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The Misremembrance of Wines Past: Verbal and Perceptual Expertise Differentially Mediate Verbal Overshadowing of Taste Memory


Abstract and Figures

Examined the impact of verbal overshadowing (VO; i.e., a memory illusion in which a recently generated verbal representation is emphasized at the expense of the perceptual memory itself) on the wine recognition of individuals of 3 categories of wine tasting expertise. Participants (aged 21–78 yrs) included 39 novice wine drinkers, 43 intermediate wine drinkers (little or no training), and 25 trained wine experts. Ss tasted a red wine, engaged in either verbalization or an unrelated verbal activity, and then attempted to identify the target wine from among 3 foils. The negative effects of verbalization on wine recognition were exclusively limited to intermediate wine drinkers. Results indicate that memory for taste can, at least under some circumstances, be disrupted by attempts at committing it to words and support the claim that VO occurs when there is a marked discrepancy between perceptual expertise and verbal expertise. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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35, 231245 (1996)
The Misremembrance of Wines Past: Verbal and Perceptual Expertise
Differentially Mediate Verbal Overshadowing of Taste Memory
M. M
W. S
University of Pittsburgh
When participants generate a detailed, memory-based description of complex nonverbal stimuli
(e.g., faces) their recognition performance can be worse than nondescribing controls. This effect,
termed verbal overshadowing, has been hypothesized to occur in situations in which domain-
specific perceptual expertise exceeds verbal expertise. The present study explored this hypothesis
by examining the impact of verbalization on the wine recognition of individuals of three categories
of wine tasting expertise: Non-wine drinkers, untrained wine drinkers, and trained wine experts.
Participants tasted a red wine, engaged in either verbalization or an unrelated verbal activity,
and then attempted to identify the target wine from among three foils. As predicted, only the
untrained wine drinkers showed impaired wine recognition following verbalization. The results
are explained in terms of the differential development of perceptual and verbal skills in the
course of becoming an expert.
1996 Academic Press, Inc.
Of all the sources of memory illusions, our memory enhancer that enables it to be such a
own language may be the most insidious. We potent source of memory illusions, luring us
depend on language to represent our experi- to rely on it even in situations for which it
ences faithfully so that we can communicate may not be well suited.
them to others and so that we can remember Perceptual memories are one domain where
them ourselves. Generally, language serves language often falls short. Despite their rich
memory well. Verbal rehearsal and elabora- evocative quality, most of us experience a
tion are among the most established tech- dearth of language when trying to describe
niques for enhancing memory (e.g., Darley & memorable perceptions. We might say: ‘‘He
Glass, 1975; Maki & Schuler, 1980). Verbal was very handsome’’; ‘‘The soup was deli-
discussion is known to be a critical ingredient cious’’; ‘‘The wine tasted exotic, but bitter.’’
for integrating experiences into one’s life nar- However, such recountings seem merely im-
rative (Nelson, 1993a). Indeed, the absence of pressionistic dabs that capture only the coars-
language is often considered a primary source est details of our perceptual memories. Be-
of infantile amnesia (Nelson, 1993b). It is per- cause language is usually so effective for char-
haps the very effectiveness of language as a acterizing our memories, its paucity in the
case of perceptual memories is not always rec-
ognized. This sets the stage for a memory illu-
The writing and research reported here were supported
sion, termed verbal overshadowing, in which
by a grant to the second author from the National Insti-
tutes of Mental Health. The experiment was conducted
a recently generated verbal representation is
as part of the first author’s MS thesis. Portions of the
emphasized at the expense of the perceptual
study were presented at the Annual Meeting of the Cogni-
memory itself. Of course, the impact of rely-
tive Science Society, Pittsburgh, PA, July 1995. We thank
ing on a verbal representation of a perceptual
Peter Machamer and Charles Perfetti for their guidance
on wine selection and study design, Harry Moore and
memory will depend on the relative quality of
Ann Berta for graciously rounding up wine experts, and
the two representations (verbal versus nonver-
Steve Fiore for helpful comments on earlier drafts. Ad-
bal). Such a reliance may be inconsequential
dress correspondence to Jonathan Schooler, 631 LRDC,
when either the perceptual memory is quite
University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15260. E-mail:
scant or the verbal representation quite exten-
231 0749-596X/96 $18.00
1996 by Academic Press, Inc.
All rights of reproduction in any form reserved.
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sive. However, memory impairment may re- Additional studies suggested that these disrup-
sult when a perceptual memory greatly ex- tive effects were the result of attempting to
ceeds one’s ability to communicate that mem- verbalize nonverbalizable stimuli. Consistent
ory. Indeed, a number of recent studies have with this view, postencoding visualization of
illustrated the memory disruption that can re- a face did not impair recognition, whereas ver-
sult when, as a result of memory verbalization, balization impaired recognition, not only of
individuals rely on verbal representations of faces, but also of other nonverbal stimuli, such
difficult-to-describe perceptual memories for as colors. In contrast, verbalization modestly
stimuli such as faces and colors (Schooler & improved recognition of verbal stimuli (e.g.,
Engstler-Schooler, 1990), visual forms (Bran- spoken statements). More recent studies have
dimonte, Schooler, & Gabbino, 1995), and observed verbal overshadowing effects for a
music (Houser, Fiore, & Schooler, 1995). variety of other tasks for which relying on a
A central implication of the verbal over- purely verbal representation could be disrup-
shadowing approach is that the impact of ver- tive, including memory for various perceptual
balization on memory will critically depend stimuli such as music (Houser et al., 1995),
on individuals’ relative levels of verbal and maps (Fiore, 1994), and visual forms (Brandi-
perceptual expertise in a domain. When the monte et al., 1995). Collectively, these studies
two types of expertise are relatively commen- suggest that following verbalization, individu-
surate, either both strong or both weak, shift- als increasingly rely on verbalizable memory
ing between the two should be inconsequen- attributes at the expense of the nonverbaliza-
tial. When, however, there is a distinct dispar- ble attributes. For memories that are readily
ity between the two, that is, when perceptual verbalized, such a shift is nonproblematic and
expertise markedly exceeds verbal expertise, may even be helpful. For nonverbal memories,
then a reliance on the verbal characteristics however, an emphasis on the verbal aspects
of a memory may be disadvantageous. The of the memory, may be quite detrimental, as
present study examines this hypothesized rela- most individuals possess only rather meager
tionship between verbal overshadowing and linguistic skills for communicating complex
expertise. To address this issue, we first re- perceptual experiences.
