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 Access to awareness is improved by affective learning
ZHANG Xiuling, PANG Zhaoyang, JIANG Yunpeng, ZHANG Ming, JIANG Yi
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (3): 253-259.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00253
Abstract   PDF (600KB)
 Increasing evidence has indicated that emotional information, and particularly threatening visual input, elicits faster behavioral responses than non-threatening stimuli. This superior processing of threatening information is also found under conditions where consciousness is absent. However, recent studies found that faster unconscious detection of emotion-associated stimuli than neutral stimuli may be due to their unmatched physical characteristics, rather than by their emotional content. Thus, it is necessary to test whether emotional stimuli still have the processing advantage over neutral ones in unconscious conditions when low-level visual properties are matched. In order to investigate whether unconsciously prioritized processing still occurs with emotion-associated stimuli which are physically identical, we used the conditioning paradigm to manipulate the affective significance of Gabor patches. Participants performed two challenging visual detection tasks under the breaking Continuous Flash Suppression (b-CFS) paradigm. In experiment 1, differently oriented Gabor patches (45° and 135°) were used as material. During an initial learning phase, one oriented Gabor patch (e.g., 45°) was paired with an alarm sound (CS+), whereas the other was never paired with the alarm sound (CS–). The emotional rating indicated that negative emotion could be elicited by the alarm sound in the participants. The orientation of CS+ Gabor patches was counterbalanced across participants. In the subsequent testing phase, participants were required to discriminate the location of the Gabor patch relative to the central fixation as quickly and accurately as possible. In this phase, Gabor patches were suppressed by dynamic noise using b-CFS. The procedure in experiment 2 was the same with that in experiment 1, except that the color of the Gabor patches was also varied, between red and green. In experiment 1, there was no difference in the accuracy rates between CS+ stimuli and CS– stimuli (99% vs. 99%). Suppression time results showed that CS+ stimuli emerged from suppression faster than CS– ones. In experiment 2, there was no difference in the accuracy rates for different learning condition. For the analysis of suppression time, the “learning effect” was computed to represent difference between experimental conditions and control condition. Integrated learning showed a significant learning effect, while there was no remarkable learning effect in orientation learning or in color learning condition. These findings revealed an unconscious processing advantage for aversive conditioned stimuli. Furthermore, the learning effect was specific to the conditioned stimuli and could not generalize to other similar objects. Taken together, this study provided further evidence for the optimized processing of affectively significant visual stimuli in unconscious conditions.
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 The influence of Chinese and English background pop music to the memory of Chinese and English words in Chinese undergraduates
GAO Qi, BAI Xuejun
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (1): 1-8.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00001
Abstract   PDF (366KB)
 It was generally found that pop music would do harm to the efficiency and accuracy of visual activity when it was as a kind of background music. This is called irrelevant sound effect, which means that the presence of irrelevant sound significantly impairs people’s performance on main visual task. Some researchers believe that the reason of this phenomenon is because the lyrics of the background pop music add extra workload to the working memory, which interferes with the visual task. Moreover, it was shown that the first language lyrics impaired participants’ performance more seriously than a strange language. To participants, the second language is less familiar than the first language but more than a strange language. So how about the irrelevant sound effect when lyrics are participants’ second language? And how about it when the visual task contains the second language? This study aimed to investigate the influence of different language lyrics to the visual memory task, the familiarity of whose materials was different in two experiments. It was hypothesized that there would be significant irrelevant sound effects in different language background musics with different language materials, and languages of the lyrics and materials would have reciprocal actions in both experiments. 180 participants from a university (90 for each experiment)who have passed CET6 (College English Test 6) attended this study to research the effect of lyrics in background pop music on short-term memory for familiar and unfamiliar Chinese and English words. There were three kinds of background sounds: no background sound, Chinese background pop music and English background pop music. In order to control effects caused by instruments, this research used Let it go sung by Yao Beina (Chinese) and Demi Lovato (English) as the background music in both two experiments. Only the refrain was used as music materials. In the first experiment, participants should remember 32 Chinese and 32 English familiar nouns and finish an instant recall task. In the second experiment, participants should remember 10 unfamiliar Chinese and 10 unfamiliar English nouns and finish an instant recognition task. Memory materials were displayed by Eprime 1.0 randomly. In the first experiment, the main effect of music types was significant, F(2,87) = 15.67, p < 0.00, ηp² = 0.15. The scores in the condition of no background music (M = 14.12) were significantly higher than the other two conditions. Participants’ scores in English background pop music (M = 12.50) were significantly higher than that in Chinese background pop music (M = 10.30). In the second experiment, the results showed that the scores in the condition of no background sound (M = 6.87) were still significantly higher than the other two conditions (M = 6.03 for Chinese music, M = 5.83 for English music). F(2,87) = 4.69, p < 0.05, ηp² = 0.05. The difference between two experiments was a significant reciprocal action in the second experiment, F(2,87) = 19.23, p < 0.01, ηp² = 0.20. The scores in the condition of Chinese background pop music were higher when the materials were Chinese words (M = 7.03), and the scores in the condition of English background pop music were higher when the materials were English words (M = 6.93). The conclusion was that lyrics in background music would effect the main visual task no mater what kind of lyrics’ language was, but different familiarity of languages indeed had different influences on the efficiency and accuracy of the main task. When memory words were familiar, the familiar language of lyrics would do more harm to the memory. While the words were unfamiliar, which means the task was more difficult, lyrics would do more harm to the memory of words that with the same language. The level of difficulty of the task and the familiarity of lyrics’ language both can effect the memory, while the former is more important.
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 Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: The halo effect and generalization effect in the facial attractiveness evaluation
HAN Shangfeng, LI Yue, LIU Shen, XU Qiang, TAN Qun, ZHANG Lin
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (4): 363-376.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00363
Abstract   PDF (719KB)
 Even though people usually agreed that “a book should not be judged by its cover”, researches had repeatedly demonstrated that individuals spontaneously and very swiftly formed impression on others based merely on the appearance of their faces. Facial attractiveness is an important content in the first perception. Which had been linked to outcomes as diverse as mate choice, job hunting, and cooperation. Given these real world consequences of the first impressions, it is important to understand how these impressions are formed. Some studies found that facial physical characteristics, such as symmetry, averageness and sexual dimorphism, had a great impact on facial attractiveness. While different individuals have different experience, when faced with the same face in the same context, different individuals have different evaluations on facial attractiveness. Some researchers put forward a new theory, namely, the observer hypothesis, which demonstrated that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. However, the processing of unfamiliar facial attractiveness remained unclear. The goal of the current study was to explore how we processed the impression of unfamiliar facial attractiveness. 19 males and 27 females took part in the experiment one and 16 males and 22 females participated in the experiment two, each experiment contained two phases that were learning tasks and evaluation tasks. In the learning phase, participants firstly learned to associate faces with negative, neutral, or positive trait words or imaged the behavior of the individuals to form different impression, which was contribute to the same valence between the neutral face and trait words or sentence. When participants could evaluate the valence of the face correctly, they could proceed to the next phase. In the experiment one, 13 males and 25 females had passed learning phase and evaluated the original faces and the unfamiliar faces. In the experiment two, 12 males and 17 females had done the learning task and evaluation task successfully. And in the evaluation phase, extend of warmth, competence and facial attractiveness of the unfamiliar faces, which had 50% similarity with the learned faces, were evaluated. Both of the two experiments had the same results, which showed that there are two ways to form unfamiliar facial attractiveness: (1) the first one is that generalization effect occurred after halo effect, compared with negative familiar faces, positive familiar faces were evaluated more attractive, so did the unfamiliar faces that were familiar with positive familiar faces; (2) the second one is that halo effect occurred after generalization effect, unfamiliar faces which were similar with positive familiar faces were not only evaluated more positive but also more attractive. The results suggested that generalization effect occurred after halo effect and halo effect occurred after generalization effect were the two ways to form unfamiliar facial attractiveness. In conclusion, halo effect and generalization effect play an important role in the processing of unfamiliar facial attractiveness.
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 Mobile phone addiction and sleep quality in adolescents: Mediation and moderation analyses
LIU Qingqi, ZHOU Zongkui, NIU Gengfeng, Fan Cuiying
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (12): 1524-1536.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01524
Abstract   PDF (509KB)
 Mobile phones have integrated into people’s daily lives. Proper mobile phone use would help individuals meet diverse needs in learning and shopping, as well as in recreation and communication. However, the problem that more and more people are getting addicted to mobile phones has been salient. Studies have revealed that mobile phone addiction would bring about significant adverse impacts on mental health such as depression, anxiety, and even suicidal ideation. Poor sleep quality is also one of the major undesirable outcomes of mobile phone addiction. Research documented that mobile phone addiction significantly predicted sleep quality, and sleep quality deteriorated with increasing level of mobile phone addiction. Prior studies have focused mainly on the direct association between mobile phone addiction and sleep quality, however, little is known about the underlying mediating mechanism (i.e. how mobile phone addiction influences sleep quality) and moderating mechanism (i.e. when mobile phone addiction influences sleep quality). To address these gaps, the present study constructed a moderated mediation model to examine the effect of mobile phone addiction on sleep quality in adolescents since both the use rate of mobile phone and the occurrence rate of mobile phone addiction are very high among adolescents. Specifically, the present study would examine the mediating role of affect balance in the relation between mobile phone addiction and sleep quality of adolescents, and test whether the direct effect and the indirect effect would be moderated by rumination and mindfulness. A sample of 1258 high school students completed a battery of self-report questionnaires measuring their mobile phone addiction, sleep quality, affect balance, rumination and mindfulness. All the measures showed good reliability and validity in the present study. Data were analyzed using SPSS 17.0 and the SPSS macro PROCESS which was specifically developed for assessing the complex models including both mediators and moderators. The results were as followings: (1) After controlling for gender and grade, mobile phone addiction significantly exerted direct effect on sleep quality and indirect effect on sleep quality through the mediation of affect balance. (2) Both the direct effect of mobile phone addiction on sleep quality and the indirect effect of affect balance were moderated by rumination, and these two effects were stronger in adolescents with high level of rumination. (3) Both the direct effect and the indirect effect of were moderated by mindfulness, and these two effects were weaker in adolescents with high level of mindfulness. The present study highlights the mediating role of affect balance and the moderating role of rumination and mindfulness in the effect of mobile phone addiction on sleep quality. It may contribute to a better understanding of the effects as well as its paths and conditions of mobile phone addiction on sleep quality of adolescents. Moreover, it can also provide constructive suggestions for protecting and improving affect balance and sleep quality of adolescents in the mobile Internet era.
