June 2007
Volume 7, Issue 9
Free
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2007
The attentional blink affects three aspects of selection: Delay, duration, and suppression
Author Affiliations
  • Edward Vul
    Dept. Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Mark Nieuwenstein
    Dept. Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Dept. Cognitive Psychology, Vrije Universiteit
  • Brian Coffey
    Dept. Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Nancy Kanwisher
    Dept. Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Journal of Vision June 2007, Vol.7, 812. doi:10.1167/7.9.812
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      Edward Vul, Mark Nieuwenstein, Brian Coffey, Nancy Kanwisher; The attentional blink affects three aspects of selection: Delay, duration, and suppression. Journal of Vision 2007;7(9):812. doi: 10.1167/7.9.812.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

The attentional blink is a deficit in reporting the second of a pair of items when they are separated by 200–500 msec. Recent findings demonstrate that the AB is due to a disruption of attentional selection, rather than memory encoding. Here we asked which properties of attentional selection are affected by the AB: its delay, amplitude, and/or duration. We presented an RSVP sequence of letters with two annulus cues surrounding the location of the letters occurring for 58.3 msec each at two different times in the sequence. The letters occurring after the cues were targets while the other letters were distracters. By recording which letters from the stream were reported, we could compute (a) the “center of mass” of reports around the second cue (i.e. the delay), (b) the overall reduction in the proportion of letters that were reported from an interval around second cue, rather than elsewhere in the letter stream (i.e. the suppression), and (c) the variance of the distribution of reports around the second cue (i.e., the duration). We found that each of these effects of the attentional blink are dissociable by their time course (i.e., how they vary with delay after T1). The duration of selection returns to baseline (T1) levels first; suppression takes some 100 msec longer; and delay of selection takes longer yet to reach baseline. We further dissociate the delay of selection from suppression and duration by showing that a cueing manipulation alters delay without affecting either suppression of duration. These data show that all three effects exist and are dissociable; this new evidence may be problematic for current accounts of the blink that rely on only one of these effects as the basis of the AB deficit.

Vul, E. Nieuwenstein, M. Coffey, B. Kanwisher, N. (2007). The attentional blink affects three aspects of selection: Delay, duration, and suppression [Abstract]. Journal of Vision, 7(9):812, 812a, http://journalofvision.org/7/9/812/, doi:10.1167/7.9.812. [CrossRef]
Footnotes
 EY13455 to NK
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