ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B
主办:中国心理学会
   中国科学院心理研究所
出版:科学出版社
25 November 2020, Volume 52 Issue 11 Previous Issue    Next Issue
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Reports of Empirical Studies
The neural basis of scientific innovation problem finding
TONG DanDan, LI WenFu, LU Peng, YANG WenJing, YANG Dong, ZHANG QingLin, QIU Jiang
2020, 52 (11):  1253-1265.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01253
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Creative thinking, which refers to the process by which individuals produce a unique, valuable product based on existing knowledge, experience, and multi-perspective thinking activities, is the cornerstone of human civilization and social progress. As an important part of the creative field, scientific inventions in particular require individuals to break the existing state and build new things in the process of creating them. Therefore, the use of real-life examples of scientific inventions to explore the cognitive neural mechanism of creative thinking has become a focus of recent research. There have been many studies of creative problem solving, especially regarding its neural mechanisms. However, less attention has been paid to the issue of problem finding. Hence, the present study employed resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) and scientific invention problem-finding materials to identify the neural substrates of the process of scientific innovation problem finding.
In the present study, nine scientific innovation problem situations were selected as materials. Each problem consisted of three parts: (paradoxical) problem situation, (misleading) old problem, and heuristic prototype. The modified learning-testing paradigm was used to explore the brain mechanisms of problem finding. Participants were asked to find a new problem based on the given problem situation and old problem in the testing phase after learning all the heuristic prototypes in the learning phase. A total of 104 undergraduates (mean age = 19.26 ± 0.99) were enrolled in the final experiment. The rs-fMRI data were acquired using an echo planar imaging (EPI) sequence from a 3-T Siemens Magnetom Trio scanner (Siemens Medical, Erlangen, Germany) at the MRI center of Southwest University. We used both the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) and resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) to measure the local properties of rs-fMRI signals, and then investigated the relationship between ALFF/RSFC and individual differences in scientific problem finding.
After controlling for age and sex, the results of multiple regression analysis showed that individuals with a high rate of useful problems had higher spontaneous brain activity in the left medial prefrontal cortex (L-mPFC) and cerebellum. Functional connectivity analysis further found a significant positive correlation between the rate of useful problems and the mPFC-Cuneus functional connectivity.
Based on these results, we infer that: (1) The mPFC plays an important role in the process of scientific innovation problem finding. It might be responsive to two aspects: one involved in breaking the thinking set and forming novel association and another associated with the extraction and processing of working memory. (2) The cerebellum and the cuneus might be separately involved in the inter-semantic allocation of attentional resources and divulging.

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Forward testing effect on new learning in older adults
WANG Tangsheng, YANG Chunliang, ZHONG Nian
2020, 52 (11):  1266-1277.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01266
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As the population of a society ages and evolves, the cognitive capacity and life-long learning ability of older adults is extremely significant. The current study aims to investigate whether interpolated testing can effectively improve the abilities of older adults to learn and retain new information. In other words, this study targets to verify whether the forward testing effect (FTE) can be applied to older adults comparing to the younger participants in previous research. Previous research on younger adults and older children (rather than younger elementary school children) indicates that the FTE in learning of single items is primarily due to the release from proactive interference (PI). Research on younger elementary school children indicates that they cannot reduce PI; thus, they do not have FTE in their early years as they are just learning. However, this finding cannot explain why people have the FTE during complex learning, which is also attributed to the reduction of mind-wandering (MW). Other research demonstrates that learning engagement plays a role to make a great difference between PI and MW amongst older and younger adults. Will older adults (aged over 60) experience FTE when learning simplified things? How about complex materials?
The current study conducted three experiments to research the above questions progressively. All participants (older adults) were randomly divided into two groups using a computer. The tested group was then given interim tests, and the other (control) group went without any test until the last list or segment. Finally, both groups took a memory test on the things they have encountered through the learning process. The size of these groups was determined according to the effect size in previous studies. The number of participants in each experiment was 30, 32 and 49. In experiment 1, both groups were given five lists of words. The test group was given an interim test after studying each of the five lists, whereas the control group was required to solve the math problem after studying each list, where they only took an interim test on list 5. In experiment 2, the participants had five lists of common supermarket items to learn. The test group was also given an interim test after studying each of the five lists. However, the control group only had to restudy lists 1-4, and then, they were given an interim test after studying the fifth list. In experiment 3, the participants were instructed to study a four-segment lecture video where the instructions and experimental procedures were the same as those in experiment 2. All the participants in the three experiments mentioned above were over 60 years of age.
