No pain no gain: The positive impact of punishment on the strategic regulation of accuracy

Michelle Arnold, Lisa Chisholm, Toby Prike

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    3 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Previous studies have shown that punishing people through a large penalty for volunteering incorrect information typically leads them to withhold more information (metacognitive response bias), but it does not appear to influence their ability to distinguish between their own correct and incorrect answers (metacognitive accuracy discrimination). The goal of the current study was to demonstrate that punishing people for volunteering incorrect information—versus rewarding volunteering correct information—produces more effective metacognitive accuracy discrimination. All participants completed three different general-knowledge tests: a reward test (high points for correct volunteered answers), a baseline test (equal points/penalties for volunteered correct/incorrect answers) and a punishment test (high penalty for incorrect volunteered answers). Participants were significantly better at distinguishing between their own correct and incorrect answers on the punishment than reward test, which has implications for situations requiring effective accuracy monitoring.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)146-153
    Number of pages8
    JournalMemory
    Volume24
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

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