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 he influence of different sex ratios and resource-gaining capability on male’s mating selection
WANG Yan, HOU Bowen, LI Xinyao, LI Xiaoxu, JIAO Lu
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1195-1205.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01195
Abstract   PDF (456KB)
 With two experiments the present study tried to explore the influential factors of male’s mating standards under the priming of different sex ratios. To understand the changing pattern of mating strategies, the life history theory was integrated, which focuses on interpreting organisms’ trade-off in the allocation of limited resources. Research has shown that individual’s life history strategies could be different under different environmental priming. Literature indicated that individual’s mating standard could also be influenced either by clues related to mating preferences such as resources and good looking, or by clues not related to mating preferences like death rate, economic condition of the society. This study generally put the emphasis on influences of the priming of different sex ratios, ability to gain resources and childhood economic conditions on male’s mating preference. It was hypothesized that when primed by different sex ratios, male participants with different childhood economic conditions or ability to gain resources would show different changing pattern of mating standards. In experiment 1 participants were 230 unmarried males, with an average age of 20.02 years old (SD = 1.94). Participants were primed by reading a news article about the condition of high sex ratio (more men than women), or about the condition of low sex ratio (less men than women), or about a new kind of robot (control group). Then, the mating preferences were measured by self-report scales. Furthermore, participants were asked to rate the level of childhood economic condition and the self-appraisal of potential resource-gaining capability. The results revealed that males showed significantly lower mating standards on “good resources” when primed by high sex ratio clues (more men than women), compared with low sex ratio clues (less men than women). The interaction effect on mating standard of good resources between sex ratio and the capability of resource-gaining was significant. With higher level of resource-gaining capability, male participants showed lower mating standard for good resources when primed by high sex ratio than low sex ratio. On the other hand, with lower level of resource-gaining capability, male participants showed a quite similar mating preference for good resources under different priming. No main or interaction effects were found on the influence of sex ratio clues on the mating standards for good appearance and good parent. Finally individual’s childhood economic condition showed no significant effect on male’s mating preferences under different priming. In experiment 2 participants were 82 male undergraduates with a mean age of 19.37 years old (SD = 3.325). All the subjects were divided into two groups randomly. After filling with the demographic data individuals in both of the two groups would read information of 8 pictures with different priming, one was 6 male pictures and 2 female pictures, and the other was 6 female pictures and 2 male pictures. After then they filled a form of 12 mating selection items. The results in experiment 2 were the same as that in experiment 1. Both of the experiments indicated that the sex ratio as an important environmental clue might influence male’s mating standard for good resources, but not the good appearance or good spouse (parents). The capability of resource-gaining, but not the harshness of childhood, played a moderating role between sex ratio and mating standards of good resource.
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 Parent-child relationship and the comparison between parents and their children on their children’s mate preference
WANG Yan, QIAN Xiaoyun, TIAN Qian, GAO Jun, LI Xiaoxu
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (1): 91-100.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00091
Abstract   PDF (430KB)
 One of the important factors influencing young people’s mating choice would be their parents’ preferences for their children-in-law. Especially in China with only one child in most families, parents’ involvement could not been ignored. However, the literature is very limited on the differences on mating preferences between parents and their adult children within the same families. Few studies on Chinese families have been conducted on this topic so far. Based on questionnaires colletcted from 1142 individuals from 339 Chinese families (mother, father and their adult unmarried child), this research explored the differences in the mating preference for the potential children-in-law between the parents and their adult children. A total of 7 factors have been extracted in the exploratory factor analysis, which were namely, good character, good genes, good personality, good resources, same nationality and political background, good parents and good spouse. Based on these 7 factors, the differences in mating preferences between the two parents and between parents and their adult children have been explored. Compared with parents of the sons, the adult daughters’ parents were more concerned on the mating standards on good characters, good resources and same nationality and political background. Comparisons between the two parents showed that as compared to mothers, sons’ fathers were more concerned with the appearance of their potential daughter-in-laws. Futhermore, the adult daughters’ mothers demanded more on their potential son-in-law’s good characters, good personality and good resources. As for the differences between parents’ and their adult children, the children were more concerned with their future spouse’s good genes and pleasurable personality whereas the parents emphasized more on the good characters, good resources and same nationality and political background of their potential child-in-laws. Finally contrary to the common belief, results showed the closer the relationship between parents and their adult children, the greater were the differences between their mating preferences. The correlational analyses showed that the closer the fathers’ perceiced relationship with the children, the greater their demand on the traits of “good characters” and “good parents” for their child-in-laws as compared with their children’s preference. Similarly, the closer the mothers’ perceived relationship with the children, the greater the concern the mothers would have on the trait of “good characters” for their children-in-laws. However, the closer the relationship between mothers and sons, the more demanding the sons would be on the preference for “good spouse” as compared with mother’s preference. Contradictorily, children’s perceived relationship with parents did not have impact on the difference between parents and adult children in the children mate preference.
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 The effect of incidental similarity (“dress same”) on consumers’ product disposition intentions and its underlying mechanism
GONG Xiushuang, JIANG Jing
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (3): 337-348.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00337
Abstract   PDF (437KB)
 As a critical stage of consumer behavior, product disposition is closely related to the development of secondhand markets, ecology and public welfare. It is thus vital to examine the antecedents of product disposition behavior. Based on identity signaling perspective, we proposed a positive effect of “dress same” (i.e., incidental similarity of identity-signalling vs. non-identity-signaling products) on consumers’ product disposition intentions, with embarrassment as the underlying mechanism. Meanwhile, this paper also examined the moderating role of comparison of physical attractiveness in the aforementioned effect. Four studies were conducted to test our hypotheses. Study 1 was designed to test the main effect of “dress same”. Participants were randomly assigned to two conditions (i.e., incidental similarity of jacket vs. cellphone case). They were first instructed to read and imagine a scenario where they incidentally found a classmate wearing the same jacket (vs. using the same cellphone case) as theirs when they entered the classroom. Afterwards, they indicated their intentions to dispose of that jacket (vs. cellphone case). Study 2 was conducted on MTurk to test the mediating role of embarrassment and to preclude other alternative explanations. Similarly, participants read and imagined that they incidentally found a coworker wearing the same jacket (vs. riding the same bike) as theirs in a social interaction. Moods and product disposition intentions were measured subsequently. In study 3, we employed three product stimuli of the same product category (outfit: jacket vs. jeans vs. sports shoes) to rule out the confounding effect induced by product attributes and to enhance the robustness of our results. Study 4 further examined the moderating role of comparison of physical attractiveness using a 2 (incidental similarity of T-shirt vs. umbrella) * 2 (direction of comparison: upward vs. downward) between-subjects design. Comparison of physical attractiveness was manipulated by instructing participants to imagine that their physical attractiveness is superior or inferior to the person depicted in the scenario. In line with our predictions, “dress same” had a significant positive effect on consumers’ product disposition intentions, driven by feeling embarrassed. This effect was robust by using both student and non-student samples and independent of product visibility, price, and endowment effect. Moreover, our results also revealed a significant moderating role of comparison of physical attractiveness in the aforementioned effect. In the upward comparison condition, the main effect of “dress same” on product disposition intentions as well as the mediating effect of embarrassment was enhanced, but they were attenuated in the downward comparison condition. Our findings contribute to the literature in several different areas. First, by examining how “dress same” influences consumers’ product disposition intentions, this research enriches the literature of product disposition behavior in particular and consumer decisions in general. Second, our findings shed light on the literature of incidental similarity by exploring its negative consequences. Third, the current research contributes to the embarrassment literature by examining embarrassment in an important consumption context (i.e. “dress same”). Finally, we also extend the application of social comparison theory in consumer behavior research.
