ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B


    25 February 2015, Volume 47 Issue 2 Previous Issue    Next Issue

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    The Preview of Word N+2 Influences the High Frequency Word N+1 Processing in Chinese Reading
    BAI Xuejun; WANG Yongsheng; GUO Zhiying; GAO Xiaolei; YAN Guoli
    2015, 47 (2):  143-156.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00143
    Abstract ( 844 )  

    Whether readers can obtain preview information from word N+2 in the parafovea is a key problem for solving the controversy of whether words in the perceptual span are processed in serial or in parallel. Several studies using the boundary paradigm have demonstrated that the preview of word N+2 influences fixations on word N+1 (Kliegl, 2007; Yan, 2010; Yang, 2009; Risse, 2012), but it has not been investigated what kind of preview information drives these effects. The present study used the boundary paradigm to explore the influence of the preview of word N+2 on the processing of word N+1 during Chinese reading. Three experiments are reported. In experiment 1, we manipulated the previews of a single character high-frequency word N+1 and the first character of word N+2. The results showed that fixation durations on word N+1 given an identity preview of word N+1 were significantly longer given an identity compared to non-word preview of word N+2. In experiment 2, we manipulated the previews of word N+1 and the first character of word N+2, and controlled the identity previews of both characters to be orthographically similar. We hypothesized that the orthographic information gained from the first character of word N+2 in the parafovea would affect the processing of word N+1. Our results showed no effect of the N+2 preview. However, due to the orthographically similar character N+2 being available during fixations on both words N and N+1 we were unable to determine if our effect was driven by it being processed far into the parafovea during fixations on word N, or closer to the fovea during fixations on word N+1. To address this possibility we conducted experiment 3. We used the same manipulation as in experiment 2, but ensured that the orthographic similarity between the two characters was only present during fixations on word N. In this experiment there was orthographic overlap between the identity preview of word N+1 and the false preview of word N+2. As such, the orthographic similarity was only present during fixations on word N, rather than both word N and word N+1.Our results showed that when the preview of word N+2 was orthographically similar to word N+1 as opposed to orthographically dissimilar, fixation durations on word N+1 were shorter. Overall, the results showed that the preprocessing of word N+2 significantly influenced the processing of word N+1. The results indicated that orthographic information from word N+2 had been preprocessed in the parafovea during fixations on word N, and that this overlapping information markedly affected the processing of word N+1, such that fixation times were shorter. Therefore, the present study demonstrates that words within the perceptual span can be processed in parallel.

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    ERP effects of Radical Combinability in Chinese Character Recognition
    WU Yan; WANG Xieshun; CHEN Hsuan-chih
    2015, 47 (2):  157-166.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00157
    Abstract ( 1128 )  

    Prior research on sublexical processing in Chinese character recognition has almost consistently found that radicals were involved in lexical access. However, it is still controversial about the question of how radicals were accessed. For example, it remained unclear that whether sublexical processing relied on radical position information. Close examination to previous studies, we found material compositions might be an important factor that accounted for the different effects of radical positions in lexical access. For example, studies in which illegal characters were used as fillers showed strong positional effects. In contrast, studies in which illegal characters were not employed demonstrated the significant effects of position-general radicals instead of position-specific radicals. Following this argument, the present study was conducted with two purposes. First, by manipulating radical combinability, we aimed to investigate the roles of position-general and position-specific radicals in Chinese character recognition. Second, we examined the question of whether the existence of illegal characters would influence effects of position-specific radicals by changing the composition of materials. We recorded participants’ brain responses using event-related brain potentials. Two types of radical combinability were manipulated: the number of characters containing a specific radical at a particular position (i.e., position-specific radical combinability, SRC), and the number of characters containing a specific radical irrespective of position (i.e., position-general radical combinability, GRC). Orientation decision task was employed, in which a stimulus (a character or filler) was not presented at the center of the screen, but slightly to the right or the left. The participants were required to judge whether the target stimulus appeared on the right or the left, relative to the fixation at central of the screen. This procedure would not draw participants’ attention to orthographic information and make characters process implicitly. In addition, we manipulated the type of fillers across different experiments, with Experiment 1 employing illegal characters as fillers, whereas Experiment 2 using geometric figures as fillers. Results revealed that in the implicit task, effects of GRC appeared to be stable. More specifically, no matter which types of fillers were used (i.e., illegal characters or geometric figures), characters with high GRC evoked a larger right-brain lateralized N400 effect as compared with the items with low GRC. However, effects of SRC were influenced by material compositions. When using illegal characters as fillers, Characters with low SRC elicited a larger P200 than their high SRC counterparts. However, when replacing illegal characters with geometric figures, the P200 effect disappeared. These findings confirm the role of radical combinability in Chinese character recognition. Findings of the present study also suggest that the role of GRC might be relatively stable across different materials, while the effect of SRC might be enlarged by the existence of illegal characters. We argued that this might be due to the fact that illegal characters were generated by violating one or some of Chinese orthographic rules, which may sensitize participants to orthographic information. Radical position, as an important feature of Chinese orthography, might be over attended.

