The C-SEB regularly organizes scientific talks, conferences, discussions, and workshops for its members and invited guest. You will find all upcoming events in our event calendar below. Unless otherwise stated, our activites are for C-SEB members only. Events that are open to the general public will be labeled accordingly. We hope you enjoy learning about our events and welcome you to participate!
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Two Modes of Learning and the Description-Experience Gap People can learn about the probabilistic consequences of their actions in two ways: One is by consulting descriptions of an action’s consequences and probabilities. The other is by personally experiencing the probabilistic consequences of an action. In the last dozen years research has demonstrated systematic discrepancies between description- and experienced-based choices. This description experience gap has been attributed to factors including reliance on a small set of experience, the impact of recency, and different weighting of probability information in the two decision types. In this talk, I will present the results of our recent meta-analysis evaluating these and other determinants of the decision-experience gap. We found a robust gap but also a key moderator, namely, problem structure. Second, the largest determinant of the gap was reliance on small samples and the associated sampling error. Third, the gap persisted when sampling error was eliminated. Fourth, the occurrence of recency was contingent on decision makers’ autonomy to terminate search, consistent with an optional stopping rule. Finally, we found indications of different probability weighting in experience versus description when the problem structure involved a risky and a safe option. I will delineate implications of these results for models of choice under uncertainty and discuss potential applications in the context of risk communication. https://dwulff.github.io/about/ https://therbootcamp.github.io/
The aging lexicon: Differences in the semantic networks of younger and older adults Cognitive aging is often equated with cognitive decline. However, while fluid abilities, such as reasoning, working memory, and processing speed, decline, crystallized abilities often flourish. One variable that appears to particularly defy the common developmental trend is vocabulary size, showing performance increases into late adulthood. Based on this finding, it was recently demonstrated that the rise in vocabulary size, and crystallized abilities in general, may in parts be responsible for the decline in more fluid abilities. Building upon this hypothesis, I will present evidence using a network-approach that older and younger adults’ representations of words, also known as their mental lexicon, differ not only in size but also in structure. Moreover, I will show that these structural differences in the mental lexica of younger and older adults can be explained in terms of differences in the amount of experiences made by younger and older adults. In light of known connections between network structure and cognitive functioning, these results strengthen the view of cognitive decline being driven by extended learning, rather than cognitive or neuronal deterioration. https://dwulff.github.io/about/ https://therbootcamp.github.io/