view recent research on the disruptive effects However, what about individuals who,
of verbalization on perceptual memory and through extensive training and experience,
then consider its implications for the impact learn a vocabulary that enables them to com-
of verbalization on the memory performance municate perceptual experience in a domain
of individuals of varying degrees of domain- with seemingly greater precision? Consider,
specific perceptual and verbal expertise. for instance, a wine expert’s description (from
memory) of a red wine, as ‘‘earthy on the
nose; exhibiting a woody taste in the mouth
Although verbal rehearsal typically en- with hints of cherries and tobacco; the tannins
hances memory performance, Schooler and could be called round [while] . . . the fruit
Engstler-Schooler (1990) reported a situation has a very short finish.’’ Might this expert’s
in which the standard memory facilitation ability to describe the wine so precisely en-
from verbal rehearsal breaks downnamely, hance his or her memory wines, or at least,
when participants describe complex stimuli to overcome the memory impairment that
that is, things that are difficult to capture in have been shown to arise when complex per-
words. Specifically, they found that posten- ceptual memories are committed to words? To
coding verbalization of difficult-to-describe address this issue, we next consider evidence
visual stimuli, such as faces, impaired partici- that verbal overshadowing may be caused by
pants’ ability to subsequently distinguish the differences between verbal and perceptual ex-
targets from verbally similar distractors, an
effect that they termed verbal overshadowing. pertises in a domain.
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est, whereas it does not occur when both ver-
bal and perceptual expertise are modest. How-S
ever, what happens when individuals possess
both perceptual and verbal expertise? If verbal
A central implication of the above charac- overshadowing happens because everyday
terization of the verbal overshadowing effect language is inadequate to the demands of de-
is that verbal disruption should occur under scribing complex perceptual or cognitive
situations in which individuals possess rela- memory traces, then persons who have a spe-
tively greater perceptual than verbal expertise cialized verbal expertise should not be subject
in a domain (cf. Schooler, Ryan, Fallshore, & to verbal overshadowing. A language or vo-
Melcher, in press). In support of this claim, cabulary dedicated to a specific domain may
Fallshore and Schooler (1996) found that in provide a precision and depth lacking in ordi-
the case of own-race faces, verbalization im- nary language, thereby facilitating the recall
paired recognition. However, for other-race of both nonverbal and verbal information.
faces there was no effect of verbalization on Thus, in order to fully examine the manner in
recognition. Fallshore and Schooler suggested which verbal and nonverbal expertise mediate
that with increasing expertise, individuals ac- verbal overshadowing, we need to identify a
quire the ability to represent the configural domain that not only varies with respect to
relationships between features (Diamond & nonverbal expertise (as in the case of own
Carey, 1986; Rhodes, Tan, Brake, & Taylor, versus other-race faces) but also with respect
1989). Because such configural relationships to verbal expertise. Wine tasting seems an
are less readily described than individual fea- ideal candidate for two reasons. First, it is
tures (Wells & Turtle, 1988) this form of ex- associated with individuals who vary both
pertise may increase the disparity between in- with respect to their perceptual expertise
dividuals’ verbalizable versus nonverbalizable (wine drinkers versus nondrinkers) as well as
face expertise. Consistent with this view, Fall- with respect to the verbal expertise (individu-
shore and Schooler found that while the over- als with and without extensive formal train-
all recognition performance of participants ing). Second, memory for wine taste corre-
was better for own-race versus other-race sponds to a domain (taste/olfaction) which,
faces, participants’ description quality, as in- although never previously examined in this
dicated by the performance of yoked partici- context, in principle offers conditions that
pant-judges who identified faces based on ver- seem likely to be conducive to verbal over-
balization participants’ written descriptions, shadowing.
was actually numerically superior for other- Why taste should be susceptible to verbal
race faces. Moreover, participant-judges iden- overshadowing. Several characteristics of
tification performance was significantly corre- odor (and by extension, taste
) sensation and
lated with verbalization participants’ recogni- memory suggest that they are likely domains
tion accuracy for African-American faces, but for the observation of verbal overshadowing.
not for Caucasian faces. These results suggest Engen and Ross (1973) have suggested that
that other-race face recognition relies more on odors are encoded and remembered as ‘‘uni-
verbalizable knowledge than does own-race tary perceptual events’’; they are not readily
recognition, and suggest that own-race face decomposed into constituent features. In this
recognition is uniquely vulnerable to verbal- respect, olfactory memories share the afore-
ization because the disparity between verbal mentioned configural properties associated
and nonverbal expertise is greater for own- with memories for faces (Rhodes et al., 1989).
race as compared to other-race faces.
In sum, prior research suggests that verbal
We consider taste and olfaction memory together be-
overshadowing effects occur when perceptual
cause olfaction is a fundamental component of taste expe-
expertise is high and verbal expertise is mod-
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Thus, to the degree that perceptual memories accurate than novices in matching white
wines to descriptions written by other ex-that are not easily analyzed according to their
constituent features are particularly vulnerable perts. Lawless also found that novices and
experts differed significantly in their use ofto verbalization, then memory for smells/
tastes should be similarly at risk. concrete and abstract wine descriptors. Ex-
perts used more concrete (e.g., yeasty) andAlthough no prior research has specifically
examined the effect of self-generated verbal- fewer abstract (e.g., full) terms than did nov-
ices. Solomon (1990) found similar linguisticization on smell/taste memory, several studies
have investigated the effects of experimenter- differences between experts and novices and
further provided evidence suggesting that ex-provided verbal labels. Not surprisingly odor
recognition is enhanced by the provision of perts’ greater precision in describing wines
‘‘is associated with their more precise [taste]veridical labels at acquisition (Engen & Ross,
1973; Lyman & McDaniel, 1990; Walk & discrimination performance’’ (p. 495). Over-
all, the perceptual communication dataJohns, 1984). On the other hand, being given
incorrect labels impairs recognition (Engen & strongly suggest that wine experts learn to
pay selective attention to describable featuresRoss, 1973). It thus seems likely that the im-
pact of verbalization on scent memory would of wines, whereas nonexperts are less able to
do so.depend on the overall accuracy of subjects’
descriptions. However, given the common dif- S
ficulty of naming even familiar odors (Law-
less & Engen, 1977), it seems quite probable Previous research suggests that verbaliza-
tion of a perceptual memory can be disruptivethat verbalization can, at least under some cir-
cumstances, impair scent/taste recognition. when perceptual expertise exceeds verbal ex-
pertise. Although evidence for this relation-Expertise and the communication of per-
ceptual experience. If the impact of verbal- ship has been revealed in the domain of face
recognition, it has not been demonstrated forization on scent/taste recognition depends on
the ability to categorize correctly or describe other domains. Moreover, prior evidence for
this relationship has come from the observa-the stimulus, then given research on the
greater precision of wine experts’ descrip- tion of verbal overshadowing when perceptual
expertise is high and verbal expertise is lowtions, we might reasonably expect that ex-
perts’ wine recognition would be less im- (own-race face recognition) but not when both
forms of expertise are low (other-race facepaired by verbalization. Recent research on
the effectiveness of wine experts’ verbal de- recognition). Prior studies have not examined
situations in which both perceptual and verbalscriptions suggests that they can indeed de-
scribe wines more precisely than nonexperts. expertise are high.
