Stewart, Neil (2001) Perceptual categorization. PhD thesis, University of Warwick.
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Official URL: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/record=b1374461~S15
The categorization of external stimuli lies at the heart of cognitive science.
Existing models of perceptual categorization assume (a) information about the absolute
magnitude of a stimulus is used in the categorization decision, and (b) the representation
of a stimulus does not change with experience. The three experimental programs
presented here challenge these two assumptions. The experiments in Chapter 2
demonstrate that existing models of categorization are unable to predict the
classification of items intermediate between two categories. Chapter 3 provides
empirical evidence that categorization responses are heavily influenced by the
immediately preceding context, consistent with evidence from absolute identification
showing people have very poor access to absolute magnitude information. A memory
and contrast model is presented where each categorization decision is based on the
perceived difference between the current stimulus and immediately preceding stimuli.
This model is shown to account for the data from Chapters 2 and 3. Chapter 4 explores
the claim that new features may be created on experience with novel stimuli, and that
these features serve to alter the representation of stimuli to facilitate new categorization
tasks. An alternative account is offered for existing feature creation evidence. However,
experimental work re-establishes a feature creation effect. Consideration is given as to
how feature creation and memory and contrast accounts of categorization may be
integrated, together with extensive suggestions for the development of these ideas.
|Item Type:||Thesis or Dissertation (PhD)|
|Subjects:||B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology|
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Categorization (Psychology)|
|Official Date:||June 2001|
|Institution:||University of Warwick|
|Theses Department:||Department of Psychology|
|Supervisor(s)/Advisor:||Chater, Nick ; Heit, Evan, 1965-|
|Sponsors:||University of Warwick ; Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (Great Britain) (BBSRC) ; University of Warwick. Dept. of Psychology|
|Extent:||xiv, 221 p.|
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