publication . Article . 2013

Utility templates for the interpretation of conditional statements

Bonnefon, Jean-François; Haigh, Matthew; Stewart, Andrew;
Open Access
  • Published: 01 Jan 2013 Journal: Journal of Memory and Language, volume 68, pages 350-361 (issn: 0749-596X, Copyright policy)
  • Publisher: Elsevier BV
  • Country: United Kingdom
People often use conditional statements to describe configurations of agents, actions and valued consequences. In this paper we propose the existence of utility templates, a special subset of these configurations that exert strong constraints on how people interpret conditionals. We conducted an initial completion survey which identified four potential utility templates. Four experiments then examined characteristic effects of these templates: When a described novel situation is close enough to a pre-existing template, people interpret ambiguous information associated with that situation or reinterpret current information in such a way that their understanding o...
free text keywords: Linguistics and Language, Experimental and Cognitive Psychology, Artificial Intelligence, Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology, Language and Linguistics, Template, Cognitive psychology, Relevance theory, Pragmatics, Schema (psychology), Psychology, Cognition, C800
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