The result of experiment 1 shows that the test group recalled approximately twice as many correct words as the math group in the list 5 interim test. The result indicates that interpolated tests facilitate older adults' learning of new single items. For the test group, the repeated measures ANOVA, with lists 2-5 as the within-subjects variable, showed that PI linearly increased across lists. This finding indicates that interim tests could not completely prevent the build-up of PI across lists for older adults. Notably, the math group experienced approximately three times as much PI as the test group in the list 5 interim test. The result indicates that interim tests prevent the build-up of PI for older adults. In Experiment 2, the test group recalled approximately twice as many correct words as the restudy group in the list 5 interim test. The repeated measures ANOVA showed that, for the test group, PI linearly increased across lists 2-5 interim tests. The restudy group committed approximately three times as much PI as the test group in the list 5 interim test. The result of Experiment 3 shows that the test group recalled approximately twice as many correct items as the restudy group in the Segment 4's interim test. This finding reveals that interpolated testing enhances the learning ability of older adults for new complex materials.
The results show that interpolated testing effectively enhances older adults' learning and retrieval of new information. The test groups scored higher than the math and restudy groups in learning of single items and complex materials. The results support an integrated theory of interference reduction and learning engagement, which can comprehensively explain the FTE difference amongst younger children, older children, younger adults and older adults. Therefore, we can use FTE as a effective method to modify the learning and memorising condition of older adults.

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An animal behavioral model for the concept of “Integrative Learning”
YIN Bin, WU Xiaorui, LIAN Rong
2020, 52 (11):  1278-1287.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01278
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The dominant paradigm for learning in China today is “gradual learning”, that is, learners acquire knowledge gradually from a lower to a higher level with the help of teachers. Based on theories of adaptive learning and “meta-learning self”, we advanced the alternative of “integrative learning”, that is, “under the role of ‘meta-learning self', learners actively integrate learning materials to achieve rapid and in-depth understanding of knowledge.” Furthermore, we designed an animal behavioral model to explore the effects of integrative learning versus progressive learning.
Forty SD rats were selected as subjects, a two (Learning mode: Integrative Learning-IL, Progressive Learning - PL) by two (Sex: Male, Female) factorial design was employed, and a fourteen-unit integrative T-maze was constructed for the study. Five task stages were conceived to test the phenomenon and mechanisms of integrative learning: a learning stage, a retest stage after one week, a Gestalt transfer learning stage, a generalization/analysis test stage, and a segment fixation test stage.
The results showed that: 1. During the learning stage, the number of errors in each trial in the IL group decreased exponentially over time, while that curve in the PL group was wavy; males exhibited significantly fewer errors in total than females; and the number of days to learning success in the IL-male group was significantly less than in the PL-male group, though the difference between female groups was not significant. 2. During both Gestalt transfer learning and generalization/analysis test stages, the IL group performed better than the PL group overall; during the segment fixation test stage, all groups appeared fixed more on the first segment of the original correct path. 3. To identify mechanisms for the IL groups' better performance, a dynamic heat-map path analysis was employed, showing that the IL group (especially males) appeared to consolidate the first key segment of the correct path repeatedly before quickly apprehending the rest of it, which had elements similar to the first one. Males in the PL group, however, were more likely to return to explore the earlier segment than females when allowed to enter a new segment of the maze. 4. The IL group as a whole either ate less of the chocolate reward at the finish of the correct path or moved the pellet elsewhere to eat, a pattern that was much more obvious in females.
