I think that the choice made by a subject in a choice task should be behavioral observation. But I am not sure about reaction time and memory, which is more about ability instead of intention.


1 Answer 1


It may help considering whether the phenomenon is under some control by the participant. Pupil dilation is a physiological measure, but the speed at which I hit a key (reaction time) is a behavioral measure. Memory is a phenomenon. If you meant recall, recognition, or another memory retrieval task, how could you measure that physiologically? Memory is generally measured through (somewhat controlled) self-report. However, it could also be probed through less controllable, more automatic reactions.

  • $\begingroup$ So should memory be counted as "self-report" instead of behavioral measure? $\endgroup$
    – Aqqqq
    Oct 31, 2018 at 13:27
  • $\begingroup$ What about eye movement and gaze duration? $\endgroup$
    – Aqqqq
    Oct 31, 2018 at 13:57
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ If you ask people "how much did you remember“ then you have a self-report of memory, if you test people on some memory items you probably have a behavioral measure. There are many ways to probe memory, also many types of memory, pretty sure you could have a physiological measure of familiarity/recognition if you wanted one (and could spend money on the gear to measure it!) $\endgroup$ Oct 31, 2018 at 14:46
  • $\begingroup$ Why is it important to distinguish between different kinds of measure/observation though? So long as you have a question and answer it anything is fine? $\endgroup$ Oct 31, 2018 at 14:49
  • $\begingroup$ agree with @steveLangsford above: to classify something as self-report, behavioral, etc. one needs to decide on a specific measure. Eye movements are medium-controllable, so that might be a mix, depending on what the participant's task and intentions are. $\endgroup$ Oct 31, 2018 at 16:07

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