Recognition-based inference : when is less more in the real world?

Pachur, Thorsten. (2010) Recognition-based inference : when is less more in the real world? Psychonomic bulletin & review : a journal of the Psychonomic Society, 17. pp. 589-598.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A5839775

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Common wisdom tells us that more information can only help and never hurt. Goldstein and Gigerenzer (2002) highlighted an instance violating this intuition. Specifically, in an analysis of their recognition heuristic, they found a counterintuitive less-ismore effect in inference: An individual recognizing fewer objects than another individual can, nevertheless, make more accurate inferences. Goldstein and Gigerenzer emphasized that a sufficient condition for this effect is that the recognition validity be higher than the knowledge validity, assuming that the validities are uncorrelated with the number of recognized objects, n. But how is the occurrence of the less-is-more effect affected when this independence assumption is violated? I show that validity dependencies (i.e., correlations of the validities with n) abound in empirical data sets, and I demonstrate by computer simulations that these dependencies often have a strong limiting effect on the less-is-more effect. Moreover, I discuss what cognitive (e.g., memory) and ecological (e.g., distribution of the criterion variable, environmental frequencies) factors can give rise to a dependency of the recognition validity on the number of recognizedobjects.
Faculties and Departments:07 Faculty of Psychology > Departement Psychologie > Ehemalige Einheiten Psychologie > Cognitive and Decision Sciences (Hertwig)
UniBasel Contributors:Pachur, Thorsten
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Psychonomic Society
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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edoc DOI:
Last Modified:11 Oct 2017 10:37
Deposited On:14 Sep 2012 07:04

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