August 2016
Volume 16, Issue 12
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   September 2016
Prior knowledge of the locations of potentially relevant objects reduces effects of visual salience
Author Affiliations
  • Mieke Donk
    Department of Cognitive Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Jeroen Silvis
    Department of Cognitive Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Jan Theeuwes
    Department of Cognitive Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Journal of Vision September 2016, Vol.16, 377. doi:10.1167/16.12.377
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      Mieke Donk, Jeroen Silvis, Jan Theeuwes; Prior knowledge of the locations of potentially relevant objects reduces effects of visual salience. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):377. doi: 10.1167/16.12.377.

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      © 2017 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.

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Abstract

The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the effects of visual salience on early oculomotor selection can be modulated by prior knowledge regarding the identities and locations of potential saccadic targets. In two experiments, participants were asked to make a saccade to a singleton target line (e.g. left tilted) that was presented with a singleton distractor line (tilted in the opposite direction) in a homogenous field of background lines. The salience of the target was either high or low relative to the salience of the distractor. The Stimulus Onset Asynchrony (SOA) between the singletons and the background elements was manipulated in order to dissociate the availability of information concerning the identities of the singletons, the locations of the singletons, and the salience of the singletons. The singletons were either presented simultaneously with the background lines (Experiment 1 and 2), prior to the background lines (Experiment 1 and 2), or after the background lines (Experiment 2). The results indicate that when the singletons and background lines were presented asynchronously, the salience of the target relative to the distractor had a reduced effect on selection performance. This decrease in the effect of salience occurred regardless of whether the singletons were presented before or after the appearance of the background lines. The results suggest that the availability of information concerning the locations of potentially relevant objects makes oculomotor behavior less sensitive to relative differences in salience among those objects.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016

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