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Psychophysiology. 2012 Oct;49(10):1394-400. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8986.2012.01452.x. Epub 2012 Aug 20.

The flexibility of partial information transmission in the auditory channel: the role of perceptual discriminability.

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Key Laboratory For NeuroInformation of Ministry of Education, School of Life Science and Technology, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China.


A stimulus contains multiple attributes. Under certain circumstances, some information can be transmitted to the next cognitive stage before the processing of other information. An examination of partial information transmission is essential in improving our understanding of the mechanism of information processing. By manipulating two attributes, namely, pitch and intensity, this study examined whether the transmission speed of an attribute could be influenced by its perceptual discriminability. Using a choice go/no-go paradigm, this study presented adults with two pieces of pure tones and measured their LRPs. Results showed that pitch and intensity were transmitted earlier as partial information in the high pitch- and intensity-discriminability conditions, respectively. Thus, this study demonstrated that the transmission speed of a certain attribute could be modulated by its perceptual discriminability.

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