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 The effect of part-list cues on memory retrieval: The role of inhibition ability
LIU Tuanli, BAI Xuejun
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1158-1171.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01158
Abstract   PDF (556KB)
 When people are asked to recall items from a previously studied list and are given a subset of the items on that list as retrieval cues, they often do more poorly at recalling the remaining items on the list than do people asked to recall the items in the absence of such retrieval cues. Such part-list cueing effect has often been attributed to inhibitory executive-control processes that supposedly suppress the non-cue items’ memory representation. According to this account, part-list cueing effect arises as an ‘aftereffect’ of executive-control processes during the presentation of part-list cues. The presence of part-list cues at testing leads to an early covert retrieval of the cue items, and this covert retrieval is assumed to trigger inhibitory processes on the non-cue items, affecting the representation of the non-cues itself and thus lowering their recovery chances. The core functions of executive-control processes include inhibition, working memory, and cognitive flexibility. The aim of current study was to further investigate the relationship between individual’s inhibitory executive-control ability and the part-list cueing effect. In this study, undergraduate students with different cognitive inhibitory ability were asked to finish a part-list recall task, and participants’ age, learning experience, and living background etc. were well balanced. In Experiment 1, a color-word Stroop task was carried out to test participants’ inhibitory ability, which can be reflected by the accuracy difference between the incongruent and congruent conditions of the Stroop task. In Experiment 2, participants’ working memory capacity, which is typically reflected by the OSPAN and T-OSPAN scores, was tested by an operation span task. We found typical part-list cueing effect in both experiments, that participants’ memory performance, discrimination, and response bias for target items were worse in the part-list cue condition than in the non-cue condition. The regression analysis showed a negative relationship (b = -2.525) between the amount of part-list cue effect and participants’ cognitive inhibitory ability, with the increasing Stroop effect, the part-list effect reduced. However, a positive correlation was shown between the amount of part-list cue effect and individual’s working memory capacity, indicated by the OSPAN score and T-OSPAN score. Higher the OSPAN and T-OSPAN score is, larger part-list cue effect was observed. The above results indicated that low-Stroop-effect individuals showing stronger part-list cueing effect than high-Stroop-effect individuals, and high-WMC individuals showing more part-list cueing effect than low-WMC individuals. Our findings are consistent with previous studies looking into individual-differences, suggesting a close link between working memory capacity, cognitive inhibitory ability and inhibitory efficiency. In addition, the current results also support the inhibitory executive-control account of part-list cueing effect.
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 The cognitive processing of contrastive focus and its relationship with pitch accent
LI Weijun, ZHANG Jingjing, YANG Yufang
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1137-1149.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01137
Abstract   PDF (1428KB)
 Information structure (IS) is a very important pragmatic concept in linguistics. It has been broadly studied in linguistics, psychology, neuroscience, etc. IS can be generally distinguished as focus/new information and background/given information. It is proper for focused/new information to receive accent. Recently, researchers have shown increasing interest in the neural mechanism of focus processing and its relationship with pitch accent. It was generally found that focus elicited a widely distributed positivity compared to background (non-focused) information in both visual and auditory domain, although these positivities varied in time course, amplitude and scalp distribution. As for its relationship with pitch accent, the results are complicated due to the variability in task (prosodic, semantic), language (German, Dutch, and Chinese, etc.), focus-marking device (context-question, pitch accent, it cleft structure, etc.), as well as information status (being new or given information). The present study aims to investigate the processing of contrastive focus and its interaction with pitch accent at different positions using ERPs. We used a highly constraining question as context, which posited two single nouns (NP1 and NP2) at different positions (in the medial and end of clause) in the answer sentence as contrastive focus (new information, narrow focus). Twenty (nine males) healthy undergraduates participated in the experiment. The participants were told to listen carefully to each dialogue, and completed a sentence comprehension task. The EEG was recorded from 64 scalp channels using electrodes mounted in an elastic cap. Focus and accent related ERPs were calculated for a 1500 ms epoch including a 200 ms pre-critical words baseline. It was found that focus evoked a larger positivity compared to non-focus at both positions. This was convinced by the statistical analysis result at both NP1 during 650-1300 ms, F(1, 19) = 8.29, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.29, and NP2 during 550-1050 ms, F(1, 19) = 14.45, p < 0.001, η2p = 0.38. Besides, accented words elicited a larger positivity than unaccented ones at both of NP1 (950-1150 ms), F(1, 19) = 7.39, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.22, and NP2(1050-1400ms), F(1, 19) = 8.04, p < 0.05, η2p = 0.30. Furthermore, missing accent on focus did not elicit any observable brain effect compared to accented focus at both positions in the lateral area, F(1, 19) < 1, ps > 0.05. At the end of the clause, however, accent on background information elicited a larger negativity (200-350 ms) compared to consistently unaccented background, F(1, 19) = 10.84, p < 0.01, η2p = 0.38, while there was no significant difference between accented and unaccented focus, F(1, 19) < 1, p > 0.05. Overall, the positive effect elicited by focus at both positions may reflect that listeners consume more cognitive resource to integrate focus to discourse compared to non-focus. Besides, accented words elicited a larger positivity than unaccented ones at both positions, indicating that prosodic prominence attracted more attention than unaccented information. Finally, accent on non-focus evoked a larger negativity compared to unaccented non-focus at the end of the clause. This result may reflect that listeners were sensitive to the information structure induced by pitch accent and the processing were influenced by the position of focus. In sum, the current results suggest that listeners make on-line use of both focus and pitch accent in various ways at different positions to build coherent representations of dialogues.
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 The effect of emotional scene and body expression on facial expression recognition
BAI Lu, MAO Weibin, WANG Rui, Zhang Wenhai
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1172-1183.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01172
Abstract   PDF (641KB)
 Traditionally, the recognition of facial expression was studied by using isolated faces, which was affected by the categorical theory of emotion. In fact, in real life, facial expression always occurs in context. The result of facial expression recognition could be ambiguous when observer typically viewed face in isolation without any other cues. Recently many researches investigated how context may influence the facial expression processing. Numerous studies found context effect in recognition of facial expression, namely visual scene, body expression, emotional concept and surrounding other faces all shaped the facial expression processing. Evidence from ERPs and eye movements showed that facial expression was combined with both of emotional visual scene and body expression during the early stage of processing, and to some degree, was automatic. But none of these studies investigated the role they played simultaneously. Moreover, studies of context effect in recognition of facial expression seldom investigated the recognition of visual scene directly by using memory paradigm. Given that emotional concept may provide a top-down constraint in facial expression recognition, in the current study, we increased number of emotion labels for a better understanding of the context effect. Two experiments were conducted in this study, both of them adopted a 2 (facial expression: disgust, fear)×2(emotion congruent between face and context: congruent, incongruent) within-subject design. Stimuli were made up by images of disgust and fear (low level of perceptual similarity) facial expression, visual scene and body expression. All participants were required to label an emotion word for the face which was shown against backgrounds of visual scene (Exp1) or both visual scene and body expression (Exp2). Experiment 1 aimed to study the effect of emotion congruent between facial expression and visual scene on facial expression recognition. On the basis of experiment 1, experiment 2 added congruent or incongruent body expression to investigate whether body expression disturbed the effect of visual scene on facial expression recognition. Results of the two experiments indicate that: (1)The influence of visual scene on facial expression recognition is still significant when increased the number of emotion labels; (2)Participants would rely more on visual scene and remember the scene more often when emotional facial expression is shown against an incongruent visual scene; (3)The effect of visual scene on facial expression recognition can be influenced by body expression, but the emotion of visual scene still play an important role in recognition of negative facial expression
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 Electrophysiological evidences of different emotional regulation strategies between the avoidant and the secure attachment individuals in the context of lovers, intimacy
YANG Qingqing, HU Na, CHEN Xu, NIU Juan, ZHAI Jing
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (3): 306-316.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00306
Abstract   PDF (656KB)
 People differ in adult attachment style perceive and regulate their social relationships and emotions in the different ways. Previous researches have investigated the efficiency and preference of emotion regulation strategies among different attachment styles and found that the secure attachment individuals tend to reappraise the context and reinterpret events in a mildly way while the avoidant individuals prefer to deactivate the distressed experience and suppress emotional expression. However, empirical evidences were still lacked when exploring the temporal dynamics of the neural processes. The current study tends to fill this research gap by using event-related potentials (ERP) to investigate how avoidant and secure attachment individuals differ in their two emotion regulation strategies: cognitive reappraisal and expression suppression, in lovers intimate scenarios. Forty-three participants (twenty-two avoidant and twenty-one secure attachment individuals), ages of 18–25 years, participated in the study. The experiment consisted of two sessions. In the first session, participants were instructed to freely view (VIEW) and to respond naturally to the content without trying to alter the upcoming emotions. In the second session, participants were instructed to regulate their emotions either in a reappraisal way or in a suppression way. Results showed that: (1)secure attachment individuals reported significantly higher level of pleasure than the avoidant individuals in response to the intimate pictures; (2) secure individuals reported significantly higher level of valence and arousal scores than the avoidant individuals in the emotion regulation condition. ERP analysis further indicated that the mean amplitude of the LPP in response to the intimate pictures in the secure individuals when adopting the cognitive reappraisal strategy was significantly lower thanwhen they in the free-viewing condition in five time windows. However, when using expression suppression strategy, secure individuals showed a significantly reduced LPP amplitude in 300–500, 500–700 ms time windows, compared with the free watching conditions, and showed increased LPP amplitude in 900–1100 ms and 1100–1300 ms time windows. For avoidant individuals, which they used expression suppression strategy, the pictures evoked a significant lower LPP amplitude compared to free-viewing condition in the five time windows. However, there was no significant differences when they used reappraisal strategy compared to spontaneous watching. In sum, there were significant differences both in the subjective emotional measures and electrophysiological responses in response to the lover’s intimacy pictures between the avoidant and secure attachment individuals which they used either the cognitive reappraisal or the expression suppression to regulate their positive emotions. At an early phase of positive emotion regulation, secure individuals applied cognitive reappraisal strategy to regulate emotions efficiently or sustainably, while the avoidant individuals used expression suppression strategy. This study enriched the theoretical relationship between the different emotion regulation strategies and attachment styles, and broadens the research width of emotion regulation and attachment, which can further provided theoretical basis for future researches focusing on the emotion regulation.
