ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B


    28 January 2012, Volume 44 Issue 1 Previous Issue    Next Issue

    For Selected: Toggle Thumbnails
    Competition and Emotion Impact on Effect of Prototype Elicitation during Insight Problem Solving
    LI Ya-Dan,MA Wen-Juan,LUO Jun-Long,ZHANG Qing-Lin
    2012, 44 (1):  1-13. 
    Abstract ( 1267 )   PDF (438KB) ( 2800 )  
    The cognitive mechanism of insight remains largely unknown and there are different theories to explain it. On the basis of previous studies and views, Zhang Qinglin proposed that the heuristic theory of prototypal matters in insight problem solving, which can be regarded as creative problem solving under experimental conditions. In addition, many previous relevant studies had revealed inconsistent results of the impact of competition and emotion on creative thinking. Based on the “prototype elicitation” theory, the present study was designed to explore the dynamic effects of competition and emotion on the mechanism of insight problem solving by using traditional Chinese logogriphs.
    This study adopted a four-stage experimental paradigm. First, we created different competitive levels of experimental situation; second, the participants were asked to learn the prototypal logogriph; third, participants’ emotion of different valences were induced; and fourth, participants were required to complete the target logogriph test. In the experiment, the 4(high, medium, low competitive level vs. without competition) ×3 (positive, neutral vs. negative emotion) experimental designs were adopted. The materials used in the present study were seventy emotional images taken from Chinese Affective Picture System (CAPS) and seventy pairs of medium-difficulty Chinese logogriphs. The results showed that: 1) the prototype elicitation effect of successful logogriph problem solving was effected significantly by the competitive levels (F (3,64)=16. 921, p<0. 001). Specifically, low intensity competitive level was most favorable to the prototype elicitation, moderate and high intensity was next, and under the condition of no competition was the worst. 2) the prototype elicitation effect of successful logogriph problem solving was also effected significantly by the induced emotions (F (2,65)=14. 118, p<0. 001) . Specifically, negative and neutral emotion inspired better prototype elicitation effect than positive emotion. 3)the interaction effects of with/without competition and emotion valence were significant on the prototype elicitation effect of successful logogriph problem solving (F (1,67)=3. 493, p<0. 05). The prototype elicitation effect of negative emotion was best without competition, the neutral emotion was next, and the positive emotion was the worst; But with competition, the prototype elicitation effect of neutral emotion was best, the negative emotion was next, and the positive emotion was the worst.
    These results show that neither high nor low arousal level can promote insight problem solving but proper arousal level has a positive effect on it. These also suggest that the mediating role of motivation factors and the reciprocal effect brought by the competition and emotion on the mechanism of prototype elicitation effect. However, the mechanisms of these effects are not known yet, and more researches about the impact factors of competition and emotion on the mechanism of insight problem solving are required.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    The Effects of Transformed Gender Facial Features on Face Preference of College Students: Based on the Test of Computer Graphics and Eye Movement Tracks
    WEN Fang-Fang,ZUO Bin
    2012, 44 (1):  14-29. 
    Abstract ( 1498 )   PDF (558KB) ( 3256 )  
    Perceived facial attractiveness can influence people’s social interactions with one another, including mate selection, intimate relationship, hiring decision, and voting behavior. People evaluate faces using multiple trait dimensions such as attractiveness and trustworthiness both of which are affected by facial masculinity or femininity cues. However, studies manipulating the computer graphics of sexual dimorphism on facial attractiveness have yielded inconsistent results. Some found that feminine facial features in male faces were more attractive than masculine ones. Some others found that women prefer masculine male faces. And still others found that women preferred femininity in male faces.
    The current study used the computer graphics and the eye tracker to assess the effect of the dimorphic cues on the perception of facial attractiveness among Chinese college students through two experiments. Experiment 1 assessed women’s perceptions of attractiveness and trustworthiness of men’s faces under the condition of either perceived masculinity vs. femininity or the sexual dimorphism. Results showed that, when non-face cues (e.g., hairstyle) were masked, women perceived femininity in men’s faces as more attractive and trustworthy than the masculinity. However, in the sexual dimorphism condition in which the non-face cues were not masked, women found masculinity in men’s faces more attractive and trustworthy.