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    The Role of Discourse Context on Semantic Integration
    CHEN Shuang, CHEN Lijing, YANG Xiaohong, YANG Yufang
    2015, 47 (2):  167-175.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00167
    Abstract ( 811 )   PDF (404KB) ( 36 )  

    How do readers integrate incoming words into the local and global discourse context is a central issue in discourse comprehension. Some researchers have suggested that the integration of incoming information with local, proximal context is an automatic and default process. However, the integration of incoming information with the global discourse context employs more attention and may be delayed. On the other hand, some researchers have suggested that incoming information is immediately integrated into the global discourse context. Previous studies also obtained discrepant results concerning the time course of contextual modulation, which might be due to the fact that different types of knowledge violations were used in different studies. Two kinds of knowledge violations were used in previous studies: selectional restriction violations and world knowledge violations. Selectional restriction refers to the semantic constraints on verb’s arguments, which are considered as lexical information. Previous studies have shown that the processing of selectional restriction takes precedence over that of world knowledge. However, it is still unclear whether the precedence of selectional restriction would affect the modulation of global context. Therefore, the current study set out to explore how different kinds of knowledge violations affect global integration in discourse context in an eye-tracking experiment. We constructed discourses consisting of three sentences. The first and second sentences made up a non-fictional or a fictional discourse context. The third sentence was either in (1) selectional restriction violation, (2) world knowledge violation or (3) congruent conditions. In the non-fictional context, sentences in both the selectional restriction and world knowledge violation conditions were incongruent while only the congruent sentences were sensible. However, in the fictional context, all the three kinds of sentences were congruent. 26 university students participated in the experiment. Two were removed due to excessive track losses. Data from 24 (12 males, Mean age = 22.92) participants were used in the statistical analysis. Results showed that for selectional restriction violations, the effect of context was significant in first fixation time, go-past time, total time and number of fixations on the target word as well as first fixation time, total time, number of fixations and regression out count on the post-target region. However, for world knowledge violations, the effect of context was only found in total time and number of fixations on the target region as well as on the post-target region. Participants read the target words and post-target words longer, more frequently in fictional context than in non-fictional context. These results revealed that when object nouns violated selectional restriction, discourse context affected both the early and later stages of word processing. When object nouns violated world knowledge, contextual modulation was only observed on the later time measures. The present study demonstrated that discourse context could override local anomalies, irrespective of the kinds of knowledge that are violated. However, the time course of the integration process was modulated by the kinds of knowledge that are violated. These results establish kinds of knowledge as an important factor for semantic integration in discourse context.

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    The Effect of Route-angularity on Spatial Situation Model Constructing in Text
    CHEN Jiebin; LU Zhongyi
    2015, 47 (2):  176-189.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00176
    Abstract ( 501 )  

