Stewart, N., & Morin, C. (2007). Dissimilarity is used as evidence of category membership in multidimensional perceptual categorisation: A test of the similarity-dissimilarity generalised context model. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 60, 1337-1346.

In exemplar models of categorisation, the similarity between an exemplar and category members constitutes evidence that the exemplar belongs to the category. We test the possibility that the dissimilarity to members of competing categories also contributes to this evidence. Data were collected from two two-dimensional perceptual categorisation experiments, one with lines varying in orientation and length and the other with coloured patches varying in saturation and brightness. Model fits of the similarity-dissimilarity generalised context model were used to compare a model where only similarity was used with a model where both similarity and dissimilarity were used. For the majority of participants the similarity-dissimilarity model provided both a significantly better fit and better generalisation, suggesting that people do also use dissimilarity as evidence.

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