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An optimal control approach to testing theories of human information processing constraints

Chen, Xiuli (2015)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Abstract

This thesis is concerned with explaining human control and decision making behaviours in an integrated framework. The framework provides a means of explaining human behaviour in terms of adaptation to the constraints imposed by both the task environment and the information processing mechanisms of the mind. Some previous approaches tended to have been polarised between those that have focused on rational analyses of the task environment, on the one hand, and those that have focused on the mechanisms that give rise to cognition on the other hand. The former usually is based on the assumption that rational human beings adapt to the external environment by achieving 'goals' defined only by the task environment and with minimal consideration of the mechanisms of the human mind; while the latter focuses on information processing mechanisms that are hypothesised to generate behaviour, e.g., heuristics, or rules. In contrast, in the approach explored in this thesis, mechanism and rationality are tightly integrated. This thesis investigates a \(state\) \(estimation\) \(and\) \(optimal\) \(control\) approach, in which human behavioural strategies and heuristics, rather than being programmed into the model, emerge as a consequence of rational adaptation given a theory of the information processing constraints.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Howes, Andrew
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Department:School of Computer Science
Keywords:optimal control, Markov decision processes, human information processing constraints
Subjects:BF Psychology
Q Science (General)
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:5907
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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