    Research on text comprehension is an important part of cognitive psychology, Situation model is considered as the higher level of text representation, so it attracts the focuses of many researchers. The spatial dimension of situation model has been explored most often. Layout-learning & Anaphora resolution is an important way to explore the representation of spatial distance in text comprehension. Our paper explored the rules of distance representation in three experiments and advanced some hypotheses. In Experiment 1, we used the method of layout-learning & Anaphora resolution while controlling the path distance (including category distance and measure distance) and linear distance, with the number of turns as the independent variables, to examine whether the route-angularity effect occur. During the Experiment1, those who are experimented first should study the layout diagram of the company, and memorize the location of each room and the specific items in each room until they feel they can describe the location of each room and the specific items within the room in detail. During the Experiment1, the observers were first asked to learn the layout diagram of a fictional company, including the specific locations and names of each room. Then a reading comprehensive test was conducted to make sure the observers could remember these details. In Experiment2, we used a pure natural discourse reading test, which was traditionally supposed to construct the spatial situation mode, to determine whether there is still route-angularity effect in discourse comprehension under such a mode, and the whether the effect, if any, was modulated by the complex levels of spatial in description. In the natural discourse reading test, we controlled the path distance and linear distance, with the number of turns as the independent variable, and require the observers first read some discourses relevant to route-angularity, and then finish the reading comprehension questions directly. Experiment 3 used the mode that the leading character walks synchronous dynamic with the discourse, with the help of eye detecting, forcing the observers follow the leading character’s route. Controlling the number of turnings and route distance, with the linear distance between the current location and the anaphora position as independent variable, we aimed to probe the observers’ psychological mechanism when they construct spatial situational mode in complex spatial description. The observers were showed dynamic route map while reading the discourses, and after that, they have to judge the mark in the map. The observers’ reading time of the target sentences, the total fixation time in anaphora words, and reaction time of judging the mark were recorded. A hundred and ten college students with normal vision participated, with sixty in Experiment 1 and Experiment 2, with fifty in Experiment 3, respectively. In Experiment 1, we used the method of layout-learning & Anaphora resolution which was explained in the foregoing paragraph. In experiment 2, participants read narratives describing location of a small town, and in each site there was an object. By motion sentences, the participants' attentions were removed from one site to another. Reading times of the following target sentences that refer to objects in one of these site by means of a definite noun phrase can imply whether participants established a spatial representation of text or not. In experiment 3, using eye movement monitoring, display the text and the routes synchronous, forcing the subjects to follow the protagonist in real time, Separated category distance and metric distance and the number of angularity, the results showed that when the category distance and metric distance and the number of angularity were all the same, the Straight-line distance influenced the time of anaphora resolution. All the data were analyzed with repeated-measure ANOVA. In Experiment 1 and Experiment 2, the general trend is that the observers spent more time on reading the target sentences as the increasing appearances of route-angularity when the discourse spatial description is simple (angularity routes<2). By contrary, when the discourse spatial description is comparatively complicated (angularity routes >2), there would be no any trace of the route-angularity effect but instead the reversal effect would appear. In Experiment 3, the Fixation time of the anaphora words was longer when the straight stretch was farther in the complicated spatial condition, and also the time spent on reading the target sentences and the judging time. Integrated the three experiments, we can prove that route-angularity does effects on distance representation in text comprehension. When the description of location is simple, the spatial situation models which readers constructed were route-chart type, they completed anaphora resolution through reverse searching; when the description is more complex, readers prefer to construct a map-based space situation model, and find the shortest straight line distance through the space bridge.

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    Facing Orientation Effect on Representational Momentum
    DONG Rui
    2015, 47 (2):  190-202.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00190
    Abstract ( 600 )   PDF (501KB) ( 73 )  

    Representational momentum (RM) is the term used to refer to a systematic misrepresentation in memory of an object’s position in space. In contrast to using simple patterns as the stimuli, the use of naturalistic objects as stimuli enabled researchers to learn more about typical-motion effects. Nagai and Yagi (2002) thought that the finding of typical-motion effects might imply that a pointed-shaped object moving in the direction of its point produced larger forward displacement than did a pointed-shaped object moving in the opposite direction, because the objects used in these studies had a clear sharp point at their fronts. However, was pointedness the only cause of typical-motion effects? We hypothesized that another possible cause of typical-motion effects was the facing orientation effect, by which we mean, the direction that the face is facing. It was necessary to separate these two factors in exploring the causes of typical-motion effects. One possible way to do this is to use symmetrically shaped naturalistic objects to exclude the influence of pointedness. The present research aimed to explore whether facing orientation influences representational momentum through four experiments. We used a 2(facing orientation: forward vs. backword) ×2(direction of motion: leftward vs. rightward/ upward vs. downward) within-subjects design and used implied motion paradigms in all four experiments. The dependent variable was a weighted measure. In experiment 1, we used symmetrical figures, which included eyes to manifest facing. We chose the hedgehog figure because in the real world a hedgehog only moves forward. In experiment 2, we changed the design of experiment 1 by using a more abstract figure that was symmetrical and only included eyes manifest facing. In experiment 3, we used Pacman as a stimuli. Pacman was a game software made by Namco, a game software company. Pacman was a little yellow guy with a big head and a really large smile who run away from the ghosts trying to eat all the pellets. The mouth in Pacman manifests facing, and the shape of the mouth is a sharp angle. Because the contour of Pacman contains a sharp angle and facing orientation at the same time and their orientation are in contradiction, we can compare the size of the pointedness and the facing effect. In experiment 4, we used Pacman as stimuli. The motion direction was vertical. We wanted to explore whether the results of the first 3 experiments were influenced by reading habits because the weighted mean for moving forward motion was larger than moving backward in the level of moving right in experiments1, 2, and 3. The results of experiment 1 and 2 indicated that facing orientation effect was the most likely causes of typical-motion effects. Experiment 3 found that facing orientation effect was stronger than pointedness effect when both effects occurred simultaneously, and had opposing effects. Experiment 4 found that facing orientation effect also occurred when stimuli moved vertically. In summary, facing orientation effect was a possible cause of typical-motion effects. Because facing orientation effect only occurred when the stimulus was moving right and down, lateral reading habits and gravity were suggested to be the underlying reason of facing orientation effect. The representational momentum is cognitively penetrable.