    Experiment 2 used the eye tracker to assess the effects of the dimorphic cues on the evaluation of facial attractiveness. Results showed that the subjects preferred the masculine male faces obtained by the sexual dimorphism and feminized female face. Eye movement tracking showed that average pupil dilation and average fixation count on a male face were significantly higher than on a female face. The first fixation time was significantly greater for the masculine faces than for the feminine ones, but the first fixation time was significantly shorter for the male faces than the female ones. The first fixation time and first fixation duration for masculine faces were both significantly longer than for feminine ones. These indicators of eye movement provide some evidence for the effect of the sexual dimorphism on the facial attractiveness.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    ERP Dissociation and Connection between Implicit and Explicit Memory at Encoding
    MENG Ying-Fang
    2012, 44 (1):  30-39. 
    Abstract ( 873 )   PDF (445KB) ( 1812 )  
    The distinction between explicit and implicit memory is fundamental to current memory research. Explicit memory involves conscious remembering of prior episodes, often by means of intentional retrieval of those episodes, whereas implicit memory involves influences of prior episodes on current behaviour without intentional retrieval, and sometimes without conscious remembering of those prior episodes. Much evidence confirms that explicit memory and implicit memory have different neural bases at the retrieval stage, but what about the encoding stage? Little evidence is provided owing to methodological ambiguities in prior studies which often compared incidental tests with intentional tests. In fact, brain activity in one test can reflect not only implicit (memory) but also explicit memory. Addressing these ambiguities has awaited a theoretical approach that distinguishes implicit (memory) and explicit memory for specific episodes in one test. To explore this question, a forced-choice recognition was conducted to produce priming without awareness of memory retrieval. We suggest that recognition mechanisms allied with explicit memory are different from recognition mechanisms allied with implicit memory.
    An ERP experiment was conducted with a study-to-test paradigm, in which participants performed a color study task, followed by a forced-choice recognition. There are two stages during recognition. Two words (one old and one new) were presented in a forced-choice recognition, and subjects were asked to choose the old one. If subjects could not choose a studied word, they were encouraged to guess. After choosing, subjects would report whether the word was from the study stage or not. Neural activities during the study phase were recorded. The Dm for explicit memory was identified by contrasting ERPs to words for which the studied word was selected and endorsed it as an old word versus ERPs to words for which the studied word was unselected; The Dm for implicit memory was identified by contrasting ERPs to words for which the studied word was selected but failed to endorse it as an old word versus ERPs to words for which the studied word was unselected.
    The results showed that implicit and explicit memory share a 200~300ms frontal-central negative-going Dm effect, which maybe reflect attention at encoding, so that these words can be retrieved implicitly or explicitly. Implicit memory involved a temporal negative-going Dm effect from 200ms after stimulus onset, which maybe reflect encoding into the perceptual representation system. Explicit memory involved an earlier (400-600ms) right prefrontal, positive-going Dm effect, as well as a late (600-1200ms) parietal negative-going Dm effect. These effects maybe reflect elaborated processing and encoding into the episodic memory system.
    The results suggested that implicit and explicit memory are not completely independent of each other. The truth is that they have both independent and shared components at encoding.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Modality Specificity of Horizontal Metaphoric Representation of Time: A Comparison Study Between the Blind and Sighted People
    ZHANG Ji-Jia,SONG Yi-Qi
    2012, 44 (1):  40-50. 
    Abstract ( 702 )   PDF (430KB) ( 1115 )  
    The conceptualization of the abstract concept — "time" need to be grounded on a more concrete conceptual domain — "space". It has been demonstrated that this “left-past, right-future” representation of time is psychologically real, and the experience responsible for the representation of time is related to the exposure of participants to a left-to-right orthographic system. That is to say, the reading/writing directionality affects the representation of temporal sequences. There are two theories which try to explain this finding: the perceptual symbol theory and the propositional symbol theory. Perceptual symbol theory assures that the left-right mapping of time is perceptual, while propositional symbol theory assures that this mapping is linked to the abstract, amodal concept of time. The most substantial difference between these two theories is whether a perceptual facilitation effect with temporal words focuses on a specific modality. The present study aimed to test whether it could be accessed through auditory modalities.
