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Biasing actions by incentive valence in an approach/avoidance Task

Vincentius Hoofs (UGent) , Nico Böhler (UGent) and Ruth Krebs (UGent)
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Abstract
The present study investigates interactions between incentive valence and action, which mirror wellknown valence-action biases in the emotional domain. In three joystick experiments, incentive valence (win/loss) and action type (approach/avoid) were signaled by distinct orthogonal stimulus features. By combining several design aspects, i.e., the use of bi-directional joystick movements, the inclusion of no-incentive baseline trials, and cue-locked versus target-locked valence and action signals, we tried to bridge between paradigms used in the emotional and motivational domain, and to understand previous, partly inconsistent results. In the first task variant (Experiment 1), we observed performance benefits for compatible mappings (win-approach; loss-avoid) relative to incompatible ones (loss-approach; win-avoid) when valence and action signals were target-locked, consistent with a fairly automatic response activation that can benefit or impair task performance. In contrast, cue-locked valence signals led to response facilitation (relative to a no-incentive baseline) more or less independent of actual valence (win/loss) and action type (approach/avoid), which is reminiscent of general facilitation effects of incentive cues across diverse cognitive tasks. Slight design variations did not change this main result pattern, indicating that it was neither driven by the close proximity between target and performance feedback (Experiment 2), nor by mere temporal coincidence of valence and action signals (Experiment 3), but rather by differences between preparatory (cued) and immediate (non-cued) effects of incentive valence. The present study provides novel insights regarding the nature of valence-action biases in the motivational domain and helps to integrate previous, partly inconsistent findings across domains
Keywords
valence-action bias, incentive valence, win/loss, reward, action, approach/avoidance

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Citation

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

MLA
Hoofs, Vincentius, et al. “Biasing Actions by Incentive Valence in an Approach/Avoidance Task.” COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY, vol. 5, no. 1, 2019.
APA
Hoofs, V., Böhler, N., & Krebs, R. (2019). Biasing actions by incentive valence in an approach/avoidance Task. COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY, 5(1).
Chicago author-date
Hoofs, Vincentius, Nico Böhler, and Ruth Krebs. 2019. “Biasing Actions by Incentive Valence in an Approach/Avoidance Task.” COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY 5 (1).
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Hoofs, Vincentius, Nico Böhler, and Ruth Krebs. 2019. “Biasing Actions by Incentive Valence in an Approach/Avoidance Task.” COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY 5 (1).
Vancouver
1.
Hoofs V, Böhler N, Krebs R. Biasing actions by incentive valence in an approach/avoidance Task. COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY. 2019;5(1).
IEEE
[1]
V. Hoofs, N. Böhler, and R. Krebs, “Biasing actions by incentive valence in an approach/avoidance Task,” COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY, vol. 5, no. 1, 2019.
@article{8629726,
  abstract     = {The present study investigates interactions between incentive valence and action, which mirror wellknown valence-action biases in the emotional domain. In three joystick experiments, incentive valence (win/loss) and action type (approach/avoid) were signaled by distinct orthogonal stimulus features. By combining several design aspects, i.e., the use of bi-directional joystick movements, the inclusion of no-incentive baseline trials, and cue-locked versus target-locked valence and action signals, we tried to bridge between paradigms used in the emotional and motivational domain, and to understand previous, partly inconsistent results. In the first task variant (Experiment 1), we observed performance benefits for compatible mappings (win-approach; loss-avoid) relative to incompatible ones (loss-approach; win-avoid) when valence and action signals were target-locked, consistent with a fairly automatic response activation that can benefit or impair task performance. In contrast, cue-locked valence signals led to response facilitation (relative to a no-incentive baseline) more or less independent of actual valence (win/loss) and action type (approach/avoid), which is reminiscent of general facilitation effects of incentive cues across diverse cognitive tasks. Slight design variations did not change this main result pattern, indicating that it was neither driven by the close proximity between target and performance feedback (Experiment 2), nor by mere temporal coincidence of valence and action signals (Experiment 3), but rather by differences between preparatory (cued) and immediate (non-cued) effects of incentive valence. The present study provides novel insights regarding the nature of valence-action biases in the motivational domain and helps to integrate previous, partly inconsistent findings across domains },
  articleno    = {42},
  author       = {Hoofs, Vincentius and Böhler, Nico and Krebs, Ruth},
  issn         = {2474-7394},
  journal      = {COLLABRA-PSYCHOLOGY},
  keywords     = {valence-action bias,incentive valence,win/loss,reward,action,approach/avoidance},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  title        = {Biasing actions by incentive valence in an approach/avoidance Task},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/collabra.205},
  volume       = {5},
  year         = {2019},
}

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