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Journal Articles Computers in Human Behavior Year : 2020

Expertise reversal effect: Cost of generating new schemas


Experts show better mnemonic performance than novices, due to higher number of stored schemas, according to cognitive load theory. This advantage is hindered in non-optimal situations where experts' schemas are sometimes not applicable and may show same or higher cognitive load than novices. Further investigations were, however, needed to unravel the mechanisms at stake in real-life situations. We investigated expert train travelers in normal versus disturb condition using immersion in a virtual environment of a Parisian train station: Saint-Michel Notre Dame. Our aim was to determine how cognitive load varies according to expertise level of travelers. We measured skin conductance responses for physiological analysis, NASA-Task Load Index for subjective analysis, and factual and spatiotemporal contextual memory investigation for behavioral analysis. As expected, expert travelers showed lower cognitive load than novices in normal but not in disturb condition. In fact, an expertise reversal effect was observed in disturb context, characterized by higher cognitive load in experts for subjective and physiological measures, and a lower temporal memory performance. These alterations are believed to be associated with high cognitive load needed for inhibiting the automatized schemas. We provide a novel insight in expertise reversal effect, during navigation in an everyday life activity.
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hal-04025071 , version 1 (11-03-2023)



A. Armougum, A. Gaston-Bellegarde, C. Joie-La Marle, P. Piolino. Expertise reversal effect: Cost of generating new schemas. Computers in Human Behavior, 2020, 111, pp.106406. ⟨10.1016/j.chb.2020.106406⟩. ⟨hal-04025071⟩
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