What is Stroop Effect?

In psychology, the Stroop effect is a demonstration of cognitive interference where a delay in the reaction time of a task occurs due to a mismatch in stimuli.

The effect has been used to create a psychological test that is widely used in clinical practice and investigation.

A basic task that demonstrates this effect occurs when there is a mismatch between the name of a color (e.g., "green", or "red") and the color it is printed on (i.e., the word "red" printed in green ink instead of red ink). When asked to name the color of the word it takes longer and is more prone to errors than when the color of the ink matches the name of the color.

Why is it important?

The Stroop effect has been widely used in psychology. Among the most important uses is the creation of validated psychological tests based on the Stroop effect permit to measure a person's selective attention capacity and skills, as well as their processing speed ability.

  • Processing
  • Selective
  • Automaticity
  • Parallel distributed

It is also used in conjunction with other neuropsychological assessments to examine a person's executive processing abilities, and can help in the diagnosis and characterization of different psychiatric and neurological disorders.

Researchers also use the Stroop effect during brain imaging studies to investigate regions of the brain that are involved in planning, decision-making, and managing real-world interference (e.g., texting and driving).

Brain Test - Stroop Effect

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