We examined whether expectancy, one of several factors influencing attention, is similarly affected in rats and humans by manipulation of relative stimulus frequency, A two-choice reaction time (RT) task was developed for rats, and an analogous task was used for humans. Errors, RTs, discriminability, and response bias were measured. Both rats and humans shifted their response bias to the more frequent stimulus, with no change in overall discriminability. As stimulus probability or stimulus repetition increased, RTs and errors decreased. These results illustrate the similarity of expectancy in rats and humans. This two-choice RT task for rats can be used in future studies to examine the neuronal mechanisms of expectancy and attention.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Sensory Systems