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    The Facilitating Effect of Target-Nontarget Categorical Difference in Identity on Multiple Identity Tracking
    BAI Tian, LYU Chuang, WEI Liuqing, ZHOU Yibin, ZHANG Xuemin
    2015, 47 (2):  203-211.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00203
    Abstract ( 579 )   PDF (308KB) ( 17 )  

    Research on Multiple Identity Tracking (MIT) focused on the influence of differences in properties of targets’ and non-targets’ identities on tracking performance and identity recognition. It has been found that the uniqueness of single property, but not compounded property, facilitated tracking performance. However, the uniqueness of compounded property could facilitate tracking performance in the condition where the property guided or oriented attention towards targets. The facilitating effect was also affected by both the complexity of identity information and working memory load. One problem with the previous research is that the same category of stimuli (e.g., either numbers or letters) served as targets and non-targets. The current study involved two categories of stimuli (i.e., 0-9 and A、C、E、K、N、P、R、T、U、Y) and manipulated the differences between targets and non-targets to investigate the effects of differences in targets-nontargets identity on tracking performance and identity recognition. Two experiments had been conducted with undergraduate students using the MIT paradigm. Experiment 1A included three conditions: no identity difference (e.g., both targets and non-targets were the same numbers), within-category difference (e.g., targets and non-targets were different numbers), and between-category difference (e.g., targets were numbers and non-targets were letters). Results showed a significantly greater tracking performance in the between-category difference condition relative to the no identity difference condition, with within-category difference in between. Experiment 1B simultaneously manipulated the identity differences (no difference, within-category difference, between-category difference) and the number of targets (4 vs. 5) and found a significant interaction between the two factors. That is, when there were 4 targets (6 non-targets), tracking performance for between-category difference and within-category difference was better than for no identity difference; when there were 5 targets (5 non-targets), tracking performance for between-category difference was better than for within-category and no identity difference. And tracking performance for within-category difference was significantly better than for no identity difference. Experiment 2 altered the degrees of between-category difference. Non-targets in the third experiment were 5 letters. Targets were 4 letters and 1 number (low-difference condition), 2 letters and 3 numbers (medium-difference condition), and 5 numbers (high-difference condition). We observed that both tracking performance and identity recognition increased with the increasing degree of difference. The results of the two experiments indicated that between-category identity difference between targets and non-targets facilitated tracking performance and identity recognition in the multiple identity tracking task. These results could be explained by the working memory model, grouping theory and Model of Multiple Identity Tracking (MOMIT).

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    Pilots’ Dissociation of Object Properties and Motion Properties in Relative Arrival Time Tasks
    YAN Bihua, YOU Xuqun
    2015, 47 (2):  212-223.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00212
    Abstract ( 520 )   PDF (678KB) ( 22 )  

