Sponsored by Chinese Psychological Society; Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
ISSN 0439-755X CN 11-1911/B8
12 issues per year
Current Issue: Issue 12, 2018
Acta Psychologica Sinica is a scholarly journal sponsored by Chinese Psychological Society and Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, co-sponsored by Department of Psychology, Chinese University of HongKong, published monthly by the Science Press. It is to publish original empirical studies and theoretical papers in the broad field of psychology including cognitive and experimental psychology, developmental and educational psychology, physiological and medical psychology, management social psychology, psychological measure, psychological history and method et al.
ZHANG Kan, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
FUNG Helene Hoi Lam, Department of Psychology, Chinese University of Hong Kong, China
HAU Kit-Tai, Department of Educational Psychology, Chinese Univ
Acta Psychologica Sinica,2018,Vol 50,No. 12
Music and language are unique to the human beings. It has been suggested that music and language have a common origin as an emotional protolanguage. The development of socialisation has resulted in the development of language into a symbolic communication system with explicit semantics. By contrast, music has become an important means of emotional expression. However, whether language with explicit semantics affects the emotional processing of music or not remains uncertain. Given that songs contain melody and lyrics, previous behavioural studies have focused on songs to analyze the influence of lyrics on the processing of musical emotion. However, several studies have also shown the influence of lyrics, although such findings are relatively contradictory. Thus, the current study used behavioural and electrophysiological measurements to investigate the impact of lyrics on the processing of musical emotion. Experiment 1 analyzed whether the emotional connotations in music with and without lyrics could be perceived by listeners at the behavioural level. Experiment 2 further investigated whether there are different neural responses to emotions conveyed by melodies with and without lyrics. A cross-modal affective priming paradigm was used in Experiments 1 and 2, in which musical excerpts served as the prime and emotional faces as target. To avoid the impact of familiarity, 120 musical stimuli were selected from European opera. Each was sung by a vocalist with and without lyrics, thereby resulting in 240 musical stimuli in two versions as potential prime stimuli. A total of 160 facial expressions affectively congruent or incongruent with the preceding musical stimuli were selected as potential target stimuli. Three pre-tests were conducted to ensure the validity of the stimuli. Eventually, 60 musical stimuli for each music version were selected as the prime stimuli, whilst 120 images were used as the target stimuli, thereby resulting in 240 music–image pairs. To ensure that each stimulus appears only once for each participant, two lists were prepared using a Latin square design. Each prime and target was presented in either the congruent or incongruent condition within each list. Thus, each list comprised 120 trials, with 30 trials in each condition. During the experiment, the two lists were equally distributed across the participants. A total of 40 healthy adults participated in Experiment 1. They were asked to judge as quickly and accurately as possible whether the emotion of the target was happy or sad. The accuracy and reaction time were collected. Meanwhile, 20 healthy adults participated in Experiment 2. They were required to judge whether the emotion between music and image was congruent or incongruent whilst their EEG waveforms were recorded. ERPs were analyzed and compared between conditions at the time windows of 250–450 ms and 500–700 ms after the onset of the target. The Experiment 1 results showed that when faces were primed by music either with or without lyrics, the participants responded faster and more accurately under affectively congruent condition compared with affectively incongruent condition. This finding indicated that the emotional connotations in music with and without lyrics could both be perceived. The ERP results in Experiment 2 showed that distinct neural mechanisms were activated by music with and without lyrics. Specifically, when faces were primed by music without lyrics, a larger N400 was elicited in response to affectively incongruent pairs than to affectively congruent pairs at the time window of 250–450 ms. However, when faces were primed by music with lyrics, a more positive LPC was observed in response to the affectively incongruent pairs than to the affectively congruent pairs at 500–700 ms. This finding confirms the results of Experiment 1, thereby suggesting that the emotion conveyed by music with and without lyrics could be perceived by the listeners. Moreover, the emotional processing between music with and without lyrics differs in the time course of neural processing. That is, the emotional processing of music with lyrics lagged behind that of music without lyrics. In conclusion, the present results suggest that the neural processing of emotional connotations in music without lyrics preceded that of music with lyrics, although the emotional connotations conveyed by music with and without lyrics could both be perceived. These findings also supported theory of musical philosophy, which suggests that music without lyrics can express emotion more immediately and more directly than music with lyrics owing to the lack of “translation” from the propositional system. On the other hand, considering that lyrics influenced the time course of emotional processing in music with lyrics, our results also provide evidence that the emotional processing of music and language may share neural resources to some extent.
