Unifying Representations and Responses: Perseverative Biases Arise From a Single Behavioral System

John P. Spencer, Anne R. Schutte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A dominant account of perseverative errors in early development contends that such errors reflect a failure to inhibit a prepotent response. This study investigated whether perseveration might also arise from a failure to inhibit a prepotent representation. Children watched as a toy was hidden at an A location, waited during a delay, and then watched the experimenter find the toy. After six observation-only A trials, the toy was hidden at a B location, and children were allowed to search for the toy. Two- and 4-year-olds' responses on the B trials were significantly biased toward A even though they had never overtly responded to this location. Thus, perseverative biases in early development can arise as a result of prepotent representations, demonstrating that the prepotent-response account is incomplete. We discuss three alternative interpretations of these results, including the possibility that representational and response-based biases reflect the operation of a single, integrated behavioral system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-193
Number of pages7
JournalPsychological Science
Volume15
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2004

Fingerprint

Play and Playthings
Observation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Unifying Representations and Responses : Perseverative Biases Arise From a Single Behavioral System. / Spencer, John P.; Schutte, Anne R.

In: Psychological Science, Vol. 15, No. 3, 03.2004, p. 187-193.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{f8d6c103b72943abba87ef089fae1788,
title = "Unifying Representations and Responses: Perseverative Biases Arise From a Single Behavioral System",
abstract = "A dominant account of perseverative errors in early development contends that such errors reflect a failure to inhibit a prepotent response. This study investigated whether perseveration might also arise from a failure to inhibit a prepotent representation. Children watched as a toy was hidden at an A location, waited during a delay, and then watched the experimenter find the toy. After six observation-only A trials, the toy was hidden at a B location, and children were allowed to search for the toy. Two- and 4-year-olds' responses on the B trials were significantly biased toward A even though they had never overtly responded to this location. Thus, perseverative biases in early development can arise as a result of prepotent representations, demonstrating that the prepotent-response account is incomplete. We discuss three alternative interpretations of these results, including the possibility that representational and response-based biases reflect the operation of a single, integrated behavioral system.",
author = "Spencer, {John P.} and Schutte, {Anne R.}",
year = "2004",
month = "3",
doi = "10.1111/j.0956-7976.2004.01503007.x",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "15",
pages = "187--193",
journal = "Psychological Science",
issn = "0956-7976",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Unifying Representations and Responses

T2 - Perseverative Biases Arise From a Single Behavioral System

AU - Spencer, John P.

AU - Schutte, Anne R.

PY - 2004/3

Y1 - 2004/3

N2 - A dominant account of perseverative errors in early development contends that such errors reflect a failure to inhibit a prepotent response. This study investigated whether perseveration might also arise from a failure to inhibit a prepotent representation. Children watched as a toy was hidden at an A location, waited during a delay, and then watched the experimenter find the toy. After six observation-only A trials, the toy was hidden at a B location, and children were allowed to search for the toy. Two- and 4-year-olds' responses on the B trials were significantly biased toward A even though they had never overtly responded to this location. Thus, perseverative biases in early development can arise as a result of prepotent representations, demonstrating that the prepotent-response account is incomplete. We discuss three alternative interpretations of these results, including the possibility that representational and response-based biases reflect the operation of a single, integrated behavioral system.

AB - A dominant account of perseverative errors in early development contends that such errors reflect a failure to inhibit a prepotent response. This study investigated whether perseveration might also arise from a failure to inhibit a prepotent representation. Children watched as a toy was hidden at an A location, waited during a delay, and then watched the experimenter find the toy. After six observation-only A trials, the toy was hidden at a B location, and children were allowed to search for the toy. Two- and 4-year-olds' responses on the B trials were significantly biased toward A even though they had never overtly responded to this location. Thus, perseverative biases in early development can arise as a result of prepotent representations, demonstrating that the prepotent-response account is incomplete. We discuss three alternative interpretations of these results, including the possibility that representational and response-based biases reflect the operation of a single, integrated behavioral system.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=1642332280&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=1642332280&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1111/j.0956-7976.2004.01503007.x

DO - 10.1111/j.0956-7976.2004.01503007.x

M3 - Article

C2 - 15016290

AN - SCOPUS:1642332280

VL - 15

SP - 187

EP - 193

JO - Psychological Science

JF - Psychological Science

SN - 0956-7976

IS - 3

ER -