    The Relative Arrival Time Task, in which participants are asked to judge which of the two moving objects would reach the designated target first, is largely used to assess the dynamic spatial ability. What are the impacts of object properties and motion properties of the two moving items on judgment in this relatively complex task is still unclear. This study focuses on the cognitive processing of experiential variables and visual variables, as well as the individual differences in RAT tasks. Pilot group and non-pilot group were recruited to make a compare in their processing of visuospatial object properties, motion properties and their interrelationship in RAT tasks. Three experiments were designed to extensively and sequentially examine the effects of different properties of objects on judgments. While Experiment 1 focused on the color, movement direction and velocity, Experiment 2 investigated the size and vision direction, exploring the target line which could possibly affect distance representation and spatial configuration into Experiment 3. The processing advantages of the pilot group were also considered in three expeirments, respectively. The results of Experiment 1 showed that the movement direction and velocity of two objects had effects on the judgment of RAT tasks with no such findings concerning color of object. Participants demonstrated better performance on the left-to-right tasks presented on the screen compared to the right-to-left ones, which was more salient on tasks with objects moving in large velocity. Compared to the control group, pilot group exhibited shorter response time and with better accuracy on average, which was largely reflected on the right-to-left tasks and those with small velocity, and there were no significant difference in response time between tasks in opposite direction or in contrasting velocity for pilot group. It was found in Experiment 2 that the size–speed factor affected the judgment of RAT tasks for control group, and non-pilot participants did better in tasks featured by fast-moving large objects or by small objects moving at low speed. In addition, tasks with inconsistency in directions of moving objects and visions of participants seemed more difficult for control group to complete. Processing advantages of pilots were presented in judgments on RAT tasks was not affected by size of objects and the accuracy of the judgments was unbiased despite of moving in different vision lines. Experiment 3 showed that, the judgment of pilot group was not affected by changing the features of target line while a poorer performance occurred in non-pilot group. The judgment of RAT tasks, which is a complicated process of collaborative judgments on a basis of multiple representations of objects, is affected by the two objects’ size, velocity, direction of movement, direction of vision and features of target. However, pilots are able to accurately process such information as relative speed, relative distance, relative time and movement direction in a changing space, dissociating the functions of object size and background in motion judgments. Therefore, it suggests that pilots have a higher field-independent cognitive trait and dynamic spatial processing capabilities.

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    The Spatial Contiguity Effect in Multimedia Learning: The Role of Cueing
    WANG Fuxing; DUAN Zhaohui; ZHOU Zongkui; CHEN Jun
    2015, 47 (2):  224-233.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00224
    Abstract ( 862 )  

    Text and illustrations integrated in spatial distribution could be helpful for learners’ performance during multimedia learning. In addition, recent studies showed that cues, e.g. highlighting with color, arrows, bold typeface, could guide learner’s attention and improve their learning outcomes. The researchers speculate that the picture and text close to each other can shorten the visual search time and reduce the cognitive load, thereby enhancing the learning results. Previous studies also showed that adding cues to the learning materials could guide the learners’ attention, promoted the organization and integration of the new learning knowledge. But what are the specific processes of the contiguity effect? Whether the changes of the picture-text’s location and adding cues would affect the allocation of attention? In this study, we expected that the contiguity effects and cueing would affect the learners' attention allocation, and then influence the memory tests. Consequently, the integrated text and pictures with cues would have more fixation counts and longer dwell time on the task related area, and higher scores in the retention test and transfer test. In this study, fifty one college students were recruited from Central China Normal University as the participants with prior knowledge questionnaire. And a computer-generated animation depicting the process of lightning formation was used as the experiment material. Highlighting red color on text and pictures were manipulated as cues. First of all, a demographic questionnaire including a prior knowledge questionnaire would be sent to all of the prospective participants who want to participate in the experiment. The student who could be the participants had been measured by the prior knowledge questionnaire, to ensure they knew little about the lightning knowledge. After that they were randomized into four groups. The four groups were as follows: the integrated text picture with cues, the integrated text picture without cues; the split text picture with cues; the split text picture without cues. All participants would watch the animation and learn those materials during the experiment. Eyelink 1000 was used to record their eye data. After the eye tracking data collection, they would take retention test and transfer test to test what they had learned. The results showed that the students who learned the text pictures integrated had higher scores than the text picture split group on the retention test and transfer test. And the integrated group had more run counts and longer first fixation time on the task related area (red color highlighting cues) than the split group. Besides that, as to the text, the integrated group also had longer dwell time and more fixation counts, manifested a text-oriented reading mode. Although the main effect of cues were not significant on the retention, transfer tests and eye-movement data, the interaction effect between cues and picture-text location was significant. The integrated group had more fixation counts and more run counts on the task related area when the text and pictures were cued with red color. In addition, the four groups have no difference over their gender, age, the prior knowledge. In sum, these results indicated that the contiguity effects can not only improve learners’ memorizing and understanding, but also help to allocate the attention or attention shifting during multimedia learning with the moment to moment recording. The text close to the picture can be beneficial to integrate and memorizing the information between pictures and text. What’s more, cues can make visual search process much shorter and easier when the text and illustrations are contiguous in space.

