ERIC Number: EJ1080414
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Nov
Abstractor: As Provided
Can Arousal Modulate Response Inhibition?
Weinbach, Noam; Kalanthroff, Eyal; Avnit, Amir; Henik, Avishai
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v41 n6 p1873-1877 Nov 2015
The goal of the present study was to examine if and how arousal can modulate response inhibition. Two competing hypotheses can be drawn from previous literature. One holds that alerting cues that elevate arousal should result in an impulsive response and therefore impair response inhibition. The other suggests that alerting enhances processing of salient events and can therefore enhance processing of a cue that indicates to withhold a response and improve response inhibition. In a stop-signal task, participants were required to withhold prepotent responses when a stop signal followed target onset. Abrupt alerting cues preceded the target in one half of the trials. The results showed that alerting improved response inhibition as indicated by shorter stop-signal reaction times following an alerting cue compared with a no-alerting condition. We conclude that modulation of low-level operations can influence what are considered to be higher cognitive functions to achieve optimal goal-directed behavior. However, we stress that such interactions should be treated cautiously as they do not always reflect direct links between lower and higher cognitive mechanisms.
Descriptors: Experimental Psychology, Arousal Patterns, Inhibition, Cues, Behavior, Interaction, Cognitive Processes, Responses, Foreign Countries, College Students, Auditory Stimuli, Visual Stimuli
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Israel