    Experiment 1 explored the modality specificity of horizontal metaphoric representation of time by the blind people who carried out a time nature judgement task on auditorily presented words referring either to the past or the future. A 2×2×2 repeated measure design was adopted with independent variables of temporal reference (past / future), target location (left / right) and response location (left / right).The results showed horizontal metaphoric representation of time only was observed at the motoric level of the blind people. The blind people were faster responding to past words or sentences with their left hands and to future words or sentences with their right hands. These results indicated that spatial information which was used to represent time was perceptual. Contrary to the reading directionality of the blind people, the writing directionality of the blind people is right-to-left. The results showed that the directionality of metaphoric representation of time was not coherent with the writing directionality of the blind people. It suggested that the sensory-motor experience was related to the reading habits of the blind people.
    In Experiment 2, the sighted people were divided into two groups: the sighed group and the blindfolded group. The procedure of experiment 2 was the same as in experiment 1. A 2×2×2×2 mixed design was used. Two groups of participants differing in the spatial frame of reference showed different results. Only when the words were auditorily presented on the right side, did the blind-folded show the patterns of congruency between response side and temporal reference at the motoric level. This result further proved the positions of perceptual symbol theory.
    It is well known that the spatial cognition of the blind people is different from the sighted ones. So, a comprehensive analysis of data of the two experiments above was made to test whether the three groups had different horizontal metaphoric representation of time. A 3×2×2×2 mixed design was used. The results of the blind people and sighted people were similar. Neither of them was affected by the auditory spatial information in the horizontal metaphoric representation of time, which suggested that the the spatial cognitive ability in the blind’s motoric modality compensated the loss of sight.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    The Locations of Word Segmentation in Chinese Reading: Research Based on the Eye-Movement-Contingent Display Technique
    ZHANG Zhi-Jun,LIU Zhi-Fang,ZHAO Ya-Jun,JI Jing
    2012, 44 (1):  51-62. 
    Abstract ( 622 )   PDF (452KB) ( 1125 )  
    Recent studies have demonstrated that words are fundamental units in Chinese reading (Bai et al., 2008; Yan et al., 2010). Yan et al. (2010) suggested a two-stage process model for Chinese reading. If parafoveal word segmentation is successful for target selection, readers will aim at the center of the target word. If not, readers will gaze at the beginning of the next word. Given these hypotheses, we examine whether the assistance in word segmentation promotes reading. Two experiments were conducted using the eye-movement-contingent display technique.
    The sentences used in both experiments consisted of 7 to 10 two-character words. These stimuli were balanced following a Latin-square design. There were four treatments of sentences in Experiment 1. As Word n was fixated, (1) the color of Word n and all words to its left changed from red to black, (2) the color of Word n+1 and all words to its left changed from red to black, (3) only the color of Word n changed from red to black, and (4) normal sentences were presented in red. Moreover, the four corresponding treatments from black to red were added to correspond to these changes. The first treatment facilitated the segmenting of Word n from its subsequent text, the second facilitated the segmenting of Word n+1, the third drew attention to Word n, and the normal sentences provided a baseline. As a result, there were no significant differences in reading time and the number of fixations among four experimental treatments (p>0.05). However, the mean gaze time and the number of words refixated in the second treatment were lower than those in the baseline group (p<0.05), whereas the mean saccade length and the number of words skipped were higher (p<0.05).
    The results of Experiment 1 showed that Chinese readers always segmented Word n+1 from its subsequent texts as they fixated on Word n. However, we cannot exclude the possibility that exogenous attention leads readers to fixate for less time. Therefore, a second experiment was conducted. Experiment 2 adopted similar treatments as Experiment 1, but the two adjacent characters not belonging to a word were grouped and changed color together. In other words, the manipulations did not provide cues to facilitate word segmentation. Consequently, there were no significant differences in mean saccade length, the number of fixations, the number of words refixated and skipped, and the number of regressions among different treatments (p>0.05). However, there were reliable differences in mean fixation duration, gaze duration, first fixation duration, the number of words skipped and sentence reading time between the third treatment and the baseline group (p<0.05), indicating that the treatment significantly interrupted reading.
