume less working memory capacity during reading. The effect of representation mode is different between subjects with high-RST and low-RST scores. Characteristic of the high concrete words that may be responsible for the effectiveness of processing are discussed.
This study investigated the influences of age and length of education on gender conception, and the influences in turn of the conception on gender-role attitudes and preference, with multiple regression analysis. Of a random sample of 1 500 Tokyo residents, aged between 20 and 60, 342 women and 313 men completed a questionnaire concerning their views of gender. The questions were structured to measure their agreement to gender-stereotyped opinions and behaviors. Results were as follows: (1) The older both men and women were, the more rigid their gender conception was. (2) The longer the respondent's education was, the more flexible their gender conception was. (3) These tendencies were stronger for women than men. (4) Pass analysis indicated that age, education, and parents' gender-typed expectation affected gender conception, which in turn influenced gender-role attitudes, and also that gender-roles were chosen on the basis of gender-role attitudes. It was concluded that age and length of education affected gender-role attitudes and preference, through gender conception in the context of gender schematic processing.