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Transcript of Griffiths
The Role of Cognitive Bias and Skill
in Fruit Machine Gambling
Each person in your group is going to be given some chips, to gamble on the role of a dice.
ONLY ONE person in the group is to roll the dice- they may also gamble.
you must place a bet of at least one chip on each role, and try to guess what it will land on.
OTHER THAN GUESSING THE NUMBER< DO NOT SAY ANYTHING!!!
Now, share the chips back out evenly.
DO the same, but this time I want you to say your thoughts out-loud each time the result comes in, or as your guessing the dice.
Re-distribute the chips evenly.
This time, take in turns rolling the dice.
Answer the following as truthfully as you can:
Was this game completely down to chance?
Was there a possibility of using probability to work out each role?
Was there ANY skill involved?
Did you feel more in controll when you rolled the dice?
DId you make any irrational thoughts?
Gross, suggested that people tend to make bias judgements about probablility. he describes it thus:
Which of these 3 options are most likely to be the result of 6 coin tosses:
H H H T T T
H T H T H T
H H T H T H
These are essentially cognitive shortcuts. It's too time consuming to rationally judge every choice so we go with a rule of thumb to make things easier.
Usually, these are amazingly useful, however... Sometimes we use them incorrectly.
Illusion of Control:
Believing you have more chance of winning because you feel you have control (you don't... idiot)
Feeling like you knew it was going to happen AFTER it has, sometimes believing you could have predicted it. "I knew it would land on that! I nearly said that!"
Success= Own skill, Failure= Situational factors.
Believing a set of results will represent all results: winning 3 hand of cards- "winning streak- I'll win all night"
Belief that events work together when they do not- eg rolling a dice slowly to get a lower number... fool.
To see if regular gamblers are more skillfull than non regular gamblers in fruit machine gambling.
To see if regular gamblers are more irrational in their cognitive biases than non regular gamblers.
1: There would be no significant differences between Regular Gamblers (RG) and Non-regular Gambles (NRG) in objective measures of skill.
2: RGs would make more irrational verbalisations than NRGs
3: RGs would believe themselves to be more skillful than NRGs in subjective measures of self report
You need to find out the details of the method...
To do this:
Read the original study from where it says METHOD and look at the results tables
On your mini whiteboard find the following
Method and design
DVs for each condition (with eg's for H1)
Controls and how to think aloud
Heuristics explain gambling addiction
Gamblers use heuristics TOO OFTEN
They think they nearly win not always lose
It's an individual differences study because it suggests gamblers are different to 'normal' people
30 regular gamblers
30 non-regular gamblers
Regular 29m & 1f play at least once week
Non-regular 15m & 15f play once month or less
Recruited via a POSTER
The ‘objective’ (behavioural) DVs
Total number of plays in session
Total minutes of play in session
Total plays per minute in session
End stake – total winnings
Total number of wins in session
Win rate (time) – time between wins
Win rate (plays) – number of plays between wins
The ‘subjective’ DVs
(1) Cognitive activity
measured by ‘thinking aloud’
(2) Perception of SKILL
measured by post - experiment semi structured interview
In Arcade each participant given £3 to gamble on machine that gave 30 free gambles
Objective: To stay on machine for 60 gambles
To break even & win back the £3
If they achieved 60 gambles they could choose to keep the ££ or carry on gambling
All participants played same machine ‘Fruitskill’
Randomly assigned to thinking aloud / non-thinking aloud
All recordings transcribed within 24 hours
How to think aloud
Say everything that comes to mind- do not censor anything- even if irrelevant.
Talk as continuously as possible, even if your ideas are not clearly structured.
Do not worry about fragmented sentences.
Do not try to justify your thoughts.
SUBJECTIVE MEASURES OF COG-BIAS
Verbalising confusion ***
Reference to skill
Swear at machine
Talk to the machine
Machine personification **
Examples of FINDINGS:
Win rate plays **
Win rate - time
Play Rate **
OBJECTIVE MEASURES OF SKILL
SUBJECTIVE MEASURES OF PERCEPTION OF SKILL- SELF REPORT
Is there any skill involved?
Knowing when machine will pay out
Equal chance / skill *
"This fruity is not in a good mood!"
"It wants its money back"
"The machine... Hates me"
"This machine won't pay out happily"
"Putting only a quid in bluff the machine"
There were no real differences between objective results of skill between RGs and NRGs.