    The patterns of eye movements in Experiment 2 differed from those in Experiment 1. Thus, the results obtained in Experiment 1 were not due to exogenous attention. The distribution of the first fixation on the word zones was checked, and the fixation duration in the single-fixation situation and the first fixation duration in the two-fixation situation were compared. The latter was longer than the former in Experiment 2, whereas there was no difference in Experiment 1. Therefore, we concluded that there were two types of word segmentations. First, readers attempted to segment Word n+1 from its subsequent text as they fixated on Word n. Second, readers continued to segment the word as it was fixated on if the first segmentation failed.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    The Representation of Causal Sequence in Expository Text Comprehension
    WU Li-Mei,MO Lei
    2012, 44 (1):  63-75. 
    Abstract ( 680 )   PDF (324KB) ( 1102 )  
    Text comprehension is viewed as the construction of a mental representation of the situation described by the text. Based on the evidence from narrative comprehension, Zwaan et. al., (1995) have proposed an event-indexing model of text comprehension. According to the model, during comprehension, readers construct their representations from five indexes: time, space, causality, intentionality, and agent. Actually, these five indexes are corresponding to the framework of an event, and the model fits the comprehension of narrative that usually involves creating a mental representation of the states of affairs described by the text. In view of both theoretical consensus and the evidence from narrative text experiments, it is somewhat surprising that evidence for the construction and the structure of representation is not clear when comprehension of expository text is considered.
    There has been much less research using expository than there has been using narrative texts, and a major issue concerning these studies has been the effect of knowledge map on the processing of expository. During expository comprehension, knowledge map was more helpful for the participants who without interrelated domain knowledge than the participants who with some interrelated domain knowledge in the construction of the representation. Based on the systematic analysis of previous theories and evidences from text reprehension in the reading of narrative and expository text, it raised a question that whether the construction of text representation can be realized in expository comprehension like that in the narrative reading. This research was designed to throw some light on the question. We examine the status of construction and the structure of mental representation of expository text about familiar topics.
    Three experiments were conducted. Experiment 1 was to explore whether participants construct the representation of causal sequence presented in the expository. Experiment 2 varied the order of the description to make it differ from the inherent order of the causal sequence. In Experiment 3, two causal sequences were provided. Participants read the short expository on familiar topic and finished a probe task after reading each passage. All materials were presented on a monitor controlled by computer. Participants read the passages in a self-paced manner, advancing the text one line at a time by pressing the space bar. Participants were instructed to read carefully so that they would be able to judge whether the probe word appeared in the text. The reaction times for the probe followed by the prime sentence were recorded and analyzed.
    The results showed that in the reading of expository on familiar topics, mental representation was constructed based on the causal relation, rather than the surface relation, the representation of the expository about a causal chain was organized with the causal order, but not affected by the descriptive order, the corresponding causal relations were grasped if the content illuminated more than one causal chain.
    The present findings indicate that the construction of representation of causal sequence can be realized in comprehending expository on familiar topics. Also, the evidence implied the pattern of causal representation of expository text.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    The Effects of Context and Word Morphology on Interpreting Unknown Words by Learners of Chinese as A Second Language
    JIANG Xin,FANG Yan-Xia
    2012, 44 (1):  76-86. 
    Abstract ( 757 )   PDF (356KB) ( 1706 )  
    When learning Chinese, vocabulary is one of the main factors affecting foreign learners’ reading ability. Most learners are able to interpret unknown words through useful clues, which shed light on vocabulary learning and acquisition. To interpret unknown words, learners mainly rely on contextual clues and word morphology clues. However, very little research has been conducted on the roles of contextual and word morphology clues in the process of interpreting unknown compound words of different combinations by learners of Chinese as a second language, especially those with different native languages. Therefore, the present research intends to address the impacts of the following factors on interpreting unknown words by learners of Chinese as a second language, i.e. contextual and word morphology clues, the influence of morpheme combinations and learners’ language backgrounds.
