An online cognitive bias task: the Rough Estimation Task using Qualtrics
journal contributionposted on 22.01.2020, 09:20 by Thom Wilcockson, Emmanuel M Pothos, W Miles Cox
Measurement of cognitive bias typically relies on laboratory-based tasks. In order for cognitive bias measures to be useful outside of laboratory settings, a simple measure is required which does not rely on precise measurement tools, for example, precise reaction time measurement (which can be done only with specialized software typically running through either dedicated hardware or specifically configured computers). The Rough Estimation Task is a simple reading task which has been previously shown to be an effective measure of alcohol-related cognitive bias. We conducted an online version of the Rough Estimation Task, so that we could measure cognitive bias away from a laboratory environment. We also measured whether baseline Rough Estimation Task scores could predict future drinking and Rough Estimation Task scores. A sample of undergraduate participants completed the study online. We found that the online Rough Estimation Task was associated with both current and future drinking, as measured in a follow-up online task. The results imply that the online Rough Estimation Task could be used as a simple online measure of cognitive bias for both concurrent and future drinking behavior, and so raises hope for employing this measure outside of laboratory settings and possibly even in clinical applications.
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