We arrived at the following conclusions: 1) Integrative learning is more efficient than progressive learning, and is characterized by the acquisition of more layered knowledge which can better assist long-term migration learning. 2) During the process of forming a “cognitive map”, information stored in memory has the characteristics of entirety, chunking, and categorization. 3) In a maze learning task, performance among males is more consistent than among females. 4) Some individuals may appear anxious or maladjusted during integrative learning.

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Testosterone and aggressive behavior in juvenile offenders with antisocial tendency: The mediation effect of hostile attention bias and the moderation effect of cortisol
REN Zhihong, ZHAO Ziyi, YU Xianglian, ZHAO Chunxiao, ZHANG Lin, LIN Yuzhong, ZHANG Wei
2020, 52 (11):  1288-1300.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01288
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Juvenile crime, as an important factor of public security, has extensively concerned the whole society. Although juvenile offenders with antisocial tendency exhibit unique behavior patterns and development characteristics, few studies have investigated the potential mechanism of aggressive behaviors in juvenile offenders. Based on the dual-hormone hypothesis and social information processing theory, It is plausible to argue that biological hormones and the social information processing process related to hostile might play an fundamental role in shaping aggressive behaviors of juvenile offenders. Therefore, the present study proposes a moderated mediating model and examined the prediction of testosterone for aggressive behaviors in juvenile offenders that is mediated by hostile attention bias and moderated cortisol. Drawing on both biological hormone and social cognition perspectives, the present study attempts to answer the questions of “how” testosterone affects aggressive behavior and “when” the effect will be present, which provides implications for further developing interventions against aggressive behaviors in juvenile offenders with antisocial tendency.
This study included 84 juvenile offenders (average age: 17.55, standard deviations: 0.52) as participants. Their aggressive behavior was measured using the Chinese version of the Buss-Perry Attack Scale (AQCV). Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) was utilized to measure the salivary testosterone and cortisol levels of the participants. Moreover, the participants' attention biases toward hostile aggressive phrases and hostile facial expressions were evaluated using an adopted Stroop and the dot-probe paradigm, respectively. Both traditional and trail-level attention bias scores were calculated to reflect the participants' attention bias statically and dynamically.
Results showed that (1) attention bias toward hostile stimuli (Variability, Peak TL-BSNEGATIVE) played a complete mediation role in the relationship between testosterone and aggressive behavior (i.e. variability played a complete mediation role in the prediction of AQCV total score, physical aggression subscale score, and anger subscale score. Peak TL-BSNEGATIVE played a complete mediation role in the prediction of verbal aggression subscale score by testosterone). (2) Cortisol moderated the relationship between testosterone and attention bias toward hostile stimuli. More specifically, at a high cortisol level, testosterone positively predicted individual attention avoidance (Peak TL-BSNEGATIVE) and variability, thereby reducing the aggression level. However, the mediation effect of attention bias toward hostile stimuli was not significant at a low cortisol level.
Based on the dual-hormone hypothesis and social information processing theory, the present study examined a moderated mediating model in a sample of juvenile offenders with antisocial tendency using the perspectives of biological hormone and social information processing in aggressive behaviors. The present study revealed a potential development mechanism of aggressive behaviors in juvenile offenders and thus provides an empirical foundation for hormone-based interventions against aggressive behaviors in juvenile offenders. Finally, on the basis of the mediation and moderation effects of biological hormones on aggressive behavior, the present study indicates that increasing attention avoidance and the cortisol level for juvenile offenders with antisocial tendency might help reduce their aggressive violence.

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Changes in the network of posttraumatic stress disorder among children after the Wenchuan earthquake: A four-year longitudinal study
LIANG Yiming, ZHENG Hao, LIU Zhengkui
2020, 52 (11):  1301-1312.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01301
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Previous studies have found temporal differences in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) development. Clinical workers and researchers have also demonstrated that symptoms of PTSD differ by stage after traumatic events. Recently, the symptom network perspective has contributed substantially to the development of psychopathology due to its important advantage in understanding the role of psychological symptoms in mental disorders. An increasing number of analyses adopting the network approach to study PTSD symptoms have also provided novel insights into PTSD symptomatology. However, changes in children's long-term PTSD symptomatology are poorly understood. The current study aims to identify changes in the network of PTSD symptoms among children through the network approach.