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 Long-term effects of choice of major, social support, learning engagement on college students’ interest in their major
PAN Yingqiu
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (12): 1513-1523.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01513
Abstract   PDF (676KB)
 Previous research suggested that about 40% of Chinese undergraduate students report that the majors they are studying are not congruent with their interest. To shed light on the underlying factors and processes that shape college students’ interest in their major, a longitudinal study was conducted to investigate whether and how factors including students’ initial choice of major, academic engagement (i.e., critical thinking, and time and study environment management) and social support (i.e., peer relatedness and help-seeking from teachers) in the first three years of college would shape students’ interest in their major in the third year of college. A total of 729 freshmen from a comprehensive university with high academic reputation in southern China participated in the study. 633 (305 males and 328 females) of them (87%) continued to participate in the study in the second and third years of college. The sample attrition rate for each year was about 8%. The main reason for the sample attrition was that students were not available at the time of data collection. Students from the same major program completed questionnaires in a group at a specific time in their classroom. Questionnaires were collected in the same procedure by the same experimenter in December of each year. Latent Growth Modeling was used to analyze data. It was found that students’ critical thinking as well as time and study environment management steadily decreased from Year 1 to Year 3 while peer relatedness showed an increasing pattern over the three years. It was also found that the students’ initial choice of their major and a higher level of critical thinking in the first year positively predicted students’ interest in their major in the junior year. The slopes of both critical thinking and time and study environment management from Year 1 to Year 3 also showed a positive prediction to students’ interest in their major. That is, students who demonstrated a higher level of critical thinking or were better in time and study environment management from Year 1 to Year 3 were more interested in their major in the junior year. Help seeking from teachers in the junior year also had a positive contribution to students’ interest in their major. In short, college students’ initial choice of major, critical thinking, time and study environment management, and help seeking from teachers are critical for college students’ interest in their major. College students’ deceasing critical thinking and time and study environment management is worthy of attention for researchers and educators in higher education institutes.
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 Perceiving better, inhibiting better: Effects of perceptual precision on distractor-inhibition processes during working memory
LIU Zhiying, KU Yixuan
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (10): 1247-1255.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01247
Abstract   PDF (624KB)
 Working memory (WM) is the memory system to store and process information shortly for the goal-directed behavior. The resource of WM is extremely limited. It is necessary to selectively maintain relevant information and inhibit interference from distracting information. Previous studies have found that individuals with high WM capacity would be able to suppress interference more efficiently. However, it’s still unknown whether the precision of WM representation will be influenced by distractors in a similar way as WM capacity. Perceptual representation as the first stage of information processing, its precision will highly influence the quality of information stored in WM. Here, we adopted an independent perceptual task and a variant version of color recall task to examine (1) the effect of interference on WM capacity as well as precision and (2) whether the precision of perceptual representation would influence the ability to inhibit interference during WM processing. Fifty-three undergraduate students participated in the experiment. In the first perceptual task, participants reported the color of a cued item while the item remained presented until a response was made. Afterwards, color recall tasks were operated including a ‘distractor-present’ and a ‘distractor-absent’ condition. Each condition contained three levels of WM load: low (2 targets), medium (4 targets) and high (6 targets). In ‘distractor-present’ condition, target items were presented along with two more distracting colored stimuli with a different shape. Participants were asked to remember only the color of the target items and report the remembered color of a cued item by clicking on a color wheel. From the distribution of errors between the reported color value and the original color value, we could obtain measures for both capacity and precision via standard mixture model used by Zhang and Luck, 2008. To explore the effects of distractor on WM capacity and precision and whether these influence will vary with WM load, repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed on WM capacity and precision. For WM capacity, main effects of distractors, WM load and their interaction were significant. WM capacity decreased with increasing WM load. And WM capacity in ‘distractor-absent’ condition was significantly higher than performance in ‘distractor-present’ condition. Interaction of distractor and WM load mainly reflected that distractors decreased WM capacity under the medium and high loads. For WM precision, main effect of load was significant and distractor affected precision on low load condition. When all participants were divided into two groups according to their performance in the perceptual task, the distractor effect only existed in the group with lower perceptual precision. Pearson correlation analysis further revealed that perceptual precision could predict the ability to inhibit distractors, in either WM capacity or precision. The quality of the perceptual representation in the lower group negatively correlated with the distractor effect in WM capacity while the perceptual precision in the higher group negatively correlated with the distractor effect for WM precision. The present study has shown that interference influenced the quantity and quality of WM representations differently under certain WM load. And individuals with lower perceptual quality would be more susceptible to interference. These findings imply that the performance and the ability to suppress distraction during WM may be enhanced via training of perceptual precision.
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 Social class and social perception: Is warmth or competence more important?
WEI Qingwang, LI Muzi, CHEN Xiaochen
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (2): 243-252.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00243
Abstract   PDF (413KB)
 Warmth and competence are the two fundamental dimensions (i.e. Big Two) in social cognition. According to the Dual Perspective Model (DPM), warmth is the primacy of the Big Two and the Big Two are differentially linked to the actor (self) vs. observer (other) perspectives. In the observer perspective, warmth is more relevant and more important; whereas in the actor perspective, competence is more relevant and more important. Another domain of literature on social class psychology suggested that lower-class individuals were more sensitive to external environment and valued interdependent self; whereas upper-class individuals were more self-focused and valued independent self. The current study combined these two domains of literature and examined possible moderating role of social class on the link between the Big Two and the actor vs. observer perspectives. Specifically, we hypothesized that both lower-class individuals and upper-class individuals would value warmth more than competence in evaluating others, and this primacy of warmth would be more evident for lower-class individuals (H1). In contrast, lower-class individuals would also value warmth more than competence whereas upper-class individuals would value competence more than warmth when evaluating themselves (H2). Two studies were carried out to test these hypotheses. In Study 1, 122 undergraduate participants were presented with a list of 8 sentences each describing a behavior of a stranger. The behavioral acts were deliberately chosen to be amenable to both warmth and competence traits. Participants were asked to use a single word to describe the character of the subject in each sentence. Information on participants’ objective socioeconomic status (SES, family income and highest parental education level) was also collected. In Study 2, 137 community participants were asked to rate the importance of 12 traits (6 on warmth dimension, 6 on competence dimension) in evaluating themselves. The MacArthur scale was used to assess participants’ subjective social class rank. In Study 1, more warm words (as compared to words on the competence dimension) were chosen to describe the character of the subjects in the sentences. This pattern was consistent among both lower- and upper-class individuals. In addition, lower-class individuals used significantly more warm words than upper-class participants. In Study 2, lower-class individuals scored significantly higher on warmth than competence. Contrary, upper-class individuals scored significantly higher on competence than warmth. Taken together, findings from these two studies provided evidences to support our hypotheses. The current study contributes to the social cognition literature by integrating the DPM and social class psychology. Social class does influence the primacy of warmth vs. competence as demonstrated previously in DPM. The primacy of warmth in evaluating others is more typical for lower-class individuals and the primacy of competence in evaluating themselves is more typical for upper-class individuals. Moreover, DPM further develops the ideas of social class psychology. Lower-class individuals showing contextual social cognitive tendencies and upper-class individuals showing solipsistic social cognitive tendencies are reflected very well in the primacy of warmth vs. competence in evaluating others vs. themselves. Uncovering the nuances in social cognition between lower and upper classes also provides important practical implications to promote healthy inter-class communications.
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Positive effect of intuitive processing is modulated by cognitive resources under different levels of consciousness
Tingting YU, Yue YIN, Shu WANG, Shujin ZHOU, Xiaochen TANG, Junlong LUO
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (6): 583-591.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00583
Abstract   HTML   PDF (429KB)

It was argued that thinking is characterized by the action of two distinctive cognitive systems, namely, intuitive (Type 1) processing and analytic (Type 2) processing. Intuitive processing is generally described as rapid, automatic, unconscious, and effortless, whereas analytic processing appears to be slow, controlled, conscious, and effortful. Decades of research have established that human judgment is often predisposed to rapid, intuitive processing. However, recent research has indicated that intuitive processing can support reasoning and even enhance it under certain conditions. Recent findings have suggested that intuitive processing should be as affected by cognitive resources and consciousness as analytic processing. However, intuitive and analytic processing will interfere with one another through a series of classical paradigms in which the results of two distinctive cognitive systems are in conflict. To avoid this interference, the present study applied the Chinese character chunking decomposition task, predicting that intuitive processing positively affect problem solving, but that it would disappear under conditions wherein cognitive resources were extremely scarce.

In the present research, we first drew up the Chinese character chunking decomposition task as materials, and participants were asked to judge whether the target character (e.g., “又”) was a component of the original character (e.g., “支”). Then, the formal experiment was organized into a 2 × 2 × 2 within-subject design. The first variable was the duration time of the target character, consisting of 2 levels: 24 ms and 200 ms; the second variable was the material category, consisting of 2 levels: intuitive material and analytic material; and the third variable was the inclusion relation, consisting of 2 levels: inclusion and exclusion. The inclusion condition meant that the target character was a component of the original character, whereas the exclusion condition denoted that the target character was not a component of the original character.

The results indicated that participants showed a lower rate of accuracy and a longer response time on analytic materials than on intuitive ones. However, no difference was observed between the two types of materials in terms of response time and accuracy when the duration time of the target character was 24 ms, and the inclusion relation was inclusion. Meanwhile, the accuracy scores of intuitive and analytic processing were approximately 0.5 at the guessing level. Signal detection analysis showed that the results under the unconsciousness condition were not influenced by the response bias.

The results proved that intuitive processing was rapid and analytic processing was slow. As predicted, intuitive processing positively affects the problem solving process. In addition, the experiment showed that intuitive processing was effortful and relied on cognitive resources, which was inconsistent with prototypical dual-process theories. Therefore, the positive effect would disappear when the cognitive resources were below demand.