The present study sought to examine theLehrer (1983) investigated the validity of
‘‘wine talk’’ by trying to determine if wine relationship between verbal overshadowing
and expertise in wine tasting because it repre-experts ‘‘constitute a separate linguistic com-
munity.’’ Though she found that experts evi- sents an area of expertise within which indi-
viduals can vary with respect to perceptualdenced wide variability in their use of wine
terminology and ability to communicate ef- and verbal expertise. Our subjects included
non-red wine drinkers, who have virtually nofectively about wines, compared to novices
they were more accurate and more consistent experience with the stimulus, and thus provide
a baseline of individuals with minimal percep-in using a list of 145 wine terms to describe
sample wines. Lehrer’s work suggests that tual and verbal expertise; wine drinkers, who
have developed a palate for red wine (theyalthough wine-related verbal expertise is dif-
ficult to acquire, there are delineable levels have moderate perceptual expertise), yet do
not know how to describe wines with muchof such expertise. Likewise, Lawless (1985)
found that experts were significantly more precision (they lack verbal expertise); and fi-
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nally, wine experts, who have developed an (i.e., little or no perceptual experience) were
classified as Novices (n
39). Most Novicesextensive vocabulary dedicated to taste and
odor detection and classification that enables were University of Pittsburgh students and
staff who responded to a campus newspaperthem to significantly exceed novices in de-
scribing wines (Lehrer, 1986; Solomon, advertisement. Fifteen were paid $5 for their
participation. The other 22 volunteered (as did1990). If verbal overshadowing of perceptual
memory occurs when there is a marked dis- all other participants).
Intermediates. Participants were classifiedcrepancy between individuals’ verbal versus
perceptual expertise, then these three types of as Intermediates (n
43) if they drank red
wine at least once per month (moderate toparticipants should show the following pattern
of verbalization effect. Persons who do not high perceptual expertise) and had little or no
formal wine training (low verbal expertise).drink red wine (like persons describing other-
race faces) should show no effect of verbaliza- Most were enrolled in community college
wine appreciation classes or were memberstion because their minimal verbal expertise
matches their limited or nonexistent percep- of local wine societies; five responded to an
advertisement in a Pittsburgh newspaper.tual experience. In contrast, regular red wine
drinkers with little or no formal wine training Their mean red wine consumption was 7.0
times per month.(like persons recognizing own-race faces)
should show a substantial effect of verbaliza- Experts. Participants were classified as Ex-
perts (n
25) if they were either wine profes-tion because they have developed a relatively
high degree of perceptual expertise (a sionals or had taken multiple wine seminars.
Eighteen of them were, or had been, profes-‘‘palate’’) but not the verbal tools to express
it. Finally, wine experts possess both percep- sionally involved with wine (as retailers, bro-
kers, cellarmasters, wine-makers, and/or com-tual and verbal skills that are highly inte-
grated, and perhaps even interchangeable, and petition judges). Their mean red wine con-
sumption was 10.1 times per month.should therefore perform well regardless of
verbalization. The above predictions were Materials and Design
tested in a wine memory study in which parti-
cipants of varying levels of expertise tasted a Stimuli. Eight red varietals from five coun-
tries were the targets and distractors for twotarget wine, verbalized it or engaged in an
unrelated activity, and then attempted to dis- recognition trials. There were two sets. In Set
A the target was a Cabernet Sauvignon (Cali-criminate it from three similar distractors. fornia); the distractors were a Gamay Beaujo-
lais (California), a Beaujolais VillagesM
(France), and an Egri Bikaver (Hungary). In
Participants Set B the target was a Shiraz (Australia) and
the distractors were a Barraida (Portugal), aThe participants were 107 adults between
the ages of 21 and 78. Ninety-one were from Merlot (Argentina), and a Pinot Noir (Califor-
nia). The test arrays were presented in eachPittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and 16 were from
Washington, DC. At the start of the session of four Latin squares orders. The target wine
appeared equally often in each of the four po-they completed a questionnaire which in-
cluded a three-item wine knowledge quiz (see sitions. Stimulus set order (A or B) was coun-
terbalanced within each trial.Appendix A). Based on the questionnaire, par-
ticipants were categorized according to red This was a 3 (Novice/Intermediate/Expert)
2 (Verbal/Nonverbal)
2 (Trial) designwine consumption frequency, amount of for-
mal wine training, and professional involve- with expertise and verbalization as between-
subjects factors, trial as a within-subjects fac-ment in wine, as follows:
Novices. Participants who indicated that tor, and target discrimination as the dependent
variable. Approximately equal numbers ofthey drank red wine less than once per month
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Verbal andNonverbalparticipantsweretested the target a 7 and each distractor a 1); a score
of 0 indicated no discrimination, and negativein groups of 4 to 14.
Procedure. After completing the question- scores indicated false alarms (i.e., ranking one
or more distractors higher than the target).naire participants were told that ‘‘this is a
wine-tasting and recognition experiment in Where participants changed any ratings, the
final ratings were used to calculate the dis-which you will be asked to taste two red
wines. After a short interval during which you crimination score.
will perform a simple task, you will try to
recognize the sample from among several R
wines.’’ For Novices, the experimenter dem- The relationship between verbalization and
onstrated how to swirl, smell, and to taste expertise was mediated by a significant three-
wine. Participants were asked to spit out each way interaction between Verbalization, Ex-
sample after tasting it. On each trial the parti- pertise, and Trial F(2,196)
7.52, MSE
cipants received a tray with five opaque plastic 44.14. (Alpha for all statistics was set at .05).
cupsthe target and the recognition test This three-way interaction was the result of a
arraycontaining approximately one ounce sizeable first trial interaction between verbal-
of wine. Cards covered the wine from view ization and expertise (F(2,106)
4.30, MSE
prior to tasting. French bread and distilled wa-
40.95) which became insignificant on trial
ter were available for participants to clear their 2, F(2,103)
1.16, MSE
11.28. This attenu-
palates between samples. Participants tasted ation of the verbal overshadowing effect
the target after having been told to ‘‘pay atten- across trials has been observed in a number
tion to any or all aspects of the sample except of recent studies (Fallshore & Schooler, 1996;
for its appearance.’’ They were allowed 1 min Houser et al., 1995; Schooler, Ryan, & Reder,
to taste the target as often as they wished. in press). These carry-over effects could be
They then read verbalization or control task due to a number of factors (see Discussion).
instructions in their response booklets. For the present purposes we focus our analy-
Nonverbal participants solved a moderately ses on trial 1, for which performance was un-
difficult crossword puzzle. Verbalization par- contaminated by previous exposure to the par-
ticipants were asked to ‘‘describe this wine as adigm.
precisely and in as much detail as you can. Figure 1 illustrates first trial performance.