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    The Development of Self-Position Representation and Self-Orientation Representation in Children’s Map Task
    LU Jing; HU Qingfen
    2015, 47 (2):  234-242.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00234
    Abstract ( 774 )  

    Since the 1970 s, study from neurophysiology cognitive have found that animals’ position representation and direction representation in navigation tasks have different neural mechanisms. For example, place cells in hippocampus fire selectively in specific locations (O’Keefe & Dostrovsky, 1971), and head-direction cells in the postsubiculcum fire when the animal face specific orientations (Ranck, 1984). These studies have demonstrated the functional division of labor in animals’ cells responsive to different types of representations in space. However, no research has yet focused on the contrast between these two types of representations, and further the development trajectory of position and direction representations. In the present study, two map tasks were used to explore the developmental trajectory of position and direction representations in human children aged from 4 to 6. In each task, two map-to-space problems and two space-to-map problems were resolved by each child, which were conducted in a symmetrical-furnished square room. For the map-to-space problems of the location task, children were asked to indicate their own locations in the room by placing a cylinder object in the map, whereas for the space-to-map problems, they were given a map with a cylinder object in a specific position and asked to go to the corresponding location in the room. In the direction task, children were asked to indicate their orientations by placing a doll facing the corresponding direction in the map (space-to-map problems), or facing the corresponding direction in the room as the doll indicated in the map (map-to-space problems). We found that 4-year-old children began to perform better than chance in the location task. However, children did not show the ability to solve the direction problems until 5 years old. Besides, the 4-year-olds performed better in the pattern of map-to-place in the location task. These results demonstrated that the ability of using map to represent position and that to represent direction were dissociable in the development. Specifically, the ability of representing one’s own location in a map developed earlier than that of representing one’s own direction. Our study provides novel evidence on the dissociation of position representation and direction representation, extending previous neurophysiological studies. Additionally, the benefit of map-to-space pattern suggested that this pattern might provide a better global understanding of spatial relations in map task and favor young children’s location representation when they start to understand map.

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    Feeling Better and Becoming MoreBenevolent: Impact of Social Comparison on ProsocialBehavior
    ZHENG Xiaoying; PENG Siqing; PENG Luluo
    2015, 47 (2):  243-250.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00243
    Abstract ( 1879 )  

    Social comparison is the process of evaluating oneself in comparison with others. People actively or passively, consciously or nonconsciously engage in social comparison. Upward comparison---comparing to better off others, engenders psychological inferiority, while downward comparison---comparing to worse off others, elicits psychological superiority. The purpose of the current research was to explore how such psychological inferiority and superiority information resulted from social comparison would influence others-oriented behavior, namely, prosocial behavior. We postulated that downward comparison could increase people’s empathy towards others, and thus would promote prosocial behavior. Two studies were conducted to test the hypotheses. In Study 1, undergraduates were randomly assigned to the upward comparison, the downward comparison, and the control conditions. In the upward (downward) comparison condition, participants were asked to compare their academic performance with the classmate whose academic performance was ranked the first place (last place) in their major. In the control condition, information aboutacademic performance or comparison was not mentioned. After making the comparison, participants indicated their willingness to help in four hypotheticalscenarios. Empathy, self evaluation, and emotion were measured. In Study 2, we used donation intention as an indicator of prosocial behavior. Rather than asking participants to consciously make upward or downward comparison as in Study1, we manipulated social comparisonbygivingfalse intelligence test feedback. All participants completed a subset of Raven intelligence test. Participants in the upward comparison condition were told that their performance in the test was ranked the bottom 10% of our population. Participants in the downward comparison condition were told their rank was in the top 10%. Those in the control condition did not receive any feedback about the test score. Then we asked participants to read two scenarios and indicate their willingness to donate. Empathy was also measured using the same scale as in Study 1. Results of Study 1 indicated that as compared to the upward comparison condition and the control condition, participants in the downward comparison were more likely to help others. There was no significant difference between those in the upward comparison condition and the control condition. Empathy, rather than emotionorself evaluation, acted as the mediator of this effect. Study 2 further replicated this result, and suggested that those who knew they were better than others showed higher empathic concern for people who needed help, which in turn increased donation intention. In conclusion, downward social comparison would promote prosoical behavior by increasing people’s empathy towards those who need help. This effect was not driven by positive emotionnor enhanced self evaluation, but was mediated by the empathetic feeling.

