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eScholarship
Open Access Publications from the University of California

Replication/Extension Papers 2019 - 2020

This year, the Cognitive Sciences and Psychology Division of ULAB established their first paper series on eScholarship OpenAccess. We had fourteen mentors, more than eighty mentees, and six graduate students. All of our groups' hard work throughout the year culminated into fourteen final papers, posters, and presentations.


Special thanks to our faculty advisor, Professor D'esposito, as well as our graduate students, Roya Baharloo, Zuzanna Balewski, Sophia Batchelor, Celia Ford, Jessica Jones, and Brooke Staveland. ULAB would not have been possible without your support!


Our board would like to thank all of our mentors and mentees for their hard work and final projects, as well. It was a pleasure serving you this year and we know you will all achieve much more in the future!


Sincerely,

ULAB Board 2019 - 2020

Hareen Seerha, Research Director

Shreeya Garg, Lab Manager

Rajan Parikh, Lab Manager

Lexi Zhou, Operations

Arushi Sahay, Operations & Social Chair

Ashish Ramesh, CS Director

Josephine Widjaja, Editor-in-Chief

Samadi Karunasundera, Finance Chair



Cover page of An Extension Study: fMRI use to Distinguish Between Deception andGeneral Memory

An Extension Study: fMRI use to Distinguish Between Deception andGeneral Memory

(2020)

The purpose of this study is to expand upon the findings published by Junhong Yu, Qian Tao,Ruibin Zhang, Chetwyn C.H. Chan, and Tatia M.C. Lee in their paper, “Can fMRI discriminatebetween deception and false memory? A meta-analytic comparison between deception and falsememory studies” by conducting a meta-analysis to compare brain activation between deceptionand general memory1 recollection (Yu et al., 2019). Meta-analyses compile fMRI results frommany individual studies with regard to a specific cognitive task into one, cumulative dataset. Themeta-analyses for this extension were compiled by Neurosynth using FMRIB Software Library(FSL) to measure the amount of brain activation corresponding to areas involved in bothdeception and memory in general (“Nipype: Neuroimaging in Python,” 2020). The purpose ofthis extension is to understand how general memory recollection might compare to deception.The prediction of this study is that by broadening the memory dataset to include data from falseand true memory, activation will be reported in more areas than those reported in Yu and hiscolleagues separate analysis of each kind of memory. This, in turn, should make it more difficultto differentiate deception from memory recollection when it is not known to be true or false.While Yu et al. 2019 concluded that areas associated with truthful memory and false memorywere both separately distinguishable from deception, the results found in this study indicate thatactivation involved with general memory was distinguishable from deception only in theprecuneus and cingulate gyrus.

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Cover page of Selectively Distracted: Divided Attention and Memory for Important Information - A replication and extension study

Selectively Distracted: Divided Attention and Memory for Important Information - A replication and extension study

(2020)

Distractions and multitasking are generally detrimental to learning and memory.Nevertheless, people often study while listening to music, sitting in noisy coffee shops, orintermittently checking their e-mail. The experiment we replicated examined how distractionsand divided attention influence one’s ability to selectively remember valuable information.Participants studied lists of words that ranged in value from 1 to 10 points while completing adigit-detection task, while listening to music, or without distractions. Most of the figures weresuccessfully replicated using the given dataset and tools like Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets.Since we were able to arrive at the same conclusion as the original author, we believe thisexperiment is valid and reliable for application to further extension studies. Our extension studyexamined correlations between gender and recall ability and between age and recall ability. Weconcluded that there was no significant correlation between these variables, suggesting thesefactors did not affect the outcome. This extension further supports the author’s results, as age andgender were seemingly not confounding variables.