Describe it uniquely, so that someone else The Expertise
Verbalization interaction was
would match it to your description. Consider driven by a significant verbal overshadowing
all elements of the wine’s taste, smell, feel, effect among the Intermediates, t(41)
or related associations . . .’’. After 4 min the The Novices showed a trend toward verbal
participants were told that the array contained enhancement, though it only approached sig-
four different wines, including the one pre- nificance, t(37)
1.88, p
.07, while the
viously tasted, that they should taste each in Experts showed virtually no effect of verbal-
order, and that they were to indicate succes- ization.
sively their confidence that each was the tar- Recognition results from the control (non-
get. They used a scale where 7 indicated com- verbalization) condition indicated that the In-
plete certainty that a wine was the same, 4 termediates and Experts had greater percep-
mean that they were guessing, and 1 indicated tual expertise than Novices. (Tukey’s HSD
certainty that a wine was not the same. post hoc tests indicated that the Intermediates
The confidence ratings were converted to a and Experts constituted a group that was sig-
discrimination score for each trial. This value nificantly more accurate than the Novices.
was the difference between the confidence rat- From the standpoint of the observed verbal
ing for the target wine minus the mean of the overshadowing effect, it is noteworthy that al-
ratings for the three distractors. A score of 6
indicated perfect discrimination (i.e., rating though Nonverbal Experts scored numerically
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. 1. Trial 1 mean discrimination as a function of expertise and verbalization.
higher than Intermediates, this difference was creases reliance on their perceptual expertise.
In order to test this hypothesis, all potentiallynot significant.)
Participants’ mean scores on the three-item, relevant variables (e.g., age, gender, consump-
tion frequency, wine quiz score, expertise cat-four-point general wine knowledge test indi-
cated that the Experts had markedly greater egory, and stimulus blocking variables) were
verbal expertise than either the Intermediates
or Novices. There was a significant effect of
expertise on wine knowledge performance,
48.58, MSE
59.10, with mean
scores of 1.1, 1.9, and 3.8 for Novices, Inter-
mediates, and Experts, respectively. Tukey’s
Type of expertise
HSD post hoc test indicated that all three
means differed significantly from one another,
Verbal (controlled Perceptual
although it should be noted that the magnitude
for perceptual (controlled for
measure) verbal measure)
of the difference between Novices and Inter-
mediates (.8) was markedly less than that be-
Verbalizers .30*
tween Intermediates and Experts (1.9).
Nonverbalizers .17 .24**
One interpretation of the verbal overshad-
owing effect is that verbalization increases in-
** p
dividuals’ reliance on verbal expertise and de-
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: (1) general featural descriptors such as
‘‘sour,’’ ‘‘sweet,’’ ‘‘fruity,’’ etc.
; (2) specific
flavor associations, that is, references to spe-
Nonverbal Verbal
cific flavors and/or odors detected in the tar-
gets, for example ‘‘oak,’’ ‘‘ashes,’’ ‘‘to-
bacco,’’ various specific fruits and berries,
etc.; (3) wine terminology, that is, specialized
valuative and categorical terms often used by
* Difference significant at p
.01 (paired ttest).
wine Experts
; (see Appendix B for the ex-
haustive list of terms comprising the catego-
ries); (4) negative, feature-absent descriptors
entered into stepwise regressions of discrimi- (whether objective or affective) such as ‘‘it is
nation in the verbal and nonverbal conditions. not sweet’’; ‘‘not bitter,’’ etc.
; (5) affective
The results are consistent with the following judgments such as, ‘‘I did not like this wine,’’
interpretation: The Nonverbal participants’ ‘‘It’s drinkable,’’ ‘‘It’s okay, but nothing spe-
discrimination was significantly predicted cial’’
; and (6) description length (number of
only by the measure of perceptual expertise words in the description). The words were
(consumption frequency) (r
.40) whereas counted exactly as written, whether in com-
Verbalizers’ discrimination was only signifi- plete sentences, telegraphically, or list-style.
cantly predicted by the measure of verbal ex- The results, shown in Fig. 2, were summed
pertise (quiz score) (r
.39). None of the over both trials because there were no signifi-
other variables tested entered significantly into cant differences between trials on any of the
the stepwise regression model. A complemen- measures, except that Experts made more fla-
tary pattern was revealed by partial correlation vor associations on Trial 2 than on Trial 1
analysis examining the effects of partialling (1.9 versus 1.2, respectively, t(15)
out the effects of verbal and perceptual exper-
tise in the two conditions. As can be seen D
in Table 1, when consumption frequency was The results of this experiment reveal that
partialed out, wine knowledge was signifi- memory for taste can, at least under some cir-
cantly correlated with performance in the ver- cumstances, be disrupted by attempts at com-
bal condition but not the nonverbal condition. mitting it to words. The verbal overshadowing
In contrast, when wine knowledge was par-
tialed out, consumption frequency had a mod-
All descriptors were counted uniquely, that is, once
est correlation with discrimination among the
per description even if repeated.
nonverbalizers (though significant at only the
Quantifying adjectives such as ‘‘slightly,’’ ‘‘little,’’
.08 level), whereas consumption had no corre-
‘‘barely,’’ ‘‘strong,’’ etc., were not counted when used
lation with the verbalizers’ performance.
in conjunction with another descriptorfor example, ‘‘a
Trial 2 results. Table 2 shows how discrimi-
slight burning.’’ They were counted if used alone, as in
‘‘a slight/strong,’’ etc., wine.
nation changed between the two trials. As can
Following Lehrer (1990) ‘‘dry’’ was not counted as
be seen in Table 2, the Expertise x Verbal
a wine term. Technically, what novices typically perceive
Condition x Trial interaction was driven by
as one dimension of ‘‘dryness’’ is a two-dimensional,
significantly improved performances among
independent combination of sweetness (sugar) and astrin-
the nonverbal Novices and verbal Intermedi-
gency (tannic acid). ‘‘Aroma’’ counted as wine term only
if the subject had correctly defined it on the quiz. It was
ates, t(21)
4.38 and t(17)
3.4, respec-
not counted if used as synonym for ‘‘odor’’ or ‘‘smell.’’
tively. The changes in Experts’ discrimination
When subjects used negative terminology combined
were insignificant.
with a feature or flavor, both categories were counted.
