Return to the Picture Story Exercise page

Script Author: O. Schultheiss
last updated: 03-14-2017 by K.Borchert ( for Millisecond Software LLC

Note (by Millisecond Software):
By default this script allows participants to move onto the next stimuli before the maximum
time limit is up (but only after parameters.minstorytime).  To change that setting so that all participants have to wait until 
the maximum time limit is up, go to TRIALS-> openended.story and follow further instructions.
In general: Once the maximum time limit is up, the current story page closes and the next trial is started.

Millisecond Software thanks Dr. Schultheiss for sharing this script!


This script implements a Picture Story Exercise (PSE) based on:											

Pang, J. S., & Schultheiss, O. C. (2005). Assessing implicit motives in U.S. College students:
Effects of picture type and position, gender and ethnicity, and cross-cultural comparisons. Journal of 
Personality Assessment, 85(3), 280-294.

and on: 
Schultheiss, O. C., Liening, S., & Schad, D. (2008). The reliability of a Picture Story Exercise measure
of implicit motives: Estimates of internal consistency, retest reliability, and ipsative stability. Journal of
Research in Personality, 42, 1560-1571 	
For more information on the PSE, see: 
Schultheiss, O. C., & Pang, J. S. (2007). Measuring implicit motives. In R. W. Robins, R. C. Fraley & R. Krueger (Eds.),
Handbook of Research Methods in Personality Psychology (pp. 322-344). New York: Guilford. 
All sources are available for download from the website of the Human Motivation & Affective Neuroscience Lab at

Participants are asked to do 8 picture story exercises. Each exercise presents a picture for 10s
and then asks the participant to write a complete story about the picture. Participants have
5 minutes for each story.

The default data stored in the data files are:

(1) Raw data file: 'PictureStoryExercise_raw*.iqdat' (a separate file for each participant)

build:							Inquisit build
computer.platform:				the platform the script was run on
date, time, subject, group:		date and time script was run with the current subject/groupnumber 
blockcode, blocknum:			the name and number of the current block
trialcode, trialnum: 			the name and number of the currently recorded trial
									(Note: not all trials that are run might record data; by default data is collected unless /recorddata = false is set for a particular trial/block) 
/essay:							stores the essay number (= picture itemnumber)
stimulusitem:					the presented stimuli in order of trial presentation
response:						the participant's response (openended response)
latency: 						the response latency

(2) Summary data file: 'PictureStoryExercise_summary*.iqdat' (a separate file for each participant)

script.startdate:				date script was run
script.starttime:				time script was started
script.subjectid:				subject id number
script.groupid:					group id number
script.elapsedtime:				time it took to run script (in ms)
computer.platform:				the platform the script was run on
/completed:						0 = script was not completed (prematurely aborted); 1 = script was completed (all conditions run)

* 8 pictures - order is determined randomly
* pictures are presented for 10s
* Then a textbox appears in which participants can enter the story
* Participants have 5 minutes for each pic (warning are given shortly before participants are moved onto the next picture)

can be edited under section Editable Stimuli

can be edited under section Editable Instructions

check below for (relatively) easily editable parameters, stimuli, instructions etc. 
Keep in mind that you can use this script as a template and therefore always "mess" with the entire code to further customize your experiment.

The parameters you can change are:

/pictureduration:				duration the pictures are presented in ms (default: 10000ms)
/firstreminder:					first reminder that clock is ticking in ms (default: 180000ms => 3min)
/firstwarning:					first warning that time is almost up in ms (default: 220000ms => 3 2/3 min)
/secondwarning:					second warning that time is up in ms (default: 240000ms => 4min)
/maxstorytime:					the maximum time allowed for each picture in ms; after parameters.maxstorytime is up
								computer moves participant to next picture (default: 300000 => 5min)
									Note: added by Millisecond Software (not present in original script)
/minstorytime:					the minimum time that participants have to stay on a picture in ms
									Note: added by Millisecond Software (not present in original script)

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