Most models of choice response time base decisions on evidence accumulated over time. A fundamental distinction among these models concerns whether each piece of evidence is equally weighted (lossless accumulation) or unequally weighted (leaky accumulation). The authors tested a hypothesis derived from A. Heathcote and S. Brown's (2002) self-exciting expert competitor (SEEXC) model of skill acquisition: that evidence accumulation becomes less leaky with practice. The hypothesis was supported by observation that the effects of prime stimuli increased with practice. The authors used metacontrast masked primes, which could not be consciously discriminated by most participants, to avoid methodological problems associated with conscious strategy changes. The form of the law of practice in the data is also shown to be consistent with the SEEXC model.
Journal of Experimental Psychology-Human Perception and Performance Vol. 31, no. 2, p. 289-298