What is the Stroop Interference Effect?

Hannah Adams, “What is the Stroop Interference Effect?”
Mentor: David Osmon, Psychology

The construct validity of the DKEFS-Stroop CW trial has not been examined using reaction time and Miyake executive function timed measures. The present study did so using simple, choice, and cognitive control measures of reaction time as well as timed measures of Miyake factors of inhibition (SSRT, Stroop-negatively primed trials), flexibility (Local-Global-RT, Flanker-RT), and updating/monitoring (Keep Track-4, 2-back). One hundred one UWM students were given the DKEFS-Stroop CW Inhibition task (CW-I), Simple RT, 2-Choice RT, Complex 2-Choice RT, Cognitive Control RT, Stroop negative priming RT, Local-Global RT & correct, a timed 2-back Correct, a timed Keep Track-4, Flanker RT & correct, Stop Signal RT tasks. An adaptive elastic net General Regression with Weibull model analyzed which variables predicted the DKEFS-Stroop CW task. Generalized regression predicted CW-I well (Generalized R2=0.46) using only two of the 13 variables, including Choice IIV and Stroop negative priming ). These results indicated that better CW-I performance was associated with less Choice IIV and faster Stroop negative priming RT. The present results demonstrate that CW-I performance on the popular DKEFS executive function battery is associated with less intraindividual variability on choice RT tasks and with a faster ability to overcome Stroop interference when negatively primed trials increase the interference. CW-I is not related to other executive abilities, including being able to be cognitively flexible or holding a lot of information in mind and not related to the second type of interference either, which is the ability to stop an already programmed action but is related to inhibiting a prepotent response in favor of a less preferred and less automatic response. This indicates that CW-I requires executive control and is most related to having little variability between reaction time trials, and strongly related to overcoming negative priming interference.


  1. You did an excellent job of making some complex concepts understandable for someone who is not familiar with your area of research.

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