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rhody is offline
May31-10, 08:41 PM
PF Gold
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P: 765

This paper was published in 1998, has the consensus as to what qualifies as synesthesia changed since, which would disqualify this as a legitimate type ?
This paper came out of a collaboration of University of Sydney, Australia and University of Otago, New Zealand.

Just when you thought we had reached the end of new types of synesthesia to discuss, this:

Changes in Odor Sweetness Resulting from Implicit Learning of a Simultaneous Odor-Sweetness Association: An Example of Learned Synesthesia

In two experiments the smelled sweetness of odors was increased by using them as flavorants of sucrose solution. Experiment 1 used blind experimenters to compare a target odor mixed with sucrose with a control odor mixed with water during masked training trials. The increased sweetness of the target odor was unaffected by whether or not subjects revealed some explicit knowledge of the contingencies in a post-conditioning recognition test. Experiment 2 found that such a conditioned increase in odor sweetness occurred whether training solutions were sipped from a cup or sucked through a straw. Using a frequency test designed to provide a sensitive assay of contingency awareness, there was still no indication that this affected conditioning. It was concluded that such modification of the taste-properties of odors results from implicit simultaneous associative learning and provides an example of learned synesthesia.
Summary: You should read pages 16 - 20 for a more complete summary
In summary, the results from these two experiments demonstrate that conditioned changes in odor sweetness are robust in the face of controls for experimenter bias and mere exposure effects. They occur even when orthonasal contact with the odor, i.e., sniffing, is prevented when a subject samples a training solution. This form of conditioning takes place when awareness of the experimental contingencies is at best very limited and appears unrelated to the size of the change reported by a subject. Such changes are also relatively long lived, in that no sign of a decrease was obtained as a result of delaying testing for 24 h or more. In the context of previous research on odor–taste combinations the present study appears to provide a rare example of an experimental demonstration of learned synesthesia.