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Ease-of-learning judgments are based on both processing fluency and beliefs
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Cognitive psychology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Cognitive psychology.
2018 (English)In: Memory, ISSN 0965-8211, E-ISSN 1464-0686, Vol. 26, no 6, p. 807-815Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Processing fluency influences many types of judgments. Some metacognitive research suggests that the influence of processing fluency may be mediated by participants’ beliefs. The current study explores the influence of processing fluency and beliefs on ease-of-learning (EOL) judgments. In two experiments (Exp 1: n = 94; Exp 2: n = 146), participants made EOL judgments on 24 six-letter concrete nouns, presented in either a constant condition (high fluency) with upper-case letters (e.g., BUCKET) or an alternating condition (low fluency) with mixed upper- and lower-case letters (e.g., bUcKeT). After judging words individually, participants studied the words and completed a free recall test. Finally, participants indicated what condition they believed made the words more likely to be learned. Results show constant-condition words were judged as more likely to be learned than alternating condition words, but the difference varied with beliefs. Specifically, the difference was biggest when participants believed the constant condition made words more likely to be learned, followed by believing there was no difference, and then believing the alternating condition made words more likely to be learned. Thus, we showed that processing fluency has a direct effect on EOL judgments, but the effect is moderated by beliefs.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 26, no 6, p. 807-815
Keywords [en]
Ease-of-learning judgments, processing fluency, monitoring, metacognition, cue utilisation, beliefs
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-157349DOI: 10.1080/09658211.2017.1410849ISI: 000432247400008OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-157349DiVA, id: diva2:1219023
Available from: 2018-06-15 Created: 2018-06-15 Last updated: 2018-06-25Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Metacognitive Aspects of Learning: What Influences Magnitude and Accuracy of Ease-of-Learning Judgments?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Metacognitive Aspects of Learning: What Influences Magnitude and Accuracy of Ease-of-Learning Judgments?
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

To learn efficiently, many situations require people to judge what will be easy or difficult to learn, or how well it has been stored in memory. These metacognitive judgments are important to understand because they most likely guide how people behave when they learn, and consequently how much they learn. In this thesis, I focus on what is referred to as ease-of-learning (EOL) judgments, that is judgments about how easy or difficult a material will be to learn. EOL judgments have received relatively limited attention in the metacognitive literature. Therefore, this thesis also considers for comparison the more extensively researched judgments of learning (JOL), which are judgments of how well a studied material has been learned or how likely it is to be remembered on a later memory test. I had two major aims with my research. First, I aimed to investigate how accurate EOL judgments are, that is, how well they can predict the ease of future learning, and what moderates this accuracy. More precisely, I investigated what affects EOL judgment accuracy by varying how much an item-set varies in a predictive item characteristic, as well as varying methodological aspects of the judgment situation. The second major aim was to investigate what sources of information people use to make EOL judgments and how the information is used to make metacognitive judgments. In three studies, participants made EOL judgments for word pairs (e.g., sun – warm), or single words (e.g., bucket), studied the items, and tried to recall them on memory tests. In Study II, participants also made JOLs after studying the items. To estimate the accuracy of the judgments, the judgments were correlated with recall performance on memory tests. The results of the thesis show that EOL judgments can be accurate when they are made on a to-be-learned material which varies in a predictive item characteristic (Study I and II). In some conditions, EOL judgments are even as accurate as JOLs (Study II). Study II also supports the cue competition hypothesis, which predicts that, when people judge memory and learning, they sometimes rely less on one source of information if other information is available. Furthermore, Study III shows that processing fluency (the experience of effort associated with processing information), may be an important source of information for EOL judgments, and that people’s beliefs about available information can moderate how the information is used to make EOL judgments. Overall, the results show when EOL judgments will be accurate and when they will not, and provides evidence that people may use processing fluency to make EOL judgments even when it contradicts their beliefs. Importantly, the results also indicate that when multiple sources of information are available, information may compete for influence over metacognitive judgments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Psychology, Stockholm University, 2018. p. 65
Keywords
ease-of-learning judgments, judgments of learning, metacognition, monitoring, processing fluency, learning, memory
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-157395 (URN)978-91-7797-232-7 (ISBN)978-91-7797-233-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-09-07, David Magnussonsalen (U31), Frescati Hagväg 8, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 2: Manuscript.

Available from: 2018-08-15 Created: 2018-06-18 Last updated: 2018-07-27Bibliographically approved

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