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Cover page of A Cognitive Model of the Generation of Singular Concepts and the Mental Systems Involved

A Cognitive Model of the Generation of Singular Concepts and the Mental Systems Involved

(2020)

Psycholinguistics is the study of how neuroanatomical processes influence language acquisition, language structure, and language use (Menn & Dronkers, 2017). According to the field of psycholinguistics, a concept is represented in the mind and is different from the word associated with those representations. Representational theory of mind seeks to explain concepts through symbols and models of cognitive processes (Williams, 1984). In order to be relevant from a psychological standpoint, representational theory of mind must utilize a computational model rather than focus on individual beliefs. Many different theories use a representational model to explore how individuals acquire and categorize concepts. The aim of this study is to develop a theoretical cognitive model—titled the Semantic-Phonological Association Network (SPAN)—of singular concept generation. While developing SPAN, an examination of the current literature and different theories of models relating to concept generation are used as the foundation for the research. For example, Pinker’s “Why We Curse” explores the relationship between the phonetics of swear words and the physical manifestations they represent (Pinker, 2007). It is necessary to represent the phonological and semantic networks as separate but intricately connected systems. SPAN seeks to symbolize the connection between the phonological and semantic system. The main goal is to establish auditory-semantic priming effects from the relationship between the mental systems and introduce a nuanced version about how one is able to generate singular concepts that contain semantic, phonological and lexical information.You can find our presentation link here:

https://drive.google.com/file/u/2/d/1vRzU6wGm5Di0GQZclCa3VK34JWlOYmY0/view

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Cover page of The effect of food anticipation on cognitive function- A replication study

The effect of food anticipation on cognitive function- A replication study

(2020)

Several lines of evidence indicate that glucose can enhance cognitive performancewithout being ingested. Previous research has found that the effect of food anticipation can boostcognitive resources in a testing environment [1]. This study was designed to replicate thefindings utilizing the same population, examining the effect that food anticipation has oncognitive abilities among multiple weight groups. 182 students were included in this replicationstudy. In order to accurately measure the results, the study randomized the order that foodanticipation tasks and cognitive tests were performed. The results indicated that an anticipatoryfood reward effect enhanced the cognitive capabilities of individuals categorized by BMI asoverweight and obese. Furthermore, this effect shifted the attention of these individuals towardlite food options as opposed to regular. Finally, this anticipatory food effect reduced emotionalarousal regarding food for individuals in the obese BMI category. We replicated previousfindings of increased cognitive resources in the presence of food anticipation prior to test taking.These findings add to the growing literature that the presence of food can boost cognitiveresources in testing environments. Future studies should shift the focus away from weight as adriving factor in the results, and instead look at how socio-economic status (SES) and foodinsecurity may affect eye gaze behavior and the anticipatory reward effect associated with foodcues.

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Cover page of The Effect of Mood States on the Reduction of False Memories: A Replication andExtension Study

The Effect of Mood States on the Reduction of False Memories: A Replication andExtension Study

(2020)

Previous research has documented that mood affects memory accuracy. The present study aimsto (1) replicate earlier work showing that mood (negative, positive, neutral) and valence affectsmemory consolidation, (2) examine whether retrieval processes are more likely to preserve falsememories when a mood is induced, (3) identify error prevalence associated with memoryconsolidation. A recognition-memory standard for photographs depicting script-like events wasused. Individuals in both negative and positive moods–similar in arousal levels–correctlyidentified more target events and are more confident in fewer false memories comparing toindividuals in a neutral mood. This shows that arousal (but not valence) helps predict memoryperformance. These findings suggest that arousal state affects memory while mood mediates trueand false memory.

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Cover page of How Do Foreign Accents Impact Perception and Credibility?

How Do Foreign Accents Impact Perception and Credibility?

(2020)

The paper aims to investigate how foreign accents impact perception and credibility by looking at various experiments that the researchers have conducted. To observe the effects that foreign accents have on listeners, we outlined three critical areas: visual and auditory stimuli, subtitle comprehension, and perception. By having an in-group or native accent as our control group, we were able to evaluate how various accents, such as Dutch and German, have a subtle impact on the accuracy of the speakers rated and measured by the participants. Based on our analysis, foreign-accented speakers are perceived to be less credible. In addition, it was concluded that perception also plays a key role in the day-to-day life of non-native speakers. While more research would be beneficial, it is clear that foreign accents reduce the speakers’ credibility and should be considered in environments such as job interviews and other social settings.

