Influencing Categorical Choices through Physical Object Interaction


Recent research has shown that action knowledge influences categorical decisions. Shipp, Vallée-Tourangeau, and Anthony, (2014) showed that action influences categorisation using a triad task when combined with taxonomic information and presented within a functional context. The present experiment examined whether participants would be more likely to match items based on shared actions following priming with the functional actions of the objects. Participants engaged in the triad task after a priming phase where they either interacted with a series of objects for their functional capacity, grouped them into or moved them from one table to another. Consistent with Shipp et al. the results showed that action was primarily used to base choices on the triad task when the action choice also shared a taxonomic relation, and was presented in context. Participants were more likely to select the action item when they had been primed with the functional action of the objects.

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