    Thirty-six intermediate-level learners of Chinese (18 Euro-American students and 18 Japanese students) were invited to participate in the test. Thirty-six semitransparent compound words were chosen as target words, which were unacquainted to the participants although the individual words comprising the compound words were familiar to them. The participants were asked to interpret the meaning of compound words under three different conditions: (1) the words-only condition, (2) the context-only condition with target words omitted, (3) words plus context clues condition, in which target words were presented within specified sentences. The factorial design of 2 native languages (western languages and Japanese) × 2 structural rules of the target compound words (modifier-head constructions and verb-object constructions) × 3 aforementioned conditions was adopted. The results of the test were encoded as the data for statistical and analytical purposes.
    The results show that both the contextual clues and the word morphology clues provide a certain amount of information in the process of word meaning interpreting and the integration of context and word morphology clues results in better interpreting. Furthermore, the roles of context and word morphology in interpreting unknown words have quantitative and qualitative differences. Contexts provide more syntactic information than word morphology clues, whereas word morphology clues provide more semantic information. The morpheme combinations can affect the interpreting. Thirdly, it is found that much better interpreting was achieved for the meaning of modifier-head constructions rather than verb-object constructions; Word morphology clues provide more information for modifier-head constructions than verb-object constructions. Two possible reasons may lie in the larger number of modifier-head constructions than verb-object constructions and the difference in the morpheme activated styles between the two types of compound words in Chinese. Finally, the results show that Japanese learners were better in interpreting unknown compound words than western learners. This may suggest an effect of L1 and L2 distance on interpreting L2 unknown compound words.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Young Children’s Diversity Effects in Inductive Reasoning
    ZHONG Luo-Jin,MO Lei,LIU Zhi-Ya,LI Qian-Wen,Lee, Myung Sook
    2012, 44 (1):  87-99. 
    Abstract ( 724 )   PDF (519KB) ( 1469 )  
    People are inclined to look for more diversity evidences to support the conclusion in their induction, because more diverse evidence leads to a stronger conclusion. This phenomenon is defined as the diversity effects of induction. Prior researches demonstrated that adults have this useful strategy for evaluating samples that contain single versus multiple pieces of evidence. However, there is a controversy regarding the criteria that children used to evaluate the multiple samples. The main debate is whether or not children who are younger than nine years old have diversity effects in their induction. Some researchers considered that children who are younger than nine years old do not attend to sample diversity to evaluate evidence, because there are important developmental changes in the mechanisms that support human induction. Other researchers held that young children have the diversity effects in their inductive reasoning. Those researchers suggest that the developmental changes underlie the inductive reasoning result from limitations in young children’s knowledge base. Therefore, they argued that the results that previous studies could not find children’s diversity performance are artificial as the paradigms or materials they used in their researches were unfit for young children.
    In order to explore the problem whether young children have diversity effects, three experiments were performed. Experiment 1 used picture materials, and adopted the paradigm of Rhodes, etc. (2008a); twenty-four children at five years old and forty adults participated in this experiment. Experiment 2 used the same materials as experiment 1, but adopted a more direct technique paradigm; forty children at five years old participated in the experiment. Experiment 3 adopted the same method as experiment 1, but used common objects which children are familiar with as experimental materials; forty children at three years old participated in the experiment.
    The results of experiment 1 indicated that adults had diversity effects in their induction, while five years old children had typicality effects but not diversity effects when they made induction of the animal pictures. This finding is consistent with the results of Rhodes, etc. (2008a). The results of experiment 2 demonstrated that children as young as five years old could utilize the diversity strategy in induction. The results of experiment 3 manifested that three-year-old children had diversity effects when they were making induction of familiar objects.
    The findings of this article indicate that children as young as three years old could value diverse evidence in their inductive reasoning, which suggest that children may have diversity effects in inductive reasoning. The controversy whether children have diversity effects or not may mainly results from the different experimental paradigms and materials used by prior researchers. The reason why some previous studies have not found diversity effects of young children probably because they used unsuited detection paradigms or materials. The present work suggests that psychological experiment of young children should be done under appropriate experimental situation.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Reading Another’s Mind and Reading the Interactive Mind from Chinese Idioms: Evidences from Eye-movements and ERPs
    WANG Yi-Wen,ZHENG Yu-Wei,SHEN De-Li,CUI Lei,YAN Guo-Li
    2012, 44 (1):  100-111. 
