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Foreperiod length, reaction time and autonomic activity Lowery, Hilary Jane

Abstract

Four foreperiods, 6.1, 2.1, 1.1, and 0.6 seconds, were used to investigate the relationships between some components of the OR to a warning signal and reaction time to a stimulus. It was found that reaction time was slowest with the longest foreperiod and fastest with the shortest foreperiod. Duration of the components of the OR correlated negatively with reaction time, and no correlation was found between reaction time and heart-rate deceleration. Heart-rate deceleration was found to be maximal during the 6.1 second foreperiod and to correlate positively with the duration of the deceleration. The findings are discussed in terms of a central process, and the implications for individual learning differences are discussed in terms of the response requirements of the task.

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