When participants are asked to provide confidence judgments for each provided alternative in a multiple-choice memory task, such judgments are inflated if the assessed alternatives are accompanied by an implausible (dud) alternative. This finding, termed the dud-alternative effect, has been recently documented in a memory setting with a lineup procedure (Charman, Wells, & Joy, Law & Human Behavior 35:479–500 2011). In the present study, we developed a novel paradigm to investigate the dud-alternative effect in memory. The paradigm utilizes a multiple-choice associative recognition task in which dud alternatives can be rejected on the basis of their unfamiliarity. In two experiments, we demonstrated a reliable dud-alternative effect with our novel procedure. The results demonstrated that the dud-alternative effect in episodic memory is not limited to tasks based on perceptual factors, but is a general phenomenon concerning confidence judgments.
Duds Confidence Recognition Metacognition
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The authors thank Dylan Jones for helpful comments while developing this project.
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