August 2012
Volume 12, Issue 9
Free
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2012
Awareness of Attentional System and Spatial Judgments
Author Affiliations
  • Jean-Paul Noel
    Gustavus Adolphus College
  • Anthony Mefford
    Gustavus Adolphus College
  • Lauren Hecht
    Gustavus Adolphus College
Journal of Vision August 2012, Vol.12, 667. doi:10.1167/12.9.667
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      Jean-Paul Noel, Anthony Mefford, Lauren Hecht; Awareness of Attentional System and Spatial Judgments. Journal of Vision 2012;12(9):667. doi: 10.1167/12.9.667.

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

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Abstract

Spatial judgments and estimates play a fundamental role in the construction of the visual world. This perception is deeply influenced by the loci of an individual's attentional system and the reference point undertaken when making these estimates. In this study it was hypothesized that exocentric, but not egocentric, spatial estimates would be enhanced by meta-awareness. Furthermore, it was predicted that this effect could be replicated through the process of perceiving oneself from a third person’s point of view. In Experiment 1, participants completed the Sustained Attention to Response Task while periodically making depth or segment length estimations. Results confirmed the hypotheses; performance increased for participants in a state of meta-awareness with respect to segment length estimates, but did not for depth estimates. In Experiment 2, a third set of participants estimated distances both egocentrically (i.e., relative to their body) and exocentrically (i.e., relative to an external point), either under natural viewing conditions (i.e., egocentric perspective) or when watching themselves in a virtual reality environment (i.e., exocentric perspective). Results indicated that from an exocentric perspective participants underestimated both egocentric and exocentric distances; however, from an egocentric perspective participants underestimated exocentric distances and overestimated egocentric ones. From these results it can be concluded that although participants do perceive exocentric distance more accurately when conceptually distant from their own attentional system, the processing mechanism underlying this effect is not a purely visual mechanism as the effects were not replicated when participants viewed themselves from a third person's point of view.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2012

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