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Memory & Cognition

, Volume 28, Issue 5, pp 832–840 | Cite as

Toward an explanation of the power law artifact: Insights from response surface analysis

  • In Jae MyungEmail author
  • Cheongtag Kim
  • Mark A. Pitt
Article

Abstract

The power law (y =ax −b) has been shown to provide a good description of data collected in a wide range of fields in psychology. R. B. Anderson and Tweney (1997) suggested that the model’s data-fitting success may in part be artifactual, caused by a number of factors, one of which is the use of improper data averaging methods. The present paper follows up on their work and explains causes of the power law artifact. A method for studying the geometric relations among responses generated by mathematical models is introduced that shows the artifact is a result of the combined contributions of three factors: arithmetic averaging of data that are generated from a nonlinear model in the presence of individual differences.

Keywords

Response Surface Response Curve Power Function Retention Interval Exponential Model 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyOhio State UniversityColumbus

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