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Temporal binding is a subjective compression of the time between a cause and its effect (Buehner, 2012). For example, people typically underestimate the time between a voluntary action and its consequences and overestimate the time between an involuntary action and its subsequent consequences. Previous research suggests a relationship between temporal binding and feelings of responsibility. Specifically, the temporal binding effect of time compressing is weaker when people are coerced (Caspar et al., 2015), while other studies have found that temporal binding is stronger when people have more choices (Borhani, Beck, & Haggard, 2017; Barlas & Obhi, 2013). The present study investigated the validity of temporal binding as a measure for feelings of responsibility. In two experiments, we compared the effects of choice on temporal binding (Experiment 1) and explicit judgments of responsibility (Experiment 2) in the same task environment. In Experiment 1, forty-one participants recruited from the participant pool at UNG judged the time between 1) a self-chosen keypress and a tone (free choice); 2) a cued keypress and a tone (no choice); or 3) two computer- generated tones (control). We hypothesized that the temporal binding effect of time compressing would be strongest in the free choice condition. Contrary to our hypothesis, the choice manipulation did not influence temporal binding. Experiment 2 (in progress) will determine whether choice influences feelings of responsibility differently from temporal binding.

Keywords: Temporal Binding


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  • Subject
    • Psychological Science

  • Institution
    • Dahlonega

  • Event location
    • Nesbitt 3110

  • Event date
    • 23 March 2018

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      John Dewey