    Abstract ( 787 )   PDF (513KB) ( 1606 )  
    Two essential ingredients of everyday cognition are the ability to reason counterfactually and the ability to understand and predict other people¢s behaviour by attributing independent mental states to them (theory of mind). Theory of mind gradually became one of the areas of much interest among developmental psychology and cognitive neuroscience. In everyday life, people interact in a variety of ways – playfully, competitively, cooperatively – and by their very nature, interactions are more conceptually and methodologically difficult to study than the behaviour and experience of a single person. Understanding the interactive mind is more complex than understanding the single-person mind.
    Using three types of Chinese four-character idioms—‘physical idioms’, ‘single person idioms’ and ‘interactive idioms’, the present study was designed to explore the dissociative electrophysiological correlates between reading another’s mind and reading the interactive mind. We report one eye-movement study (Experiment 1) and one ERP study (Experiment 2) investigating time course of reading another’s mind and reading the interactive mind.
    Results from Experiment 1 showed that the total reading times of the second character in single person idioms were longer than in physical idioms. Furthermore, the gaze durations of the first three characters in interactive idioms were longer than in both physical idioms and single person idioms. Results from Experiment 2 showed that in the 500-700ms epoch, the mean amplitudes of the late positive component (LPC) over frontal for single person idioms and interactive idioms were significantly more positive than for physical idioms, while there was no difference between the former two. In the 700-800ms epoch, the mean amplitudes of the LPC over frontal-central for interactive idioms were more positive than for single person idioms and physical idioms, while there was no difference between the latter two.
    Our data provide a direct comparison between the electrophysiological correlates for reading another’s mind as well as reading the interactive mind. Our findings show that reading the interactive mind overlaps the neural system capable of reading another’s mind but requires the involvement of an additional system. Individuals first are able to read another’s mind, and the reading the interactive mind builds on that earlier understanding by involving the same mental-state processing characteristic of reading another’s mind plus an additional interactive mind processing system as well. We believe that reading another’s mind and reading the interactive mind are two different levels of theory of mind. Reading another’s mind is the basis for reading the interactive mind and the level of reading the interactive mind is higher than the level of reading another’s mind.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Reduced Specificity of Autobiographical Memory in Traumatized Adolescents: Exploring the Contributions of Impaired Executive Control and Affect Regulation
    CHEN Xue-Jun,HUANG Yue-Sheng,DANG Xiao-Jiao,ZHENG Xi-Fu
    2012, 44 (1):  112-120. 
    Abstract ( 799 )   PDF (436KB) ( 1954 )  
    Reduced specificity of autobiographical memories retrieved to word cues on the Autobiographical Memory Test (AMT) associated with increased posttraumatic stress in traumatized samples has been already confirmed, though the researches for the adolescents are still not very substantial. Theoretical debates concerning the dominant influences on this effect have focused on affect regulation, whereby specific personal information is avoided more by those experiencing greater distress, versus impaired executive control, whereby increased distress is associated with an inability to set aside inappropriately general responses on the AMT.
    The present study compared these 2 views using AMT and AMT-R (the reversed version of the AMT) together. All the participants were recruited from a nonclinical and normal middle school. Participants (divided into three groups: high-PTSD, n = 31, low-PTSD, n = 32, and nontraumatic controls, n = 30)were required to generate specific memories response to emotion-related cue words in the AMT, whereas had to generate general memories from the past in the AMT-R. An emphasis on the role of affect regulation would predict that distress would be associated with reduced specificity (as in the standard AMT), whereas emphasis on the role of executive control would predict that this relationship should be reversed.
    The results indicated that, in contrast with the earlier studies, high-PTSD and low-PTSD groups behaved less specificity than nontraumatic controls and high-PTSD group also had generated less specific memories than low-PTSD group, regardless of cue valence in the AMT. But there were no significant differences of specific memories among the three groups in the AMT-R.