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 Fairness cognition-behavior gap in 4~8 year-old children: The role of social comparison
LIU Wen, ZHANG Xue, ZHANG Yu, YU Ruiwei
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (12): 1504-1512.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01504
Abstract   PDF (361KB)
 Fairness is a comprehensive strategy that takes into consideration of self-interest and other people's interests. The development of fairness norms, that is, using certain rules to distribute resources among different agents, includes two levels: the cognitive level, understanding fairness norms, and the behavioral level, applying fairness rules. Young children endorse fairness norms related to resource distribution, but often act in contradiction to those norms when given a chance to distribute. While currently most research focuses on children's fairness cognition or behavior, the phenomenon of children’s fairness cognition-behavior gap and its influence factors have rarely been explored in the context of a single study. Using a novel approach, the present study aims to investigate the gap of fairness cognition and behavior among 4- to 8- year-old children. The research presented here offers clear evidence of this discrepancy and goes on to examine possible explanations for its diminution with age, as well as the impact of social comparison on such resource distribution behavior. Study 1 adopted the Dictator game to examine the equity principle among 105 4~8-year-old children’s fairness cognition and behavior, and compared the cognition-behavior gap. The justifications/motivations of children’s distribution behavior were also coded and analyzed. In Study 2, We replicated the findings in Study 1, that children will take a cost to avoid being at a relative disadvantage, but also found that 5-to 6-year-olds would spitefully take a cost to ensure that another welfare falls below their own. We tested 80 6-year-old children, and analyzed the influence of social comparison on children’s distribution behavior, both upward and downward social comparisons considered. A variant of the Dictator Game, were used to investigate children’s behavior in different conditions. In Study 1, we found that children at this age already have developed fairness understanding, their fair distributive behavior increased with age, and the gap between cognition and behavior decreased with age. Nevertheless, they failed to engage in equal distribution until age 8. Children’s interpretations of their behavior showed a significant age-related difference from 4 to 8. As children grew older, their interpretations transitioned from focusing on desire to principle. Study 2 found that the degree of unfairness and the cost had a significant impact on the choice of distribution behavior in both the upward social comparison and downward social comparison. Under the no-cost situation, children were more inclined to avoid their own disadvantage and to favor their own favorable results. In the highly unfair situation, it was necessary to avoid being inferior to others, even if the cost was too high. The present study of children’ fairness cognition-behavior gap in a single environment contributes to the literature on moral development. The results provide some support for traditional accounts of moral development by showing that, in the course of development, children’s distribution behavior is increasingly consistent with the norm of fairness that they endorse from an early age. These results also suggest that social comparison influences children’s distribution behavior, and that the development of fairness includes overcoming an initial social comparison preference for self-advantage/disadvantaging others.
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 Effectiveness of mindfulness meditation in intervention for anxiety: A meta-analysis
REN Zhihong, Zhang Yawen, JIANG Guangrong
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (3): 283-305.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00283
Abstract   PDF (1297KB)
 Mindfulness meditation (MM) has enjoyed a growing popularity in healthcare in recent years when bio-psycho-social approaches are becoming more and more emphasized in modern medicine. There has been mounting empirical evidence showing MM’s significant effectiveness in alleviating anxiety for both nonclinical and clinical populations. However, the effect size of the available empirical investigation results has remained inconsistent and possible moderators have yet to be explored comprehensively. In order to determine the immediate and long-term efficacy of MM in overcoming anxiety, we conducted a meta-analysis based on a systematic and comprehensive review of the published studies on mindfulness-based interventions for anxiety. We also examined whether some characteristics of research participants (e.g. age, geographic areas) and interventions (e.g. format, duration, at-home practice), and specifics of the study (i.e. types of control, quality of the study) and data analysis (e.g. attrition rate) moderate the magnitude of the effectiveness of MM interventions (11variables). The review was performed following the rigorous PRISMA Protocol. Published studies using randomized controlled trial were selected from major databases worldwide to include investigations conducted in both Western and Eastern countries. Databases used include VIP Journal Integration Platform, Wan fang, China National Knowledge Infrastructure, Scopus, Web of Science, Embase, the Cochrane Library, and PubMed. Keywords used are mindfulness, meditation, MBSR, MBCT, anxi*, mood, intervention, therapy, program. Using the random effect model, we pooled the effect size (Hedge’s g), and conducted a publication bias evaluation, a moderating effect analysis and an interaction analysis in CMA 3.3. Results of our analyses revealed fifty-five RCTs from both Eastern and Western countries (k = 68 samples, N = 4595 participants). Mindfulness meditation for treating anxiety is shown to be efficacious with a medium to large immediate effect (g = 0.60), but the effect is not reliably shown at follow-up assessments. The post-heterogeneity test result suggests that using the random effect model is reasonable. Univariate meta-regression analysis yielded that study quality, geographic areas, participants’ age, intervention format (Group vs. Individual), amount of at-home practice, and attrition rate shown in data analysis remarkably influenced the effect size of MM’s immediate effect, while types of control, health condition, mindfulness practice experience, intervention duration, or statistical analysis methods used (ITT vs. PP) did not appear to moderate MM’s immediate effectiveness for reducing anxiety. Additionally, geographic areas affect the effect size the most. Multiple meta-regression models suggested that type of control and geographic areas, as well as statistical analysis methods significantly moderate the effect size of intervention effectiveness. Overall, the study results demonstrated high immediate effect of mindfulness-based practices for alleviating anxiety, but the effect did not seem to last. In addition, geographic area turns out to be the strongest moderator, and practitioners in the East seem to benefit more than those who are in the West. Study quality, participants’ age, mindfulness practice experience, intervention format, at-home practice quantity and attrition rate also affect the effect size to a certain extent. Future research is warranted to improve methodological quality of outcome studies, to provide more clear and replicable evidence of MM efficacy, and to explore more underlying moderators for the intervention effect size, such as participant satisfaction and so forth.
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 Automatic emotional access in emotional stroop of different proficient type of bilinguals
JIAO Jiangli, LIU Yi, WEN Suxia
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1150-1157.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01150
Abstract   PDF (342KB)
 In the domain of second language acquisition, one of the key questions relates to the representation of emotions in different languages of the bilingual’s. Although it has been proposed that the first language (L1) contains more richly interconnected semantic associations than the second language (L2), the emotional representation difference between L1 and L2 has been debated. Because the proficiency of L2 may influence the bilingual’s emotion automatic access, we thus investigated the emotional access in different proficiency type of bilinguals in this regard. According to their proficiency levels of L2, three types of bilinguals were selected in our study. That is, comprehensive proficient bilinguals, reading-proficient bilinguals, and listening and spoken-proficient bilinguals. Comprehensive proficient bilinguals are proficient in L2 input and output. Reading-proficient bilinguals are able to read and write in L2 without being able to listen and speak it, whereas listening and spoken-proficient bilinguals are the opposite. The present study investigated the modulation effect of bilingual’s types on the emotional access in L1 and L2 through the Emotional Stroop paradigm. The experiment was a 3-factor mixed design with 2 (Languages: L1 vs. L2) × 3 (Type of bilinguals: Comprehensive proficient bilinguals vs. Reading-proficient bilinguals vs. Listening and Spoken-proficient bilinguals) × 3 (Emotional valence: Positive vs. Negative vs. Neutral). The stimulus were delivered using E-prime software, which also automatically recorded reaction times and error rates. The results of reaction times showed that: (1) For Comprehensive proficient bilinguals: under the condition of L1, there was significant difference between positive and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 4.75, p < 0.05, ηp2 = 0.81), also negative and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 4.80, p < 0.05, ηp2 = 0.81). Under the condition of L2, there was significant difference between positive and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 6.98, p < 0.001, ηp2 = 0.69), also negative and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 6.65, p < 0.05, ηp2 = 0.68). That is, comprehensive proficient bilinguals showed Emotional Stroop effect under the condition of L1 and L2. (2) For Reading-proficient bilinguals: Under the condition of L1, there was significant difference between positive and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 5.96, p < 0.001, ηp2 = 0.73), also negative and neutral words (F(19) = 6.60, p < 0.001, ηp2 = 0.74). Under the condition of L2, there was significant difference between positive and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 5.56, p < 0.05, ηp2 = 0.86), also negative and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 3.86, p < 0.05, ηp2 = 0.85). That is, Reading-proficient bilinguals also showed Emotional Stroop effect under the condition of L1 and L2. (3) For Listening and Spoken-proficient bilinguals: Under the condition of L1, there was significant difference between positive and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 5.33, p < 0.001, ηp2 = 0.86), also negative and neutral words (F(1, 19) = 4.92, p < 0.05, ηp2 = 0.85). Under the condition of L2 there were no significant difference between these three type of words. That is, Listening and spoken-proficient bilinguals showed Emotional Stroop effect only under the condition of L1 but not L2.There were no significant differences in error rates. In summary, the results suggested that Comprehensive proficient bilinguals and Reading-proficient bilinguals had automatic emotional access in L1 and L2, and Listening and Spoken-proficient bilinguals have weaker emotional access in L1 but not in L2.
