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A cognitive model of surprise judgements

Maguire, Rebecca, Costello, Fintan and Keane, Mark (2006) A cognitive model of surprise judgements. In: Proceedings of the Twenty-Eighth Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. Erlbaum, Hillsdale, NJ, pp. 531-536.

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In this paper we outline a cognitive theory and model of surprise judgements which aims to explain how and why some events are considered to be surprising in a piece of text, while others are not. The model is based on a series of experiments carried out by Grimes-Maguire and Keane(2005a), which show that subtle changes in the predictability of a discourse can have a profound effect on a reader’s perceived surprise at certain events. Rather than defining surprise in terms of expectation, we conceive of it as a process involving Representation-Fit. We have implemented this theory in a computational model that has two stages: the Integration stage entails building a coherent representation of the scenario by means of an objective knowledge base rooted in WordNet. The Analysis stage then outputs a surprise rating for a specified event, based on the degree to which that event can be supported by the prior representation. Simulations reveal a strong correspondence between model and participant generated surprise ratings.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology > Emotions > Surprise
Divisions: School of Business > Staff Research and Publications
Depositing User: Caoimhe Ní Mhaicín
Date Deposited: 15 May 2014 14:29
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2014 12:36

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