Updating Context in the Equation: An Experimental Argument with Eye Tracking

  • Jean BaratginEmail author
  • Brian Ocak
  • Hamid Bessaa
  • Jean-Louis Stilgenbauer
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 456)


The Bayesian model was recently proposed as a normative reference for psychology studies in deductive reasoning. This new paradigm supports that individuals evaluate the probability of an indicative conditional if A then C in the natural language as the conditional probability \(P(\textit{C given A})\) (P(C|A) according to Bayes’ rule). In this paper, we show applying an eye-tracking methodology that if the cognitive process for both probability assessments (\(P(\textit{if A then C})\) and P(C|A)) is really identical, it actually doesn’t match the traditional focusing situation of revision corresponding to Bayes’ rule (change of reference class in a static universe). Individuals appear to revise their probability as if the universe was evolving. They use a minimal rule in mentally removing the elements of the worlds that are not A. This situation, called updating, actually seems to be the natural frame for individuals to evaluate the probability of indicative conditional and the conditional probability.


Equation Conditional probability Focusing Updating Eye-tracking methodology 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean Baratgin
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Brian Ocak
    • 1
    • 3
  • Hamid Bessaa
    • 1
  • Jean-Louis Stilgenbauer
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratoire CHArtUniversité Paris 8 & EPHE, Site Paris-EPHEParisFrance
  2. 2.Institut Jean Nicod (École Normale Supérieure)ParisFrance
  3. 3.Université de Franche-ComtéBesançonFrance

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