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Cover page of The influence of fundamental frequency on perceived duration: A replication study

The influence of fundamental frequency on perceived duration: A replication study

(2020)

The following study examines the relation between perceived duration and the intensityand fundamental frequency of sounds. Sounds with higher fundamental frequency (the lowestfrequency of a periodic waveform) and greater intensity are judged to have longer duration.However, it is not known if fundamental frequency, intensity, or both affect the perceivedduration, and to what extent. The purpose of this study is to find out the variance in contributionof both fundamental frequency and intensity to perceived duration through two forced choicetasks. Through replication, we found that fundamental frequency does in fact have a significantpositive effect on perceived duration while intensity did not. Future research may focus ontesting these results among different language groups, and applying these results to anunderstanding of communication and language.

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Cover page of Consistency and variability in functional localisers

Consistency and variability in functional localisers

(2020)

Much of research surrounding reading difficulties is based solely on behavioral analyses.A child’s early and correct diagnosis is imperative to insure that they receive adequate resourcesand support which can severely affect equal opportunities for success in the future. Afterstudying different methods of diagnosis for reading difficulties, we saw most of these tests couldnot assert significant differences between children with and without reading difficulties. Thiscontributes to diagnoses being heavily reliant on behavioral observations. Since statisticallysignificant distinction can’t be made with behavioral tests, researchers are pushed to exploredifferent approaches.In order to explore more concrete approaches to diagnoses, we then looked at fMRI datato determine if we could accurately attribute functional localizations in the brain to responses towords and pictures. Through this, researchers aimed to use specific neuroanatomical images todetermine how the brain activity of a person without reading difficulties corresponds to wordandimage-processing. We compared data between two runs of the same subject as well asbetween subjects in order to determine consistency of the study. Although we could not findconsistency between subject, we were able to explore possible ways to optimize fMRI studies forfuture diagnoses. We hope to one day optimize the data collection system in order to use thelocalization of brain activity to diagnose children with reading difficulties in an unbiased,systematic way.

Cover page of Do human screams permit individual recognition? - Replication

Do human screams permit individual recognition? - Replication

(2020)

The replication seeks to provide some insight into whether nonlinguistic vocalizations,such as screams, are able to aid humans in identifying individuals based solely on theirscreaming patterns. Participants were asked to distinguish vocalizers after listening to tworecordings. Response accuracies and discriminability indices were calculated to check for screamreceptiveness. We also interpreted d’ scores in order to break down response errors and accuracyfor each participant. According to our findings, the majority of listeners were able to distinguishindividuals based on their screams.The replication also focused on results derived from vocalizer gender differences. Byanalyzing the varying mean response latencies created by male and female vocalizers, we wereable to interpret how well humans are at discriminating against each gender's screams. The goalof this project is to further our understanding of the evolutionary purpose behind screams and toprovide further insight into how screams are related to an individual's identity.

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Cover page of Visual Field Maps of the Visual Cortex

Visual Field Maps of the Visual Cortex

(2020)

fMRI imaging measures brain activity by detecting changes in the brain that are associated with blood flow and can be used in order to determine the size and location of visual field maps. This study measured BOLD responses in humans to understand spatial summation by showing them spatial contrast pattern images through vertical and horizontal apertures.Nonlinear responses can be computed from the visual field responses, from which the spatial summation ratio is calculated. A ratio of less than one indicates a smaller response to exposure to a full aperture or contrast image than predicted by the linear model. Datasets were analyzed using MATLAB, producing eccentricity maps of the visual cortices from stimuli. BOLD response curves identify the intensity of the maps within a particular voxel. The eccentricity maps can then be overlain on anatomical representations of the brain, characterizing the various visual field cortices. Methods of fMRI data analysis are confirmed with the results of this study.

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