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I am planning to run a study where participants will been shown questions on a computer monitor and their task is to type their responses in a text box as quickly as they can. Their input and input speed will be recorded. So any recommendation of preferably free programs is welcome. Thanks!

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Seems like something you could do with python. The psychopy toolbox might help. –  Dan M. May 29 '13 at 16:08
    
How much precision do you need? If being off by 100ms won't hurt, then don't even bother with psychopy. Just make a web page with a textarea and write two lines of javascript to save the timestamp of the first and last onChange events. –  octern Jun 3 '13 at 2:04
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up vote 3 down vote accepted

I imagine most software designed for creating psychological experiments will be able to do this. (e.g., EPrime, Direct RT, MediaLab, SuperLab, etc.). I've mainly used Inquisit to record responses and response times. These are all proprietary options.

You could also readily implement a trial interface with a textbox and response times in standard programming languages. For example, I've used visual basic on occasion to record data in textboxes.

Finally, as @Dan M mentions there is psychopy which is free. I have not personally used it.

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Thanks for the suggestions. One problem with paid programs is that although the lab I am affiliated with has the licenses for them, I cannot take them with me. So I will probably try Dan's suggestion of Psychopy. –  Alex May 30 '13 at 16:41
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There's a new program called "Paradigm" that has direct support for typed responses. It will measure the input speed, time to first key press and record the typed response. It's very easy to use and has a number of other great features.

Check it out:

Paradigm http://www.paradigmexperiments.com

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Seems like quite a sophisticated and versatile program. Thanks for the suggestion, and welcome to cogsci.stackexchange! –  Nick Stauner Jan 15 at 21:30
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