Colors in Mind: A Novel Paradigm to Investigate Pure Color Imagery

Wantz, Andrea Laura; Borst, Grégoire; Mast, Fred; Lobmaier, Janek (2015). Colors in Mind: A Novel Paradigm to Investigate Pure Color Imagery. Journal of experimental psychology - learning, memory, and cognition, 41(4), pp. 1152-1161. American Psychological Association 10.1037/xlm0000079

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Mental color imagery abilities are commonly measured using paradigms that involve naming, judging, or comparing the colors of visual mental images of well-known objects (e.g., “Is a sunflower darker yellow than a lemon”?). Although this approach is widely used in patient studies, differences in the ability to perform such color comparisons might simply reflect participants’ general knowledge of object colors rather than their ability to generate accurate visual mental images of the colors of the objects. The aim of the present study was to design a new color imagery paradigm. Participants were asked to visualize a color for 3 s and then to determine a visually presented color by pressing 1 of 6 keys. The authors reasoned that participants would react faster when the imagined and perceived colors were congruent than when they were incongruent. In Experiment 1, participants were slower in incongruent than congruent trials but only when they were instructed to visualize the colors. The results in Experiment 2 demonstrate that the congruency effect reported in Experiment 1 cannot be attributed to verbalization of the color that had to be visualized. Finally, in Experiment 3, the congruency effect evoked by mental imagery correlated with performance in a perceptual version of the task. The authors discuss these findings with respect to the mechanisms that underlie mental imagery and patients suffering from color imagery deficits.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Cognitive Psychology, Perception and Methodology
10 Strategic Research Centers > Center for Cognition, Learning and Memory (CCLM)
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Cognitive Psychology, Perception and Methodology > Biologische Psychologie (SNF)

UniBE Contributor:

Wantz, Andrea Laura; Mast, Fred and Lobmaier, Janek

Subjects:

100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology

ISSN:

0278-7393

Publisher:

American Psychological Association

Language:

English

Submitter:

Andrea Laura Wantz

Date Deposited:

26 Feb 2015 11:24

Last Modified:

21 Jul 2017 10:47

Publisher DOI:

10.1037/xlm0000079

PubMed ID:

25419823

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.63354

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/63354

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