Does implicit mentalising involve the representation of others’ mental state content? Examining domain-specificity with an adapted Joint Simon task

Wong, Malcolm Ka Yu and Bazhydai, Marina and Hartley, Calum and Wang, Jessica (2024) Does implicit mentalising involve the representation of others’ mental state content? Examining domain-specificity with an adapted Joint Simon task. Royal Society Open Science. ISSN 2054-5703 (In Press)

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Abstract

Implicit mentalising involves the automatic awareness of others’ perspectives, but its domain-specificity is debated. The Joint Simon task demonstrates implicit mentalising as a Joint Simon Effect (JSE), proposed to stem from spontaneous action co-representation of a social partner’s frame-of-reference in the Joint (but not Individual) task. However, evidence also shows that any sufficiently salient entity (not necessarily social) can induce the JSE. Here, we investigated the content of co-representation through a novel Joint Simon task where participants viewed a set of distinct images assigned to either themselves or their partner. Critically, a surprise image recognition task allowed us to identify partner-driven effects exclusive to the Joint task-sharing condition, versus the Individual condition. We did not observe a significant JSE, preventing us from drawing confident conclusions about the effect’s domain-specificity. However, the recognition task results revealed that participants in the Joint task did not recognise their partner’s stimuli more accurately than participants in the Individual task. This implies that participants were no more likely to encode content from their partner’s perspective during the Joint task. Overall, this study pushes methodological boundaries regarding the elicitation of co-representation in the Joint Simon task and demonstrates the potential utility of a surprise recognition task.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Royal Society Open Science
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Research Output Funding/yes_externally_funded
Subjects:
?? implicit mentalisingco-representationjoint actiondomain specificityjoint simon effectyes - externally fundedgeneral psychologyexperimental and cognitive psychologygeneral ??
ID Code:
220651
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
28 May 2024 11:10
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
In Press
Last Modified:
19 Jun 2024 16:15