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 Priming effects of virtual avatars on aggression: Influence of violence and player gender
HENG Shupeng, ZHOU Zongkui, NIU Gengfeng, LIU Qingqi
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (11): 1460-1472.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01460
Abstract   PDF (654KB)
 A virtual avatar is a video game player’s self-presentation in virtual space. The physical appearance of an avatar can prime stereotypes and behavioral scripts stored in memory. The relation between avatar appearance and aggression has been substantially confirmed, but there are open questions about the conditions in which this association is strongest, and what the relation between avatar identification and aggression is. This study used a cue-priming paradigm in two experiments to test the effect of avatar appearance on avatar identification and aggression in violent and nonviolent video games; to test gender as a moderator of these effects; and to test the correlation between avatar identification and aggression. The first experiment investigated the effect of avatar appearance on the level of avatar identification and aggression in violent and nonviolent video games. This experiment employed a 2 (Avatar Appearance: justice/evil) × 2 (Game Violence: violent/non-violent) between-subjects design. 75 male participants were randomly assigned to play a violent or non-violent video game using an avatar representing justice or evil. Based on the first experiment, the second experiment explored the interaction effect of avatar appearance and gender on the level of avatar identification and aggression in a violent video game. This experiment also employed a 2 (Avatar Appearance: justice/evil) × 2 (Gender: male/female) between- subjects design. 42 male and 36 female participants were randomly assigned to play a violent video game using an avatar representing justice or evil. After game play, the amount of hot sauce given by participants to an ostensible partner who hated spicy food was used to measure aggression, and an avatar identification scale was used to measure identification with the avatar. The results showed that: (1) The relations between avatar appearance, avatar identification and aggression were influenced by the violence of game. In the violent video game, the identification with the justice avatar was significantly higher than with the evil avatar, and the evil avatar elicited significantly higher aggression than the justice avatar. In the non-violent game, there was a marginally significant difference between the identification with the justice or evil avatar, but there was no significant difference between the level of aggression elicited by the justice or evil avatar. (2) In the violent video game, the avatar effects were moderated by player gender. Specifically, the avatar identification of female participants was significantly affected by avatar appearance, whereas that of the male participant was not. Avatar appearance had a stronger impact on the aggression of males than females. (3) There was a significant correlation between avatar identification and aggression, which was moderated by game violence and gender. In conclusion, the results of this study supported the priming effect theory and were partially consistent with the existing research. Several factors influenced the effect of avatar appearance on aggression, including a video game factor (violent or non-violent game) as well as an individual factor (male or female), and the complex relationship between avatar identification and aggression. One social implication of the study is that game designers should embed more positive associations, situations, and stereotypes in games to provide users more positive potential priming effects.
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 Should I sacrifice my profit before his eyes? Partner’s ability and social distance affecting the tendency of reputation-profit game
WANG Pei, TAN Chenhao, CUI Yichen
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1206-1218.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01206
Abstract   PDF (614KB)
 Previous studies have shown that when individuals must make a choice between reputation and profit (reputation-profit game), individuals usually tend to get a reputation from the sacrifice of profit. According to competitive altruism theory, the reason why people cooperate to get a reputation at the cost of profit is to compete against others to get some valuable opportunities in the future with the help of the reputation. Based on this perspective, ability and social distance of the game partner (only receives information about reputation) which decide the upper limit of profit and the belief of whether the partner would afford such a chance would affect the tendency of reputation-profit game. To demonstrate these two factors and reveal the nature of reputation obtaining behavior, in this research, we hypothesized that ability and social distance of the partner would affect the preference between reputation and profit, when faced with a partner whose ability is strong or social distance is close, individual would prefer reputation than profit, and there would be an interaction between ability and social distance. A condition about contribution was set up in Experiment 1. 40 undergraduate students participated in this experiment. They were told that they would attend in an online activity. First, participants took part in a series of dummy prisoner dilemma game and won some money (100 tokens). Second, they were told that they would play a game (trust game) with another student in the future, and the importance of reputation was introduced (all participants were trustee). After that, participants were told that there were some public accounts which need their contribution, and they could make virtual contribution to each account and only one would be chosen as the real. Before the contribution, they were told that the contribution would be seen by a student who would be the trustee. Ability (truster’s principal: high/low) and social distance (schoolmate/students from other schools) were manipulated as independent variables, and contribution was used as dependent variable. A condition about bargain was set up in Experiment 2. 55 undergraduate students participated in this experiment. The background was just like experiment 1. First, participants were told that they will perform as suppliers in an online task whose task was pricing the materials they sold. They were told their profit would be calculated respectively in each zone, and only one would be selected as the final result. Second, participants were told if the price they set was higher than the “real value”, there would be 50% chance of being confiscated half of earnings in this turn. Then they were learned that there would be two times of bargain in each zone, and buyers would chat about each supplier soon after the first bargain. Before the pricing tasks, participants were informed that the number of suppliers was greater than the number of players in each zone; each player had the right to choose a supplier to buy material in the second bargain. Ability (player’s demand: high/low/none) and social distance (schoolmate/ students from other schools) were manipulated as independent variables, and participant’s pricing result was used as dependent variable. The results of Experiment 1 showed that participants donated more money when his donation was seen by a student whose ability was high. This finding demonstrated that the higher the ability is the more reputation individual wants. And the results of Experiment 2 showed that there was an interaction between ability and social distance. Only when partner’s ability of the future mission was low, participants preferred to propose a lower price before the partner whose social distance is close in order to gain reputation from the sacrifice of profit. This finding showed only when ability is low, then individuals would take social distance into account, and they tend to acquire a good reputation before a partner whose social distance is close. All the findings supported our hypothesis that ability and social distance are the core factors which affect the tendency of reputation-profit game. These results verified the tactical of individual’s choice in reputation- profit game.
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 What do you listen to under the pressure of time? The moderator effects of reference group on impulsive buying
ZHOU Yuanyuan, HU Yangli, ZHAO Yancheng
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (11): 1439-1448.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01439
Abstract   PDF (404KB)
 Sometimes consumers should make decisions under the pressure of time. Although researchers have investigated impulsive buying under time pressure for many years, almost no consensus has reached. A number of literature have found that time pressure has a positive impact on impulsive buying while other literature have got the opposite conclusion. These researches ignored others’ influence. With the popularization of the social media, consumers are more and more exposed to reference group when making decision under the pressure of time. So in this research we will investigate the relationship between time pressure and impulsive buying under different types of reference group influence based on reference group theory. Three studies were conducted to verify our hypotheses. Study 1 used secondary data and an experiment to test main effect. First, 104 products’ sale data from JUMEI have been gotten. Based on regression analysis, we verified the interaction effects of time pressure and reference group on impulsive buying. Then, experiment 1 was conducted through a 2 (time pressure: high vs. low) × 2 (reference group: informational influence vs. normative influence) between-subjects design. 128 participants completed the experiment. The results also revealed the same significant interaction effects. Study 2 used the similar experimental design as study 1 to further test our mediation effects. 148 university students from Zhongnan University of Economics and Law participated in the experiment. The results revealed the significant mediation effects of instant gratification (i.e., the degree of immediate gratification that an individual obtains via making an impulsive buying) and normative evaluation (i.e., judgments about the appropriateness of engaging in impulsive buying behavior). Moreover, study 3 further tested informational influence. A total of 144 participants from Huazhong University of Science and Technology completed the study with a 2 (time pressure: high vs. low) × 2 (informational influence: content information vs. quantity information) between-subjects design. The results revealed the significant interaction effects of time pressure and informational influence on impulsive buying. The results of these three studies have provided supports for our hypotheses: (1) The reference group moderate the relationship between time pressure and impulsive buying—Specifically, consumers under higher time pressure will do more impulsive buying in the normative reference influence, while those under lower time pressure will do more impulsive buying in the informational reference influence. (2) Instant gratification and normative evaluation mediate the above relationships. (3) The informational influence moderate the relationship between time pressure and impulsive buying—Consumers under lower time pressure will do more impulsive buying when reading content information, while those under higher time pressure will do more impulsive buying when reading quantity information. Finally, we discussed the theoretical contributions and managerial implications of this paper, and offered some critical insights for marketers.
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 The influence of moral emotions on online helping behavior: The mediating role of moral reasoning
WU Peng, FAN Jing, LIU Huashan
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (12): 1559-1569.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01559
Abstract   PDF (446KB)

According to the dual-process model and the social intuitionist model, moral emotion is defined as a key factor in predicting moral behavior. The difference between the two models is whether moral emotion has a direct effect on moral behavior. The dual-process model points out that moral emotion directly affects moral behavior, whereas in the social intuitionist model, the effect of moral emotion on moral behavior will be mediated through moral reasoning. With the rapid development of internet and information technology, people’s psychological states and behaviors have changed dramatically. So the above distinctions between the two models can be extended to the studies on cyberpsychology and behavior. To test the two models in an network environment, the present study involved a series of experiments to examine whether moral emotion predicted online helping behavior and whether moral reasoning mediated this relation.

Video materials were validated in the pilot study. A total of 120 college students evaluated the feeling of sympathy and guilt, the level of pleasure and arousal after watching one of three video materials (sympathy, guilt and neutral). In Study 1, 56 college students were recruited and randomly assigned to the “sympathy”, “guilt” or “neutral” group. Participants were asked to complete an online test after watching the relevant moral emotion video. After the testing, participants were informed that they would receive an email sent by the experimenter anonymously. In the email, participants were required to offer additional help (to fill in an online questionnaire). Participants’ online helping behavior was measured by the amount of questions that they answered. In Study 2, 233 college students were invited to participate. In addition to the same arrangement as in Study 1, participants’ moral reasoning was measured by the Prosocial Reasoning Objective Measure (PROM).

The results of pilot study suggested that the “sympathy” video material led to greater sympathy and less guilty, while the “guilt” video material led to greater guilt and less sympathy. With regard to the level of pleasure and arousal, there was no significant difference between the “sympathy” video material and the “guilt” video material, whereas there was a significant difference between the “neutral” video material and the other two video materials. In Study 1, ANOVA was used to analyze the data. The results indicated that as compared to neutral emotion, sympathy and guilt aroused more online helping behaviors. However, there was no difference between sympathy and guilt. In Study 2, statistical mediation analysis with a multicategorical independent variable (recommended by Hayes and Preacher) was used in the analyses of the data. The results showed that sympathy and guilt could induce online helping behavior through the mediation effect of moral reasoning, whereas moral emotion had a direct effect on moral behavior.