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    A Meta-Analysis on Effects of Human, Social, and Psychological Capital on Career Success in Chinese Business Organizations
    ZHOU Wenxia; XIE Baoguo; XIN Xun; BAI Guanglin; MIAO Rentao
    2015, 47 (2):  251-263.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00251
    Abstract ( 1576 )  

    Career success is defined as the positive psychological or work-related achievements one obtains through work experiences. For individuals, career success reflects the self-actualization of individuals. In an organization, employees’ personal career success means the organization’s making the best of its human resources and eventually contributing to its success. As career success is of concern not only to individuals but also to organizations, many researchers continue to identify the individual and organizational factors that facilitate employees’ career success. At the individual level, demographic, social capital, human capital, motivational and work-family variables are possibly associated with career success. At the organizational level, organizational variables such as firm size, industry sector, organizational support and geographic location may also be related to career success. Though Chinese organizational researchers have identified many determinants of career success and some have qualitatively reviewed partially the related literature, no large-scale systematic attempt has been made to systematically summarize the existent literature. In order to quantitatively review the career success literature, we use meta-analysis which is of appropriate for several reasons. Firstly, meta-analysis is a quantitative review technique that can reduce the measurement error from sampling and unreliability in individual studies. Secondly, a critical review and synthesis of the related body of research can play an important role in theory development and building. Thirdly, as former scholars have already identified some factors that determined objective and subjective career success, it would, therefore, be theoretically valuable to review and compare the strength of predictors in determining the objective and subjective career success in order to guide future research and management practices. In this study, we use meta-analysis to examine the relative importance of three career competencies (i.e., human capital, social capital, and psychological capital) and their underlying mechanism of predicting career success. Four inclusion criteria were used to select individual studies for this. Firstly, we focused on studies with dependent variables including at least one kind of operationalizations such as promotion, salary or subjective career success. Secondly, participants had to be employees in Mainland China. Thirdly, correlations were reported in the study. Fourthly, if the same sample was repeatedly included in different studies, then only the study that including most number of variables would be used in the present study. According to the above four criteria, we identified 76 studies that covered 78 dependent samples and 21,570 employees. Based on the intelligent career framework, contest and sponsored mobility, the theory of market transition, and the imbedding perspective of social capital, we put forward our hypotheses. To test our hypotheses, we obtained a correlation matrix first through four steps (i.e., encoding, correcting for correlations, composition of correlations and calculation of effective seizes). Then, we utilized LISREL8.30 to test our hypotheses. The results showed: (1) human capital, social capital and psychological capital were positively related to objective and subjective career success; (2) while human capital could explain more variance of objective career success, psychological capital could explain more variance of subjective career success; (3) organization sponsorship partially mediated the relationship between human capital, social capital and career success; it also partially mediated the relationship between psychological capital and subjective career success. The relationship between psychological capital and objective career success was fully mediated through organization sponsorship; (4) psychological capital could predict better much better organization sponsorship. This study contributes to the career success literature. One major contribution is that our results reveal the differential effects of the three career competency on objective and subjective career success. This finding is important both to theoretical development and to the methodology of measuring career success. Secondly, we examined the underling mechanism on how human, social and psychological capital may affect career success. Thirdly, it is important to find the kind of criteria used by elites and its agents to give candidates sponsorship. This theoretical question is examined in the present study using meta-analysis. Our study also offers implications for managerial practices. First, managers should focus on developing subordinates’ human, social and psychological capital. Second, individuals should be aware of the fact that career success does not only affect human, social and psychological capital, but also others sponsorship. Several limitations have been noted in the current study. First, potential moderators may exist in the relationships among the three career competencies and career success. But we have not examined the moderating effects. A third limitation of this study is that we have not been able to explore the synergy among the three career competencies by examining their interactions due to the limitation of meta-analysis. Third, like other meta-analyses that examine mediating process, the current meta-analysis has not included control variables in hypotheses testing because many studies have not provided correlations with these control variables.

