Speed–accuracy trade-off in skilled typewriting: Decomposing the contributions of hierarchical control loops.

Motonori Yamaguchi, Matthew J. C. Crump, Gordon D. Logan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Typing performance involves hierarchically structured control systems: At the higher level, an outer loop generates a word or a series of words to be typed; at the lower level, an inner loop activates the keystrokes comprising the word in parallel and executes them in the correct order. The present experiments examined contributions of the outer- and inner-loop processes to the control of speed and accuracy in typewriting. Experiments 1 and 2 involved discontinuous typing of single words, and Experiments 3 and 4 involved continuous typing of paragraphs. Across experiments, typists were able to trade speed for accuracy but were unable to type at rates faster than 100 ms/keystroke, implying limits to the flexibility of the underlying processes. The analyses of the component latencies and errors indicated that the majority of the trade-offs were due to inner-loop processing. The contribution of outer-loop processing to the trade-offs was small, but it resulted in large costs in error rate. Implications for strategic control of automatic processes are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)678-699
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance
Volume39
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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