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Volume 14 Issue 4 (2018)

Reasoning and Reading in Adults. A New Reasoning Task for Detecting the Visual Impendance Effect original article

pp. 150-159 | First published on 31 December 2018 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0246-4

Elpida Panagiotidou, Francisca Serrano, Sergio Moreno-Rios

Abstract

The visual impedance hypothesis states that at the time of reasoning, the reading context provokes visual images, which may add irrelevant details to an inference and thus could hamper reasoning. This study aims to create a new visual version of a reasoning task, similar to the traditional propositional task of relational syllogisms, but based on visuospatial components. Using such a task, it would be possible to investigate the deductive ability of relational inferences in tests without the need for reading. Two reasoning tasks were used and measures of working memory, visuospatial memory, intelligence, and reading comprehension were taken. The participants were 61 university students without reading difculties. Results show that both versions of the reasoning task work similarly in fnding the main reasoning effects expected. Findings support the visual impedance effect, that is, fewer correct responses in problems with imaginable contents than with neutral ones. They indicate that this new visual task could be used to explore reasoning skills without reading being involved, and this would be useful for testing reasoning in people both with and without reading difculties.

Keywords: visual impedance, transitive reasoning, visual deductive, task, reading difculties

Which Information Helps Resolve Recall Failures for Familiar People's Names? original article

pp. 160-166 | First published on 31 December 2018 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0247-3

Serge Brédart

Abstract

Personal names are particularly susceptible to retrieval failures. In the present paper, studies describing people’s spontaneous strategies for resolving failures in recalling personal names as well as laboratory studies of experimentally induced resolution of name recall failures are reviewed. The review indicates that people frequently use spontaneous strategies based on a search for structural, semantic, and contextual information about the target person. On the other hand, both cueing and priming experimental studies have shown that providing phonological information may help resolve a recall failure, whereas providing structural or semantic information is usually not helpful. A possible explanation of this discrepancy between the spontaneous use of semantic/contextual information and the experimentally demonstrated uselessness of this kind of information is provided. Finally, the role of syntactical similarity (belonging or not to the same part of speech) in the efciency of phonological priming is discussed.

Keywords: name retrieval; person naming; proper names; tipof-the-tongue; priming

Outer and Inner Dimensions of Brain and Consciousness - Refning and Integrating the Phenomenal Layers original article

pp. 167-185 | First published on 31 December 2018 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0248-2

Johannes Wagemann, Friedrich Edelhäuser, Ulrich Weger

Abstract

In view of the unresolved mind–brain problem, we examine a number of prototypical research attitudes regarding the question, how the mental and the neuronal realms are related to each other, both functionally and ontologically. By discussing neurophilosophical and neuropsychological positions, the mind–brain problem can be recast in terms of a structural relation between methodological and content-related aspects. Although this reformulation does not immediately lead to a solution, it draws attention to the necessity of searching for a new way of balancing separating and integrating elements regarding content as well as method. As a relatively unknown alternative in this context we investigate an approach by the philosopher Rudolf Steiner. It comprises a first-person method, along with the theoretical background of what has come to be known as the mirror metaphor - an analogy for the brain as a necessary but not a sufcient basis for mental activity. Through a first-person study, this approach is scrutinized using volitionally controlled perceptual reversals. The results allow for a phenomenological distinction of processual phases which can be summarized as engaging and disengaging forms of mental activity. Finally, we initiate a discussion in view of related philosophical concepts and give an outlook on the next possible research steps.

Keywords: mind-brain-relation, mirror-metaphor, first-person method, functional layer theory

What Makes You Think That You Are a Health Expert? The Effect of Objective Knowledge and Cognitive Structuring on Self-Epistemic Authority original article

pp. 186-191 | First published on 31 December 2018 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0249-1

Yoram Bar-Tal, Katarzyna Stasiuk, Renata Maksymiuk

Abstract

Self-epistemic authority (SEA) refers to the subjective judgement of the level of expertise and knowledge a person has in a given domain. While it is reasonable to assume that people's perception of SEA reflects their level of objective knowledge in the given domain, there is evidence to show that people are not optimal judges of their own knowledge. Thus, the present study examined the interaction between the participants’ trait-like characteristics of need for cognitive closure (NFC) and efficacy to fulfill the need for cognitive closure (EFNC), which affects the use of cognitive structuring, as a source of SEA. Results of the study confirm that objective knowledge as well as a cognitive-motivational epistemic process (interaction between NFC and EFNC) affect SEA. For high EFNC individuals, the effect of NFC on SEA was positive. However, for low EFNC individuals, the relationship was negative.

Keywords: self-epistemic authority, epistemic motivation, need for closure, efficacy to fulfil need for closure, objective knowledge, cognitive structuring, expertise

Influence of the Spectral Quality of Light on Daytime Alertness Levels in Humans original article

pp. 192-208 | First published on 31 December 2018 | DOI:10.5709/acp-0250-0

Kamila Łaszewska, Agnieszka Goroncy, Piotr Weber, Tadeusz Pracki, Małgorzata Tafil-Klawe

Abstract

Exposure to light is very important for human health. However, the characteristics of the light stimulus and the appropriate timing of such exposure are essential. Studies that have used monochromatic light exposure have shown no systematic patterns for the effects of blue light compared to longer wavelengths. Previous studies have shown that red light exposure increases objective and subjective measures of alertness at night without suppressing nocturnal melatonin or inducing circadian disruption. The present study investigated whether noon time exposure to red light would increase both objective and subjective measures of alertness such as those measured by EEG, cognitive-behavioral performance, and subjective sleepiness. The three lighting conditions were as follows: dim light (< 0.01 lux at cornea), blue light (465 nm, 72 μW/cm2), and red light (625 nm, 18 μW/cm2), both at 40 lux. The results of the EEG data showed an increase in theta power over time in dim light only. In red light, alpha power showed a decrease over time. The impact of red light was observed in the performance measures: The only significant effect was a deterioration in the continuous performance test after red light exposure. Subjective measures of alertness were not affected by light in either condition, in contrast to darkness, when subjects reported greater sleepiness than before. None of the changes in objective measures of alertness induced by red light exposure translated into subjective sleepiness at noon. Thus, we concluded that behavioral effects of light at noon are very limited at best.

Keywords: light, daytime, alertness, performance, EEG