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J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn. 2004 Jul;30(4):923-35.

On the role of recognition in decision making.

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Centre for Economic Learning and Social Evolution, University College London, London, UK.


In 2 experiments, the authors sought to distinguish between the claim that recognition of an object is treated simply as a cue among others for the purposes of decision making in a cue-learning task from the claim that recognition is attributed a special status with fundamental, noncompensatory properties. Results of both experiments supported the former interpretation. When recognition had a high predictive validity, it was relied on (solely) by the majority of participants; however, when other cues in the environment had higher validity, recognition was ignored, and these other cues were used. The results provide insight into when, where, and why recognition is used in decision making and also question the elevated status assigned to recognition in some frameworks (e.g., D. G. Goldstein & G. Gigerenzer, 2002).

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