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Limits of executive control : sequential effects in predictable environments

(2016) PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE. 27(5). p.748-757
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Abstract
Cognitive-control theories attribute action control to executive processes that modulate behavior on the basis of expectancy or task rules. In the current study, we examined corticospinal excitability and behavioral performance in a go/no-go task. Go and no-go trials were presented in runs of five, and go and no-go runs alternated predictably. At the beginning of each trial, subjects indicated whether they expected a go trial or a no-go trial. Analyses revealed that subjects immediately adjusted their expectancy ratings when a new run started. However, motor excitability was primarily associated with the properties of the previous trial, rather than the predicted properties of the current trial. We also observed a large latency cost at the beginning of a go run (i.e., reaction times were longer for the first trial in a go run than for the second trial). These findings indicate that actions in predictable environments are substantially influenced by previous events, even if this influence conflicts with conscious expectancies about upcoming events.
Keywords
TRANSCRANIAL MAGNETIC STIMULATION, REACTION-TIME, EXPECTANCY, MECHANISMS, TASK, executive control, expectancy, sequential effects, motor-evoked, potentials, transcranial magnetic stimulation, open data

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Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Verbruggen, Frederick et al. “Limits of Executive Control : Sequential Effects in Predictable Environments.” PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE 27.5 (2016): 748–757. Print.
APA
Verbruggen, Frederick, McAndrew, A., Weidemann, G., Stevens, T., & McLaren, I. P. L. (2016). Limits of executive control : sequential effects in predictable environments. PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE, 27(5), 748–757.
Chicago author-date
Verbruggen, Frederick, Amy McAndrew, Gabrielle Weidemann, Tobias Stevens, and Ian P. L. McLaren. 2016. “Limits of Executive Control : Sequential Effects in Predictable Environments.” Psychological Science 27 (5): 748–757.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Verbruggen, Frederick, Amy McAndrew, Gabrielle Weidemann, Tobias Stevens, and Ian P. L. McLaren. 2016. “Limits of Executive Control : Sequential Effects in Predictable Environments.” Psychological Science 27 (5): 748–757.
Vancouver
1.
Verbruggen F, McAndrew A, Weidemann G, Stevens T, McLaren IPL. Limits of executive control : sequential effects in predictable environments. PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE. Thousand oaks: Sage Publications Inc; 2016;27(5):748–57.
IEEE
[1]
F. Verbruggen, A. McAndrew, G. Weidemann, T. Stevens, and I. P. L. McLaren, “Limits of executive control : sequential effects in predictable environments,” PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE, vol. 27, no. 5, pp. 748–757, 2016.
@article{8534925,
  abstract     = {Cognitive-control theories attribute action control to executive processes that modulate behavior on the basis of expectancy or task rules. In the current study, we examined corticospinal excitability and behavioral performance in a go/no-go task. Go and no-go trials were presented in runs of five, and go and no-go runs alternated predictably. At the beginning of each trial, subjects indicated whether they expected a go trial or a no-go trial. Analyses revealed that subjects immediately adjusted their expectancy ratings when a new run started. However, motor excitability was primarily associated with the properties of the previous trial, rather than the predicted properties of the current trial. We also observed a large latency cost at the beginning of a go run (i.e., reaction times were longer for the first trial in a go run than for the second trial). These findings indicate that actions in predictable environments are substantially influenced by previous events, even if this influence conflicts with conscious expectancies about upcoming events.},
  author       = {Verbruggen, Frederick and McAndrew, Amy and Weidemann, Gabrielle and Stevens, Tobias and McLaren, Ian P. L.},
  issn         = {0956-7976},
  journal      = {PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE},
  keywords     = {TRANSCRANIAL MAGNETIC STIMULATION,REACTION-TIME,EXPECTANCY,MECHANISMS,TASK,executive control,expectancy,sequential effects,motor-evoked,potentials,transcranial magnetic stimulation,open data},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {5},
  pages        = {748--757},
  publisher    = {Sage Publications Inc},
  title        = {Limits of executive control : sequential effects in predictable environments},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0956797616631990},
  volume       = {27},
  year         = {2016},
}

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