Psychonomic Bulletin & Review

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 666–670 | Cite as

Effects of laterality and pitch height of an auditory accessory stimulus on horizontal response selection: The Simon effect and the SMARC effect

  • Akio Nishimura
  • Kazuhiko YokosawaEmail author
Brief Reports


In the present article, we investigated the effects of pitch height and the presented ear (laterality) of an auditory stimulus, irrelevant to the ongoing visual task, on horizontal response selection. Performance was better when the response and the stimulated ear spatially corresponded (Simon effect), and when the spatial—musical association of response codes (SMARC) correspondence was maintained—that is, right (left) response with a high-pitched (low-pitched) tone. These findings reveal an automatic activation of spatially and musically associated responses by task-irrelevant auditory accessory stimuli. Pitch height is strong enough to influence the horizontal responses despite modality differences with task target.


Auditory Stimulus Simon Effect Simon Task Left Response Pitch Height 
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Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Graduate School of Humanities and SociologyUniversity of TokyoTokyoJapan

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