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    A Simple Cognitive Diagnosis Method Based on Q-Matrix Theory
    LUO Zhaosheng; LI Yujun; YU Xiaofeng; GAO Chunlei; PENG Yafeng
    2015, 47 (2):  264-272.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00264
    Abstract ( 639 )  

    Cognitive diagnosis has recently gained prominence in educational assessment, psychiatric evaluation, and many other fields. Researchers have been trying their best to develop a new Cognitive Diagnosis Model (CDM) or to improve existing ones’ performance for respondent classification. As a new CDM, GDD (Sun, Zhang, Xin, & Bao, 2011) receives more and more attention due to its classification accuracy which is as high as DINA. This article introduces a new approach called Hamming Distance Discrimination (HDD) which is inspired by GDD and based on the Q-matrix theory (Tatsuoka, 1991) modified by Leighton et al. (2004) and Ding et al. (2009, 2010). HDD uses Hamming Distance (HD) to measure the distance between an examinee’s Observed Response Pattern (ORP) and an Expected Response Pattern (ERP). When there are more than one ERPs with the same minimum HD for an examinee’s ORP, two solutions based on HD are proposed: the random method (Method R) and the Bayesian method (Method B). Method R randomly chooses one ERP from those share the same minimum HD whereas in method B, we apply Bayesian Discriminant to distinguish which ERP the examinee belongs to. Monte Carlo simulation was used to compare the accuracy of respondent classification between HDD and GDD. In the Monte Carlo simulation study, the pattern match ratio and average attribute match ratio were used as criteria to evaluate the classification accuracy of GDD and HDD. Five attribute hierarchical structures in attribute hierarchical model (AHM) of Leighton et al. (2004) and Tatsuoka (1995, 2009) with 6 attributes were simulated. Under each type of Q-matrix, we set the slip at four levels (2%, 5%, 10%, 15%) to simulate ORPs of examinees (N=1000). The results of this study demonstrate that HDD is superior, especially under the unstructured hierarchy and independent structure. Moreover, method B presented higher classification accuracy than method R. Further research on HDD’s validity and performance in other situations is warranted.

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    Joint Estimation of Model Parameters and Q-Matrix Based on Response Data
    YU Xiaofeng; LUO Zhaosheng; QIN Chunying; GAO Chunlei; LI Yujun
    2015, 47 (2):  273-282.  doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2015.00273
    Abstract ( 601 )  

    Q-matrix is an important component of cognitive diagnostic assessment, which represents the item-attribute relationships. Cognitive diagnostic assessment infers attribute mastery patterns of respondents in the testing field based on item responses. Item responses in the assessment are observable, but respondents attribute mastery patterns are potential, not observable. Q-matrix plays the role of a bridge in cognitive diagnostic assessment. Therefore, Q-matrix impact the accuracy of cognitive diagnostic assessment greatly. Research on the effect of parameter estimation and classification accuracy caused by the error in Q-matrix already existed, and it turned out that Q-matrix gotten from expert definition or experience was more easily subject to be affected by subjective factors, lead to a misspecified Q-matrix. Under this circumstance, it’s urgently needed to find more objective Q-matrix inference methods. This paper started from this consideration, carried out further research on the Q-matrix inference from response data based on the research of Liu, Xu and Ying (2012), and modified the Liu et al. algorithm, designed a joint estimate item parameters and Q-matrix algorithm. The joint estimate algorithm can estimate item parameters and the Q-matrix simultaneously. In simulations, considered different Q-matrix (attribute-number is 3,4 and 5), different sample size (500, 1000, 2000 and 4000), different number of error items (3,4 and 5), the attribute mastery pattern of the sample followed an uniform distribution, and the item parameters followed an uniform distribution with interval [0.05,0.25]. When item parameters were unknown, item number was 20, and item attributes was 3, 4 or 5, based on the initial Q-matrix, and the joint estimate algorithm can get the true Q-matrix with a high probability and item parameters with small deviation, even the sample size is relatively small (such as 300), and the misspecified-item number is relatively large (such as 6). Furthermore, when the number of item attribute was misspecified by experts, in other words, the Q-matrix lacked a required attribute or added a redundant attribute, this would lead to incorrectness of all items, and the joint estimate algorithm will provide reliable information to infer the true Q-matrix. The results indicated that: (1) The joint estimate algorithm had a good performance and suitable for practical application when some item attribute vectors misspecified. (2) The joint estimate algorithm could provide useful information when added a redundant attribute or lacked a required attribute in Q-matrix, and then amended and estimated the Q-matrix.

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