For example, ‘‘it was not sweet’’ would be counted once
Wine Description Analyses
as a feature and once as a negative.
Each wine description was coded for fre-
‘‘No’’ and ‘‘not’’ were not counted as negatives if
they were part of an affective judgment.
quencies of the following categories of attri-
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. 2. Wine description contents by level of expertise. The description lengths were scaled to fit the
ordinate. *The prediction of flavor terms increasing with expertise approached, but did not reach, signifi-
cance, F(2,48)
2.63, p
. 09. **Novices and intermediates differed significantly from experts (by a
Tukey’s HSD post hoc test) following a significant ANOVA.
of taste memory adds to the growing list of professionals or individuals with otherwise
extensive trainingwas unaffected by ver-domains that have been shown to be vulnera-
ble to verbalization and thereby further impli- balization, and the recognitionperformanceof
Novices was, if anything, improved followingcates the application of languagetoperceptual
memories as a potentially ubiquitous source verbalization.
The present results support the claim thatof memory illusions. The present study also
provides further support for the hypothesis verbal overshadowing occurs when there is a
marked discrepancy between perceptual ex-that the nature of one’s expertise in a domain
is a critical determinant of susceptibility to pertise and verbal expertise. In this study, the
Novices lacked both perceptual expertise, asverbal overshadowing. The negative effects of
verbalization on wine recognition were exclu- indicated by their generally low scores on the
wine discrimination test, and verbal expertise,sively limited to Intermediatesregular wine
drinkers with little or no formal training. The as indicated by their poor performance on the
wine knowledge test. Thus, for Novices thererecognition performance of Experts—wine
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was little cost or risk in attempting to put their ability measure showed verbal overshadowing
effects. The observation of verbal overshad-memories to words. Experts possessed marked
perceptual expertise, as indicated by their su- owing for Intermediates but not Novices thus
represents a conceptual replication of theseperior wine recognition performance, and ver-
bal expertise, as indicated by their near perfect prior demonstrations of the importance of per-
ceptual expertise in eliciting verbal overshad-performance on the wine knowledge test.
Thus, for Experts, committing wine memories owing effects. The present study extends these
findings, however, by illustrating that verbalto words was of little consequence because
they were well equipped to alternate between expertise can insulate perceptual expertise
from verbal overshadowing.their two developed sources of expertise. In
contrast to both the Novices and the Experts, Inaddition to elucidating when verbal over-
shadowing effects occur, the present studythe Intermediates revealed a marked disparity
between their verbal and perceptual wine ex- also helps to explain why they occur. Consid-
eration of the predictors of wine discrimina-pertise. With respect to perceptual expertise,
the Intermediates resembled the Experts in tion in the verbal and nonverbal conditions
suggests that verbalization may cause a shiftseveral respects. They reported drinking red
wine nearly as often as the Experts (7 times in the knowledge base that individuals use in
making their recognition judgments. Stepwiseper month versus 10 times per month). More-
over, the nonverbal Intermediates’ discrimina- regression and partial correlation analyses in-
dicated that nonverbal participants’ perceptualtion did not differ significantly from the Ex-
perts’. Although the Intermediates’ perceptual expertise (consumption frequency) was the
best predictor of their discrimination perfor-expertise rivaled the Experts, their verbal ex-
pertise was markedly lower (1.9 versus 3.8 mance. In contrast, verbal knowledge (wine
knowledge quiz score) was the best predictorpoints). Similarly,Intermediates described the
wines with fewer than half the number of for- for verbalizers. This pattern suggests that de-
scribing the stimulus encourages the verbaliz-mal wine terms used by the Experts. In short,
while the Intermediates resembled the Experts ers to rely more on their verbal recollection
and/or knowledge and less on their perceptualwith respect to perceptual expertise, they more
closely resembled the Novices with respect recollection. For Novices and Experts, such a
shift would be of little consequence given thatto verbal expertise. This discrepancy between
verbal and perceptual expertise, not evidenced the two sources of expertise are evenly
matchedthat is, either equally qualified orby either the Novices or the Experts, may thus
help to explain why the Intermediates were equally unqualified. However, for Intermedi-
ates, verbalization encourages an inopportuneuniquely vulnerable to verbalization.
The present findings conceptually replicate shift from the stronger foundation of their per-
ceptual expertise to the shakier scaffolding ofand extend prior examinations of the relation-
ship between verbal overshadowing and do- their developing wine vocabulary.
A ‘‘figure/ground’’ perspective on verbalmain-specific expertise. As previously noted,
Fallshore and Schooler (1996) observed ver- overshadowing. The suggestion that describ-
ing memories may cause a general shift frombal overshadowing effects for own-race but
not other-race face recognition. This differen- reliance on the perceptual to reliance on the
verbal aspects of memories suggests that ver-tial effect of verbalization was attributed to
the unique perceptual expertise associated bal overshadowing effects may be viewed as
a memory illusion analog to the perceptual setwith same-race recognition, without commen-
surate verbal expertise. Schooler, Ryan, Fall- efects associated with figure ground and other
reversible image illusions. In figure/ground il-shore and Melcher (in press) reported a similar
finding using individual difference measures: lusions, the perception of a stimulus critically
depends on what components of the image areOnly participants who performed above the
median on an independent face recognition viewed as foreground versus those viewed us
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background. Figure/ground assignment can monte & Gerbino, 1993), recognizing out-of-
focus pictures (Schooler et al., in press), anddetermine, for example, whether an image is
perceived as a vase or a pair of faces. Figure/ solving insight problems (Schooler, Ohls-
son, & Brooks, 1992). The mental set associ-ground illusions can be associated with rela-
tively dramatic shifts in interpretation, such ated with verbalization can also result from
nonverbalized stimuli. For example, Dodson,that aspects of an image that were previously
central become reduced in salience and as- Johnson, and Schooler (in press) found that
verbalization of a face not only impaired sub-pects that were previously background be-
come increased in salience. The present find- sequent recognition of the target face, but also
reduced participants accuracy in recognizinging that verbalization alters the source of ex-
pertise that individuals rely upon in making nonverbalized faces. Apparently, engaging in
verbalization can produce ageneralizedverbaltheir taste memory judgments is reminiscent
of the shifts that can be associated with figure/ ‘‘set’’ that can systematically bias individuals
to foreground verbal knowledge at the ex-ground reversals. Accordingly, under standard
conditions, individuals’ recollection of per- pense of perceptual knowledge.
