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Learning words in space and time: Probing the mechanisms behind the suspicious-coincidence effect

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Learning words in space and time : Probing the mechanisms behind the suspicious-coincidence effect. / Spencer, John P; Perone, Sammy; Smith, Linda B; Samuelson, Larissa K.

In: Psychological Science, Vol. 22, No. 8, 08.2011, p. 1049-1057.

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@article{e9750e1d1dd145b88066cf0f53a369df,
title = "Learning words in space and time: Probing the mechanisms behind the suspicious-coincidence effect",
abstract = "A major debate in the study of word learning centers on the extension of categories to new items. The rational approach assumes that learners make structured inferences about category membership, whereas the mechanistic approach emphasizes the attentional and memory processes that form the basis of generalization behaviors. Recent support for the rational view comes from observations of the suspicious-coincidence effect: People generalize category membership narrowly when presented with three subordinate-level exemplars that share the same label and generalize category membership broadly when presented with one exemplar. Across three experiments, we examined the mechanistic basis of this effect. Results showed that the presentation of multiple subordinate-level exemplars led to narrow generalization only when the exemplars were presented simultaneously, even when the number of exemplars was increased from three to six. These data demonstrate that the suspicious-coincidence effect is firmly grounded in the general cognitive processes of attention, memory, and visual comparison.",
keywords = "Adult, Attention, Discrimination, Generalization, Humans, Photic Stimulation, Verbal Learning, Vocabulary",
author = "Spencer, {John P} and Sammy Perone and Smith, {Linda B} and Samuelson, {Larissa K}",
year = "2011",
month = aug,
doi = "10.1177/0956797611413934",
language = "English",
volume = "22",
pages = "1049--1057",
journal = "Psychological Science",
issn = "0956-7976",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc",
number = "8",

}

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Learning words in space and time

T2 - Probing the mechanisms behind the suspicious-coincidence effect

AU - Spencer, John P

AU - Perone, Sammy

AU - Smith, Linda B

AU - Samuelson, Larissa K

PY - 2011/8

Y1 - 2011/8

N2 - A major debate in the study of word learning centers on the extension of categories to new items. The rational approach assumes that learners make structured inferences about category membership, whereas the mechanistic approach emphasizes the attentional and memory processes that form the basis of generalization behaviors. Recent support for the rational view comes from observations of the suspicious-coincidence effect: People generalize category membership narrowly when presented with three subordinate-level exemplars that share the same label and generalize category membership broadly when presented with one exemplar. Across three experiments, we examined the mechanistic basis of this effect. Results showed that the presentation of multiple subordinate-level exemplars led to narrow generalization only when the exemplars were presented simultaneously, even when the number of exemplars was increased from three to six. These data demonstrate that the suspicious-coincidence effect is firmly grounded in the general cognitive processes of attention, memory, and visual comparison.

AB - A major debate in the study of word learning centers on the extension of categories to new items. The rational approach assumes that learners make structured inferences about category membership, whereas the mechanistic approach emphasizes the attentional and memory processes that form the basis of generalization behaviors. Recent support for the rational view comes from observations of the suspicious-coincidence effect: People generalize category membership narrowly when presented with three subordinate-level exemplars that share the same label and generalize category membership broadly when presented with one exemplar. Across three experiments, we examined the mechanistic basis of this effect. Results showed that the presentation of multiple subordinate-level exemplars led to narrow generalization only when the exemplars were presented simultaneously, even when the number of exemplars was increased from three to six. These data demonstrate that the suspicious-coincidence effect is firmly grounded in the general cognitive processes of attention, memory, and visual comparison.

KW - Adult

KW - Attention

KW - Discrimination

KW - Generalization

KW - Humans

KW - Photic Stimulation

KW - Verbal Learning

KW - Vocabulary

U2 - 10.1177/0956797611413934

DO - 10.1177/0956797611413934

M3 - Article

C2 - 21705517

VL - 22

SP - 1049

EP - 1057

JO - Psychological Science

JF - Psychological Science

SN - 0956-7976

IS - 8

ER -

ID: 64344646