This study has practical and theoretical significance. Specifically, the finding suggests that the role of moral emotion in moral education, in particular as related to moral reasoning, has to be further researched. Theoretically, the present study confirms that video-prime is an effective method to explore moral emotion. Furthermore, most of the findings of the present study supports the dual-process model.

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 Is color words identification really not needed in attentional resources? Evidence from the Stroop paradigm
WU Yanwen, YOU Xuqun
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (10): 1267-1276.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.001267
Abstract   PDF (445KB)
 According to the classical theories of automaticity, automatic processing is considered entirely stimulus- triggered and independent of top-down control of attention. Automatic processes elicited by unconscious stimuli are not needed in capacity-limited attentional resources. Furthermore, the classical theories highlight the inflexibility of the cognitive system. Namely, conscious information processes would be massively influenced by various unconscious processes. Such inflexibility would require for much conscious control as intended actions could only be ensured by inhibiting numerous interfering response tendencies. In contrast to these classical conceptions, Kiefer and Martens (2010) recently developed an attentional sensitization model of unconscious cognition, which allows for more flexibility and adaptability of automatic processing or unconscious cognitive processing, and the cognitive system has to be configured by attention and task sets in order for automatic processes to occur. Research on unconscious perception has long been known, but the controversies about researching methods and theoretical interpretations in empirical findings have not been resolved. However, in the past few years, it has become increasingly apparent that factors such as attention allocation, intentions, and task sets do influence on the processes that underlie unconscious perception. Kiefer and Martens (2010) argue that higher level task representations configuring the cognitive system in a way of task-congruent processing streams. In view of the above theoretically different opinions, this research aims to extend the findings of attentional sensitization theory that unconscious semantic stimulus processing is dependent not only on the activation of a semantic processing, but also on the extent to which participants assign attention to specific semantic stimulus dimensions and features. In the present research, the Stroop task paradigm was used because the Stroop paradigm was the most robust findings in attentional research that the time to name a color was lengthened markedly in the presence of an irrelevant word, and the Stroop effect was considered the hallmark of automatic processing. The Stroop paradigm would be appropriate to verify the unconscious processing. In three experiments, we used color words, homonyms of color words and color semantic associative words as priming words, and employed several stringent measures to prevent participants from attending to the irrelevant words, including the priming words’ semantics and physical colors separated from time and space; Each words were outside the focus of spatial attention and their visibility were decreased so as to discuss whether the automatic processing was constrained by attentional resources, and whether the participants obtained different amount of attentional resources could make a difference in automated processing. The results showed that: (1) Automatic processes are heavily dependent on the attentional resources, and the automated processes were terminated when the color words could not obtain the attentional resources. (2) The amount of available attentional resources regulated the efficiency and effectiveness of automatic processing, the more attentional resources obtained, the larger significant semantic priming effects to the target stimulus. The results supported the hypothesis of attentional sensitization model that automatic processes were susceptible to top-down control by the higher level cognitive system.
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 The mechanism and effect of leader humility: An interpersonal relationship perspective
MAO Jianghua, LIAO Jianqiao, HAN Yi, LIU Wenxing
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1219-1233.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01219
Abstract   PDF (561KB)
 Humility is a traditional virtue in China, however, the effectiveness of humility has been questioned in modern society. For example, by expressing humility, one’s strength and contribution may not be recognized by others. Although the traditional view requires us to show humility, however, the modern view indicates that if someone expresses humility, he/she may not get deserved reputation. Meanwhile, sometimes followers may regard leaders’ humbleness as weakness because followers need powerful leaders to guide them. The paradox of traditional and modern views of humility raises leaders’ concern about whether and how to display humility in workplace. Based on interpersonal relationship perspective, this research aims to examine the effect of leader humility on employee organizational citizenship behavior, as well as the role of inferred leader humility motives during this process. Instead of focusing on the formal relationship between leader and follower, we proposed that humble leaders would be more attractive to followers and would be easier to form a good interpersonal relationship with followers. Meanwhile, we proposed that when followers inferred different motives of leader-expressed humility, the positive relationship between leader humility and relational closeness would be weakened or strengthened. In order to test our hypothesized model, we conducted a time-lagged leader-member matching questionnaire design. Our sample came from 13 big companies located in Wuhan or Xiangyang, which resulted in 295 leader-followers dyads. To reducing common method bias, leader humility, inferred leader humility motives and demographic variables was measured in time 1. 7 weeks later, we measured relational closeness and LMX from followers and we measured voice behavior and helping behavior from leaders. Because leader humility was embedded in teams, we used hierarchical linear regression to analysis the data. Meanwhile, to test the indirect effect of relational closeness in relationship between leader humility and employee organizational citizenship behavior, bootstrapping method was also adopted. Results showed that: (1) after controlling leader-member exchange, leader humility was positively related to relational closeness. (2) Leader humility could enhance followers’ voice and helping behavior. (3) Relational closeness mediated the relationship between leader humility and followers’ voice and helping behavior. (4) When follower inferred leader humility’s impression management motive was high, the positive relationship between leader humility and relational closeness would be weakened. However, the moderation effect of follower inferred leader humility performance enhancement motives on relationship between leader humility and relational closeness was not significant. The present research makes several contributions to leader humility literature. By examining the positive effect of leader humility on follower OCB, this research proves the effectiveness of leader humility further. Moreover, this study confirmed the mediating role of relational closeness as well as its boundary conditions. As to the practical implications, this research suggested that leaders could show more humility in workplace to trigger followers to do more organizational citizenship behavior. However, at the same time, leaders should realize that if their humility was motivated by impression management, the positive effect of leader humility would be weakened.
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 Parafoveal preview benefits during silent and oral reading
GAO Min, LI Lin, XIANG Huiwen, SUI Xue, Ralph Radach
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (11): 1357-1369.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01357
Abstract   PDF (422KB)
 The researches pay more attention to the parafoveal preview benefits (PPB) in the field of reading and language comprehension. Most of previous studies about PPB were done in silent reading. Those studies mainly investigated whether there is PPB and what type the PPB is. Seldom researches are done about oral reading. We cannot find the literature about the extraction time of preview information during Chinese reading. Thus, present study used the boundary paradigm to explore the differences of PPB between silent and oral reading in Chinese. In experiment 1, in order to explore the effect of the preview of word N when word N-1 was fixated during silent and oral reading, we manipulated the preview condition of word N (masking preview and target preview) and reading modes (silent reading and oral reading). The results show that parafoveal preview information plays an important role in eye movement control during oral reading and silent reading. The preview benefits in oral reading are smaller than that in silent reading. In experiment 2, to explore the effect of the extraction time of preview information of word N when word N-1 was fixated during silent and oral reading, we manipulated parafoveal preview time (0 ms, 50 ms, 100 ms and 150 ms) and reading modes (silent reading and oral reading). The results show that during silent reading, the extraction of parafoveal information might start immediately at the beginning of fixating the word N, but during oral reading, it might start relatively late. In summary, during Chinese reading, parafoveal preview can extract the information during silent reading and oral reading. However, there is significant difference of parafoveal process between silent reading and oral reading. First of all, PPB in silent reading is bigger than that in oral reading. Secondly, parafoveal preview information extraction during oral reading is later than that during silent reading. The last but not least, parafoveal information extraction did not start immediately when pre-target word was fixated. This finding is consistent with the theory of sequential attention shift. But there is not the same phenomenon in silent reading.
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 The stimulus representation of unconscious information and its temporal characteristics
LUO Ting, QIU Ruyi, CHEN Bin, FU Shimin
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, 50 (5): 473-482.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00473
Abstract   PDF (529KB)
 The current study reports three experiments to test whether and how unconscious activation of distractors with subliminal presentation, especially at stimulus level, affects response to targets in a letter flanker task. In each experiment, the flanker letters were made unconscious using visually backward masking letters. As classic Flanker tasks, the congruency between target letters and flankers were manipulated to form three conditions – conflicting at stimulus level, conflicting at response level, and non-conflicting. Stimulus conflict referred to trials in which the target and the flankers differed but linked to the same response key, indicating that the competition between the target and flankers occurs at stimulus level. In contrast, response conflict referred to trials where the target and flankers were not only different but also associated with distinct response keys, indicating that the competition between the target and flankers emerges at both the stimulus and response levels. Non-conflict referred to congruent target and flankers trials, used as a baseline condition. Accordingly, the stimulus conflict effect was the difference between stimulus conflict and non-conflict conditions, while the response conflict effect was the difference between response conflict and non-conflict condition. A total of fifty seven participants this study. Experiment 1A was a baseline experiment with supraliminal flankers, in which the classical effects of stimulus conflict and response conflict were observed. However, when the flankers were made unconscious in Experiment 1B using subliminal flankers, a reversed stimulus conflict effect emerged but the response conflict effect maintained. These results were replicated in Experiment 2 when symbolic stimuli were used to reduce the difficulty in forming a stimulus-response association. Likewise, the effects were observed in Experiment 3 with more stimuli and response types were introduced. Crucially, the effect of stimulus conflict dynamically varied along different time windows, while the effect of response conflict was stable across time windows. Altogether, the results provided systematically behavioral evidence for the subliminal activation of distractors that affects target performance at both the stimulus and response levels in a flanker task. The data indicated that the unconscious representation of distractors dynamically influences stimulus processing of targets over time but exerts a stable impact on responses. Our findings, especially the unconscious representation at stimulus level can clarify the mechanism and integrate previous contradicting conclusions of unconscious processing.