The development of preschool children’s inductive reasoning about weight: A cross-cultural comparison of Sino-US
Acta Psychologica Sinica,2018,Vol 50,No. 12
Weight has been of interest to scientists from early in the study of cognitive development. More recent research indicates that preschool is an important transition period for using weight generally across tasks in the physical domain. For example, 4-year-olds, but not 3-year-olds, can choose a heavy versus a light object to make a balance with an intermediate weight tip and category objects by weight through observing others’ demonstration. In this research, we investigate when American (Study 1) and Chinese children (Study 2) can use verbal labels to make inductive reasoning about weight, and whether this ability is cross-cultural universal. In Study 1, two-to 6-year-old American children ( N = 100) were familiarized with three identical-appearing objects, two of them have one weight, the third one has another weight (e.g., two heavy, one light). The experimenter picked up one object and said “This is a dax.” Children were requested to find another “dax” from the left two objects and give it to the experimenter. If the experimenter labeled a heavy object, the child chose the heavy one of the two objects, s/he was scored as a 1. In contrast, if s/he chooses the light one, s/he was scored as a 0. There were two trials, thus, the total scores ranged from 0 to 2. The results indicated that there was a significant effect of age, H (4) = 41.75, p < 0.001. Children’s responses were compared to chance levels and the results suggested that the performance of 4-year-olds ( p = 0. 004), 5-year-olds ( p < 0.001), and 6-year-olds ( p < 0.001) was significantly above chance. However, the performance of 3-year-olds ( p = 0.16) was not significantly different from chance, the performance of 2-year-olds was marginal significantly below chance ( p = 0.055). To sum up, children can successfully pass the task by the age of 4. In Study 2, we examined whether Chinese children also can use the verbal label to make inductive reasoning about weight by age 4. Three-to 5-year-olds ( N = 60) were recruited to participate in the experiment. All the procedures were the same as Study 1 except that: (a) children were tested in their school; (b) two new verbal labels were created to label the objects-“delu” and “peru”. The results indicated that the effect of age was significant, H (2) = 18. 71, p < 0.001. The performance of 4-year-olds ( p < 0.001) and 5-year-olds ( p < 0.001) was significantly above chance. However, the performance of 3-year-olds ( p = 0.10) was not significantly different from chance. Overall, this research provided a timeline for the development of children using verbal label in inductive reasoning about invisible weight in the physical domain. At age 4, both American and Chinese children can reliably apply the verbal categorical label to weight. In addition, it appeared that age 3 to 4 was an important transition period for solving such task universally despite of cultural difference. The three possible reasons that could account for the developmental difference were discussed. Also discussed were the implications of cognitive development for science education.
Acta Psychologica Sinica,2018,Vol 50,No. 12
Most of the studies adopting the Deese/Roediger-McDermott paradigm or misinformation effect paradigm demonstrate that older adults are more susceptible to false memories than young ones. However, whether similar aging effect occurs under the imagination inflation paradigm remains unclear. In this study, two experiments were conducted to explore the imagination inflation effect and its potential underlying mechanism in older adults. In Experiment 1, the classic imagination inflation paradigm was used to investigate whether older adults can induce larger imagination inflation effect than young ones. A 2 × 2 × 2 (age: older adults, young adults ×time: pretest, posttest × imagination condition: imagined events, not-imagined events) mixed factorial design was adopted. Owing to their deficit in episodic memory and future simulation, older adults may show less internal (episodic) details than young ones during imagination. We hypothesized that older and young adults show similar false memory effects under the imagination inflation paradigm. In Experiment 2, we used episodic specificity induction technology to further investigate the mechanism of the imagination inflation effect in older adults. Through episodic specificity induction, the number of internal (episodic) details can increase selectively during the imagination of the events, which may facilitate imagination. Therefore, episodic specificity induction brings about larger imagination inflation false memories than control induction. A 2 × 2 × 2 (induction: episodic specificity induction, control induction × time: pretest, posttest × imagination condition: imagined, not-imagined events) mixed design was used in Experiment 2. The procedure of Experiment 2 was similar to that of Experiment 1, except that participants received episodic specificity or control induction before the posttest phase. Results showed that (1) older and young adults experienced significant false memory effect under the imagination inflation paradigm, but older adults did not show more false memories than young adults. (2) Participants who received episodic specificity induction showed more false memories than those who received control induction. Taken together, the results demonstrate that imagination of events plays an important role in producing the imagination inflation effect. The reason that older adults do not show significant higher imagination inflation effect than young ones may be closely related to the lack of internal details during imagination. The imagination inflation effect in older adults may be based on the age-related deficits in episodic memory and future thinking. The results are discussed in terms of activation/monitoring theory and constructive episodic simulation hypothesis.
