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A decision by sampling account of trade-off effects

Neil Stewart
Department of Psychology, Warwick University , UK

Decision by sampling theory is extended to provide a process account of the time course of decision making. Accumulators representing the valence of options are incremented to track the frequency of successful binary, pairwise comparsions between attributes for each option. This theory accounts for the effects of introducing a third option to a choice between two options (e.g., similarity effects, attraction effects, and compromise effects), providing a unified account of these phenomena.