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Document Type

Article

Abstract

Fifteen participants were trained on a within-subjects basis with two discrimination training conditions and one simple generalization training (control) condition to determine whether gradient shifts can be obtained within a stimulus dimension consisting of women’s waist-to-hip ratios (WHRs). In one discrimination condition, the S– consisted of the “optimal” WHR; in the other, the S– consisted of the approximate mean WHR for adult women. For all three conditions, the S+ was an intermediate value. Under both discrimination training conditions, the generalization gradient was observed to shift away from the S– and toward extreme values on the opposite end of the dimension; under the control condition, the gradient was more closely centered on the S+. The results suggest that the processes involved in gradient shifts can affect judgments of biologically significant stimuli.

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