Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience

2015 Edition
| Editors: Dieter Jaeger, Ranu Jung

Decision-Making, Threshold

  • Paul MillerEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6675-8_315



A decision-making threshold is the value of the decision-making variable at which the decision is made, such that an action is selected or a commitment to one alternative is made, marking the end of accumulation of information.

Detailed Description

A decision-making threshold determines when a decision-making process is completed. It represents a value of the decision variable, which in practice could be a linear combination of a set of neural firing rates, at which the accumulation of sensory evidence terminates and a response or action is chosen. In two-alternative forced-choice tasks, two thresholds exist, one for each of the two alternatives.

In models of decision making, the threshold can be either static or dynamic during an individual trial. Mathematically, a threshold is an absorbing boundary of the diffusion process for the decision variable. The time for the decision variable to reach such an absorbing boundary...
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biology and Brandeis UniversityWalthamUSA
  2. 2.Volen National Center for Complex SystemsWalthamUSA