A final implication of considering verbalceptual events may foreground perceptual
knowledge, with verbal knowledge relegated overshadowing effects in the context of per-
ceptual figure/ground illusions is that the ben-to the background. However, following ver-
balization, this relationship may be reversed eficial effects of wine expertise in avoiding the
disruptive effects of verbalization may reflectsuch that verbal knowledge is now fore-
grounded, leaving perceptualknowledgeover- more than simply superior wine vocabulary.
It may be that experts have become more pro-shadowed in the ‘‘background.’’ This inter-
pretation also helps to explain the Brandi- ficient in alternating between the vantages of
their verbal and perceptual representations.monte and Gerbino (1993) observation that
verbal overshadowing effects can be reversed Accordingly, with experience, wine experts
may learn the techniques for switching be-by reinstating the physical context under
which a perceptual stimulus was encoded. By tween their perceptual and verbal representa-
tions, thereby avoiding becoming fixated on‘‘foregrounding’’ the perceptual vantage, the
verbal code is again shifted to background and one or the other modality. One implication of
the suggestion that wine experts’ immunity toits negative impact curtailed.
Another characteristic of figure/ground illu- verbal overshadowing may reflect, at least in
part, their proclivity for alternating betweensions that have an analog in verbal overshad-
owing effects is the impact of mental ‘‘sets’’ representations is that this skill should be
trainable. Although the present study cannotinduced by prior experience. In figure/ground
illusions prior experience can bias subsequent definitively speak to this issue, the attenuation
of verbal overshadowing effects that occursinterpretations. So, for example, encountering
prior pictures of lamps tends to bias individu- over trials suggests the possibility that the
ability to switch between verbal and percep-als to interpret the lamp/face figure ground
illusion as a lamp and interfere with their abil- tual representations becomes more flexible
with experience.ity to see it as a pair of faces. There are a
variety of reasons to suspect that verbalization The Trial Effect
induces a mental set that fixates individuals
on particular interpretation, thereby impeding In this study, the negative effects of verbal-
ization on memory performance were limitedtheir ability to consider alternative perspec-
tives. For example, several recent studies have to the first trial of the experiment. This trial
effect has been observed previously in otherfound that verbalization specifically interferes
with performance on tasks that require indi- domains, including faces (Fallshore &
Schooler, 1996; Schooler, Ryan, & Reder, inviduals to abandon theirinitial interpretations,
such as identifying reversible images (Brandi- press) and music recognition (Houser et al.,
AID JML 2462 / a002$$$184 04-10-96 18:30:51 jmla AP: JML
1995). The fact that the trial effect, like per- not dismiss it out of hand, particularly since
ceptual expertise, mediates verbalization ef- Fallshore and Schooler (1996) observed a sim-
fects across a variety of domains helps to illus- ilar trend toward beneficial effects of verbal-
trate the generalizability of verbal overshad- ization for novices. We therefore offer the fol-
owing mechanisms. It also, however, begs the lowing cautioned account. It seems plausible
question of the source of this effect. that Novices, lacking the perceptual and/or
Although a definitive explanation for the verbal expertise necessary to perceive and to
trial effect awaits further research, several ob- describe the full complexity of their percep-
servations may help to constrain future expla- tual experience, may focus on one or two sa-
nations of it, as well as verbal overshadowing lient, most easily verbalizable features (cf. Di-
effects more generally. First, it is worth noting amond & Carey, 1986; Fallshore & Schooler,
that participants’ descriptions did not change 1996). If a novice’s discrimination for one
significantly between the first and subsequent or two features among the test samples was
trials (as has also been the case in face-recog- accurate, having focused narrowly may in-
nition experiments). It is therefore unlikely crease the probability of correct recognition.
that the trial effect occurs because participants Verbalization could have facilitated verbal
improve the quality of their descriptions. Sec- Novices’ performance by enabling them to re-
ond, it is of interest that the significant shifts hearse and make salient potentially useful fea-
in performance between trials 1 and 2 were tures for discrimination. One characteristic of
exclusively limited to those participants who the Novice descriptions is consistent with this
performed particularly poorly on Trial 1, strategy: Lacking linguistic and categorical or-
namely, the nonverbal Novices and the verbal ganization to guide their perceptions, Novices
Intermediates. This improvement suggests were hard-pressed to describe the wines. Their
that participants may have altered their strate- longer mean description length is misleading,
gies on Trial 2 in order to compensate for for in order to keep writing for 4 min. they
difficulties they perceived on the first trial. For often dwelled upon just a few features. For
example, following the first trial, participants example, they tended to dwell upon the ‘‘bit-
may have realigned their encoding and recog- terness’’ of the Shiraz. For example: ‘‘It was
nition strategies to be more commensurate definitely bitter . . . kind of dry but not real
with each other. In addition, participants may dry . . . sort of tart . . . definitely was not
have acquired some experience in switching sweet . . . as I said before, it had a bittery
back and forth between their verbal and per- tart taste . . . the taste was more bitter than
ceptual representations and as a consequence tart.’’ Another wrote, ‘‘This wine was kind of
may have become less inclined to become bitter. It tasted almost like olive juice might.
fixated on the verbal representation following . . . It was very thin and this may be due to
verbalization. the bitterness. . . . The bitterness was not
Novices’ Verbal Enhancement tangy like a lemon, it was more like castor
oil.’’ And finally, it ‘‘tastes a little sour. It
In addition to the trial effect, another poten- burned or stung my mouth. . . . It tasted a
tially troubling aspect of the present data de- little bland and bitter. . . . It smelled a little
serves discussion, namely the verbal enhance- sour like vinegar. . . .’’ If memory for spe-
ment among Novices. We had predicted that cific dimensions, such as bitter or sour, facili-
Novices would not show a significant negative tated discriminations, then verbal rehearsal of
effect of verbalization, but did not anticipate these basic dimensions may been useful for
that verbalization might improve their perfor- Novices, who, unlike the Intermediates and
mance. Experts, may have been unable to represent
Though the beneficial effect of verbaliza- the more complex or multidimensional aspects
tion was not significant it was sufficiently
close (p
.07) to suggest that we should of the wines.
