The repeatability of cognitive performance: a meta-analysis

Wilkinson, Anna (2018) The repeatability of cognitive performance: a meta-analysis. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences . ISSN UNSPECIFIED

Full content URL: http://rstb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/373...

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The repeatability of cognitive performance: a meta-analysis
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Abstract

Behavioural and cognitive processes play important roles in mediating an individual’s interactions with its environment. Yet, while there is a vast literature on repeatable individual differences in behaviour, relatively little is known about the repeatability of cognitive performance. To further our understanding of the evolution of cognition, we gathered 44 studies on individual performance of 25 species across six animal classes and used meta-analysis to assess whether
cognitive performance is repeatable. We compared repeatability (R) in performance (1) on the same task presented at
different times (temporal repeatability), and (2) on different tasks that measured the same putative cognitive ability
(contextual repeatability). We also addressed whether R estimates were influenced by seven extrinsic factors (moderators): type of cognitive performance measurement, type of cognitive task, delay between tests, origin of the subjects, experimental context, taxonomic class and publication status.We found support for both temporal and contextual repeatability of cognitive performance, with mean R estimates ranging between 0.15 and 0.28. Repeatability
estimates were mostly influenced by the type of cognitive performance measures and publication status. Our findings
highlight the widespread occurrence of consistent inter-individual variation in cognition across a range
of taxa which, like behaviour, may be associated with fitness outcomes.

Additional Information:The final published version of this article can be accessed online at http://rstb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/373/1756/20170281
Keywords:Cognitive repeatability, evolutionary biology of cognition, individual differences, learning, memory, attention
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C120 Behavioural Biology
C Biological Sciences > C182 Evolution
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:33258
Deposited On:25 Oct 2018 15:21

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