June 2004
Volume 4, Issue 8
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2004
Attention, Aging, and Facial Expression
Author Affiliations
  • Sowon Hahn
    The University of Oklahoma, USA
Journal of Vision August 2004, Vol.4, 754. doi:https://doi.org/10.1167/4.8.754
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      Sowon Hahn; Attention, Aging, and Facial Expression. Journal of Vision 2004;4(8):754. https://doi.org/10.1167/4.8.754.

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

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A primary function of visual attention is to direct cognitive resource to important features of the environment. Given that detecting a threatening stimulus is critical for organisms to survive, it is not surprising that negative information is more efficient in directing attention than positive information. The present study investigated age influences on attentional guide to positive and negative facial expressions. For each trial, younger and older participants viewed a number of schematic faces on a computer screen and determined presence/absence of a specific facial expression. When the task was searching for a unique facial expression embedded in neutral faces, a search slope for an angry face was smaller than a happy face search slope, suggesting angry face advantages. The angry face advantage was stronger for younger adults, but older adults still demonstrated the angry face advantage. In addition, when the task was searching for an angry face, the search slope was identical to the angry face present condition of the unique face search. Similarly, when the task was searching for a happy face, the search slope was same as the happy face present condition of the unique face search task. The result suggests that facial expression attracts attention with a pre-defined priority and that this priority remains constant with aging.

Hahn, S.(2004). Attention, Aging, and Facial Expression [Abstract]. Journal of Vision, 4( 8): 754, 754a, http://journalofvision.org/4/8/754/, doi:10.1167/4.8.754. [CrossRef]

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