RGs are faster than NRGs
RGs TA had significantly lower win rates
No differences in overall winnings
SUbjective Cog Bias
RGs TA showed significantly more Cog-Bias in irrational commnets than NRGs TA.
RG TA 14% NRG TA 2.5%
NRGs did use heuristics but not in the same abundance
"I had a feeling it wasn't going to pay very much after it had just given me a 'feature'" RG
"Oh you son of a bitch, you (the machine) changed them, you changed them! You snatched the win" RG
Perception of Skill in Sem-Structured Interview
RG and NRG had similar ideas of what skills were, however RG suggested there were four different skills to NRGs
Knowledge of the 'gamble button'
Knowledge of 'feature skills'
Knowledge of when the machine will pay out
Not playing if the machine has just payed out
RG emphasised importance of skill more
RG considered themselves more skilled
If people become addicted to gambling through cognitive biases there is some hope for rehabilitation through cognitive therapy which aim to help 'faulty thinking'
Though no significant difference between objective measures of skill over all, RGs were faster so perhaps Regular gamblers are more skilful
e.g. knowing the reels & when to nudge
Regular gamblers believe they are more
skillful than they are, overall did not win more than NRGs. Gamblers know they will ‘lose’ but they play
with money not for it (staying on is the objective
Regular gamblers make more irrational
verbalisations demonstrating cognitive bias
A strength of this study is that is has given us insight into how gambling addictions may be treated.
For example, if regular gamblers gamble more because of an increase of cognitive bias they can be treated using cognitive therapies
THIS IS A STRENGTH BECAUSE it means Griffiths has been useful in treating gambling addiction
A strength of Griffith's study is that it did not break any ethical guidelines
For example, Griffiths had an ethical comittee which ensured no one was introduced to gambling and all participants gave full informed consent
THIS IS A STRENGTH BECAUSE it means that the study caqn be replicated without breaking guidelines anbd protects participants.
Cognition: A thought or thought process
Cognitive: to do with thoughts and thought processes
Heuristic: Shortcut cognition
THERE WILL BE PRIZES FOR THE FASTEST 5
A strength of Griffiths's study is that it is high in ecological validity
For example, the study looked at cognitive bias in gamblers in an arcade which is the natural environment for gambling
THIS IS A STRENGTH BECAUSE it should show natural gambling behaviour and bias and so can be generalised to the real world
A weakness of Griffith's is method is that THE THINKING ALOUD CONDITION lacks Ecological and internal validity
For example, it is not usual for people to deliberately voice aloud their thoughts and cognitive biases when gambling on friut machines, and people may also show demand characterisitcs to do what Griffiths wants
THIS IS A WEAKNESS BECAUSE we cannot generalise finding about cognitive biases from the thinking aloud condition to the real world because it is not natural or say that it was the gambling that made tehm think in a way and not the conditon.
A strength of the sample is that it is arguably representitive of the gambling population
Griffith's points out in his study that there are more men (29) than women (1) in the regular gambling condition but this is expected because men more regularly gamble
THIS IS A STRENGTH because regular gamblers are proportionately represented
A weakness of the Griffiths's sample is that is gender biased
There are more men overall (44) compared to women (16) taking part in fruit machine gambling
This is a weakness because we cannot generalise findings about cognitive bias to men and women equally
A strength of the field experiment in griffith's study is that is has strong controls
For example, Girffiths standardised the procedure, ensured PPs played on the same 'Fruitskill' game and ensured transcripts were made within 24 hours.
THIS IS A STRENGTH BECAUSE it increases the validity as we know it's the IV of being a regular gambler causing cognitive bias and not the machine
It also improves reliability as it is a replicable method to study cognitive bias
A strength of Girffiths study is that it collects Quantitative data
For example griffiths collects objective measures of skill such as play rate, end stake and time of play
THIS IS A STRENGTH BECAUSE it allows us to objectively compare the skills f regular and non regular gamblers
A weakness of Griffith's study could be bias interpretation of the qualitative data
For example griffiths colects qualitative data through recording think aloud conditions and semi structured interviews
THIS IS A WEAKNESS BECAUSE Griffith's may interpret cognitive bias differently from another experimenter and this reduces the validity
A strength of the Griffiths's study is that it collects qualitative data
For example, qualitative data on the cognitive bias of regular and non regular gablers is collected through recording the thinking aloud condition and semi structured interviews
THIS IS A STRENGTH BECAUSE it gives us insight into the cognitive bias in regular gamblers that qunatitative data cannot