||(A Literature Review on Reaction Time
by Robert J. Kosinski, Clemson University:)"The reaction time pioneer was Donders (1868), who showed that a simple reaction time is shorter than a recognition reaction time, and that the choice reaction time is longest of all. O'Shea and Bashore (2012) reviewed these early studies. Laming (Reference) concluded that simple reaction times averaged 220 msec but recognition reaction times averaged 384 msec. This is in line with many studies concluding that a complex stimulus (e.g., several letters in symbol recognition vs. one letter) elicits a slower reaction time (Brebner and Welford, 1980 Teichner and Krebs, 1974 Luce, 1986). An example very much like [researchers'] experiment was reported by Surwillo (1973), in which reaction was faster when a single tone sounded than when either a high or a low tone sounded and the subject was supposed to react only when the high tone sounded. Miller and Low (2001) determined that the time for motor preparation (e.g., tensing muscles) and motor response (in this case, pressing the spacebar) was the same in all three types of reaction time test, implying that the differences in reaction time are due to processing time."