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Developmental insights into experience-based decision making

Rakow, Tim and Rahim, Saleema B (2010) 'Developmental insights into experience-based decision making.' Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, 23 (1). pp. 69-82. ISSN 08943257

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Abstract

In three experiments involving children and adults (N = 324), option payoffs for sure versus risky choices were either described or experienced via observation of 20 outcomes. Choices revealed a description-experience gap for payoffs with rare events, implying greater impact of small probabilities (≤.2) for described than for experienced choices. The size of this effect was independent of participant age. Therefore, the role of cognitive limitations in the description-experience distinction remains unclear, as the age groups would have differed in cognitive capacity. Age-related differences in ‘sampling style’ in decisions from experience were observed. Pre-choice data acquisition changed markedly with age: From frequent alternation between options towards separate systematic exploration of options with increasing age. A fourth experiment, that manipulated sampling style, failed to demonstrate its link to other age-related features of choice (e.g. risk preferences). Our studies illustrate the value of developmental research for testing theoretical claims and revealing novel phenomena in decision research.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: risky choice; decisions from experience; description versus experience; information acquisition; sampling; sequence-order effects
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2011 19:02
Last Modified: 16 Dec 2014 11:19
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/1679

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