Date

2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

Master of Science

Department

Psychology

First Adviser

Arrington, Catherine M.

Other advisers/committee members

Marsh, Jessecae J.; Vickery, Timothy J.

Abstract

Decisions often happen in sequence, but research in decision making tends to analyze the factors that influence decisions in isolation. A novel methodology – reward-based voluntary task switching (rVTS) – is introduced to investigate how reward, effort, and the representation of task interact with each other to influence successive task selections in a task switching environment. The present research also investigates whether the value associated with a task is integrated into the task-set representation that is used to execute a task, or whether task value is held in a separate representation altogether. Results from the present experiments suggest that people are sensitive to the amount of effort required to perform a task, and that the value of a task is not integrated into the representation of the task itself. It is possible that task value is stored in a separate representation that interacts with the representation of task to influence task selections.

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Psychology Commons

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