Help setting up a response criterion


I am running an experiment with three blocks, each block contains 1 trial, and each trial has an event that is using a list of 8 different items. The three blocks are easy, medium, and hard difficulty levels. I would like to set it up so that each individual block is repeated until the participant correctly answers 8 items in a row. When they have answered 8 correctly in a row it should then proceed to the next block. I am assuming that I have to create a macro with an “if” statement, but I only see options based on percentage correct. Is it possible to set it up for a certain number of correct responses in a row?

That is my primary concern, but to be difficult, I would ideally like the participant to complete the block once the response criterion is met. For example, if they answer incorrectly for the first two items, then they answer the next 8 correctly, they will be on item 3 of the block (there are 8 items in a block and they have now responded to 10). However, I would still like them to respond to the remaining 6 items to ensure that they see each item the same amount of times. To put this in context, after the experiment we are getting participants to perform a recognition task – if they see some items more than others it will bias their scores on the recognition task, so they should complete all items on the list even if they response criterion has been met. Is it possible to also set it up this way?

What I was thinking was making a macro with:

all items on the list were presented “if true” exit this block and present next block
8 correct responses in a row “if false” repeat current block

if I could set it up so that both of those “if” statements must be satisfied to progress I think it would work – but I am not sure. This is my first time experimenting with the macros, so I am a bit out of my league.

Any advice would be appreciated!

Thank you!

With your trial being linked to a stimulus list that has 8 items, this will effectively the equivalent of 8 trials being presented.

I have a question: say that after the block ends (8 trials), the participant hasn’t answered correctly 8 in a row yet. So the block is presented again, and the participant answers correctly 8 in a row after the 10th trial, i.e. the 2nd trial after the block is repeated. Now the participant has 6 more trials to go before moving on to the next block. The question is: what happens if she gets an answer wrong during one of those 6 trials? Should the block be repeated again? Or should we ignore subsequent incorrect answers once they’ve got 8 correct in a row?

This is important because the macro approach that you described will work only if the participant gets the last 8 correctly. But if she gets it correctly at some point and then makes a subsequent mistake, then you will need a different approach.

Let me know.

Ideally if they get an answer incorrect during those 6 trials (after they have already gotten 8 correct in a row) it should not matter/be ignored, all we care is they finish off the block (so they see all the stimuli the same number of times).

Please see the attached sample experiment.

Please note, the three macros and code values used. Within the experiment there is also a block created to clear the code values. If you are presenting different trials, you won’t need to use this block. Also, four tracer events are set-up within the experiment so as to see if all conditions are being met.

Nikki.sl4 (8.43 KB)

Amazing! I will try it out and let you know how it goes. Thank you very much!


I tested your program and it is doing exactly what I want it to do. However, when I add my stimuli it no longer works. I am uploading my program and I was wonder if you could help me trouble shoot. I plan on having 6 blocks with increasing difficulty as they go through the experiment. I have put the first 3 in – but I figured I’d stop seeing as it is no longer working.

I have not included my stimuli – they are calling on images – but I don’t see how that would screw up the whole program.

Let me know if you have any idea what I am doing wrong.

Thank you!!

NikkiEdit.sl4 (25.4 KB)

This is a newer version… as I was plugging away at it trying to trouble shoot. I think the instructions are throwing off the macros, so basically I need to know how to reset the values after I present instructions/ breaks, without throwing everything else off.

I am going to keep plugging away trying to figure it out, but if you have any suggestions they would be appreciated!!


NikkiEdit.sl4 (26.4 KB)

Sorry for the 1000 posts – I believe I have figured it out!

Thank you for all of your assistance.

Thank you for keeping us posted :slight_smile:

HELP! (Again)


Thanks to your assistance I was able to get the study up and running – however, I have a new dilemma.

Based on the way my experiment is programmed, participant must get 8 correct in a row to move on to the next block. Technically, if participants are really bad that means that the experiment could go on for an infinite number of trials. I am going to be running an elderly population on this study starting next week and I am afraid that I may get into a situation where the task is too hard for the participants and they never finish.

I am pretty sure there is a function where you can tell the program to move to the next block after a certain number of trials, however, based on the macros you helped me to create so I could use a response criterion I don’t think that option will work. (but I am not sure)

Is there something you can suggest so that I can create a time-out, or a skip to the next block… that way if it is taking them too long it will stop, rather than me having to explain that they are too bad at the task (not really good ethically).

Thank you!

You can create another macro that either moves to the next block after a time limit, or after a certain number of trials. The macro should work even though you have the others.