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Michael Dodd, Stefan Van Der Stigchel, Andrew Hollingworth, Alan Kingstone; Examining scanpaths and inhibition of return as a function of task instruction during scene viewing. Journal of Vision 2008;8(6):118. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/8.6.118.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Yarbus (1967) demonstrated that the pattern of eye movements and fixations that people make is affected by specific task instructions as to which objects in a painting should be attended, but to date, little systematic investigation of this issue has been conducted. In the present study, we examine how eye movements change when individuals are trying to search for something in a scene relative to when they are trying to memorize a scene, rate how much they like a scene, or simply freely-view a scene. Moreover, in the present study, we examine whether inhibition of return occurs in scene viewing tasks as a function of task instruction. Inhibition of return (IOR) refers to the finding that people are slower to detect a target or make an eye movement to a previously searched location. It has been suggested that the purpose of IOR is to aid visual search by biasing attention towards novel locations. What is not known, however, is whether the IOR effect extends to other complex tasks besides search in which it would also be useful to continually orient to novel locations. Consequently, scanpaths and saccadic reaction times are examined as a function of task instruction to determine whether IOR also influences memory, rating, and free-viewing tasks.
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