September 2019
Volume 19, Issue 10
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   September 2019
Confidence as a priority signal in perceptual decision-making
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • David Aguilar Lleyda
    Centre d’Économie de la Sorbonne (CNRS & Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne)
  • Maxime Lemarchand
    Centre d’Économie de la Sorbonne (CNRS & Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne)
  • Vincent de Gardelle
    Paris School of Economics & CNRS
Journal of Vision September 2019, Vol.19, 143a. doi:https://doi.org/10.1167/19.10.143a
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      David Aguilar Lleyda, Maxime Lemarchand, Vincent de Gardelle; Confidence as a priority signal in perceptual decision-making. Journal of Vision 2019;19(10):143a. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/19.10.143a.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

When dealing with multiple tasks, we often find ourselves in the problem of establishing the order in which to tackle them. We hypothesized that confidence, the subjective feeling in the accuracy of our decisions or actions, plays an active role in task ordering. We tested this by presenting an array of O or X, colored blue or orange. Participants had to report both which letter and color were more frequent in each trial, and to rate their confidence on each choice. Crucially, they could report the choice on each dimension in the order they chose. The difficulty of one dimension relative to the other was varied across trials. We found an effect of confidence in priority: participants tended to address first the dimension they were more confident in. In subsequent studies, we replicated this finding using task difficulty and response accuracy as proxies for confidence: participants first responded to the easiest of the two tasks, and their first choice was also more likely to be correct. We showed that this effect was not due to a difference in response availability between dimensions. We also extended our finding to situations of prospective confidence, and to situations involving non-perceptual (mental calculation) decisions. Our results support the role of confidence as a priority signal, thus strengthening the evidence for confidence having an active role shaping our future behavior.

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