- Relations between perceptual and conceptual scope: how global versus local processing fits a focus on similarity versus dissimilarity
- Journal of Experimental Psychology. General
- Volume | Issue number
- 138 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Nine studies showed a bidirectional link (a) between a global processing style and generation of similarities and (b) between a local processing style and generation of dissimilarities. In Experiments 1-4, participants were primed with global versus local perception styles and then asked to work on an allegedly unrelated generation task. Across materials, participants generated more similarities than dissimilarities after global priming, whereas for participants with local priming, the opposite was true. Experiments 5-6 demonstrated a bidirectional link whereby participants who were first instructed to search for similarities attended more to the gestalt of a stimulus than to its details, whereas the reverse was true for those who were initially instructed to search for dissimilarities. Because important psychological variables are correlated with processing styles, in Experiments 7-9, temporal distance, a promotion focus, and high power were predicted and shown to enhance the search for similarities, whereas temporal proximity, a prevention focus, and low power enhanced the search for dissimilarities.
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