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Journal Article

Primacy and frequency effects in absolute judgments of visual velocity.

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A, S., M, P., & WH, E. (2000). Primacy and frequency effects in absolute judgments of visual velocity. Perception Psychophysics, 62, 998-1007.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-E5B5-3
Abstract
In absolute judgment tasks, identical stimuli are rated higher (or lower) when presented in a series of more frequent small (or large) stimuli. Using visual stimuli differing in velocity, we show that this conventional frequency effect is largely modulated by the primacy effect-that is, by the stimuli occurring on the early trials of a run. In Experiment 1, a frequency-like primacy effect was obtained with equal-frequent velocities. Identical velocities were rated faster when mainly slow rather than fast ones occurred on initial trials. In Experiment 2, we contrasted the frequency effect and the primacy effect: In runs with frequent slow velocities, mainly fast ones occurred earlier, whereas in runs with infrequent slow velocities, mainly slow ones did so, Lack of differences of ratings in the two conditions suggests that the two effects canceled each other. In Experiment 3, when mainly frequent velocities occurred earlier, the conventional frequency effect was obtained. We conclude that the conventional frequency effect represents a combination of the primacy effect and the pure frequency effect.