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Mem Cognit. 2003 Apr;31(3):327-42.

Task-set reconfiguration with predictable and unpredictable task switches.

Author information

1
University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England. s.monsell@ex.ac.uk

Abstract

Participants switched frequently between high/low and odd/even classification of a digit. The interval between a task cue and the next digit varied between blocks. In Experiment 1, the task switched predictably every two, four, or eight trials. In Experiment 2, switching predictably every four trials was compared with random switching. With predictable switching, the cost was limited to the first trial of a run. Random switching produced a more gradual approach to asymptotic performance. After one performance, control processes attenuate the resulting change in task-set bias if a further switch is likely, but this strategic modulation is soon overwhelmed by task-set priming through further performances. Preparation reduced switch costs but not interference from the irrelevant attribute: Control of interference appears to be reactive, not proactive. Switch costs did not increase with run length, suggesting that retrieval of the task set last associated with the stimulus did not contribute to switch costs.

PMID:
12795475
DOI:
10.3758/bf03194391
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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