Agency attribution: event-related potentials and outcome monitoring

Bednark, Jeffery G. and Franz, Elizabeth A. (2014) Agency attribution: event-related potentials and outcome monitoring. Experimental Brain Research, 232 4: 1117-1126. doi:10.1007/s00221-014-3821-4

Author Bednark, Jeffery G.
Franz, Elizabeth A.
Title Agency attribution: event-related potentials and outcome monitoring
Journal name Experimental Brain Research   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1432-1106
Publication date 2014-04-01
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s00221-014-3821-4
Volume 232
Issue 4
Start page 1117
End page 1126
Total pages 10
Place of publication Heidelberg, Germany
Publisher Springer
Language eng
Abstract Knowledge about the effects of our actions is an underlying feature of voluntary behavior. Given the importance of identifying the outcomes of our actions, it has been proposed that the sensory outcomes of self-made actions are inherently different from those of externally caused outcomes. Thus, the outcomes of self-made actions are likely to be more motivationally significant for an agent. We used event-related potentials to investigate the relationship between the perceived motivational significance of an outcome and the attribution of agency in the presence of others. In our experiment, we assessed agency attribution in the presence of another agent by varying the degree of contiguity between participants' self-made actions and the sensory outcome. Specifically, we assessed the feedback correct-related positivity (fCRP) and the novelty P3 measures of an outcome's motivational significance and unexpectedness, respectively. Results revealed that both the fCRP and participants' agency attributions were significantly influenced by action-outcome contiguity. However, when action-outcome contiguity was ambiguous, novelty P3 amplitude was a reliable indicator of agency attribution. Prior agency attributions were also found to influence attribution in trials with ambiguous and low action-outcome contiguity. Participants' use of multiple cues to determine agency is consistent with the cue integration theory of agency. In addition to these novel findings, this study supports growing evidence suggesting that reinforcement processes play a significant role in the sense of agency.
Keyword Action-outcome coupling
Novelty P3
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Queensland Brain Institute Publications
Official 2015 Collection
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 9 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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