Article

Priming and backward influences in the human brain: processing interactions during the stroop interference effect.

Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708, USA.
Cerebral Cortex (Impact Factor: 8.31). 04/2009; 19(11):2508-21. DOI: 10.1093/cercor/bhp036
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This study investigated neural processing interactions during Stroop interference by varying the temporal separation of relevant and irrelevant features of congruent, neutral, and incongruent colored-bar/color-word stimulus components. High-density event-related potentials (ERPs) and behavioral performance were measured as participants reported the bar color as quickly as possible, while ignoring the color words. The task-irrelevant color words could appear at 1 of 5 stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) relative to the task-relevant bar-color occurrence: -200 or -100 ms before, +100 or +200 ms after, or simultaneously. Incongruent relative to congruent presentations elicited slower reaction times and higher error rates (with neutral in between), and ERP difference waves containing both an early, negative-polarity, central-parietal deflection, and a later, more left-sided, positive-polarity component. These congruency-related differences interacted with SOA, showing the greatest behavioral and electrophysiological effects when irrelevant stimulus information preceded the task-relevant target and reduced effects when the irrelevant information followed the relevant target. We interpret these data as reflecting 2 separate processes: 1) a 'priming influence' that enhances the magnitude of conflict-related facilitation and conflict-related interference when a task-relevant target is preceded by an irrelevant distractor; and 2) a reduced 'backward influence' of stimulus conflict when the irrelevant distractor information follows the task-relevant target.

0 Followers
 · 
81 Views
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Multiple executive processes are suggested to be engaged at Stroop test, and time-frequency analysis is acknowledged to improve the informative utility of EEG in cognitive brain research. We aimed to investigate event-related oscillations associated with the Stroop test. EEG data was collected from 23 healthy volunteers while they performed a computer version of Stroop test. Both evoked (phase-locked) and total (phase-locked + non-phase-locked) oscillatory responses in the EEG were analyzed by wavelet transform. Data from the congruent (color-word matching) and incongruent stimuli (color-word non-matching) conditions are compared. In the incongruent condition, N450 wave was more negative and amplitude of the late slow wave was more positive. In the time-frequency plane, the fronto-central total theta amplitude (300-700 ms) was larger in the incongruent condition. The evoked delta (250-600 ms) was larger in the congruent condition particularly over parieto-occipital regions. The larger frontal theta response in the incongruent condition was associated with the detection of interference and inhibition of the response to task-irrelevant features, while the larger evoked delta in the congruent condition was suggestive of the easier decision process owing to congruency between the physical attribute and the verbal meaning of the stimuli. Furthermore, in the incongruent condition, amplitude of the occipital total alpha in the very late phase (700-900 ms) was smaller. This prolonged desynchronization in the alpha band could be reflecting augmentation of attentional filters in visual modality for the next stimulus. These multiple findings on EEG time-frequency plane provide improved description of the overlapping processes in Stroop test.
    International Journal of Psychophysiology 08/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2014.08.177 · 2.65 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The item-specific proportion congruency (ISPC) effect is demonstrated by a smaller Stroop effect observed for mostly incongruent items compared to mostly congruent items. Currently, there is a continuing debate on whether conflict driven item-specific control processes or stimulus-response contingency learning account for the ISPC effect. In the present study, we conducted two experiments to investigate the time course of the ISPC effect with a stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) manipulation. Both negative and positive SOAs were used in order to manipulate the contingency learning between the word and the color dimensions. We also combined this SOA manipulation with a set size manipulation (Bugg and Hutchison, 2013) to moderate the contribution of contingency learning and item-specific processes to the observed ISPC effect. We expected that the change in the magnitude of the ISPC effect as a result of SOA would follow different patterns for the 2-item and 4-item set conditions. Results showed that the SOA manipulation influenced the ISPC effect. Specifically, when the word followed the color with a 200 ms delay, the observed ISPC effect was smaller, if at all present, than the ISPC effects in other negative and positive SOA conditions, regardless of set size. In conclusion, our results showed that the ISPC effect was not observed if the word arrived too late. We also conducted additional awareness and RT distribution analyses (delta plots) to further investigate the ISPC effect. These analyses showed that a higher percentage of participants were aware of the ISPC manipulation in the 2-item set condition compared to the 4-item set condition. Delta plots revealed that the ISPC effect was smaller for fastest responses and increased as the responses got slower.
    Frontiers in Psychology 12/2014; 5:1410. DOI:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01410 · 2.80 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Bilinguals have been shown to exhibit a performance advantage on executive control tasks, outperforming their monolingual counterparts. Although a wealth of research has investigated this 'bilingual advantage' behaviourally, electrophysiological correlates are lacking. Using EEG with a Stroop task that manipulated the stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) of word and colour presentation, the current study addressed two facets of the bilingual advantage. The possibility that bilinguals experience superior conflict processing relative to monolinguals (a 'conflict-specific advantage') was investigated by comparing behavioural interference effects as well as the amplitude of the Ninc, a conflict-related ERP component occurring from approximately 300-500 ms after the onset of conflict. In contrast, the hypothesis that bilinguals experience domain-general, conflict-independent enhancements in executive processing (a 'non-conflict-specific advantage') was evaluated by comparing the control condition (symbol strings) between groups. There was some significant, but inconsistent, evidence for a conflict-specific bilingual advantage. In contrast, strong evidence emerged for a non-conflict-specific advantage, with bilinguals demonstrating faster RTs and reduced ERP amplitudes on control trials compared to monolinguals. Importantly, when the control stimulus was presented before the colour, ERPs to control trials revealed group differences before the onset of conflict, suggesting differences in the ability to ignore or suppress distracting irrelevant information. This indicates that bilinguals experience superior executive processing even in the absence of conflict and semantic salience, and suggests that the advantage extends to more efficient proactive management of the environment.
    PLoS ONE 07/2014; 9(7):e103424. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0103424 · 3.53 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

Download
19 Downloads
Available from
May 28, 2014