Expectations and Perceptual Priming in a Visual Search Task: Evidence From Eye Movements and Behavior
An extensive amount of research indicates that repeating target and distractor features facilitates pop-out search while switching these features slows the search. Following the seminal study by Maljkovic and Nakayama (1994), this “priming of pop-out” effect (PoP) has been widely described as an automatic bottom-up process that is independent of the observers’ expectations. At the same time, numerous studies highlight the crucial role of expectations in visual attention deployment. Our experiment shows that in contrast to previous claims, PoP in a classic color singleton search task is a mix of automatic processing and expectations. Participants searched for a uniquely colored diamond among 2 same-colored distractors. Target color sequences were either predictable (e.g., 2 red-target-green-distractors trials, followed by 2 green-target-red-distractors trials, and so on) or random. Responses were faster in predictable color sequences than randomly changing ones with equal number of repetitions of target colors on preceding trials. Analyses of observers’ eye movements showed that predictability of target color affected both latency and accuracy of the first saccade during a search trial. Our results support the idea that PoP is governed not only by automatic effects from previous target or distractor features but also by top-down expectations.
The distractive effects on attentional task performance in different paradigms are analyzed in this paper. I demonstrate how distractors may negatively affect (interference effect), positively (redundancy effect) or neutrally (null effect). Distractor effects described in literature are classified in accordance with their hypothetical source. The general rule of the theory is also introduced. It contains the formal prediction of the particular distractor effect, based on entropy and redundancy measures from the mathematical theory of communication (Shannon, 1948). Single- vs dual-process frameworks are considered for hypothetical mechanisms which underpin the distractor effects. Distractor profiles (DPs) are also introduced for the formalization and simple visualization of experimental data concerning the distractor effects. Typical shapes of DPs and their interpretations are discussed with examples from three frequently cited experiments. Finally, the paper introduces hierarchical hypothesis that states the level-fashion modulating interrelations between distractor effects of different classes.
It is well known, that even in optimal conditions animals and humans make spontaneous errors which are the most prominent manifestations of attention system failures. Our goal was to investigate the causes of attention system failures in normal state of arousal and without distracting objects. We have designed a new task which allows to answer the following question: which stage of sensory processing is compromised during attention lapses?
Differences in the parameters of memory-guided saccades and saccades to visual stimuli were demonstrated. Increases in the latent periods of memory-guided saccades as compared with saccades to visual stimuli provided evidence of slowing of saccade programming based on the extraction of information from working memory. Differently directed lateral differences were seen in the latent periods and durations of saccades to visual targets and memory-guided saccades, reflecting the leading role of the left hemisphere in the programming of saccades to visual stimuli and the right hemisphere in the programming of memory- guided saccades. Comparison of parameters of the temporospatial dynamics of initiation potentials P-1 and N-1, which develop in the last 100 msec of the latent periods of saccades, suggest that there are different mechanisms for the final step of programming saccades to visual stimuli and memory-guided saccades. Decreases in the latent period of the P-1 and N-1 peak potentials before memory-guided saccades may be evidence showing acceleration of the initiation processes for memory-guided saccades as compared with visually evoked saccades. This provides grounds for suggesting that the slowing of the programming of memory-guided saccades occurs at steps preceding saccade initiation.
The article proposes application of the level approach to attention research. Four basic principles of levelbased architecture of attention are derived from theoretical premises of the level approach to cognition and the psychology of attention as well as from empirical data. The author offers a variant of empirical research program which is based on the logic of the level approach. Finally the 5 level model of attention processes organization is proposed on the basis on experimental data. The article also contains examples of author's empirical studies which are interpreted in the level approach framework. The first study demonstrates the functioning of the redundancy principle (which is one the basic principles stated in study) in the visual inspection tasks. The second study shows the differences in the efficiency of memorizing the same material and the differences in experiencing of subjective confidence in mnemonic judgments depending on the leading level of attention in task solving.
The world that we perceive and describe changes constantly. If we believe our descriptions of the world to be accurate and consistent, we must assume that the content and the structure of our individual sentences accurately and consistently reflect the world’s constantly changing nature. If so, a comprehensive production system must model the sentence generation process taking into account this basic assumption: Words, their linear arrangement, and the structures they are inserted in must somehow reflect the corresponding parameters of the observed and described event. This system must include representation of salience as one integral component resulting in interplay that involves constant, regular, and automatic mappings between elements of a visual scene, their varying salience, and the structural arrangement of the sentence constituents and the grammatical relations between them. In this interplay, perceptual input contributes initially to this mapping process by providing information for further conceptual and linguistic encoding. Importantly, this information is not processed in an unconstrained fashion; instead, it is systematically filtered, selected, and relayed based on a regular interface between the aspects of attention and their corresponding counterparts in the conceptual and linguistic structures. Bottom-up and top-down features of this interface include noticeability, importance, or relevance. As a result, linguistic output reflects the event’s conceptual organization including the attentional state of the speaker in a regular way. This mapping between attentional focus and structural choice is a part of a more complex mapping mechanism that we will refer to as Cognition-Language Interface or CLI. Specifically, this Chapter will consider theoretical and empirical knowledge about the complex interplay between the speaker’s attentional state and the structural choices they make during sentence production.
Distractor's effect (stimulus which is irrelevant at a certain moment and ignored) on task solving efficiency is considered. It is revealed that according to problem situation and connection with target stimulus any distractor can produce two opposite effects: negative - interference and positive - redundancy effect. Distractor effects' classification based on one of possible grounds - distractor's source: sensory inputs effects, hierarchical effects and correlational effects is given. Possibility of level-hierarchical relation between the three classes of effects is discussed.
This article describes the expierence of studying factors influencing the social well-being of educational migrants as mesured by means of a psychological well-being scale (A. Perrudet-Badoux, G.A. Mendelsohn, J.Chiche, 1988) previously adapted for Russian by M.V. Sokolova. A statistical analysis of the scale's reliability is performed. Trends in dynamics of subjective well-being are indentified on the basis the correlations analysis between the condbtbions of adaptation and its success rate, and potential mechanisms for developing subjective well-being among student migrants living in student hostels are described. Particular attention is paid to commuting as a factor of adaptation.