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Some research tips from 55 years' psychophysics
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2014 (English)In: Fechner Day 2014: proceedings of the 30th Annual Meeting of the International Society for Psychophysics / [ed] Geoffrey R. Patching, M. Johnson, E. Borg, Å. Hellström, Stockholm: International Society for Psychophysics , 2014, 16-16 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

I shall mention some general research problems, my way of tackling them and experimental and theoretical studies to illustrate them. Basic or applied problems? Both! Examples of applied investigations are subjective experience of loudspeaker quality and of surfaces of building ma- terials. In the following problem examples of basic research will be given. Views on validating results: statistics, repetition, converging operations (experiment demonstrating same percept for same stimulus independent of judgmental instructions). Context effects: Psychophysical or per- ceptual invariance. Data equivalence: the same data can be interpreted differently (Thurstone Case V and VI). Comments on our observers: they know better than the theorist. Kill your dar- lings: be aware that your theory might be wrong. Functionalism vs. pointillism: work with functions rather than capitalizing on statistical differences in single points. Creative research vs. gap filling research. Time perception in humans and rats. Here I shall give just one reference1. There I describe the course of a research project with all drawbacks from the failed attempt to use cheap but stupid mice rather than expensive intelligent rats to the change of journal editor who questioned my conclusions in an already accepted paper so that I had to add an appendix in which I proved him wrong. It shows also the impact of serendipity and the advantage of discussions with colleagues. Finally, the lesson on how to boast elegantly I will not give in this summary.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: International Society for Psychophysics , 2014. 16-16 p.
Keyword [en]
psychophysics, research strategies, time perception
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-113084OAI: diva2:782856
Fechner Day 2014, Lund, Sweden, August, 18-22, 2014.
Available from: 2015-01-22 Created: 2015-01-22 Last updated: 2015-01-26Bibliographically approved

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Eisler, Hannes
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Department of Psychology

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