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A Bayesian Multilevel Model for the Psychometric Function using R and Stan
AdvisorSchissler, Alfred G
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A common neuroscience topic is to determine the temporal order of two stimuli, and is often studied via a logistic model called a psychometric function. The data arises from repeated sampling of subjects across a variety of tasks (stimuli), blocks, and time separations. These studies are often interested in making inferences at the group level (age, gender, etc.) and at an individual level. This hierarchical nesting makes multilevel modeling a natural choice for these data. We describe a principled workflow for model development using domain expertise, regularizing priors, and posterior predictive performance to compare models. We then apply the workflow to produce a novel statistical model for temporal order judgment data by fitting a series of Bayesian models efficiently using Hamiltonian Monte Carlo (HMC) in the R programming language with Stan.