Training experts: individuation without naming is worth it.

Bukach CM, Vickery TJ, Kinka D, Gauthier I
J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform. 2012 38 (1): 14-7

PMID: 21967271 · PMCID: PMC3350645 · DOI:10.1037/a0025610

There is growing evidence that individuation experience is necessary for development of expert object discrimination that transfers to new exemplars. Individuation training in human studies has primarily used label association tasks where labels are learned at both the individual and more abstract (basic) level, and expertise criterion requires that individual-level judgments become as fast as basic-level judgments. However, there are training situations when the use of labels is not practical (e.g., with animals or some clinical populations). Moreover, labeling itself can facilitate object discrimination, thus it is unclear what role labels play in the acquisition of expertise in such training paradigms. Here, participants completed an online game that did not require labels in which they interacted with novel objects (Greebles) or control objects (Yufos). Games either required individuation or categorization. We then assessed the impact of this exposure on an abridged Greeble training paradigm. As expected, participants who played Yufo games or Greeble categorization games showed a significant basic-level advantage for Greebles in the abridged training paradigm, typical of novices. However, participants who played the Greeble identity game showed a reduced basic-level advantage, suggesting that individuation without labels may be sufficient to acquire perceptual expertise.

MeSH Terms (11)

Adult Concept Formation Discrimination (Psychology) Female Form Perception Games, Experimental Humans Learning Male Neuropsychological Tests Young Adult

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