Acta Psychologica Sinica,2018,Vol 50,No. 12
Decision making is a common, frequent and important task. It is not uniform though; there are individual differences in decision making processes. One notable differences between decision makers is in repeated binary choice situations. Specifically, when facing repeated binary choices, some people keep choosing the same option while others often switch. Previous research used a random card guessing task to explore the underlying mechanism of such differences in choice strategy. In this task, participants are asked to match a computer-generated “random” choice of a black or red card. The computer does not follow a random choice pattern; it follows a canonical random sequence generated by a Bernoulli process characterized by an equal numbers of black and red choices, switch of color on half of the trials, and streak length following an exponential distribution. In theory, participants should guess cards randomly. Nevertheless, they switch significantly less often than the computer does. In other words, participants present some change resistance and have an increased likelihood to select the same card; this likelihood varies among participants. One notable gap in this research stream pertains to the underlying cognitive and neural mechanism of such card switching behaviors. We partially address this gap in this study. Three hundred and fifty healthy Chinese college students (194 females, mean age = 19.97 years) were recruited for this study. All of them completed the Card Guessing Task, the Temperament and Character Inventory-Revised (TCI-R), and the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST). One session of high-resolution magnetic resonance anatomical image was also acquired for each individual using a 3T MRI scanner. First, subjects’frequency of switching, persistence error on the WCST as an index for cognitive flexibility, and persistence dimension score on TCI-R were calculated. Next, the correlation between gray matter volume (GMV) and frequency of switching was tested with both univariate and multivariate voxel-based morphometry (VBM). In addition, the mediation roles of trait persistence and cognitive flexibility in the GMV and switching frequency were tested. Results suggested that the mean frequency of card switching in our sample was 43%, which was significantly lower than 50% ( p < 0.001). Importantly, the number varied from 0%to 80%, suggesting large between-individual differences. Correlation analysis showed that both trait persistence and cognitive flexibility negatively correlated with card switching frequency. Univariate VBM analysis showed that (1) the GMV in the Frontal Pole (FP), Posterior Cingulate Gyrus (PCC), Putamen and the left Insular Cortex positively correlated with the card switching frequency, and (2) the GMV in the Medial Temporal Lobe and right Insular Cortex negatively correlated with card switching frequency. Multivariate VBM analysis suggested that the GMV of Posterior Cingulate Gyrus (PCC), Middle Frontal Gyrus (MFG), Insular Cortex, and Frontal Pole could significantly predict individuals’ frequency of card switching. Last, mediation analysis revealed that both trait persistence and cognitive flexibility mediate the relationship between GMV of the implicated regions and card switching frequency. Overall, this study examined individual differences in card switching frequency and the cognitive and neural mechanisms that underlie them. Understanding the reason why some people persist in choosing the same option, while others frequently change their choices is important, and can serve as a basis for understating complex decision making situations that follow a repeated binary choice pattern.
Acta Psychologica Sinica,2018,Vol 50,No. 12
The cognitive advantage of self-information using various stimuli has been established in several studies. To explore the mechanism for this effect, this study examined the attention functions in the process of self-information. By adopting the Attention Network Test (ANT), in this study, we compared the process of self-information to that of friend-related information in alerting, orienting, and executive control networks. In Experiment 1, participants were assigned a classic ANT task in which arrow stimuli were replaced by face stimuli. In each trial, a test array consisted of one central target and four flanker stimuli. Participants were instructed to pay attention to the central target and judge whether the image was a self-face or a friend-face. Each test array was preceded by one of four cues, namely center, double, spatial, and none. Results showed that participants had a stable advantage in processing self-face. Specifically, the efficiency of orienting on self-face was significantly larger than that on friend-face. In Experiment 2, a recently developed self-associated learning approach was employed to exclude the possible confounding of face familiarity. The stimuli used in Experiment 2 were geometric shapes that were temporarily associated with self or friend or had no social meaning. The result was consistent with that in Experiment 1. Self-associated shapes displayed advantages in orienting efficiency compared to friend-associated and non-social-meaning shapes. This finding implied that the improvement of orienting network on self-information processing was due to the important meanings in self-information apart from the simple familiarity of self-face. In Experiment 3, the processing priority of orienting network on self-face no longer existed when the task was to determine the color of the face. This condition indicated that the cognitive advantage for self-information in the orienting network was influenced by task requirements. In summary, this study found that among the three attention networks, only the orienting network displayed a processing priority of self-information and therefore played a more important role in self-processing advantage. Such an advantage occurred only when self-information was task-related. By contrast, no special biases on self-information processing were found in the alerting and executive control networks.