    The findings suggested that reduced autobiographical memory specificity has been demonstrated in traumatized adolescents in this study, and the results of AMT and AMT-R supported the affect regulation may play a greater role. Moreover, the clinical implications of the current research are discussed.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Item Parameter Estimation for Multidimensional Measurement: Comparisons of SEM and MIRT Based Methods
    LIU Hong-Yun,LUO Fang,WANG Yue,ZHANG Yu
    2012, 44 (1):  121-132. 
    Abstract ( 773 )   PDF (384KB) ( 1311 )  
    Traditional factor analysis models and estimation methods for continuous (i.e., interval or ratio scale) data are not appropriate for item-level data that are categorical in nature. The authors provide a brief review and synthesis of the item factor analysis estimation literature for categorical data (e.g., 0-1 type response scales) under the multidimensional response model. Popular categorical item factor analysis models and estimation methods found in the structural equation modeling and item response theory literatures are presented.
    The Monte Carlo simulation studies are conducted and revealed: (1) Similar parameter estimates have been obtained of Modified weighted least squares for categorical data method (WLSMV) from the structural equation model (SEM) framework and adoptive Restricted Maximum Likelihood (MLR) and Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) methods from the multidimensional item response theory (MIRT) framework. Even with a small sample and the item response theory (IRT) estimates converted to SEM parameters, the WLSMV, MLR, and MCMC results are strikingly similar. But in small sample size and long test, weighted least squares for categorical data (WLSc) did not obtain the convergence parameter estimations, although in short test, WLSc estimates have been obtained, the estimates are consistently more discrepant than those produced by the other estimation techniques. (2) The precision of the estimators enhances as the quantity of the sample increases, and the differences between WLSMV and MLR are very trivial, and the precisions of WLSMV and MLR methods are not worse than that of the MCMC method in most conditions. (3) The precision of item factor loading and of item difficulty parameter is influenced by the test length, and the precision of item discrimination and of item difficulty parameter is influenced by the number of test dimension. (4) The precision of the estimators decreases as the number of dimensions measured by the item increases, especially for item discrimination and item factor loading parameter.
    Both SEM and IRT can be used for factor analysis of dichotomous item responses. In this case, the measurement models of both approaches are formally equivalent. They were refined within and across different disciplines, and make complementary contributions to central measurement problems encountered in almost all empirical social science research fields. The authors conclude with considerations for categorical item factor analysis and give some advice for applied researchers.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    What Is a Good Theory? A Perspective from Theoretical Psychology
    YE Hao-Sheng,Henderikus J. Stam
    2012, 44 (1):  133-137. 
    Abstract ( 858 )   PDF (148KB) ( 3150 )  
    We discuss the status of theories in psychology by addressing ourselves to a recent paper published in this journal by Hong, Chao, Yang & Rosner (2010). We argue that Hong et al. provided a restrictive version of theory in psychology that is limited by the implicit adoption of logical empiricism as the basis for their views of theory. In addressing the limitations of logical empiricism we address the broader question of just what constitutes theory and how theory might be more usefully and widely applied in the discipline.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Steps to Building a Good Theory — Embracing Diversity
    Ying-yi HONG,Melody Manchi CHAO
    2012, 44 (1):  138-141. 
    Abstract ( 641 )   PDF (136KB) ( 1122 )  
    In their commentary, Ye and Stam (2012) label Hong, Chao, Yang, and Rosner (2010) as logical empiricists who “restrict the nature and uses of theory,” and criticize their approach as limited. To provide a fuller understanding of theory building and to reap the knowledge offered by these diverse perspectives, in this rejoinder, we situate the discourse in the larger historical context, and argue that the apparent differences between the approaches proposed by Hong et al. (2010) and Ye and Stam (2012) can be bridged. We contend that each approach has its own scope and related limitations. While it is useful to inform readers of how these limitations might restrict the nature and uses of theory, it is also important to remain open and tolerant toward one another, and to avoid any essentialization of apparent differences.
    Related Articles | Metrics
    Reviewers in 2011
    2012, 44 (1):  142-143. 
    Abstract ( 619 )   PDF (161KB) ( 1579 )  
    Related Articles | Metrics