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Expertise-Linked Changes in Description tirely successfully, to find ways of evoking
complex taste memories that they were other-
The preceding discussion of the Novices’ wise unable to describe (cf. Schooler, et al.).
descriptions leads to the question of how de-
scriptions changed with increasing expertise. When Verbal and Perceptual Expertise
As previously mentioned, the biggest differ- Clash
ences in verbal descriptions occurred between One of the central implications of the present
the Experts and the other two groups. Com- study is that verbal overshadowing can result
pared to the Intermediates and Novices, the from a clash between incommensurate percep-
Experts used more formal wine terms (they tual and verbal expertise. Although the applica-
knew the lingo), were less apt to mention the tion of this principle to the verbal overshadow-
absence of features (they did not need to com- ing paradigm is quite recent, evidence for the
pensate for deficient language and/or percep- differential development of perceptual and ver-
tion by describing what a taste was not like), bal expertise (with ensuing performance defi-
and wrote shorter descriptions (they commu- cits) has been available for some time. For ex-
nicated succinctly). The greater precision as- ample, Karmiloff-Smith and Inhelder (1974/
sociated with Experts’ descriptions allowed 75) documented temporarily decreased perfor-
them to ‘‘unpack’’ the broader characteriza- mance caused by increased knowledge (similar
tions made by their less well trained counter- to the wine Intermediates in this study). They
parts. For example, whereas a Novice de- found that young children rather quickly
scribed one of the target wines as ‘‘very heavy learned how to balance trick blocks (containing
and strong . . . it would overpower the flavor hidden weights that made them balance acentri-
of any food,’’ an Expert described it as ‘‘big/ cally) simply by using proprioceptive feedback.
robustnot nuanced; alcoholic, grape-y; tan- Somewhat older children took substantially
nic, with a lot of chew; . . . an end-of-meal longer to complete the task, while the oldest
wine’’. Experts also focused on where in the children quickly learned how to deal with the
mouth and in what order they noted various misleading blocks, modifying their theory of
taste components. For example one Expert de- balance in the process. Karmiloff-Smith and
scribed a wine as ‘‘slightly herbal on the front Inhelder hypothesized that the youngest chil-
palate; a touch of red cherry fruit in the mid- drens’ success was due to their exclusive reli-
dle; it seems to have a good bit of volatile ance on proprioceptive feedback (i.e., through
acidity and a very sharp acid and tin finish. trial and error placement of the blocks on the
...;notvery pleasant and I feel the burn fulcrum), whereas the oldest childrens’ success
to the middle of my chest.’’ was due to the application of more sophisti-
Although the Intermediates generally re- cated and flexible theories of balancing. In con-
sembled the Novices with respect to their de- trast, they hypothesized, the middle group’s
scriptions, there were some respects in which difficulties stemmed from the childrens’ persis-
their descriptions implicated the acquisition of tent attempts to apply an emerging theory
more sophisticated wine language: Intermedi- (things always balance at their geometric cen-
ates used more formal wine terms than Nov- ter) rather than on the proprioceptive feedback
ices; moreover, they were virtually identical that conflicted with the theory. In support of
to the Experts in the frequency with which this interpretation, Karmiloff-Smith and In-
they used affective terms, perhaps reflecting helder observed that most children in the inter-
their more developed palate and consequent mediate group who initially failed the task suc-
sensitivity to the inexpensive sample wines; ceeded when they closed their eyes and relied
finally, the Intermediates’ use of flavor associ- once again on proprioceptive feedback. Thus,
ations was more than midway between the these children possessed the perceptual knowl-
Novices and Experts. This trend suggests that edge required to solve the task, but it was over-
shadowed by their attempt to apply theirthe Intermediates were seeking, albeit not en-
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emerging, conceptual theories. More recently, (2) What is the principal grape in red
Bordeaux wine? [Cabernet SauvignonGoldin-Meadow and colleagues have collected
extensive evidence showing that children often (then Merlot); 1 point]
(3) What is the difference betweenpossess knowledge (expressed nonverbally)
that is not apparent in their verbalizations aroma and bouquet in wine? [Aroma:
Odors from the grape(s); fruit odors; 1about, nor in their performance of, various
tasks (cf. Goldin-Meadow & Alibali, 1995). point] [Bouquet: Odors from the wine:
Reduction, flavors that develop duringSimilar evidence for the potential clash be-
tween perceptual and verbal knowledge has fermentation and aging; 1 point]
been reported for adults. Lesgold, Rubinson,
Feltovich, Glaser, Klopfer, and Wang (1988) R
found that part-way through their residencies,
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The above examples share a fundamental
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... While this effect has been widely documented in diverse domains (chess (Freyhof et al., 1992), medicine , music , sport ), research examining how experts' mental representations are affected by the type of expertise is lacking. This is especially true 64 in the wine domain where most studies pool together different types of experts (wine critics, sommeliers, winegrowers) without looking at the difference among them Croijmans et al., 2020;Melcher & Schooler, 1996;Parr, 2002;Tempère et al., 2014). Yet, according to , experts' mental representations could depend on the type of expertise: winemakers would have "winemaking prototypes" and wine critics "quality prototypes". ...
Le vignoble du Beaujolais est aujourd’hui en pleine évolution grâce à une politique de revalorisation et de montée en gamme. Cette évolution entraine le développement de nouvelles mentions au sein du vignoble. Cette évolution impacte les vins du Beaujolais mais également les professionnels de la filière qui sont en première ligne pour produire, vendre et promouvoir ces vins. L’expertise dans le domaine du vin a beaucoup été étudiée depuis une vingtaine d’années. La plupart des études se sont intéressées aux experts en tant que groupe unifié opposé aux novices dans le but de comprendre l’effet de l’expertise sur les connaissances et les capacités des experts. Cependant, il apparait qu’au sein de cette unité d’experts, il existe plusieurs types d’experts avec des formations, des connaissances, des expériences et des professions différentes : élaborateurs, vendeurs et critiques de vin notamment. L’objectif de cette thèse est de comprendre les effets de l’évolut ion du vignoble sur les représentations mentales et les descriptions des vins de ces différents groupes d’experts. Afin de mener à bien cet objectif, trois études ont été mises en place et réalisées avec ces trois groupes d’experts. La première étude s’est intéressée à l’effet de l’évolution du vignoble sur les représentations mentales des experts, la deuxième à la mise en place et la réalisation de la dégustation des experts et la troisième à l’effet de l’évolution du vignoble sur les descriptions des vins des trois groupes d’experts. Nos principaux résultats ont montré que tous les experts se basent sur des éléments saillants pour construire leurs représentations mentales comme les cépages, les appellations ou le profil sensoriel des vins. Cependant, l’apprentissage perceptif et l’attention sélective de chaque groupe d’experts entraînent la construction de représentations mentales différentes entre les groupes d’experts. Lors de la dégustation, les experts utilisent un script commu n très codifié constitué d’une succession d’actions automatisées permettant d’être plus efficace. Concernant l’évolution du vignoble, nos résultats ne montrent, pour l’heure, aucun effet de l’apparition de la nouvelle appellation Beaujolais Pierres Dorées sur les représentations mentales ou les descriptions des vins des experts.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
This interdisciplinary work is a collection of major essays on reasoning: deductive, inductive, abductive, belief revision, defeasible (non-monotonic), cross cultural, conversational, and argumentative. They are each oriented toward contemporary empirical studies. The book focuses on foundational issues, including paradoxes, fallacies, and debates about the nature of rationality, the traditional modes of reasoning, as well as counterfactual and causal reasoning. It also includes chapters on the interface between reasoning and other forms of thought. In general, this last set of essays represents growth points in reasoning research, drawing connections to pragmatics, cross-cultural studies, emotion and evolution.
