The effects of effort on Stroop interference

David P. MacKinnon, R. Edward Geiselman, J. Arthur Woodward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Stroop interference was defined as the difference in time needed to name the ink colors of printed color and color-related words versus control plus signs. The effect of effort on Stroop interference was studied using an inter-subject competition procedure designed to manipulate effort. In experiment 1, subjects in the competition group were successful at inhibiting Stroop interference when compared to the performance of subjects in the no-competition group. This result is consistent with theories that postulate attentional effects on Stroop interference. In experiment 2, the significant decrease in Stroop interference was accompanied by a significant reduction in recognition memory for Stroop list items. Therefore, Stroop interference was reduced at a stage during the processing of word meaning. This result is consistent with theories that locate Stroop interference before response output.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-235
Number of pages11
JournalActa psychologica
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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