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Garner and Congruence Effects in the Speeded Classification of Bimodal Signals

American Psychological Association
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  • Biology And Life Sciences


The role of attention in speeded Garner classification of concurrently presented auditory and visual signals was examined in 4 experiments. Within-trial interference (i.e., congruence effects) occurred regardless of the attentional demands of the task. Between-trials interference (i.e., Garner interference) occurred only under conditions of divided attention when making judgments about auditory signals. Of importance, the data show congruence effects in the absence of Garner interference. Such a pattern has been rarely reported in studies of the classification of purely visual stimuli and contradicts theoretical accounts asserting that the effects share a common locus. The data question the notion that Garner classification reveals fundamental insights about the nature of the perceptual processing of bimodal stimuli.

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