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 The effects of moral punishment and relationship punishment on junior middle school students’ cooperation behaviors in public goods dilemma
CUI Liying, HE Xing, LUO Junlong, HUANG Xiaojiao, CAO Weijia, CHEN Xiaomei
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (10): 1322-1333.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01322
Abstract   PDF (499KB)
 Several factors can account for the cooperative behaviors in social dilemmas, which include individual differences, reward and punishment system, task design and so on. People have a strong aversion to being the “sucker” in social dilemma situations so that those who prefer cooperation may be willing to punish free-riding. Researches demonstrated that although punishment could promote people’s cooperative behaviors temperately, their cooperation levels would drop down to the baseline when the punishment was removed. In previous studies, material punishment was adopted most frequently, however, social punishment has not been sufficiently investigated. Furthermore, there is no unanimous conclusion towards the issue whether the cooperation of the juveniles has any gender differences. So this study mainly examined the effects of moral punishment and interpersonal punishment on the junior middle school student’s cooperative behaviors. Last but not least, social value orientation is a relatively stable individual state and is defined as a tendency of allocation proportion between individual and others. Therefore, we further explored the relationship between social value orientation and student’s cooperative behaviors under different types of punishment. Accordingly, the present study consisted of 2 experiments. The first experiment was organized into a 3 × 2 factorial design. The first factor was the type of punishment, consisting of 3 levels: moral punishment, interpersonal punishment and no punishment. The second factor was the phase of punishment, consisting of 2 levels: punishment in the first phase and no punishment in the second one. Specifically, participants were randomly assigned to the three types of punishment. For punishment groups, participants were given the two phases of punishment. The second experiment was organized into a 3 × 2 × 2 factorial design. The first two factors were the same as experiment 1. The third factor was the type of social value orientation, encompassing 2 levels: prosocial participants and proself participants. The results are as follows, first, the cooperative level was significantly higher in the moral and interpersonal punishment conditions compared to no punishment condition, and the punishment effect remained when the interpersonal punishment removed. Second, punishment effects were significantly greater in the interpersonal and moral conditions than in the no punishment condition for the female participants, but the male participants just had this effect on the case of the interpersonal conditions. Third, a greater cooperative level observed in the moral and interpersonal punishment conditions across both prosocial participants and proself participants, but only the prosocial participants kept a higher cooperative level when the punishment removed. These results suggested that the moral and interpersonal punishment could promote the cooperative behaviors of the junior middle school students. In comparison, the interpersonal punishment had a more lasting effect, which was more prominent in the male group. Additionally, relative to the case of proself participants, there was a long-term effect on punishment for prosocial participants.
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 Resolving “Commuting Paradox”: How commute time influences subjective well-being
WU Weijiong
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (11): 1449-1459.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01449
Abstract   PDF (626KB)
 People in today’s society spend a substantial amount of their time traveling to and from work. Researchers have rightfully concerned themselves with the question of if and how commuting affects people’s lives. Some behavioral economists suggested that commute time play a negative effect on individuals’ life satisfaction. This phenomenon is called “commuting paradox”, in which individuals’ utility are imbalance due to longer commuting time is not compensated. The present study regards commute time as the work-family transition zone, such as social transition zone and psychological transition zone. With these perspectives, we aimed to examine the moderating roles that marital status (social transition zone) and recovery experiences (psychological transition zone) play in the relationship between commute time and subjective well-being. What is more, the mediating mechanism of commuting utility was explored. In order to test our model, we conducted a survey on 822 part-time graduates from three colleges. Data were collected from 3 follow-up surveys to avoid the common method bias. Participants were asked to fill out questionnaires at three time points (Time 1: commute time, marital status and recovery experiences; Time 2: commuting utility; and Time 3: satisfaction with life, happiness). These variables were assessed by: commute time survey, marital status survey, recovery experiences questionnaire, satisfaction with life scale, PANA scale, and Princeton affect and time survey. All Cronbach’s alpha coefficients were acceptable (ranging from 0.83 to 0.91). Descriptive statistics and hierarchical polynomial regression analysis were applied to test the hypotheses. The results indicated that: (1) marital status (social transition zone) moderated effects of commute time on subjective well-being, i.e., unmarried employees’ commute time had negative impact on life satisfaction, married employees’ commuting time had U shape impact on life satisfaction, happiness and occupational well-being; (2) recovery experiences during work→home commute (psychological transition zone) moderated effects of commute time on outcome variables, i.e., psychological detachment moderated relationships between unmarried employees’ commute time and commuting utility; relax experience moderated the relationship between unmarried employees’ commute time and happiness; (3) effects of married employees’ commute time on commuting utility and happiness were moderated by relax experience, whereas the relationship between married employees’ commute time and life satisfaction were moderated by psychological detachment; (4) commuting utility not only mediated the effects of commute time on life satisfaction and happiness, but also mediated the moderations of marital status and recover experiences; (5) employees’ utility equilibrium were found during “commuting time trap” (1.75 h - 2.75 h), in which longer commuting time was compensated. Significance: The present study analyzed the commuting paradox from two aspects, including social transition zone and psychological transition zone. Then we built a theoretical model regarding how commute time influences employee’s subjective well-being. Together, our findings contribute to the literature by helping to (a) provided a psychological explanation for commuting paradox, (b) integrate commuting utility, life satisfaction and happiness, (c) resolve mixed findings regarding the issue of commute time and subjective well-being. The managerial implications of our findings, limitations, as well as future research directions were discussed.
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 The temporal courses of word frequency effect and syllable frequency effect of Chinese handwritten production in the old: An ERP study
HE Jieying, ZHANG Qingfang
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (12): 1483-1493.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01483
Abstract   PDF (891KB)
 A central issue in written production concerns how phonological codes influence the output of orthographic codes. The obligatory phonological mediation hypothesis assumes that the retrieval of an orthographic representation was entirely dependent on the prior retrieval of phonological codes. By contrast, the orthographic autonomy hypothesis assumes that individuals can gain access to orthographic representation directly from meaning without phonological mediation. In a picture names writing task, we used the event-related potential (ERP) technique to examine the time course of the word frequency facilitation effect and the syllable frequency facilitation effect in Chinese handwritten production in the old. Twenty-two participants (10 males, age range: 64~81 years) participated in this study. Sixty black and white line drawings with monosyllabic words were chosen as stimuli. The experimental design included word frequency of picture names (high vs. low) and syllable frequency of picture names (high vs. low) as within-participants and between-items variables. During the experiment, participants were instructed to write picture names as fast and accurately as possible. Behavioral data indicated the facilitation effects of word frequency and syllable frequency. Writing latencies were faster in picture names with high word frequency than those with low word frequency. Similarly, writing latencies were faster in picture names with high syllable frequency than those with low syllable frequency. There was no significant interaction between word frequency and syllable frequency for behavioral data. ERP data indicated that: (1) in the time window of 200~300 ms after pictures onset, we found independent word frequency effect and syllable frequency effect. The interaction between two variables was absent. (2) in the time window of 300~600 ms after pictures onset, we found the interaction between word frequency and syllable frequency, and distinct map distributions for both effects. (3) the onset latencies of word frequency and syllable frequency effects were 212 ms and 238 ms, respectively. We therefore suggest that the early word frequency effect may originate from the retrieval of orthographic information in the orthographic lexicon, while the early syllable frequency effect may originate from the retrieval of phonological information in the phonological lexicon. The syllable frequency, as a type of phonological information, influences the relatively late stage of written production. Our findings thus provide evidences for the orthography autonomy hypothesis, rather than the phonological mediation hypothesis.
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 Advancing the Effort-Reward Imbalance Model: Economic rewards influence on teachers’ mental health
YANG Ruijuan, YOU Xuqun
Acta Psychologica Sinica    2017, 49 (9): 1184-1194.   DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2017.01184
Abstract   PDF (593KB)
 In many countries over the past two decades, workplace stress has increased remarkably. Teaching is an example of a highly stressful occupation due to the diverse requirements of the job: teachers have always been subject to high job-related stress and tend to suffer from stress-related psychosomatic problems at unusually high rates. The purpose of this study is to explore how economic rewards influence on teachers’ mental health. This article uses the interdisciplinary perspective of psychology and economics to test the Effort-Reward Imbalance (ERI) model. This study consists of a cross-temporal meta-analysis that examines the changes of Chinese teachers’ scores on the Symptom Checklist-90 (SCL-90) from 1995 to 2013. Samples of Chinese teachers (N = 48712) from one hundred and thirteen different past studies were included in this study’s data. The means and SDs of the nine different SCL-90 dimensions were calculated for each of the 19 years under examination, and were compared using Excel2010 and SPSS19.0. Annual average teacher salaries were gathered from the China Statistical Yearbook. Results showed that: (1) Teachers’ mental health decreased from 1995 to 2009 and improved from 2009 to 2013. Although though some studies suggested that there were significant differences in mental health between genders, our composite conclusions showed that there was no significant difference between male and female teachers (N = 19919, p = 0.596). Kindergarten teachers and college professors tended to have the best mental health, whereas primary school, middle school, and special education teachers tended to have the worst mental health. Vocational middle school teachers scored between these two groups (N = 32260). (2) Economic rewards play an important role in influencing teachers’ mental health over time. A one-way causal relationship was observed between teachers’ compensation and psychological factors. The result show that interpersonal sensitivity, anxiety, hostility, and psychoticism were all influenced by teachers’ compensation and a lag period for such influences was one year. Obsessive neurosis, paranoid psychosis, and depression were also influenced by teachers’ compensation, with a lag period of three years. The present study represents the first time that economic methodology has been combined with psychological research to test the ERI model. Using Granger Causality to investigate the link between teacher salary and changes in SCL-90 scores, the results clearly indicate that economic rewards influence teachers’ mental health. This study also represents the first recent use of a large sample of members from one profession to test the ERI. Possible contributions to the field of Psychological Economics are discussed in the conclusion.
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