A four-year longitudinal study was conducted from 4 months after the Wenchuan earthquake. Four assessments were conducted at four (T1;September 2008), 29 (T2; October 2010), 40 (T3; September 2011) and 52 (T4; September 2012) months following the earthquake. Ultimately, 197 children completed assessments at each time point. The children were in grades four and six at T1 and attended two primary schools located in Beichuan County. Symptoms of PTSD were assessed by the University of California at Los Angeles PTSD Reaction Index based on the DSM-IV. Network analysis was implemented with the qgraph package in R following the standard guidelines by Epskamp and Fried.
Flashbacks exhibited relatively high centrality at all time points, while other symptoms with high centrality varied across time points. Emotional cue reactivity exhibited high centrality at 4 months, and its centrality decreased over time. Foreshortened future exhibited high centrality at 4, 29 and 40 months, but its centrality decreased to a low level at 52 months. Intrusive thoughts exhibited low centrality at 4 months, but the centrality of this symptom increased to a high level at 29 months. Physiological cue reactivity exhibited low centrality at 4 months, and its centrality increased over time. These findings indicated the distinct temporal variability in the centrality of some PTSD symptoms. The global connectivity of the network increased from 4 to 40 months and then decreased at 52 months.
The current study enhanced the knowledge of child PTSD symptomatology. Flashbacks might play a key role in the evolution of PTSD symptoms. In addition, different core symptoms might contribute to early and chronic PTSD structures. Emotional cue reactivity and foreshortened future might play key roles in early PTSD structures and then recover in later stages following disasters. Physiological cue reactivity and intrusive thoughts might be core symptoms in chronic PTSD structures. The phenomenon of the increased connectivity of the PTSD symptom network at 40 months may be one reason why previous trauma leads to vulnerability to PTSD. Overall, our study highlighted temporal differences in PTSD symptoms. Different core symptoms in early and chronic PTSD structures should be treated as targets at different stages following disasters in clinical practice.

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Relationship between perceived discrimination and mental health of migrant children: A meta-analysis of Chinese students
HAN Yichu, WEN Hengfu, CHENG Shuhua, ZHANG Chungan, LI Xin
2020, 52 (11):  1313-1326.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01313
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Migrant children are children aged 6~15 years (compulsory education stage) who leave their home country with their parents to study, live in the destination for more than half a year, and have no registered permanent residence. Being discriminated against and viewing oneself as a target of discrimination poses a threat to the mental health of migrant children. This meta-analysis was intended to estimate the association between perceived discrimination and various mental health conditions (positive and negative).
Numerous studies have explored the relationship between perceived discrimination and mental health among Chinese migrant students. However, these results are far from consistent and mental health indicators need to be studied further. Therefore, this meta-analysis was conducted to explore the relation between perceived discrimination and positve and negative mental health indicators, and investigate the moderating effects of perceived discrimination, type of participants, and gender. Through literature retrieval, 49 independent effect sizes were selected together with 40, 351 participants, which met the inclusion criteria of meta-analysis. After coding the data, we analyzed independent effect sizes using the CMA 2.0 program. Heterogeneity test indicated that random effects model was suitable for the meta-analysis.
The results of funnel plot and Egger's intercept showed no publication bias. Main-effect test indicated a significant negative correlation between perceived discrimination and positive mental health indicators (r = -0.323, 95% CI = [-0.378, -0.266]), and a significant positive correlation between perceived discrimination and negative mental health indicators (r = 0.41, 95% CI = [0.36, 0.458]). Moderation analyses and meta-regression analysis revealed that the association between perceived discrimination and positive mental health indicators was moderated by tools of perceived discrimination and type of participants but not by the gender. Furthermore, the association between perceived discrimination and negative mental health indicators was moderated by tools of perceived discrimination, type of participants, and gender.
According to the meta-analysis, the perception of discrimination and mental health of immigrant children were closely related. Identifying the mechanism of discrimination perception and mental health is necessary, and then helping migrant children to recover from their psychological predicament, and actively addressing the negative effects of perceived discrimination. Particular attention should be given to the relationship between perception of discrimination and positive mental health, and further protection should be ensured for migrant children at the junior secondary level.

