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Why are some events more surprising than others? We propose that events that are more difficult to explain are those that are more surprising. The two experiments reported here test the impact of different event outcomes (Outcome-Type) and task demands (Task) on ratings of surprise for simple story scenarios. For the Outcome-Type variable, participants saw(More)
Early theories of surprise, including Darwin's, argued that it was predominantly a basic emotion. Recently, theories have taken a more cognitive view of surprise, casting it as a process of "making sense of surprising events". The current paper advances the view that the essence of this sense-making process is explanation; specifically, that people's(More)
The target article is a timely exposition on the impact of how emotion and cognition interact, a specifically important issue in surprise research. Psychologists debate whether disconfirmed expectations or sense-making processes determine surprise levels experienced for an event. We posit that, in surprise, cognition and emotion are intertwined, making it(More)
Surprise is a ubiquitous phenomenon that both draws on cognition and affects cognition, in a number of different ways. For example, in artificial intelligence an agent in a changing and imperfectly-known environment has been argued to need a surprise mechanism to survive. This symposium brings together researchers in education, computer science, cognitive(More)
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