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In a study with 80 undergraduates, a visual search orienting task and incidental free-recall test were used to examine the effects of "nonelaborative" rehearsal, as defined by F. I. Craik and M. J. Watson (see record 1974-26776-001), on recall from long-term store. Each of 16 40-word lists was to be searched for a different target item. To control the length of time targets remained in short-term store, the placement of targets in the search list was varied sytematically. Performance on a free-recall test of all target items was a direct function of an item's search-list position, indicating that nonelaborative, "attending" rehearsal may increment an item's retrievability from long-term store. Recall was also dependent on a target's position in the series of target and search-list presentations with both primacy and recency effects present. Since neither differential rehearsal frequency nor differential depth of processing are adequate explanations for the primacy effect observed here, it is proposed that the search- or entry-set notions of J. Anderson (1973) and R. M. Shiffrin (1970) may explain the effect. (16 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Four experiments examined whether verbalization can interfere with insight problem solving. In Exp 1, Ss were interrupted during problem solving and asked either to verbalize their strategies (retrospective verbalization) or engage in an unrelated activity (control). Ss in the retrospective verbalization condition were significantly less successful than control Ss at solving the problems. Exp 2 replicated the finding of Exp 1 and demonstrated that the control Ss' advantage was not due to any beneficial effect of the interruption. In Exp 3, concurrent, nondirective verbalization impaired the solving of insight problems but had no effect on noninsight problems. In Exp 4, the effect of concurrent verbalization on insight was maintained even when Ss were encouraged to consider alternative approaches. Together, these findings are consistent with the hypothesis that verbalization can result in the disruption of nonreportable processes that are critical to achieving insight solutions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Recognition of common odors and simple shapes decayed in a similar manner over the course of 4 months. Recognition of complex pictures was uniformly higher than recognition of the odors and simple figures, although the distractors for these stimuli were much less similar than for the odors or simple shapes. Recognition of these common odors was the same as recognition performance on single chemicals used in previous studies. These results suggest that simple chemicals and complex familiar odors are encoded or remembered in a similar fashion, and that visual stimuli exist which are encoded in a similar manner to odors, possibly as unitary images with few features.
Two experiments investigated the role of verbalization in memory for environmental sounds. Experiment i extended earlier research (Bower & Holyoak, 1973) showing that sound recognition is highly dependent upon consistent verbal interpretation at input and test. While such a finding implies an important role for verbalization, Experiment 2 suggested that verbalization is not the only efficacious strategy for encoding environmental sounds. Recognition after presentation of sounds was shown to differ qualitatively from recognition after presentation of sounds accompanied with interpretative verbal labels and from recognition after presentation of verbal labels alone. The results also suggest that encoding physical information about sounds is of greater importance for sound recognition than for verbal free recall, and that verbalization is of greater importance for free recall than for recognition. Several alternative frameworks for the results are presented, and separate retrieval and discrimination processes in recognition are proposed.
Type I rehearsal was studied in three experiments. Craik and Watkins (1973, Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 12, 599–607) found that Type I rehearsal had no effect on long-term recall whereas Darley and Glass (1975, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Learning and Memory, 1, 454–458) found that Type I rehearsal increased long-term recall. In Experiments 1 and 2, tasks similar to those earlier used tasks both produced increases in free recall with increases in rehearsal duration. In Experiments 2 and 3, both level of processing and rehearsal duration were manipulated. In both experiments, recall increased with deeper levels of processing and with longer rehearsal intervals. However, the influence of these two variables was independent, that is, the interaction between level of processing and rehearsal duration was not significant. Level of processing and rehearsal duration might affect memory independently by strengthening different attributes.
Recent research on young children's memory for personal episodes provides new insights into the phenomenon of infantile amnesia, first identified by Freud. New research indicates that children learn to share memories with others, that they acquire the narrative forms of memory recounting, and that such recounts are effective in reinstating experienced memories only after the children can utilize another person's representation of an experience in language as a reinstatement of their own experience. This competence requires a level of mastery of the representational function of language that appears at the earliest in the mid to late preschool years.
This study examined memory for common odors and odor names that were encoded with visual, verbal, and olfactory elaborations. In the first experiment, subjects elaborated olfactory stimuli by processing a picture of the odor's source, a name for the odor, or both. Two control groups were also included: One group was presented only with the odors, and another group was presented only with odor names. One week later, all subjects were given both a free recall test of odor names and an olfactory recognition test. In general, the elaboration groups outperformed the control groups, with the visual and verbal elaboration group demonstrating the best performance. In a second experiment, olfactory imaginal encoding of odor names was compared with visual imaginal encoding of the same names to measure the relative efficacy of same versus different modality encoding on later stimulus recognition. The results showed that olfactory imaginal encoding aided later recognition of odors, and visual imaginal encoding aided later picture recognition. It is suggested that different modalities contribute unique and mnemonically independent information to episodic memory performance. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
This work presents a systematic analysis of the psychological phenomena associated with the concept of mental representations - also referred to as cognitive or internal representations. A major restatement of a theory the author of this book first developed in his 1971 book (Imagery and Verbal Processes), this book covers phenomena from the earlier period that remain relevant today but emphasizes cognitive problems and paradigms that have since emerged more fully. It proposes that performance in memory and other cognitive tasks is mediated not only by linguistic processes but also by a distinct nonverbal imagery model of thought as well. It discusses the philosophy of science associated with the dual coding approach, emphasizing the advantages of empiricism in the study of cognitive phenomena and shows that the fundamentals of the theory have stood up well to empirical challenges over the years.
In a paired-associate paradigm using odors as stimuli and pictures for multiple-choice responses, the first of two associations to an odor was retained far better than the second over a 2-week period. The persistence of first-learned associations may be responsible for the long lasting nature of odor memories. Subjects reported constructing mediational schemes for mnemonic devices to link the odors and pictures. Latencies for a task of naming odors indicated that although naming odors is difficult, labels could be generated sufficiently fast that they could be employed as mediators in the paired-associate task. A third task investigated the phenomenon of knowing that an odor was familiar but being unable to name it. Subjects in this tip-of-the-nose state were questioned about the odor quality and the name of the odor and were given hints about the name. These subjects were found to have information available about the odor quality but none for the name as found in the tip-of-the-tongue state. However, as in the tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon, hints given to the subjects in the tip-of-the-nose state often led to the correct name.