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The generalization effect in gap evaluation: How large is the gap between you and me?
WANG Tianhong, CHEN Yuqi, LU Jingyi
2020, 52 (11):  1327-1339.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01327
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In many social comparisons, people know exactly how they and others do. These comparisons induce a self-other gap. A variety of important decisions are made on the basis of judgments of the gap between ourselves and other people. Existing research indicates biased judgments of self-other gaps, with unknown absolute performance of others. However, the question we are interested in is whether judgments of a self-other gap will be accurate when both absolute performance of oneself and others are specified. This research investigated how the self-other gap was shaped by absolute and relative performances. We proposed the generalization effect, in which individuals generalized their absolute performance to rate their relative position to others though the actual self-other gap was specified.
We conducted seven studies (N = 2766) to test our proposed generalization effect on perceived self-other gap. Study 1 adopted a 2 (absolute performance: gain or loss) × 2 (relative performance: gain or loss) between-subjects design. The participants, who were informed their performance as well as their classmate's performance in a test, rated the gap between themselves and the classmate. The result indicated that absolute gain caused a larger perceived self-other gap for relative gain (“I am far ahead of her”) than for relative loss (“I am not far behind her”). Conversely, absolute loss caused a larger perceived self-other gap for relative loss (“I am far behind her”) than for relative gain (“I am not far behind her”).
Studies 2 and 3 replicated the results in Study 1 with investment and social media scenarios. Besides, Study 2a excluded the influence of information order and Study 2b excluded the effect of emotion. Studies 3a and 3b ruled out the alternative explanations of numeric size.
Study 4 tested the association mechanism by cutting off the associations between multiple dimensions. We adopted a 2 (association: cutting-off or control) × 2 (absolute performance: gain or loss) × 2 (relative performance: gain or loss) between-subjects design. In the cutting-off condition, we designed a debiasing intervention where general associations among multiple dimensions were cut off. As a result, the effect found in Studies 1 to 3 persisted in the control condition but disappeared in the cutting-off condition where associations among multiple dimensions were cut off. The result indicated that generalization among dimensions accounted for the effect we found. The result also ruled out the explanations of egocentrism and focalism.
Study 5 manipulated the reference point in social comparison and found a null effect for reference point on the generalization effect, which ruled out the explanation of reference point.
We reveal that assessments of relative performance are biased even when people have sufficient information about their own and others' absolute performances because people generalize their absolute performance to relative performance. The generalization effect reflects the overgeneralization bias in social comparison. People fail to realize that absolute performances are not necessarily related to relative performances. Moreover, the current research offers a feasible approach to reduce such a bias.

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The cross-level double-edged-sword effect of boundary-spanning behavior on creativity
ZHU Jinqiang, XU Shiyong, ZHOU Jinyi, ZHANG Bainan, XU Fangfang, ZONG Boqiang
2020, 52 (11):  1340-1351.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01340
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Boundary-spanning behavior has attracted considerable interest in recent years. Studies on this type of behavior have focused on its positive outcomes from the perspective of social networks. For decades, research has consistently demonstrated that the boundary-spanning behavior produces a wide array of positive results for teams and organizations. However, scholars have found that such behavior has negative outcomes for individuals. Using the conservation of resources theory (COR), we examined the double-edged-sword effect of boundary- spanning behavior on creativity at different levels, as well as its mediating mechanism and boundary conditions.
To test the proposed theoretical model, we applied multi-wave and multi-source research design. The data were collected from dyads of employees and supervisors in a company. At time 1, the boundary-spanning behavior, role stress, and role breadth self-efficacy were measured. These variables were rated by the employees. Approximately a month later, we asked the supervisors to rate the employees' creativity. These variables were assessed by mature scales. A total of 536 employees (90.32%) and 111 leaders (82.22%) responded to our survey. Confirmatory factor analyses and average variance extracted were conducted to assess the discriminant validity and convergence validity of the key variables. Multilevel structural equation modeling was used to validate the hypothesis and Monte Carlo simulation procedures using open-source software R were conducted to test mediation effects.
