Comparisons of sequentially presented vibrotactile frequencies have been extensively studied using electrophysiological recordings in nonhuman primates. Although neural signatures for working memory aspects of such tasks were recently also identified in human oscillatory EEG activity, homologue correlates of the comparison process are yet unknown. Here, we recorded EEG activity while participants decided which of two sequentially presented vibrotactile stimuli had a higher frequency. Because choices in this type of task are known to be systematically biased by the time-order effect, we applied Bayesian modeling to account for individual choice behavior. Using model-based EEG analysis, we found that upper beta band amplitude (∼20–30 Hz) was modulated by participants' choices. The modulation emerged ∼750 msec before a behavioral response was given and was source-localized to premotor areas.Importantly, the choice-dependent modulation of beta band amplitude was invariant to different motor response mappings and reflected the categorical outcome of the subjective comparison between the two frequencies. Consistently, this pattern was evident for both correct and incorrect trials, indicating that the beta band amplitude mirrors the internal representation of the comparison outcome. Our data complement previous findings in nonhuman primates and corroborate that the beta band activity in premotor areas reflects the categorical outcome of a sensory comparison prior to translation into an effector-specific motor command.

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