Results showed that at the team level, boundary-spanning behavior had a significantly positive effect on team creativity (β = 0.18, p < 0.05). However, at the individual level, boundary-spanning behavior had a significantly negative effect on employees' creativity (β = -0.02, p < 0.05). At the individual level, boundary- spanning behavior had a significantly positive effect on role stress (β = 0.05, p < 0.01) and role stress had a significantly negative effect on creativity (β = -0.34, p < 0.001). The mediation effect of role stress was significant (β = -0.02, p < 0.05, Monte Carlo = 20000, 95% CI = -0.03, -0.006). This evidence would indicate that the boundary-spanning behavior had a negative effect on individual creativity via role stress. Results also showed that the product term between the boundary-spanning behavior and role-breadth self-efficacy was significant (β = -0.08, p < 0.01). The role-breadth self-efficacy moderated the relationship so that the mediating effect of role stress was stronger for employees with low role-breadth self-efficacy.
The study illustrated the double-edged-sword effect of boundary-spanning behavior on creativity at different levels as well as the mediating mechanism and boundary conditions regarding the negative effect of boundary- spanning behavior on individual creativity, thereby enriching the literature on boundary-spanning behavior. Furthermore, this study identified the boundary conditions of COR, which broadens the scope of research on this theory.

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How visual novelty affects consumer purchase intention: The moderating effects of self-construal and product type
ZHU Zhenzhong, LI Xiaojun, LIU Fu, Haipeng (Allan) Chen
2020, 52 (11):  1352-1364.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01352
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This paper studies the effect of self-construal on consumers' purchase intention of products that vary in visual novelty, its underlying mechanism and boundary conditions. Specifically, we propose that products with low (high) visual novelty should increase the purchase intention among interdependent (independent) consumers through decreased social risk perception (increased consumer needs for uniqueness). In addition, the interaction between visual novelty and self-construal should be reduced when product type (hedonic and utilitarian) is made salient. This is because all consumers should prefer utilitarian products with low visual novelty but prefer hedonic products with high visual novelty, regardless of self-construal. Three experiments provide empirical support for these predictions.
Study 1 uses 2 (visual novelty: low/high) × 2 (self-construal: independent/interdependent) between-subjects design. A night-light with an ambiguous product type is selected as the stimulus in the form of a color print advertisement. We recruit 112 participants, design different models, distribute product pictures with different appearances, and use an existing scale to measure participants' self-construal. We confirm the interaction between visual novelty and self-construal on purchase intention.
Study 2 uses a similar between-subjects design, and a wrist-watch with an ambiguous product type as the stimulus. We recruit 140 participants and manipulate the product's visual novelty and self-construal. Consistent with our prediction, we find an interaction between self-construal and visual novelty on consumers' purchase intention. In addition, we provide supporting evidence for the proposed mechanism for the interaction effect that is due to consumer needs for uniqueness and perceptions of social risks.
Study 3 uses a 2 (visual novelty: low/high) × 2 (self-construal: independent/interdependent) x 2 (product type: hedonic/utilitarian) between-subjects design, to test the moderating effect of product type. Product visual novelty and self-construal are manipulated in similar manners as in Study 2. Desk-lamp is used as the stimulus. In order to minimize confounds, we manipulate the product type and verify our manipulation in a pretest. In another pretest we also verify the effectiveness of the visual novelty manipulation and rule out the potential confound of functional novelty. We recruit 302 participants for this study. The results provide support for the moderating effect of product type. Specifically, we find that, regardless of self-construal, all consumers prefer a utilitarian product with lower appearance novelty, but prefer a hedonic product with higher appearance novelty. In addition, these effects are mediated by consumer needs for uniqueness and perceptions of social risks.
In summary, the results of three studies provide convergent evidence for an interaction between self-construal and product visual novelty on consumers' purchase intention, the moderating effect of product type, and the underlying mechanism due to consumer needs for uniqueness and social risk perceptions.

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